Hi there, Natasha of Violet Tinder Studios here! I’ve always loved the look of marbling, but assumed it would be a complicated process to create it myself. When a friend of mine commissioned a marbled painting, I decided it was time to figure it out. And guess what? It’s so easy and SO fun! It’s probably best saved for a day when you can carve out an hour or so, because it is hard to pause and come back to… so ready to get down to business??
Here’s what you’ll need:
- 2-3 cans shaving cream (I only bought one to start and within 30 min, had my husband racing to the store for more!)
- A roll of blue painter’s tape
- Food coloring or Fluid Acrylic Paint
(either will work, but food coloring is much cheaper!)
- Thick/heavyweight paper (I used watercolor paper but you can really use anything that’s heavy enough to withstand some moisture… regular copy paper will be too weak)
- 1-2 foil serving pans (large enough to fit your paper size with ease)
- LOTS of paper towels!
- A rubber spatula
- A ruler
NOTE: This project does get pretty messy, so make sure you’re wearing something you wouldn’t mind getting a little dye on! 😉
1) To start, prep your paper by taping off the back side with painter’s tape. This will keep the edges clean and help when you lift the paper out of the tray. Once you start, it’s hard to stop, so make sure you prep enough paper in advance.
2) Now the fun begins! Fill your tray with shaving cream so that it completely covers the bottom of the tray. I used about half a can in the tray to start, and then added as I went along to create new color combos. Once the shaving cream is in, take your coloring and add a few drops… a little goes a long way, so start light and you can add as you go. Also, keep in mind that colors that touch will mix- so if you want to keep a color pure, avoid dropping it onto another one.
3) Once the color is in, take your rubber spatula and start folding the shaving cream. You’ll see the colors start to swirl and mix… it looks so cool! Avoid over-mixing it, as they will continue to mix as you go, and over-blended colors start to look… less pretty. Ha!
4) Take your paper and place the clean/blank side face-down in the mixture. Make sure you press gently over all of the back to help get air-pockets out, and then let it sit for about a minute.
5) Then, pick the paper up by the corner, and slowly peel up in one direction. This will help keep the marbled pattern intact. Lay it back-side-down on paper towels, and with your ruler, scrape the foam off all in one direction (I like to imagine I was “shaving” the shaving cream off!)- you’ll be left with a beautiful, colorful marbled design!
Don’t worry if your first few tries look a little… off. Once you’ve experimented with a couple sheets of paper, you’ll get an idea of your technique… then, have fun!! I started adding more and more shaving cream and coloring to create all different kinds of color combos… it really is addicting!
Oh, and if you love the marbled look, I turned a few of my marbled creations into prints. You can find them here and here.
I’d love to see what you create- share your creations on Instagram with #VioletTinderxLA and I’ll share some of my favorites!