Paper Mâché Mobile with Kids

an easy beginner paper mache project for little ones

In the summers I teach art camp, as you may know if you read my blog. We do lots and lots of very cool things which I photograph to death. The photos get downloaded to my computer, and then I forget about them because life moves fast. I just recently found these photos of a project we did last summer. It was our first attempt at paper mâché. The kids loved the process, from wrapping the wire to getting their hands all sticky and gooey. They were so proud to bring their mobiles home!

This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for your support!

SUPPLY LIST:

~ Wire hangers

~ Strips of fabric or ribbon (I just used some scraps I had)

~ Colored tapes

~ White school glue

~ Tinfoil

~ Newspaper cut into strips

~ Flour and water for the paper mâché paste

~ Twine

~ Small jewelry jump rings

~ Tempera paints

~ Ribbon to hang the balls

fabric wrapped hangers for making mobiles

fabric wrapped hangers for making mobiles

WRAPPING THE HANGERS:

~ I actually cut the wire hangers down a little and then bent them back up into a triangle. But you don’t have to cut them, you can just use them as they are.

~ Cut the fabric strips so that that they are about 1″ wide and 15″ long. Tape one end down to the wire, then start wrapping. I showed the kids how to wrap, around and around. They got it fairly quickly, but sometimes they just wrapped it all in one place so I had to show them how to wrap while moving up the wire. When you get to the end, add a dot of white glue and then secure it with another piece of colored tape. Continue around the wire until you get back to where you started.

fabric wrapped hangers for making mobiles

We set the wire hangers aside while we tackled the next step: paper mâché.

an easy beginner paper mache project for little ones

PAPER MACHE PROCESS:

~ We actually recently made paper mâché ice-cream sundaes which used this same process of making balls out of tinfoil. Click here to learn about the very simple process.

an easy beginner paper mache project for little ones

an easy beginner paper mache project for little ones

an easy beginner paper mache project for little ones

~ After the kids left class, I wrapped the balls with some baker’s twine and tied it to a jump ring. Then I wrapped a few more pieces of paper mâché around them to hide the twine. We waited one day for them to dry.

an easy beginner paper mache project for little ones

an easy beginner paper mache project for little ones

an easy beginner paper mache project for little ones

PAINTING:

~ I mixed a limited palette of tempera paints. The kids painted them in their own styles. We dried them on a paper plate.

an easy beginner paper mache project for little ones

~ Lastly, on day three when they were all dry, we tied the paper mâché balls onto the hangers with varying lengths of ribbon.

an easy beginner paper mache project for little ones

Some of the same kids are back at camp this summer, and more than one parent has said to me, “She still has her paper mâché mobile hanging in her room!” I love hearing that.

xo, Bar