Continuing on my 2018 path of trying new crafty things, this past weekend I tried water marbling for the first time and made DIY water marbled leather coasters. And oh my goodness was it fun! And really easier than I expected, albeit quite messy. There are so many things that you can make with the resulting marbled paint, but for my first venture, I stuck with simple round leather coasters. I only bought one tiny 8.5″ by 11″ pieces of leather, so I had to stop marbling when I ran out of that and the Sta-flo, but I think I could have continued marbling for hours if I had bought enough supplies!
One of my favorite parts of water marbling is that each section of the marbled paint looks different. So, while some of these coasters were dipped in the same marbled paint, the look is completely different from each other.
-Sta-Flo liquid starch
-Acrylic craft paint
-Popsicle sticks for mixing
-Leather circles (I cut mine from a piece of vegetable tanned leather from the craft store)
-Large baking sheet
-Tooth pick for marbling
-Straw for dropping the paint on the starch
So, I know I said water marbling, but more accurately it is starch marbling. To begin, pour 4 cups of liquid starch in your baking sheet. Then add paint to your plastic cups in a ratio of one part paint to 1.5 parts water. You want the paint to become liquid and have a milk like consistency. If it is too thick, the paint will sink to the bottom of the starch bath.
Next, begin by using a straw to drip paint onto the starch surface. No wrong way to do this. Just drip and fling the paint onto the surface in any pattern you like.
Now, you can keep the paint like this, or you can use a tooth pick to drag through the surface to create a more marbled look.
Once the pattern is to your liking, place the leather rounds face down onto the paint surface. Then slowly pick them back up and place in a water bath to remove the excess starch. Don’t rub too much or the paint may start to smear. Take out of the water bath and lay on a piece of paper towel to dry and repeat.
Once the coasters are all dipped and dry, you can use them as is or coat them with a sealant like this one.
One thing to note is that when the leather gets wet, it will darken, so don’t judge the pattern after the dip. Wait until they are dry to really see the pretty marble effect. The lights pink marble coaster looked horrible after I dipped it, but now it is one of my favorite ones.
And you better believe I am going to pick up a few more bottles of Sta-flo the next time I am at the grocery store! I see many more marbling projects in my future!