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Pulled String Painting Any Kid Can Do

Create Original Works of Art

pulled string painting

The last few rainy days have kept us inside. On days we can’t get out to play our go-to activity is painting. My kids love to simply paint with brushes, but the really cool thing about painting is that you can use almost anything to paint with. There is no one way to get the paint across the page. You can paint with brushes, pipe cleaners, feathers and even your own fingers. And you can also paint with string.  

Painting with string creates a really cool mirror image that, to me, looks similar to a Rorschach ink blot test. You know the kind psychologists used ages ago to determine what was in your subconscious. Only this is less complex. I remember making pulled string paintings as a kid in elementary school. This project brought back many memories of my 5th grade art teacher and her art room. 


11x17 inch paper (you can definitely use smaller, but we had larger paper on hand)

12-14 inches of string, twine, or yarn (whatever you have on hand)

Acrylic paints (we use washable paints to make clean up easy)

Start by folding your paper in half. This will make the next steps easier.

 Then drop spots of paint in any pattern on the paper. 

Next, place the string on the page in a zig-zag, or swirl pattern over the paint splotches and leave an inch of string hanging off the edges of the page.

Now simply fold the paper in half and squish the blobs of paint between the pages. 

While using one hand to weigh down the top page and put pressure on the string, use the other hand to pull the string from side to side while pulling it out of the folded pages.

Open the pages to discover what you’ve created!

If this is too complicated for little ones (say around age 2 or 3), you can easily let them dip the string into paint first before curling it onto one page. Then place a second page over the string before they pull the string. You can also let them just dip the string and drop it over and over again onto a single sheet of paper for a really fun interactive project.  It's really fool proof art.

Super easy to do for fun or you can turn these pages into framed art, personalized stationary or cards for any occasion. My kids love to use their paintings to create notes to send to family far away.

Have you tried string painting before?

The Whatever Mom is a full-time wife and twin mama living on coffee and wine. She enjoys the pure rush of cleaning the BIG potty between loads of laundry. It is her dream that moms everywhere accept and embrace the Whatever Mom philosophy which can be found here. You can also find her musings and popular shares on Facebook and Twitter. Stay up to date with her creative ideas and outings on Pinterest. 

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