Eyeball Experiments

So, I’ve been experimenting, and need your input. Last week, I “finished” the little butterfly stuffies that are Christmas gifts for my kids. “Finished” is in quotes because they still don’t have faces. Just unsettling stitch markers where the eyes should be.

Obviously, I’m too late to add safety eyes (the safety of which is debatable), and buttons/beads are right out since I have a very chew-y one-year-old. I might do a bit of embroidery, or applique on little felt eyes, but that’s fussy.

There must be a better way! I’m a child of the 90s, so, I thought maybe puffy paint would work?

I pulled out an old swatch and gave it a try:

Cute, right? And promising! The paint beaded up nicely, at least at first. I let it dry, and…

Pffffft… Well, that didn’t dry as nicely as I wanted it to. It’s lumpy and flat, not nicely beaded up, like it was when it was still wet. On the plus side, at least it was really sturdily on there. No kid (even a heavy chewer) is going to get that paint off.

I added another coat of paint, in hopes that it would bead up, like I wanted it to in my dreams. And then I added another coat.

For comparison:

One coat was super-flat, 2 coats made a nice bump, and 3 coats was almost spherical. Unfortunately, all three versions were weirdly lumpy. But, I wonder if that’s a matter of the paint being kind of pearlescent. I think I’m going to go get some plain black, and try again.

I feel like this has the potential to be a great eyeball technique, but I’m not yet convinced. I think I need to do more experimenting before I commit to painting the butterflies (I don’t want to mess them up so soon before Christmas!).

Do you have any tricks for great eyes?

1 thought on “Eyeball Experiments

  1. Cheryl

    I generally leave faces blank for tiny children. For those past the chew-on-everything stage I embroider very minimalist features with black yarn and a few straight stitches.

    Reply

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