I’ve been wanting to try out acrylic pours with my kids for a while now. So with Matariki about to enter our skies I thought it would be fun to make some wooden star acrylic pours.

This activity is EXTRAORDINARILY messy, but the magical response that children get from it is TOTALLY worth it. There really is nothing like watching the way paint colours move, and slide, and interact with each other.

In order to prevent a heart stopping moment of your kids putting paint everywhere around your home, I would suggest preparation is the key!

So here are some simple tips to help you set up a space in which the kids can make a mess, and explore, and really enjoy the process of this awesome painting technique.

Pouring Set up tips:
1. Cover the table with either a plastic dropsheet or newspaper.
2. Buy an aluminium baking tray slightly larger than the star you cut out.
3. Invest in some rubber gloves for your children to use.
4. Collect a set of milk bottle lids to help with raising your stars off the surface while drying.
5. Decide where you are going to dry your creations, as they will take up to 3 days to dry.

Wooden Star Acrylic Pours for Matariki

Matariki star acrylic pours materials

What you will need
Resene test pots
Plastic cups
A wooden star (you could also cut stars from light ply, or stiff board)
Tin baking tray, one per child
Gloves – we used ones like these
Newspaper or plastic dropsheet
Milk bottle top lids
Iceblock sticks for mixing
Silicon – optional

Acrylic pour paint preparation

Because Resene test pot paints are thicker than some other acrylics I use the 1:2 ratio. An easy way to work this out is that I measure 1/4 of a cup of Floetrol to 1/8 of a cup Resene test pot paint.

An easy want to do this so you don’t muck up your measuring cups is draw two fill lines on your plastic cups to fill to.

Do this by filling your cup with water to create the marks. So first pour in 1/4 cup of water and draw a mark onto the cup then add an extra 1/8 of a cup of water to your cup for the paint line. Then line up your cups and mark them the same way.

Matariki star acrylic pours setup water

1. Pour the Floetrol in each cup for however many colours you plan to use in your painting. We used 4 colours so used 4 cups to mix our paint in. If you are using Resene test pots you will need a 1:2 ratio with the higher number representing the Floetrol.

Matariki star acrylic pours setup floetrol

2. Pour the paint into the Floetrol and mix with an iceblock stick. Repeat this for each cup and remember to add one part paint to 2 parts Floetrol

Matariki star acrylic pours Resene paint mix

3. Add only a few drops of silicone to each of your paints. A little bit goes a long way. The less you use the better the image will turn out. 2-3 drops is more than enough.

4. Then gently stir in the silicon, but not too much for the best result.

Creating your Matariki Star Pour

Now is where the magic starts to happen. So get those gloves on and let’s make some paint pours.

1. First, use an empty cup to layer your 4 paint cups into it. Start with the darkest colour on the bottom and the lightest on top.

2. Now that you have a cup full of your 4 colours, grab your star and place it on top of the cup. Put your hand on top of the star, then turn your paint cup and star upside down onto the tinfoil tray. Let the cup sit upside down for a minute. This allows the colours to drip to the bottom of the cup.

Matariki star acrylic pours tip

3. It’s now time to lift the cup. I’m not sure what is more magical to watch at this point: the way the paint slides across the star, or your child’s wondrous expression! Both are pretty magical.

4. With gloves on, pick up the star and slowly tip it, and move it around so that the paint runs right across the star, and tips over the sides. (Yes, this part gets a little messy!)

5. Finally set your star on top of the bottle caps and put it aside to dry for 2 – 3 days to dry completely.

Warning this paint method is completely addictive for both children and adults alike. Proceed at your own risk 🙂

Check out more great Matariki craft ideas. Or, for hundreds more craft ideas, check out our Creative arts and crafts section.

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This information was compiled by the Kiwi Families team.

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