#TryThis Shaving Cream Marbling

Art projects at home always SOUND like a good idea, until you think about the set-up, tear-down and clean-up (especially with children, amirite?!) Have no fear, this technique yields incredible results with few supplies, little effort, and minimal mess. I did it in about six minutes with my four year old and no people or household items were harmed. Let’s jump in, shall we?*


Shaving cream (foaming, not gel)
Liquid food coloring or liquid watercolors
Shallow pan or tray
A tool for stirring (bamboo skewer, plastic knife, etc)
Squeegee or piece of cardboard for removing shaving cream from paper
Paper towels, wipes, or towels

The HOW:

Gather all of your supplies. Here was our dining room set-up. That blue tray is the lid to a storage container.

Fill your tray with a shallow layer of shaving cream. Just enough to coat the bottom of the tray is fine.

Spread evenly. Remind yourself this is NOT whipped cream.

Squirt several drops of each color onto the surface of the shaving cream.

Swirl colors around in shaving cream.

Place paper on top of shaving cream and pat lightly, just so the paper makes even contact with the shaving cream.

Pull your paper off and lay flat on your table or tray.

Squeegee off all shaving cream with squeegee or cardboard.

MARVEL at your talent. The best part is the paper and coloring will be DRY as soon as you get all of the shaving cream off. So, no mess and no drying time. WIN!

Now that you’re feeling confident, feel free to use the same tray again. You can add more colors or simply use what is in your pan as long as there is color to pick up.

Use your beautiful paper as stationary, frame it, wrap gifts with it, the possibilities are endless. If you tackle this project, post photos and tag the museum. Happy Marbling!

Optional follow-up activities:

Let children bring the finished tray full of shaving cream into the bathtub and play with the foam to their hearts’ content and then wash the remainder down the drain. The food coloring WILL stain hands, but will come out after a few generous washings with soap.

#TryThis is made possible with support from PNC, the Mary S. and David C. Corbin Foundation, the Alan and Janice Woll Family Fund, OMNOVA Solutions Foundation, Peg’s Foundation, Robert O. and Annamae Orr Family Foundation, Kathy Moses Salem Philanthropic Fund of the Akron Community Foundation, Charles E. and Mabel M. Richie Foundation and Mr. and Mrs. William H. Considine.




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Akron Art Museum

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Enriching lives through modern and contemporary art

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