Printing making with Kids - Sink Mat Experiment

Printmaking with kids can be accessible and easy. This simple printmaking activity can be set up for children as young as three, maybe even two if you’re feeling brave!


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spring sink mat prints

Printmaking with Kids: Easy Sink Mat Printing

I spend a lot of time at the hardware store. And last week I spotted this flower mat — the Blumz Sink Mat! — I love that exclamation point! — It’s an exciting sink mat! — and it looked like something that could be fun to print with!

In honor of Spring’s inevitable arrival (yes, it WILL get warmer) and St. Patty’s Day (I married a “Doorley”, after all), we used green and yellow paint.

spring sink mat prints

I also found a bag of ten foam brushes at the dollar store, so the luck of the Irish was clearly with me. I covered the work space with paper and then my daughter painted the mat with our fresh Spring palette.

spring sink mat prints

And then we added a sheet of paper, pressed it down with the palms of our hands, and pulled our first print.

spring sink mat prints

Ooooooooh!! She loved it, and I thought it came out gorgeous!

spring sink mat prints

We pulled three prints, which frankly was more than I had bargained for, and then the real fun began! If you followed our Jello experiment, you’ll recognize a common thread here…

spring sink mat prints

And maybe you picked up on the addition of an apron. I love that focused expression.

spring sink mat prints

There’s a leprechaun in my house!

spring sink mat prints

spring sink mat prints

More printmaking art projects for kids

16 Easy Printmaking Projects for Kids

Abstract Recycled Prints

Styrofoam Prints (from a veggie or meat packing tray)

Cookie Sheet Monoprints

Bubble Prints


  1. Oooh, I love this!! Thanks for mentioning the paper again 🙂

  2. I love it! I’ll have to give this a try. Thanks for sharing!

  3. That looks like so much fun! I think printmaking is really the best thing you can do with your time. Why do we bother doing anything else? My birthday treat to myself is a screenprinting refresher course, can’t wait. Beautiful blog as ever, Miriam x

  4. I am getting ready for sprint by finishing “spring cleaning” before the spring arrives. When is that again?
    I absolutely like this print, I could see it as a background to an even bigger project. Thanks for sharing with the rest of the creative world.

  5. Thanks for all of the thoughtful comments 🙂 Miriam, I love printmaking too. It’s been a while since I’ve taken a course in it, and would love to live vicariously through you. I agree with you Cristina, this would be an amazing pattern behind a bigger painting — it has definitely crossed my mind too!

  6. These are great prints and a great idea! Makes me think you could cut up the mat too and make stamps. Have you tried collagraphs? I think they are successful with young ones. See ideas here: http://www.cycleback.com/collo.htm. We like using different textured papers to make the matrix and a rolling pin to apply pressure when transferring the image.

  7. Hey Lori! I considered cutting up the mat, and bet we’ll do that at some point. I haven’t tried collagraphs with N yet — Great idea! And I forgot about using a rolling pin. That would take this project to the next level! Thanks.

  8. I love this idea! I will be on the lookout for a cool plastic mat to print! We probably have something around the house that I don’t even realize we could print! I love this whole post and how your daughter ended up all green! My daughter loves making handprints and painting on her hands when that is her purpose! Love how you made them into cards too!

    • Believe me, I’m looking around the house for things to print with too! 🙂

  9. Beautiful!! Creative!! FUN!!!

  10. This is so fabulous! What a fun print. Then as I’m looking at this right now, my son was loving the pics of your little one lathered up in green! So fun.

    • Thanks so much, Marie (and to your son, too!).

  11. Hi there!
    I so enjoyed your description of this activity, the process looks like so much fun, and the result is very lovely.
    I am doing a couple specific art projects on a green theme, and one is quite close in idea; using bubble wrap, mixing colours to make green, and making a print. We also started making tissue paper suncatchers, in various colours, my small children love glueing.

    Last year, on the night before St. Pat’s Day, I stencil painted tiny green feet walking all about my room, the floor, walls, up onto shelves, etc., and it was truly a bigger hit then I expected. My children believed that a tiny leprechaun had visited. Several older children brought their parents in to see the feet at the end of their day. So I plan to do this again, I loved the look of wonder on my children’s faces. I t was worth the hour or two it took to do.

    • My daughter isn’t quite 3, and we haven’t “done” St. Patty’s with her yet. The tiny green feet would probably be a perfect “good morning” teaser. I can’t wait to try it 🙂

  12. my 8 year old’s birthday is on St. Patrick’s Day – we’ve had so much fun with it! This year is a magic theme. You have the best ideas – if only she were a bit younger . . .

    • Ooh, a St. Patty’s Day Magic Birthday! How fun. This will be my first St.Patty’s day experience with my daughter, and I look forward to experiencing it through her eyes. We made magical green milk on March 1 to get her excited about the upcoming holiday, and she’s asked for it every day since! Happy birthday to your 8 year old!

  13. What a great idea! And probably reusable for more color fun for spring. Thanks for linking to Kids Can Craft:)

    • My pleasure. And thanks, Cheryl, for hosting the link party.

  14. The first thing I noticed was your daughter painting in a Naartjie dress! GASP! We have the same one in purple 🙂

    This is such a cute idea!

    • I recently discovered the Naartjie store, and I absolutely adore everything they carry. Now if only my daughter would stop running around in her jammies all day!

  15. You’ve been featured as the Kids Can Craft Party idea at this week’s Craftastic Monday! Stop by & grab a Featured On Craftastic Monday button:)

  16. Love the art projects you do with your daughter!!! When my 2 kids were her age and through elementary school, I also did creative art projects with them. This REALLY helped them in school when they had projects to do. They were able to think of creative ways to conquer these assignments and needed very little(if any) parental help!!! Now, both of my kids(college age) are very creative and still enjoy dabbling in mixed mediums. This is such a GREAT way to enrich your child!!! My kids have a lot of good memories from these experiences.

  17. These games are very useful for children and stimulate creativity for children. Thank you for sharing information.

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