Learn to make a paper mâché bowl


While toys are hard to come by, due to the Covid-19 lockdown, and the kids are running out of things to do, here's a fun way to spend a messy afternoon!

Paper mâché is easy, fun and - importantly right now - inexpensive to do. You just need some newspaper, some glue and a brush. Enjoy! 

You'll need:

  • A balloon
  • Newspapers and comics
  • Vaseline
  • Wallpaper paste (or a runny/gooey combo of flour and water to make a paste, see below) 
  • Paint brush


You can make a paste by adding ½ cup water to 1 cup flour.

Mix to a smooth consistency, pour into a saucepan and gently boil, stirring constantly for 2 or 3 minutes until the mixture thickens.

It’s not as durable as wallpaper paste, so if you are creating something that you’re going to want to keep, it’s best to buy the real thing.

What to do

Step 1

Blow up the balloon, balance it on a small bowl or mug, and cover it with a thin layer of Vaseline. Brush the wallpaper paste over half of the balloon, and apply strips of newspaper.

  • It’s best to tear the paper, rather than cut it.

Overlap the strips slightly as you put each one down, and smooth them out to get rid of any air bubbles.

Step 2

Repeat the process, until you have 3 layers of paper. Allow to dry, and then add another 3 layers.

When your creation is completely dry, pop and remove the balloon. Use scissors to trim the edge of your bowl.

Step 3

Now add your top layer, which will be your decorative paper – comics, wrapping paper, or any other interesting paper.

Leave to dry completely, and then display it proudly!

Chat back:

Share your story with Parent24. Anonymous contributions are welcome.

Email: Share your story with us via email at chatback @ parent24.com

Sign up for Parent24's newsletters.

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For only R75 per month, you have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today.
Subscribe to News24