Crazy Crafts for Kids: Painting with Leaves

My boy loves to makes crafts. At daycare, they make anywhere from four to six projects per day and we have piles and piles of papers in our house to prove it. From time to time, I will throw a few out, but I don’t dare let him see me throw away his masterpiece!

He and I spend a lot of time at home on the weekends when Hubby is working and we get bored. I have never been a “crafty” person because I don’t like to make it “wrong” so I would rather not try, but there is something about a bored boy who loves to create and loves to spend quality time with Mommy that throws all of that OCD-ness out the window.

Having said all of this, my boy has about as much patience (attention span) with one particular craft activity as I do, so our crafting sessions usually last no longer than thirty minutes and then we are moving to the next great adventure. I doubt that any of our crafts will ever “go viral” on Pinterest, but a creative friend of mine reminded me that the time together means so much more!

Nevertheless we are going to share them with you all in our new series – Crazy Crafts for Kids – which may be weekly or monthly or just plain randomly, who knows, it’s crazy around this house!

Crazy Crafts for Kids

Crazy Crafts for Kids: Painting with Leaves

gather leaves during Fall for painting crafts

Step 1: Gather leaves of different shapes and sizes

During Fall, we have a lot of different sizes and shapes of leaves in our yard. My boy learned a lot about Fall this year so every day was a new adventure in finding the different leaves. We gathered up a good sample of the different shapes to start our project. We even gathered some “berries” to add to the fun. If you don’t have leaves around, try using free printable templates or make leaves from construction paper, or simply find items with different shapes around the house.

use finger paints for easy clean-up

Step 2: Create a color palette with finger paints

My boy does not like to get dirty so I have finger paints in the house, but I have to beg him to finger paint with me. Use a paper plate to lay out the paint colors to make them easier for the leaves to “dip” in the colors. Don’t worry about the colors mixing because you can then teach your child about what colors mix to make other colors. Plus, your child will double dip anyway so just go with the flow!

paint leaves different colors

press painted leaves on paper

Step 3: Paint the leaves with different colors

Encourage your child to paint the leaves with different colors or simply dip the leaves in the paints. This is not about making a perfect piece of art so just go with it. He will do what he thinks looks great and he will be proud of his creation.

  painting with leaves

Step 4: Turn the leaf over and press down on paper

After you have the leaf the colors that you want, just flip it over and press it down on the paper. After you pick it up, there will be a beautiful design that your child created. Some of the colors will mix, but each creation is unique!

finger painting with leaves

colorful painting with leaves

Step 5: Create, create, create

My boy made several different types of pictures and even used some of the leaves as paint brushes. He was so proud of his creations and we even decided to give a few away as gifts to family members.

Painting with Leaves {Crazy Crafts for Kids}

Bonus: Let the leaves dry for another day

This one was a happy accident of sorts, but when I laid the leaves out to dry, they actually made for a separate art project for another day. I’m not sure what we are going to do with them, but we have some beautiful, colorful leaves now.

What are your favorite crafts for kids?!!


*Nothing to disclose here, just the boy and me having fun together. Enjoy!


  1. Mel Lockcuff says:

    Love painting with out of the ordinary things, what a great idea! His piece of art almost looks like something you’d see in a museum, truly! I love that next to the last photo of the finished project; so colorful! You’re right, it’s definitely the time spent that counts. What a great series, can’t wait to see more! Thanks so much for linking up to Inspire Me Wednesday!

    • janet says:

      Aww..thanks, Mel, for stopping by to see my crazy crafts. I’m trying to post every Friday and then I’ll be ready to link up with you on Wednesday now!

  2. Heather @loveandcents says:

    I love nature painting. We have painted with acorns. So much fun! Thanks for linking up at the party! You rock!

    • janet says:

      Acorns, how fun! We have tons of them in our yard, too!

  3. Gena says:

    Crafts are not my strong point either, but that’s ok because boys love to make messes! Ha! I think the leaf paintings are awesome!!

  4. They turned out beautiful!


  1. […] badge.  This is FAR from Pinterest worthy, but my friend Janet isn't scared to show her crazy crafts for kids and neither am […]

  2. […] Painting with Leaves […]

  3. […] Painting with Leaves […]

  4. […] about their origins or make a collage. You can even paint them and make a beautiful picture, or try painting with the leaves as brushes. It's so much fun and the kids get to be […]

  5. […] 4. Make a leaf collection. […]

  6. […] badge.  This is FAR from Pinterest worthy, but my friend Janet isn't scared to show her crazy crafts for kids and neither am […]

Speak Your Mind