There is something quite lovely about butterflies- their beautiful colours, gentle flutter and how the light often catches on their wings.  We wanted to re-create a little bit of that magic.


  • Template butterfly
  • Watercolour paper
  • Pencil/earaser
  • Scissors
  • Items to make shapes and lines (caps, dowels, popsicle sticks etc.)
  • Craft glue
  • Acrylic paint (We used both black and white)
  • Old fork
  • Drying rack
  • Liquid watercolour paint
  • Brushes
  • Wooden peg bodies
  • Artificial stamen
  • Glue gun (optional)



We always find these items helpful too:


  • Print and cut out the butterfly template, or even better, draw your own!
  • Trace it onto watercolour paper for the best results onto the rough side.  (We often use the weekly coupon at Micheals to purchase it!)
  • Cut out your butterflies and lay them in your tray.
  • Mix your acrylic paint with your craft glue.  As you can see we used about 1 tablespoon for approximately 10 tablespoons of glue.
  • Dip your parts into your glue mixture and carefully apply them to your butterfly, creating various designs, exploring patterning and symmetry if you like.  If paint gets on your fingers, be sure to take the time to wipe it off so it doesn’t stick to your wings!
  • Allow to dry overnight.
  • Paint your butterfly.  One trick that we use that prevents bleeding is to paint the details and then to allow it to dry and paint the background.
  • Once completely dry, attach the stamen to a peg body (you could also use a stick from nature or the provided body on the template) and then glue the body onto the butterfly.
  • Hang your butterfly from the ceiling with fishing line, attach it to a present etc.

Pin this idea:

WATERCOLOUR BUTTERFLIES: Use recyclables to create prints with glue and then paint your butterfly with watercolour paints- a perfect project for children to celebrate spring!

Do you love butterflies?

Here are some more of our butterfly projects:

SPIN ART BUTTERFLIES: Spin Art Butterflies:  Use a salad spinner to create this beautiful spring craft!


Butterfly Wall Hanging: Use coffee filters to create these whimsical butterflies to dress up your wall. Connected to the children's book: "Waiting for Wings".

DESIGN BUTTERFLY WINGS WITH LOOSE PARTS Design Butterfly Wings with Loose Parts! (Templates Included!)—CRAFT-FOR-KIDS/

SHRINK ART BUTTERFLY NECKLACE Shrink Art Necklaces from (Crafts & activities for kids)

PAPER BAG BUTTERFLY COSTUME Paper Bag Butterfly with (Crafts & activities for kids!)


  • The glue mixture forms a resist where the paint won’t be absorbed into the paper for an interesting effect.
  • Recognizing some of the common symbols/ signs associated with spring.

Safety Notes

  • We suggest that you use a tray and a smock to protect your clothing and surfaces.
  • Use scissors with care and direct, adult supervision.
  • Small items can be a choking hazard, therefore be sure to keep them out of the reach of children ages 0-3 years of age or those that tend to put things into their mouths.
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