Barneblad: Make your own stained glass art, the fun and easy way!

Brought to you by Lori Ann Reinhall & Mattea Bertling

wax art
Shave your crayons and set them on the paper as you see fit. Remember that some colors will blend differently with others, so refer to a color wheel to see how colors mix.

In an issue with a special focus on glass art, including magnificent stained glass, it only makes sense to feature a “glass” crafts project for kids. 

But while working with glass can be bit difficult and sometimes  dangerous for children, there are other ways to create “glass” in a fun and simple way.

Here at The Norwegian American, we are fortunate to have our own resident artist, Mattea Bertling, who shared her ideas for creating a “stained glass” project with crayons and wax paper. Most of you already have the supplies at home, so you are ready to go to add some colorful beauty to your life in your own unique way.

Please note that while a warm iron is needed for the project, a supervising adult should be present to make sure everyone is safe for this fun family project.

Crayon art
The crayon shavings with the wax paper on top are ready for ironing. Add another layer of wax paper to iron, so you can see how melted the crayon is.

Here’s what you need:

Crayons

Cheese grater (or a pencil sharpener)

Wax paper

Iron

Medium-point permanent marker

crayon art
Your design starts to take shape with the melted crayon before details. Make sure to let it cool down before drawing or cutting on your design.

Here’s how to do it:

Step 1 : Gather up your crayons.

Chunky toddler crayons work well, because they are quicker and easier to grate, but regular crayons work well, too.

Step 2 : Grate your crayons

Grate your crayons on a sturdy cheese grater to produce crayon shavings. Be sure to watch out for your fingers! (If you don’t have a grater, you can also use a pencil sharpener,)

Group your crayon shavings by color in individual dishes or the sections of a muffin tin. 

Step 3 : Make a crayon and wax paper sandwich

Cut or tear off a sheet of wax paper and fold it in half to create a crease in the center, and then unfold it.

Add crayon shavings to one side of the wax paper in any pattern or design desired. A little goes  a long way. Fold the second half of the wax paper back over it to sandwich in the crayon shavings.

crayon art
The melted wax design with details drawn over is great to frame or hang up as is.

Step 4 : Iron your sandwich

Set the wax paper/crayon shaving sandwich on a piece of newsprint or other paper on your ironing board (or on top of a towel on the floor). Place another piece of paper on top.

Run the iron over the sandwich slowly to evenly melt the crayon shavings. Be sure to set the iron to low heat (silk setting).

Lift the top paper off to reveal your melted-crayon stained glass.

If you see areas where the crayon shavings haven’t melted, put the paper back down and iron over the area.

Hold your artwork up to the light to reveal the stained-glass effect.

crayon art
Cutting out the shapes and hanging them up is a great way to add interest in a sun-facing window.

Step 5 : Add your drawing details

Use permanent markers to add details or images to your original, beautiful stained glass

Step 6 (optional): Cut out shapes and hang up in the sun

Cut out your shapes and attach them to fishing wire or string to display in your window. 

This article originally appeared in the March 4, 2022, issue of The Norwegian American. To subscribe, visit SUBSCRIBE or call us at (206) 784-4617.

Lori Ann Reinhall

Lori Ann Reinhall, editor-in-chief of The Norwegian American, is a multilingual journalist and cultural ambassador based in Seattle. She is the president of the Seattle-Bergen Sister City Association, and she serves on the boards of several Nordic organizations.

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