Walking on a windy autumn afternoon, I gathered an important part of what I would need for the dye craft project, the leaves. What an amazing assortment of leaves to choose from! Leaves come in so many different shapes, sizes, and colors. I felt a sense of delight as I made my selections. Of course, I would need to have rice and food coloring for this project, too. What was I doing? Follow along and I’ll show you!
Materials for Dye Craft Project
- Food Coloring: Red, Yellow, and Blue
Directions for Dye Craft Project
Determine the colors you plan to work with. I decided to have 6 different colors: red, yellow, blue, purple, orange, and green. Pour some rice into each of 6 baggies and add food coloring to each baggie. Red, yellow, and blue are all primary colors. So, add those colors alone in 3 of the baggies. Now is the time to showcase the secondary colors. Mix red and blue food coloring in a baggie of rice to make the purple. Mix yellow and blue in another to get green. Mix yellow and red food coloring in the final baggie of rice to get orange.
Let the rice baggies sit overnight. The next morning, empty each of the baggies of colored rice onto separate paper plates. Let the rice air dry. This could take anywhere from a few hours to another day, depending on how wet the rice is from the dye.
Allow the leaves you gathered to air dry. If they are wet, you may need to place them on a towel. Take care not to let them get too dried out or crispy, however. You don’t want them to crumble or fall apart. I suppose you could say there is a delicate balance between the leaves being too dry and just right. Next, using the paper and pencil, trace the outline shape of your leaves onto the paper. I chose blue construction paper for my background.
At this point, you have traced the outline shapes of your leaves onto your background paper. Using glue and colored rice, secure the rice to the leaf designs. For some of my leaves, I used all one color. For others, I emphasized the appearance of a stem. I also mixed up the colored rice a bit and made some variegated patterns.
Conclusion of Dye Craft Project
This project is worthwhile for many reasons. First of all, it is fun! This not only engages a variety of materials and textures. It is an opportunity to review primary and secondary colors with your children. It will qualify, too, as a sensational multi-sensory rice activity. The possibilities are endless as you experiment with different background paper and various shapes. You are certainly not limited to using leaves. Try tracing cookie cutters or experiment with freehand drawing to make the base on which to glue your rice. Keep on creating and enjoy!