Try this easy rainbow shamrock art project for Saint Patrick’s Day with the kids!
Here’s a rainbow shamrock salt painting idea for Saint Patrick’s Day that both kids and adults can enjoy at home or in the classroom. Invite children to draw their own Shamrock to make raised salt art, or, use our shamrock template. Preschoolers and kindergarteners may need assistance creating their rainbow shamrock craft, while older kids, teens, and adults can create salt-paint shamrock art from start to finish on their own.
Raised Salt Painting Shamrock Craft Idea
Have you ever tried salt painting?
All you need to do is dribble white glue on paper, sprinkle salt on top, shake it off, and then paint the salt remaining in the glue with watercolors before the glue dries to create gorgeous raised salt art.
Yes, it’s really that easy!
It’s also really fun to watch the colors blend and mix as you create your shamrock salt painting masterpiece.
Salt painting is a fun process art activity for kids, unfortunately, it doesn’t last very long. The only way to ‘keep’ your raised salt painting is to make a video or take pictures of the process because salt art is difficult if not impossible to preserve.
However, this helps children learn that art is more about the process than the product.
Rainbow Shamrock Raised Salt Art Project Materials
Several types of art supplies can be used to make rainbow shamrock art for Saint Patrick’s Day. You can choose between liquid watercolors and pipettes or paintbrushes OR you can choose to use a solid watercolor pallet with a cup of water and a paintbrush.
Both pipettes and paintbrushes are great for fine motor practice and hand-eye coordination. See the directions below for more information.
- Shamrock printable art template (optional)
- Baking tray
- Cardstock (plain paper is too thin to handle the weight of the salt painting.)
- White glue
- Table salt
- Liquid watercolors or a watercolor paint pallet
- Glass ramekins (or an old muffin tray to hold liquid watercolor paints)
- Paintbrushes or pipettes
- Art apron or art smock
- An old towel, newspaper, or paper towels
How to Set up Shamrock Salt Painting Art Project for Saint Patricks Day
As mentioned above, there are a few different ways to paint a rainbow shamrock for Saint Patrick’s Day. Please read through these directions before starting your salt art shamrock craft. For more salt painting tips and photographs, be sure you have a look at some of our other raised salt paint projects:
Related: Rainbow Science and STEAM Activities
Shamrock Watercolor Art Salt Painting How-to Tips
Liquid watercolors are concentrated so it is best to dilute them with 50% to 75% water before using them for salt painting projects like shamrock art. It also helps your liquid watercolor paints last longer.
But please note that raised salt art and crafts don’t last that long. They can crack and become a mess in a short time. In other words, creating rainbow shamrock salt art is a process art project that is definitely more about the process than the product. But painting raised salt art is worth the time and effort it takes to paint because it’s so much fun to watch the colors blend together as you work.
Salt Painting with Pipettes
If you choose to work with liquid watercolors and pipettes, we found that 2 to 4 color choices create the best rainbow shamrock art, too many colors and too much paint can turn your salt art brown or black–less is more!
If your children have never used a pipette before, give them a pipette and a cup of water to play with before offering it to them as an art supply. Children, especially toddlers, and preschoolers, can sometimes use too much paint on their shamrock artwork with pipettes. Use a paintbrush if your child has too heavy of a hand.
Or teach children that a little squeeze of watercolor paint goes a long way before trying this heart art salt painting project with pipettes. We offered our daughter a cup of water and a pipette and asked her to water the house plants to practice using a pipette. Give it a try!
Benefits of Painting RAised Salt Art with Pipettes
I noticed that working with pipettes helped my daughter develop her fine motor muscles and learn how to hold a paintbrush properly. So feel free to give it a try!
Pipettes also make it easier to play with color mixing while painting because a lot of paint can be poured onto the raised salt and glue in a single squeeze.
How to Paint a Rainbow Shamrock Craft for Saint Patrick’s Day
Invite children to apply a rainbow of colors to the raised salt shamrock using a pipette or a paintbrush, the step-by-step directions to make a rainbow shamrock and a salt painting video can be found in the sections below.
If your children have never tried salt painting before, first demonstrate how to use a pipette or a paintbrush to apply watercolor paint to the salt that is now stuck to the lines of glue.
If you are using a watercolor pallet, you need to apply the paint by touching the brush to the raised salt art shamrock. Don’t forget that you will need a cup of water if you choose this option to rinse the paintbrush in between colors. When using a pipette, drop a small amount of color onto the raised salt. Either way is a great fine motor activity to develop the hand.
Kids love watching the colors travel down the line of salt and bleed into each other creating more colors in their rainbow shamrock art. It’s like magic! My daughter was so excited she was leaning over her salt paint shamrock squealing with excitement as she worked.
Rainbow Watercolor Shamrock Art Salt Painting Project Step-By-Step Directions
Allow your child to set up the raised salt shamrock art project if they are able to. Younger children will need some help. Working on a cookie tray makes it easy to keep the salt from going all over the place, and gives you the ability to save and recycle the salt that you shake off to make another raised salt painting!
If you have ever wondered what the difference between a shamrock and a four-leaf clover is–click on the link to find out!
1. Draw a shamrock (or shamrocks) with white glue onto cardstock
- Download and print your favorite printable shamrock template onto cardstock and place it on a baking tray. We have several printable shamrock art and craft templates for you to choose from.
- Cardstock is recommended over regular printer paper because salt painting requires thicker paper so it does not fall apart.
- Alternatively, use white glue to draw your own shamrock art directly onto the cardstock. Draw a shamrock vertically or horizontally, or create multiple shamrocks with white glue.
Rainbow Shamrock Craft Salt Painting Design Ideas:
- Use white glue to create doodles and designs inside your shamrock art salt painting in any way that you wish, or just paint the shamrock outline as shown–>HERE.
- Write the word lucky, or a name, or any other words you want to write inside your shamrock art. Another option is to doodle little shamrocks inside of the bigger shamrock shape!
2. Sprinkle table salt on the shamrock art when the white glue is still wet
- Place the cardstock with the white glue shamrock art onto a baking sheet or cookie tray. (Optional–this step makes it easy to recycle the salt and not make such a mess of things.)
- Use a small dish to easily sprinkle salt to cover the white glue shamrock (or shamrocks) on the cardstock.
3. Shake off the excess salt before painting the salt art shamrock.
- Shake the excess salt off the shamrock art and onto a baking sheet or cookie tray to help make clean up easy.
- This step also makes it easy to recycle the salt you use for your next salt painting project.
- Use the leftover salt to make more raised salt shamrock art, or save it for your next salt painting art project!
4. Paint the St Patrick’s Day rainbow shamrock craft while the glue is still wet.
- Use a paintbrush or pipette to paint the salt covering the glue with liquid watercolors or a watercolor pallet.
- Paint with complementary or contrasting watercolors to create gorgeous shamrock salt art.
5. Place the raised shamrock salt craft on a paper towel to dry (optional).
- Gently take the shamrock saint paint craft off of the baking sheet and put it on an old towel, newspaper, or paper towel to dry so the colors don’t bleed too much into the cardstock or onto the table below.
- Please remember: Raised salt art and crafts don’t last that long. They crack and become a mess in a short time because as mentioned above, creating rainbow shamrock salt art is more about the process than the product. But it’s so much fun to watch the colors blend and mix together!
Related: Best Flower Art Projects
Primary Color Mixing Rainbow Shamrock Art Salt Painting
Another option is to invite your children to mix and play with the primary colors to create rainbow shamrock art for some color-mixing fun! To try this option, only offer the primary colors (red, yellow, and blue) and watch how your children react when the secondary colors (green, orange, and purple) slowly begin to appear to create a rainbow shamrock.
We have found that pipettes make it easier for children to blend primary colors and make secondary colors when creating a salt painting. Invite children to play and have fun with the magic of color as they create rainbow shamrock art.
This Saint Patrick’s day art project is all about the process!
Raised Salt Painting Step-by-Step Video Tutorial
The video below is of our daughter’s painting Raised Salt Heart Art with only the primary colors (red, yellow, and blue.) Notice how the secondary colors (orange, green, and purple) slowly begin to appear. It’s magic!
You can see how my daughter uses the pipettes and the primary colors to make rainbow heart art. Isn’t it mesmerizing to watch?! Creating rainbow shamrock art is pretty much the same. All you need to do is use a shamrock template instead of a heart template–or draw your own!
Rainbow Shamrock Art Project for Kids and Adults
Painting a rainbow shamrock art project for Saint Patrick’s day is an activity the kids will LOVE! Toddlers, preschoolers, kindergartners, and elementary kids and adults can all enjoy the painting technique used to create this fun rainbow shamrock craft.
For more salt painting tips and photographs, be sure you have a look at some of our other raised salt paint projects:
Another art project that kids will love is making a lucky four-leaf clover nature collage. Can’t find a lucky clover? Make one!
For more Saint Patrick’s day fun, have a look at this amazing list of Saint Patrick’s Day art and craft projects!
You may also enjoy this awesome collection of easy rainbow art projects (and Rainbow Crafts, Too!)
Learn more about Rhythms of Play HERE!