Okay, so first things first, here's the recipe. It's a pretty common playdough recipe but the mom at I Sew, Do You? took some great pictures and makes it really easy to follow.
1 cup flour
1/2 cup salt
2 tsp cream of tartar
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 cup water
Mix everything in a pot over low heat until it starts to pull away from the pot into a ball. Put the cooked dough on wax paper and knead a little to smooth it out. Now you're ready to go!
On my last few batches of playdough, I decided to add some scents and go for natural food coloring. I was making it for a playdate with some other moms and I thought I'd spruce it up a bit! I don't have anything majorly against food coloring because it's not like I give Olive a bunch of sprinkles and colored candy to eat every day. But I thought I'd try making some natural food dyes for fun! The moms at Play at Home Mom gave me the inspiration to create my own dyes and I took it from there!
How to make your own food based dyes:
1) Add 1 cup water to a small pot.
2) Add in 1 cup fruit/veggie or a few tablespoons of a colorful spice.
3) Bring to a boil and then let simmer and reduce for about 15 minutes.
4) Strain dye into a bowl. (I used a mess strainer and put a paper towel on top. You could use pantyhose or cheesecloth, too.)
5) Store your dye in small containers or plastic baggies!
Here are my "solutions" cooking:
|Safflower and Paprika|
Here are the dyes after they were strained and bagged. As you can see, some of the solutions reduced more than others:
Lastly, I've been experimenting with scented playdough. I've research a lot of different methods online and come up with a few on my own. To get scents into the dough you can add a variety of things such as: extracts, koolaid, spices, tea leaf, etc. Whatever you choose, just add it to the mixture while you're cooking it along with everything else. Here is the playdough I made for my playdough playmate this week using my natural dyes and scents!
Top row, left to right:
1) Scent - 3 tbsp chocolate powder, Dye - none, the chocolate acts as a dye
2) Scent - 1 tbsp vanilla extract, Dye - none
3) Scent - licorice using ground fennel seeds, Dye - blueberry
4) Scent - 2 tbsp cinnamon, Dye - cinnamon
Bottom row, left to right:
1) Scent - contents of 2 orange spice tea bags, Dye - Safflower/Paprika
2) Scent - 2 tbsp apple pie spice, Dye - strawberry (the spice added color, too)
3) Scent - contents of 2 peppermint tea bags, Dye - strawberry
4) Scent - 2 tbsp pumpkin pie spice, Dye - turmeric (spice adds color, too)
Have fun experimenting with your own scents and dyes and please leave a comment if you come up with any awesome ones! I'd love to hear about it! :)