Grimm's Color Blocks Do it Yourself

Do It Yourself Beautiful Grimm’s Wooden Rainbow Blocks that Actually Work!

In my quest of really cool and totally awesome preschool activities, I came across Funn at Home with Kid’s blog post about how to DIY a Grimm’s Style Wooden Rainbow Block Set. The pictures she posted of her set were absolutely stunning. Beautiful, vibrant colors. Shocking, awesome shades. What’s great? It was so incredibly simple. All she had to do was dunk her cubes in, pull ’em out, and set them down on some wax paper.

So, here I go. I make my list of things to keep on the look out of great prices for {mainly because everyone knows I don’t pay full price.} I found a new dollar store down the street, and decided to go in for a search. Eureka! I somehow found the same brand and type of small, wooden craft blocks that are at our local Hobby Lobby. Even better? Instead of an $8.99 tag, the $8.99 is scratched out and a $1.00 sign is hanging right above the blocks. Sweet! Okay, lets buy 3 packs juuuuuust in case. The problem? I still don’t have a set of liquid water colors.

grimms blocks4

Lets just say, good thing I bought 3 sets of blocks…. Man I should have photographed our disasters!

  • First off… I only had food coloring and acrylic paint on hand. NEITHER WORKS. Lets make that clear from the start. If you want a variety of shades, do not use acrylic paint. Plus, sitting on the wax paper the acrylic drips off the sides and puddles at the bottom so when you unstick it from the wax paper, it clumps at the bottom and instead of a colored block of wood you end with a colored block of wood attached to a glump of paint that never comes of
  • Secondly, do not use food coloring in water or any other DIY water color. We used an entire pack of blocks trying out any and all DIY paint mixes you can find on pinterest. They just don’t work. Not as beautifully.
  • Do not think its as simple as dunking. Its super duper incredibly and utterly simple, but not dunking simple.


grimms blocks2

The project is super duper simple. We purchased Sargent’s Art Liquid Water Colors on sale. I have no experience with water colors, so I simply purchased them because they were the cheapest paints online with decent reviews. I would give them a five star rating so far though! We started off dunking each one, and this entertained my two year old for about 30 minutes, so it wasn’t a wasted activity. We used 1 tsp paint and dipped 4-5 blocks in pure color. Then we added two tablespoons water and dumped 4-5 more blocks. And finally two more tablespoons water and 4-5 more blocks.

TIP OF THE DAY **** I learned what would have made more sense though is to leave the blocks sitting in the mixture rather than dunking. I learned that the blocks have a very light, very slight almost plasticy glaze covering each block. It is almost water repellant so we had to redo several blocks until I learned this tedious fact!


grimms blocks3
As we continue dying things in our future, I will do two things:

  1. Soak the blocks or whatever objects they may be instead of tediously dipping and just remove several blocks at a time over the course of a couple hours.
  2. Save the left over paint for Kara to paint with instead of washing it down the sink. I’m not sure why it didn’t hit me at the time; we used enough paint for our project and you can’t tell any is missing from the bottles. BUT, why not expand it over another project or two. Kara loves it! Even bath painting would have been great in the tray!


***Oh, and One more Critical Tip*** Start with your lighter colors. The dyes leach onto your skin for a few hours, and you will cross contaminate! You can see in the image below how the orange has some red mixed in. Luckily, it didn’t ruin it.. But, what if I had done purple or blue and then yellow? Work light to dark! Always

The final project was glorious!


Grimms Blocks


Please leave us a comment and let me know of a DIY project you copied from Pinterest and ended up having to make adjustments along the way!!! Some stories, I’m told, just end up humerus!


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