February 22, 2013

Paper Marbling With Shaving Cream: Step by Step

Here are the supplies you'll need.  Shaving cream, craft stick, tempera or liquid watercolor paint, brush,  plastic lid cut in half, and paper to print on..  You can also use an aluminum pan/mat/flat Styrofoam tray instead of placing the shaving cream on the table...but that isn't necessary.

If you cut a lid in half...it will act as the perfect squeegee for removing the foam and paint later on.  I find the larger the lid, the better!!!!  This isn't a must have, but I like it because you can reuse them!!!!

There should be about an inch or so thickness to the shaving cream, and should be spread out to fit the size paper you are planning to print on.  Using your brush(or a craft stick)...drop paint onto the foam surface.

Take your craft stick and drag it through in one direction...not going too deep with the stick.

Take the craft stick through the opposite direction.  You can do this to your personal liking...trying to get the feathered look. Be careful not to over do it...or you'll just have a muddied look to your print.

Place paper on top of foam surface and press gently into the surface.

Lifting it off...you may think...OH NO..IT'S A HOT MESS?!?!?!?!  Don't worry...the magic comes once you squeegee that mess off!! ha ha  

Using your half lid...scrap off the foam/paint going from bottom to top.  Shake off the mess..and scrap the rest off.  Should be able to do this in 2 or 3 passes depending on the size of your lid and paper.  

You can theme your colors any way you like to fit with the next step of whatever project you're going to create.  Vague...yes...but this process can take you into many other projects: book making, collage, mixed media, paper weaving, etc.

You can use the same surface again to create another print.  The results are inconsistent though.  I dropped more paint onto the surface...re-drug the craft stick through...and reprinted.

It is a little muddied, but still beautiful.

Clean up isn't bad with this....and your room will smell soooooooooo good!!!!! ha ha 



  1. We did it right on the tables, and squeegeed off with hunks of cardboard boxes. When you marble directly iPod the table, when you clean up, the tables get super-clean too!

  2. Let the paper sit with the pigment & cream for a minute or two before squeegeeing off and the colors will be a little bolder. This also renders a softer texture to the paper. And it smells pretty good, too!

  3. Thank you for posting this! You make it look easy and now I feel like I might try it out! This was one of those "I-think-I'll-pass-on-that!" type of projects I saw but never thought I'd do (and I'm pretty brave!)--I'm going to take the plunge and try it with my kiddos! Thanks again! Mrs. P @createartwithme.blogspot.com

  4. These are very clear directions and now I think I will try it. The mess factor was intimidating, and I didn't think I'd do it right. Okay, I'm going to jump! Thanks for the push!