Here’s a fun and easy paper plate self-portrait craft for kids to make. It’s perfect for an “all about me project”, or to make just for fun. Using supplies you likely already have on hand, your kids can turn a paper plate into a life-size image of their own face.
Kids love making self-portraits. After-all, children love it when the spotlight shines on them, and this craft makes your child the subject of the entire project. I really enjoy watching kids make self-portraits. It’s always fun to see how they visualize themselves, and to watch them create their own image with a variety of interesting craft materials.
We’ve actually done a couple of great self-portrait art projects recently. Today’s paper plate craft is the quickest, but be sure to watch the blog for the next one too. Spoiler alert: it’s awesome!
By now, you likely know much we love crafting with paper plates here in my home daycare. Have you seen our epic A-Z Paper Plates Crafts for Kids collection? Paper Plates are our “go-to” canvas for many of our crafts and art projects. What’s not to love? They’re inexpensive, plentiful and so versatile.
We love crafting with yarn too, so we dig into our yarn stash often. The other day, we made homemade braiding boards using yarn as hair, and the kids loved them. That activity got me thinking of other crafts we could make with yarn-hair, and I came up with paper plate self-portraits.
The girls really had fun with them, and they were so proud to have a piece of art that represented them when they were finished.
I’ll show you how we made them.
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Supplies for our paper plate self-portrait craft:
- paper plate
- acrylic craft paint
- paint brushes
- decorative accessories for the hair (we used small artificial flowers)
I filled a paint pallet with the following colours of acrylic craft paint: flesh, pink, red, white, black and blue. The children were free to help themselves to any other colours they felt the wanted to add.
To start, they painted their paper plates with flesh-coloured paint. While their paint dried, they chose the kind of yarn they wanted for their hair.
They had fun choosing just the right colour, and deciding how long their hair should be.
They glued the long strands to their paper plates, and then gave it a trim to even up the ends. One of the girls even added blue highlights to her hair.
Then they painted their facial features. I asked the girls if they wanted to glue on googly eyes or if they wanted to paint their eyes. Everyone chose to paint their eyes.
Good choice! Painting their eyes allowed them to choose their eye colour, and to make eyes that looked more realistic than googly eyes.
Just like each child, each plate is so unique. How cute is it that the youngest hooligan painted a mouthful of teeth even though she’s missing quite a few at the moment?
For the cheeks, I showed the girls how to stipple the pink paint on their paper plates. Stippling is done with a dry brush, and produces a soft, subtle effect. You dip the bristles of a stiff paintbrush into the paint, and dab most of it off on a paper towel. Then you gently pounce the paintbrush up and down on your painting.
For the finishing touch a couple of the girls glued a few craft flowers to their yarn hair. If you don’t have flowers, you could use barrettes, sequins or ribbons.
What do you think?
Aren’t they sweet? And they were so fun and easy to make!
I can’t show wait to show you our next self-portrait art project! The kids all agree, it’s the most fun they’ve ever had with a craft here in my daycare.
Stay tuned! It will be up on the blog soon!
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Jackie is a mom, wife, home daycare provider, and the creative spirit behind Happy Hooligans. She specializes in kids’ crafts and activities, easy recipes, and parenting. In 1997, Jackie stepped out of the corporate world to start a family and to open her own home daycare. She began blogging in 2011, and today, Happy Hooligans inspires more than 2 million parents, caregivers and Early Years Professionals all over the globe.