Paint Splatter Craft: An Easy Fourth of July DIY

Paint Splatter Craft

It’s almost America’s birthday! Woohoo!!

Since many of our regular festive activities have been put on hold this year due to a pandemic, it’s time to make the magic at home! If you have little ones then give this Fourth of July Paint Splatter Craft a try. It’s easy to make and odds are you have most of the items on hand already.

Both my boys, a 2-year-old and 5-year-old, gave it a try and both approved. More importantly, the project kept them busy for about 15-20 minutes, if not longer! I’ll take that over a quick two-minute craft any ol’ day!

Plus, at the end of the post, I list a few development benefits to the project, as seen through the eyes of an occupational therapist. Then, if the craft wasn’t enough, you can keep creating with a few premade craft activities that can be purchased off of Amazon.

Therefore, without any more hold up, let’s dive into the Fourth of July Paint Splatter Craft!

Fourth of July Paint Splatter Craft


Tempura Paints


Small Dixie Cups



Tape: Scotch Tape Works Great

Star Shapes: (Printed on Cardstock if Possible)

Optional: Glitter Glue

1. Step One

Gather up all your supplies! If you can’t find the items listed above at your local craft store, try Amazon or the Dollar Store. We were able to find a majority of our crafts at the Dollar Store.

2. Step Two

To help the craft go smoothly, be sure to prep everything before you let your little ones create the project. Decide how many different colors of paint you want to include in your paint splatter and count out the same number of Dixie cups and paintbrushes.

Next, pour about a 1/8 of paint (or more if you’re making large canvases) into the Dixie Cups and then thin with a few tablespoons of water. You want to make sure the paint will splatter when you fling it off your paintbrush.

Yet, you want to make sure it’s not too runny, or else the paint won’t stick to the paintbrush. It’s best to add in the water one tablespoon at a time. Then, if your paint isn’t thin enough, you can continue to add more paint until it is the proper consistency.

3. Step Three

After your paints are all mixed up, place your paintbrushes in each cup and set aside. Next, you want to take the free PDF of stars and cut out each of the different star shapes.

Once cut out, take each shape and arrange it on the canvases, making sure to leave space between each. The stars need to be taped down as best as they can be in order to provide the star outline once the paint is splattered in place.

4. Step Four

It is highly recommended that this craft be completed outside, in an area that can handle being splattered with some washable paint for a little while. The great outdoors can usually handle such treatment and is ready for the mess!

Note that it is usually best for the canvas to be flat on the ground when completing this activity. We attempted to have the canvas upright at first and realized that the paint ran down the canvas after it was splattered.

It’s not a horrible thing and added a little more dimension to the painting, but some paint did run underneath the stars. We embraced the drips, but decide how you would like your painting to look.

5. Step Five

Finally, now that your stars are in place and your paint is mixed up, it’s time to have some fun! Make sure your little one has a paint smock on, or clothes that you don’t mind getting covered in paint on, and let them get to work!

First, have them dop each brush individually into the paint.

Splatter Paint Project Splatter Paint Project

Next, have them cock their wrist and give the brush a flick. The paint should go flying (hopefully) in the direction of the canvas. Let them keep dipping and flicking until the canvas is covered.

Once your little artist is satisfied with their masterpiece, set the painting aside to dry. Once dry, you can pull the paper stars off of your canvas to reveal the (hopefully) star-shaped scene below the paper.

6. Step Six: Optional Step

As mentioned above, we had some paint run off underneath our stars on our canvases. We didn’t mind, but still wanted some star shapes on our canvas.

Therefore, we took out some glitter glue and got to work creating star shapes onto the somewhat formed stars. We ended up loving the results even more! The fun texture from the paint that seeped under our paper stars was a welcomed pop of color.


Thoughts from an Occupational Therapist on the Fourth of July Paint Splattering Craft

How Can Fourth of July Paint Splattering Craft Help Your Kiddo?

The Fourth of July Paint Splattering craft is a great way to have kids participate in a sensory activity that allows them to get a little (or a lot) messy. As kiddos are splattering paint all over a canvas, they might not realize that they are getting paint on their arms, hands, legs,…you name it!

Splatter Paint Craft

Due to being distracted by making artwork, this Fourth of July Paint Splattering Craft might actually be a great introduction to some sensory fun! Additionally, if you have your little one cut out the stars from the printed free PDF, they will be able to work on their fine motor cutting skills.

Plus, if you have your little one rip the tape to get the stars in place, you can work on hand strengthening skills at the same time! Two little fine motor friendly skills ready to be strengthened by you!

Want to take things a step further? Decide to not print out the provided star PDF and have your little one draw the stars themselves! Make sure they are using their ‘helping hand’ (hand opposite their cutting hand) and they will also be working on bilateral coordination skills, as well!

Paint Splatter Craft Paint Splatter Craft

Review: What Did the Kids Think?

Personally, I thought this project was colorful and entertaining. Just something about flicking paint all over the place that is enjoyable! My two test subjects enjoyed splattering paint all over the canvases and stayed at the task for about 15 minutes.

After about 15 minutes, my older son continued to work, but my younger son decided to start painting landscaping rocks. Since we set up the craft outdoors, I didn’t mind. He could paint until his little heart was content. Which was about 5 minutes later.

After out paint had dried, but 5 years old helped with using the glitter glue to draw the stars. We decided to complete this portion of the activity during nap time, so the two-year-old sat this one out.

Honest Kid Reviews of 4th of July Splatter Paint:

5-Year Old Review: It was fun. I liked getting the paint everywhere. I also liked painting on my legs.

2-Year Old Review: My favorite part was the paint. And the rocks. 

Toys to Keep the Paint Splatter Going with Thoughts from an Occupational Therapist: How is the Toy Beneficial

Paint Spin Art

First up we have the classic spin art craft. While it’s not as self-driven as the paint splatter craft, it’s a fun project that lets kids create abstract works of art. Kids can still decide on the color combo of paint they want to add to the spinner and watch as it creates unique displays.

Due to the unique ‘splash guard,’ the spinner has, the product might be a great segway for kids worried about getting messy with the paint splatter project. The ‘splash guard’ will project them from paint splattering everywhere, but allow them to still work with the messy paint medium.

Marble Painting

Second up we have marble painting! Marble painting is another great way for kiddos to make abstract art. Plus, it’s a great way for more sensory exploration.

In theory, you are supposed to use tools to swirl the paint to be marbled, but you could use your hand or finger to create unique designs as well.

Or, backing up, if your little one didn’t want to get messy, their hand could be used to mix up the paint colors in the medium.

Conclusion to Fourth of July Paint Splatter Craft

There ya go!

A quick, fun, and easy festive Fourth of July Paint Splatter Craft. Have fun letting your little one make this their own. Or, if you want, go ahead and make this yourself. It is really cool, and no, no one will tell you you can’t splatter paint all over a tree as well. …you know you want to!

Looking for more fun Fourth of July fun? Be sure to check out this post for some patriotic Rice Krispie treats.  

4th of July Splatter Paint

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