Food (Weekly Unplugged Project) – Potato and Pasta Stamps

By , April 13, 2008 9:33 pm

I confess that when I picked the theme food for this week’s Unplugged Project, I had potato stamps in mind. I have never tried stamping with potatoes and have always thought it sounded fun. But we got so into it, and since I was cooking pasta for dinner, we tried a few pasta stamps too!

Here are the materials:

First I asked each child what they wanted for a stamp. I told them to keep it simple! My daughter wanted a moon and a star. My son wanted a spiral.

These sounded manageable so I cut a potato in half and began carving using a box cutter to draw the initial outline on the potato, and then a kitchen knife to cut away the unneeded portions. Since my children are only 7 and 5, I did all the cutting (although my 5 year-old son would have loved to have gotten his little hands on the box cutter!):

This can be a bit tricky. The star lost a point and became a rather lopsided four pointed star. I lacked the mental energy to really figure out the spiral, so it became a mushroom. My son didn’t mind. My advice: keep it simple (especially at first) and use potatoes that are as firm as possible. Ours were a bit old and soft. That’s my excuse and I am sticking to it!

I blotted the stamps with a paper towel to remove the excess moisture. Using a paintbrush, we then painted the stamps with paint and printed pictures and patterns on card stock. The kids made cards for their friends. I just had fun.

Then I got adventurous and decided to try a roller effect. I peeled a whole potato and carved a rectangle on two sides, and more of a square/dot on the other two to create what I hoped would be a cool rectangle-dot-rectangle-dot pattern when rolled across the paper. I painted the rectangles blue, and the dots yellow, then rolled it on the card.

We all thought that the final result looked great! Final photos show this card.

After this success, I was really into this stamping thing and found some dry pasta in my pantry with interesting textures (I was cooking pasta, so pasta naturally came to mind). I used a rotini (twisty corkscrew pasta) and a penne (a tube with small ridges) to make a few more cards. The penne was subtle, but made a nice grass effect. The rotini was fun and drew “oohs and ahs” from my children. There are so many different pastas out there, I suspect that at sometime, you might see some more pasta stamping at Unplug Your Kids!

Here are the finished cards. First the kids’ cards for their friends:

And mine. First my potato cards (the one on the left was created with my “roller potato!”):

And then my pasta and potato cards. The blue, widely-spaced lines are the rotini pasta. The green grass is penne pasta.


If you did the food Unplugged Project with us this week, then please link to your project post in Mr. Linky below. If you didn’t join in this week, but would like to, we’d love to have you with us! Simply read about how the Unplugged Project works, and jump right in.


Next Monday’s Unplugged Project falls right on the first day of TV-Turnoff Week. What a dilemma! Since I actually post my weekly project Sunday night before I go to bed, I guess I am OK (I might not be quite as prompt a visitor though). But for those of you who like to do the project and post on Monday, if you are participating in the TV-Turnoff Week Blog Challenge you are faced with having to sit it out, do it early or late, or do a quick Monday post. I’ll leave that decision up to you and plan a project for next Monday anyhow.

The theme for next week’s Unplugged Project is:


This is in honor of Michie who has been longing for a scissors project for quite some time now!

What can you create with scissors? If your little one is too young for scissors, then you can do the cutting and your baby can do the creating! Remember, even one tiny snip “counts.”


For those who did the food project this week, here is Mr. Linky:

18 Responses to “Food (Weekly Unplugged Project) – Potato and Pasta Stamps”

  1. Julie says:

    yum yum in my tum-tum. Go see what we made.

  2. Michie says:

    Thank you – I laughed when I saw the theme this week! I really needed a smile. Now I better make sure I come up with something for this week, huh? :)

  3. Arwen says:

    I’ve always wanted to try potato stamps. We’l have to do that one of these days. This week we learned about pumpkins.

    Thanks for doing these unplugged projects. They have really been a lot of fun for us.

  4. ToddleBits says:

    I couldn’t wait to see what everyone else did with food and you did not disappoint! The potato stamps are a great idea. I wonder if using a cookie cutter would help with the carving…it would have to small enough I guess, but yours came out great! Thanks!

  5. […] if we could do a science project, and so I started thinking of something quick and easy to do with food (color celery). Yesterday afternoon, I went with the kids to cook dinner but it seemed too daunting […]

  6. Piseco says:

    You guys made some great cards! We did potato printing too, but used cookie cutters to make the shapes. I haven’t tried printing with pasta – I’ll add that idea to my list!

  7. I did nothing with food this week – I barely even cooked! However, it looks like you guys had a grand time! What a fun idea!!

    We TV Turnoff week coming up, I think I’m going to have to peruse our old projects and plan to do some of the ones we didn’t get to.

    I still love this idea of the unplugged project… as always, thanks for hosting!

  8. The cards you guys made came out great. We almost did veggie/fruit prints and still might later in the week. I went for edible food instead!

  9. Claire says:

    I’m very impressed with your pasta and potato stamps – much more detailed and intricate than any I have ever managed to carve out :-)

  10. kim says:

    How cute! We were going to do this as well……great minds think alike! You guys’ paintings came out super!!

    Glad you liked my journals last week. It’s super easy to make and lots of fun to use! Can’t wait to see yours, if you do make them!

  11. Love the homemade food stamps! I have used potatoes, but never tried pasta. Another fun thing to add to my list. :)

  12. Heather says:

    The potato stamps look like so much fun. I am going to definetly have to try it some time.

  13. warillever says:

    I love the roller potato!

    We did rolled corn paintings last fall, and the kids loved it.

  14. Kate in NJ says:

    OK, better late than never.
    Love the stamps!

  15. Homemade food stamps are really fun, I also like onions and halved cabbage. There is a counting book called “One Potato” by Diana Pomeroy in which all the illustrations are done with potato prints. We just did recipes, I’ll try and do something more inventive for next week!

  16. kristen says:

    Love the past prints!!

  17. Amber says:

    I am so jealous! When I read this weeks project was food my first thought was how exciting it would be to do potato stamping. I was sad that we couldn’t try that this week. Your project turned out so nice! We used pasta for our project and after seeing yours I am kicking myself for not thinking to make prints with pasta! I guess we can do that later today with the pasta we have leftover from our project.

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