Wax Resist Paintings

  • Things you may have already:
    • White crayon
    • Heart templates – use cookie cutters, cardboard templates or anything else you may have

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Ideal Age Range:


Mess Factor:

Low – Medium

Prep Time:

5 minutes – gather and organize your supplies.

The techniques for this project can be used to create a fun picture or to personalize Valentine’s Day cards. In addition to creating Valentine hearts and designs, you can also include “secret” messages in your design – a big hit with my grandson.

If you also have a child that really loves secret messages or invisible ink, take a look at a project alternative at the end of this post.

Active Instructions:

  1. Trace various sized heart shaped templates on the white paper, using the white crayon and PRESSING FIRMLY. Young children may need hand over hand assistance to trace the hearts.
    • Add squiggles, zigzags, dots, and circles, all around the heart shapes.
    • You can make the white crayon lines thicker by tracing over the shapes multiple times.
    • You can also add text
    • This is tricky since you will not be able to see the lines clearly on the white paper. Hold the paper up to a light source to help to see the design.
  1. Using the wider brush, paint valentine watercolors over the entire surface including the white crayon designs. The wax from the white crayon will resist the paint, and appear through the colors. For bolder paint color, you may need to add several coats of paint and a little less water.
    • Young children may need supervision to limit the color choices and the amount of water being used. Too many colors mixed together will start to look muddy.
    • Have scrap paper available for continued painting fun while the valentine picture dries.
  1. After the paint partially dries, use the smaller brush to add little details and lines. Using less water with the paint will help make bolder colors.
  2. When the picture is complete, you can frame it with a contrasting color. 

Enhanced Project

You can use the same technique above to create secret message Valentine’s Day cards:

  • Fold the watercolor paper into your preferred card shape
  • Use the white crayon to write a secret message and create a Valentine design.
  • Enclose the card in an envelope with a a mini watercolor set.
  • Deliver to friends with instructions to color over the front of the card to reveal the secret message!

Show us the designs that you create!
If you want to pin this project, please use the image below.

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