Have you used CelMix before? CelMix is a cellulose powder, when mixed with water it acts as a thickener. I've read many times that it can be used for finger painting, making gel paint, papier mache and other paper crafts. I've been so curious about how it works it was time to give it a go!
As the CelMix comes in a powder that you add to water, it is up to you how much to use. I started out by measuring and following the instructions precisely but I quickly found myself making adjustments. I suggest using the instructions as a guide only as very quickly I was able to get a feel for how much to use.
It's a good idea to stir lots when adding the powder and allow it to set for 10 minutes or so before using. The powder clumps I had dissolved while setting.
First up I made gel finger paints. The texture was wonderfully gooey and slightly runny. I put my mixture in the blender to get the super smooth consistency I was looking for. The blender aerated the gel paints and made them lighter. I used liquid water colours to add the colour. I used a little Bio Glitter (also cellulose based) to to add wonder and sparkle.
Otto (37 months) hadn't used this gel like paint before and initially didn't want to touch it, so I suggested using a paint brush. Success!
It didn't take too long for him to use his hands and fingers. He didn't end up doing any drawing or painting (mark making) but rather played with the paints and loved to rub it on his arms and squish it in his hands and fingers. We will be making this again!!
In a large sensory tub like this I made the CelMix a lot thicker. Otto and Otis (9yrs) loved this so much. It's not only for the little kids. I put scoops and ladles in the tubs but the children just wanted to squish it!!
It's difficult to describe the texture, it is very gel like but not like slime. More like jelly. While CelMix is non-toxic I wouldn't use it unsupervised or with children who are putting things in their mouths.
I've coloured this with food colouring.
It was so cool and Otto loved to put it on his arms.
I knew that eventually Otto would put his trucks and things into the tub. It all washes off easily.
It's easy to use the CelMix to make paste, it works well for pasting card and paper and it's perfect for papier mache.
CelMix looks expensive but it lasts, a little goes a long way. If you have a child who loves papier mache it may be the best way to make bulk paste. This is Otis' project (he is making a papier mache bee) and Otto is helping.
CelMix is made in Australia and I hope there are equivalents overseas. Our Bio Glitter is from Conscious Craft (UK) but similar is available at MTA (AU). Please pass on any links if you've used something similar.