It would be easier to imagine if I had proper photo documentation, eh? Well whatever. They turned out lovely and I'm sure baby will adore them just as Ace is digging his new matching color chip game. It's the set I made as a dry run to these blocks and guess what? For this version I DO have photo documentation!
For this project, any old wooden shape will do. I happened to have scored a deal on chips, so that's what I used.
Paint all the chips. The watercolor absorbs pretty fast, so by the time you finish the first round you should be able to flip your chips and paint the other side. This part got a little messy for me because I inevitably used my fingers to hold the chips, but the paint washed off easily. After that first painting, keep adding coats of color until you get the desired effect. This time around you will need to let the wood dry completely before flipping it.
If you find the chips are not absorbing color to your liking, consider floating then in a small pot of paint. In the case of the blocks, I found this method worked well for the lighter colors: I let them sit in the paint for a few minutes and then rotated them around.
After the chips are completely dry, coat them with a spray shellac. You could also use beeswax polish: both are a safer choice (beeswax polish is the safest) for children than harsh polyurethane, but one might be easier to find than the other depending on where you live. Once fully dry, let the games begin! Have your child group the whole pile by colors, or mystery sort individual chips pulled out of a bag. Count the chips! Create patterns. Make towers!
They are a great open ended resource to have around-
Hey everyone, did you notice what I added? Yup - some pictures of the finished product!