Pendulum Painting | Nanny Anita | My Baba

I have seen many pendulum painting activities over the last year and have been waiting for the perfect opportunity to do it. To say that this summer weather has been changeable, is putting it lightly. When the weather has been fine, we have generally gone out. Then when it has been unpleasant we’ve been inside. When we finally got the chance to do it, we started outside, then the wind picked up and we had to more it inside. Not ideal at all.

Make sure you follow my outside activity board for more ideas. Don’t forget to save the pin for later. 

To do your own pendulum painting you will need:

  • Wooden pole
  • Tape
  • String
  • Plastic bottle
  • Paint or sand
  • Water
  • Lighter
  • Screwdriver
  • Scissors
  • Paper

The first thing you will need to do is set up your bottle. Cut the bottom off the end of it, then in the lid make a hole using a screwdriver. The easiest way to make the hole is to heat the end of the screwdriver up with a lighter. It will make is much easier to cut through the lid. Failing that, using the lid of a glue bottle also works well (if it fits the water bottle). Finally make 2 holes in either side of the bottle near the bottom; this is to hang it up with.

To set up the frame for the pendulum painting, you can either rest the wooden pole between two chairs. Or you can have it sticking over the end of a table. Whichever way you decide to have it just make sure to secure the pole in place. Finally hang the bottle from the pole; I used a bit of tape to make sure that it stayed in one place.


Pendulum painting We used both sand and paint while doing this. When we were outside we used sand straight onto the pavement. It worked well, until the wind picked up and it started to threaten rain. YC and I then moved it all inside and used paint in it onto paper. If you are using sand you will need a bigger hole in the lid than if you are using paint. Don’t forget to water down your paint so that it comes out smoothly. You will need equal parts of paint and water for that.

When you are filling up the bottle make sure you cover the hole up with a finger.

Pendulum painting

It really is fun to watch the bottle make patterns. You can experiment with different colours and different swings. We actually placed smaller canvases onto the larger pieces of paper. That way we got a small portion of the pattern onto the canvases to keep. YC loved trying different things with it.

Our finished canvases

We definitely want to try the pendulum painting again outside when the weather permits it.

If you enjoyed this pendulum painting be sure to check out my balloon painting and pour painting craft.

Pin for later:

Pendulum painting with sand and paint to create unique canvases. Kids craft.

About The Author

Nanny Anita
Norland Nanny

Nanny Anita is our resident Super Nanny. Having trained at the famous Norland College, in Bath, she has over 12 years experience, working all over the world with children from 2 months to 17 years old. Nanny Anita is an expert when it comes to keeping the little ones entertained and writes a column with Leonora called 'Get Crafty' for Little London magazine. Nanny Anita has been on hand to answer our reader questions, and she provides weekly arts, crafts and activities for families to do with their children at home. She really is a modern day Mary Poppins!

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