Earth Day, celebrated this week, is a good annual reminder to imagine creative ways to reuse what we typically throw away, even little things. Here’s one that may lurk in the produce bin of your refrigerator: a celery-stalk rose just waiting to be revealed with some ink or fabric paint.
The end of a celery stalk makes a natural stamp. (Courtesy of Donna Erickson)
Curious? When you prep celery for your next recipe, cut through the stalk about 2 inches from the core end, grab that end in your hand and instead of tossing it into the compost bin, take a look at the roselike pattern the stalks make nestled together. Use it as a natural stamp (it’s an ideal size and shape for young children to hold) for printing artistic rose designs.
As you prep your printing station for this crafty idea, ponder all the things you can decorate. Think Mother’s Day! Why not stamp rose prints all over tissue paper that will pop out of a gift bag for Mom, Grandmother or a special friend? She’ll be oohing and aahing over the “roses in bloom” before she even gets to the gift tucked inside.
Keep stamp, stamp, stamping the blooms on gift tags, lunch bags, placemats, a playroom wall! You name it.
Here’s the stuff you’ll need for printing on tissue paper:
Plain sheets of white or light-colored tissue paper
Acrylic paints or stamp inkpads in colors of your choice for roses and leaves
Paper plates, if using paints
Markers for outlining the stamped shape (optional)
Here’s the fun:
First, make your celery stalk rose stamp. For a nice design, cut evenly through the entire stalk of celery, about 2 to 3 inches from the core end. Wipe off moisture on the cut ends. For leaves, cut a 3-inch length from one of the celery ribs. Wipe off moisture on one cut end.
Pour a puddle of paint on a paper plate and lightly dip the cut end of the rose stamp in the paint, or press on an inkpad. Stamp onto tissue paper.
Voila! C’est la rose, a clever design by nature. Continue printing all over the tissue paper.
Embellish by dipping a cut rib in paint for leaves and stamp lightly around the “roses.” Let dry.
Use markers to outline and embellish the designs, if you wish.