Friday, November 1, 2013

What did you make for the school auction (part 1)?

This year I was elected to be the Head Room Parent for Cohen's kindergarten class. This is a super fun and very busy job but I love it. It allows me to be very involved my child's education but not actually have to teach him.

Our school auction was yesterday. Each teacher is allowed to enter four baskets into the auction. As head room parent is my responsibility to organize the baskets and get them where they need to be on time. I have a little fun with this made some very crafty things to go with the baskets.

The money we raise from the baskets goes directly back to the teachers classroom to help her buy supplies and books for her room. Seeing as how the kids will benefit from the supplies and books, I wanted them to be involved in helping make something for the auction.

I decided to make a silhouette of San Antonio with the fingerprints of all 22 students in Cohen's kindergarten class.

This is a really easy project that you could do for grandparents gifts for Christmas or birthday.

Canvas or Wood
White Paint
Colorful Paint (enough for each child to have a different color)
Sealer (I used Mod Podge Matte)

Step 1: Decide on a shape
We decided to do a silhouette of San Antonio so that it would appeal to the most people at the auction. You could easily do a heart, flower, cross, fleur-de-lis, etc.

I actually tested it out on Cohen before I did this with 22 other children, and we did a cross as our test piece. It turned out cute…but we learned a lot from the experience. I’m glad we tested it out!

Step 2: Prep the canvas

I painted the entire canvas white before I ever let any little fingers paint on it. I did this, so that if there were any mistakes or the paint soaked through the stencil, I could easily go back and touch it up later, with the same color. Also, we found that my stencil did not stick well to the canvas, but if I painted it first, the stencil stuck much better.

Step 3: Cut the shape
I found a picture of San Antonio online and traced it on a white piece of paper. Then I scanned that white piece of paper and used my Silhouette Cameo to cut out the silhouette of San Antonio. I cut out of contact paper I had on hand (I used this lovely print to line the kitchen cabinets in my new house).
I covered the ENTIRE canvas. The green painters tape is covering where the contact paper just did not reach. I knew there would be splatters and spills (22 kindergarteners…remember?).
Here is a picture of us at the school getting the kids to paint the canvas. I got a few of the other moms to come help. This was a great idea. We did it assembly line style, the moms held the paper plate with the paint, and the kids just went from one side to the other, putting little prints all over it.
The same day we had the kids paint the canvas, I had the kids put one print on a piece of paper with their names on it, so the parents could distinguish which prints belonged to their child.
Here is a shot of the canvas with all the little prints. I waited a FULL 24 hours before pulling the contact paper off the canvas. I should mention, I did bring my blow dryer to school, and every 6-8th child, we blow dried the canvas a bit to help keep the paint from mixing. Some of the boys did a great job blobbing that paint on there thick!
You can also see the other page with the single prints.

Step 4: Remove stencil/contact paper and touch up and seal canvas
I had to go back with my white paint and clean up a few areas. There wasn’t a bunch of paint that got under the contact paper, but there was some.
After I touched up everything, I went back and added the words “San Antonio Texas” by cutting the words out of contact paper and painting the letters on the canvas.
After all the paint dried overnight, I went back and covered the entire canvas in Mod Podge to seal it. I guess this step isn’t necessarily a “must do” if you are giving a painting to grandma, but I knew there would be lots of folks at the auction that might want to touch the canvas, and I didn’t want a bunch of other peoples fingerprints messing up what the kids worked so hard to make.

So here it is…the final picture.

San Antonio Texas Silhouette for School Auction -

We got lots of complements and made a little money for our teacher at the auction.


  1. Beautiful!!! I love this (especially since I'm also from San Antonio!)

  2. What type of paint did you use? We are trying something similar and want to make sure the paint is safe for the children. Thanks! Great job on this auction item!

    1. I used regular craft paint from the stuff in the little bottles. Maybe Apple something brand?? They were on sale, so I could afford to get 22 different colors.