A unique Coloured Salt Dough Recipe : Red Ted Art's Blog

Kids Crafts – Coloured Salt Dough Recipe

| March 23, 2011 | 42 Comments

Welcome back to Kids Get Crafty! Finally the kids and I got out our easy salt dough recipe and got crafting. I do hope that today’s topic of, ahem, pooh, hasn’t put you off and that you will stay for a read…. Pooh?! Who crafts with pooh… well we do… and there is a story as to why! But first to our salt dough recipe – exploring a bit of colour theory, some dinosaurs and two stories.

The Book

Harry and the Bucketful of Dinosaurs (Book & CD) Harry & The Bucketful of Dinosaurs, by Ian Whybrow. I decided it was time to “broaden” Red Ted’s horizons and introduce some dinosaurs into his world (I have another fab dinosaur craft up my sleeve and need Red Ted to be “keen” on dinosaurs before I can do that one). We already have Harry & the Robots, which Red Ted adores, so when this book was suggested to us, I thought it would be perfect. And indeed it was. We find Harry in the attic with his grandmother sorting through things – when he finds an old box full of dinosaurs. He brings them down, cleans them and fixes them. Learns all about their names at the library and becomes great friends. One day however, they are lost and Harry is inconsolable. Luckily the lost and found office has indeed found them – *phew*. What I love about the Harry books (or at least the ones we have), is that it encourages to make, mend and clean – it is never “about the new” toys, but about the ones that Harry has put lots of love and effort into. A great message in my eyes. It also encourages about learning and passion. Perfect. We love the book and it gets the big thumbs up!

And, ahem, another book:

The Story of the Little Mole Who Knew it Was None of His Business The Story of the Little Mole Who Knew it Was None of His Business, by Werner Holzwarth. Ok, this one is for the Dad’s. Toilet humour through and through! But I mention it, as it is not often that a GERMAN author is translated into English AND does REALLY well. Did you know this is originally in German? There you go! I love buying books from different countries it really makes “our library” more interesting. Here we have a story of a little mole that wakes up one day, only to find that, erm, someone has done their business on his head. Off he goes to find out who it was… Surprisingly cute (?!). Maybe a good one to get when you start potty training – though nothing to do with potties, toddlers often get obsessed with Nr 2s at that stage at may really enjoy it. Go on… you know you want to! Available in German & English (and possibly other languages?).

Another reason it is featured here, is, that I have been taking part in the Notes From Home carnivals whenever I can. Recently there was a twitter discussion, whether there should be a carnival of pooh… well… how can I not take part?!

The Craft

I thought the carnival of pooh would be a great way to explore colour theory – well not just the colour brown, but how brown is “made”. Usually, if I let Red Ted paint with as many colours as he wants, we usually end up with a brown at some stage… so to make it more interesting, I though we could make our easy salt dough recipe and explore… not wanting to delve straight into brown, I wanted to try greens, oranges and purples – enter the dinosaur craft:

Salt dough recipe: Flour, salt, water, blue, red & yellow paint. Oven (optional). Varnish (optional).

1) First I made salt dough in blue, red and yellow. Our red paint looks a little pink like, so we called it pink, but it is kind of red…  to make salt dough:

  • 2 cups of all purpose flour
  • 1 cup of salt
  • UPTO one cup of water
  • Poor in the water bit by bit. You don’t want the salt dough to be too wet. I kept ours quite dry – and added the last bit of water with the paint.

2) Having divided the dough into 3, I added the paints – as this step can be a little messy

3) Start salt dough crafting – I pointed to the book and asked Red Ted which dinosaur he would like to make and then asked him about the colours we need… lucky for me he pointed to the green one with the orange spine… so “Red Ted, how do you get Green?” – blank face. I told him we take blue and yellow and do lots of mixing. I had to help get the “final green”, but he had a go…

4) Shaping the dinosaurs – very interestingly, I said to Red Ted, “what do we need?” “A body” “A head” “what is on the spine” etc… Red Ted started making dinosaurs quite similar to the pictures (for his age group). If left him to it, we got new creations (sometimes parrot like, sometimes blobs)… I think a combination of “questions” and “free play” are best – this way he learns to look at details but also gets to do his own thing! I encouraged “sausage making” for tails and small bits for eyes (our pink dinosaur has HUGE eyes).

5) I then asked him what would happen if we mixed ALL the colours together  – we did it and got a grey! I was hoping for brown – I believe it is the salt that turns it grey? I didn’t really want to make grey pooh… but when we looked at the mole book, I realised it was PERFECT mole colour! So we made a mole and an orange pooh instead. Perfect. The I hasten to add that the mole was a joint effort. Red Ted isn’t able yet to do “details” such as a small nose and arms. His approach is wedging stuff on, which I then shaped a little. Red Ted then made a yellow dog, with pink eyes and a blue tummy. Lovely.

6) You can bake salt dough in the oven at around 100C (low heat). I did this to help it set, then turned them upside down on our radiator to help the centres dry out… this can take a few days.

7) They will loose some of that vibrant colour.So I decided to varnished them for Red Ted in order for that vibrant colour to come back!

I believe the mole and dog are his favourite – his love for these and thus the pooh book just goes to show that he is a boy through and through! *Sigh*.

Here our Rogues Gallery:

The Mole & Dog:

Red Ted loved them so much, he didn’t want to go to nursery (where is only one day a week and he LOVES), as he wanted to stay home to play with them all and make “more” with mummy…

Happy Dinosaur and Pooh Day.

Linking with the upcoming Notes from Home Pooh carnival.

What have you made from Salt Dough in the past? Have you got a fail save recipe or other ideas? ALL kids related crafts very welcome – but today especially salt dough & dinosaur crafts!


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Category: Kids Craft, Recipes, salt dough

Comments (42)

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  1. northernmum says:

    fabulous and perfect for poo day!

    cant wait to the rest of the entries


  2. ella says:

    Maggy, this is inspired, you are so clever!

    ALL my children (age 3 up to 9) will LOVE this activity, even the ones that are slightly past the playdough age! And the Mole book is being added to our library too :)

  3. Brilliant Maggy. I am still recovering from the idea of a carnival of Poo!

    Mich x

  4. maria says:

    Such a lovely idea to make up the colours mixing coloured dough…and I love the dinosaur and the mole with the pooh on its head:)
    I suspect you’ll be doing lots more dinosaur crafts, when boys discover dinos their interest just keeps growing!
    We love dinosaur crafts too!

  5. B says:

    Love it! What a funny theme! The play-dough creations were great!

  6. Esther says:

    Great Idea to make up your own play dough! I love the dinosaur. Playing with play dough is fun and no wonder Red ted wanted to stay home

  7. mermaid says:

    Love your creations!
    Ok, I´ll go and make my very first salt dough (so I`ll have smth to link up :D)

    These dinosaur books are my daughter`s favourite as well. I`m not sure about myself because I find it difficult to pronounce the names of the dinosaurs 😀 But I think we will be making some dragons later as my little one learns about dragons at school this week :)

  8. These dinosaurs are wonderful! Looks like great fun!

  9. Liz Burton says:

    I’ve never tried making dough, but I might give it a go now.

    We love Harry and the Bucketful of Dinosaurs :0)

  10. Wonder Mom says:

    I adore Salt Dough! We mad Salt Dough ornaments a couple of years age, and added Kool Aid tot he mix, so the ornaments were pretty AND smelled yummy too…

  11. Love it! I keep missing the right day for this linky (I should put a reminder on my calendar).

    We also have a dinosaur craft planned…my son is really into his dinosaur books right now and I have to check out the one you suggested!

  12. Janelle says:

    What a lovely mole! Looks like you all had a ton of fun creating!

  13. That mole book is hilarious! The dinosaur one looks good, too, and I’m taking notes since I now have a little boy of my own!

    Love the craft–crafty pooh. Who knew?

    Thanks for linking up!

  14. Catherine says:

    Love Red Ted’s creations – they look fab! The mole is simply genius! 😉

  15. JDaniel4's Mom says:

    Love your mole! The books look great this week!

  16. A perfect poo post! We love the mole book very much indeed! Thanks Maggy xxx

  17. I love their clay creations!

    Stopping by from Read.Explore.Learn.

  18. Isil says:

    Harry and the dinasours is such a lovely story,my 4 year old loves it.We also have the toys, a bucket and some dinasours. One of my toddler’s favorite toys :)

  19. Bailey says:

    I love seeing art and literacy combined. It sounds like Ted had a great time exploring color combinations.

  20. Kerri says:

    I love the mole! My favorite picture is the picture of them all in the oven! Great project and always appreciate book recommendations.

  21. Natalie says:

    This is a very pretty craft for a great book. Thanks for joining WMCIR!

  22. Rachel says:

    Thanks so much for linking up with For the Kids Fridays at Sun Scholars. I can’t wait to see what you have to share this week! I’ll be posting the next party later tonight. Hope to have you stop by!

    :)rachel @ SunScholars.blogspot.com

  23. Merry says:

    Love the pooh dough… very inventive way of doing colours :)

  24. SAHMlovingit says:

    You are genius – that pooh dough is fab.

    I’m only just getting around all the poo carnival posts. I saw that mole book on Cara’s link and I’m SO getting it, it looks FAB!

  25. Reina says:

    The story of the little mole in absolutely one of my children’s favorite. It was also their choice for me to read at their pre-school class :) In The Netherlands, there is also a theater play from this story (the different types of pooh are made qith different foof (for example, the horse poh are kiwis)). We saw it more than a year ago and my kids still talk about it. Nothing like a good pooh fun to make two 4 yo laugh :)

  26. Helen D says:

    Was pootling around for inspiration for my playgroup craft for tomorrow and have just found it… salt dough it is! Thanks for the inspiration.

  27. Lisa says:

    Hey there what kind of paint and how much of it did you use?

    • Red Ted Art says:

      Hi Lisa, it really varies soooo much from brand to brand. I used a set of paints from IKEA and gave it a really good squirt. Having said that, I would probably use food colouring/ food gels now, as I have a good set that are very vibrant and effective. It is a little bit of experimenting.. and if in doubt add more paint than less (but compensate, by adding less water to the mixture).

  28. Lisa says:

    And how long did you bake them for?

  29. Chris says:

    For future reference: When you mix all three primaries you will generally get a grey shade. But if you mix red yellow and green instead of blue you will often get something closer to brown. I suppose that means you could do the primary colors and use 2x more yellow than blue and get a browner shade… since the yellow and blue are what make up the green. When I mix paint to create skin tones they are all some combination of red yellow and green.

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