It’s almost Mother’s Day. What are you doing for your mum this year? It’s a tricky year, how can we get creative with what we have at home to show our loved ones gratitude? Well, we are still grocery shopping. If you have some paint and paper around the house, try making some veggie prints for a card. This is a 5-star kid-approved activity. The flower pictured above is made from dipping a bok choy stem in paint and then pressing it into paper with a little twist (just like a stamp).


Pair your card with pancakes for breakfast, or lemon squares as a gift, and she is sure to feel like a superstar mum.

We added purple ink to these onion prints to form a flower stalk. Try drawing stems to turn your prints into a bouquet. Cut out your favorite prints and then turn them into flower arrangements to paste on coloured cards.

Here is a single piece of starfruit printed repeatedly. For the littles, this would be an ideal process. One fruit and one colour that can turn into something really beautiful.






  • Paint (tempera, acrylic, or watercolor)
  • Paint brushes
  • Water in a cup for paint brushes
  • Mat or plastic sheet (to cover your workspace)
  • Apron or old shirt to wear
  • Wet rag or paper towel for wiping up
  • White Paper (scrap paper or printer paper)


  • Card stock or Coloured paper for your Mother’s Day Card (optional) OR Plain paper
  • Glue stick
  • Scissors
  • Pens


  • A vegetable or fruit to print. We tried onion, bok choi, serrano pepper, napa cabbage, corn sprouts, and star fruit. If there is something about to go bad in your fridge, and it inspires you with an intriguing texture, try it out.



Step #1: Set up for success.

Tape some clear mats onto the table to avoid getting it dirty. Plastic cutting boards, cardboard, paper, or a plastic tablecloth would also work. Choose some paint colours to put into containers with brushes. Get your paper and a rag ready for testing. It is a good idea to wear an apron or painting shirt.

Step #2: Cut your veggies to expose the part you want to print.


Only cut what you can use. Food is too precious to waste, so we made bok choy for dinner with the leftover vegetable.

Step #3: Paint the surface of the veggie or fruit you are using.


Experiment with the paint consistency. What happens when the paint is thick, compared to when it is thinly applied? What happens when you mix colors?

Step #4: Press the painted veggie onto paper evenly.


Make sure to press down all the edges. Try twisting it to make a swirl effect.

Step #5: Press it again


Pressing it a few more times before adding more paint allows you to notice the difference in detail of the fruit or veggie between your first and last print.




Make a pattern

Experiment with using more than one color on a single print.


Experiment with composition by overlapping, leaving lots of space, or printing along the diagonal.

Step #6: Let it dry


Once you have some prints you like, set your work aside to dry.


Step #7: Bringing it all together

Turn your prints into a card by folding the paper in half. It’s beautiful if the print wraps around to the back. You can also trim it to a specific size with scissors.

Alternatively, you could choose parts you like and cut them out to create a collage. You can add drawn lines or stems to create the whole bouquet.

Step #8: Write a message


Finally, write a thoughtful message about what you are grateful for or what you think makes your mom a superstar.

Looking for something more?

Try putting your different experiments together into a composition. Here we started with the leafy parts (popcorn sprouts and napa cabbage) and let that dry before adding the flower shapes (onion and bok choy). Try making a few different compositions on card stock and choosing your favorite to give to your mum as a print to frame or as a card.



This project was inspired by an artist: ABCDEFruits by Jackson Lam, 2011 Apple as butterfly.

Happy Mother’s Day from Project CHEF

Curriculum Connections





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