Whether you are creating a jungle theme for your child's playroom or a border of different paw prints for a zoo theme in a baby nursery, sponge painting affords you complete control of placement and design. Animal prints add a whimsical element to walls, wrapping paper, invitations and other crafts. Modify paw prints to look like cats, dogs, tigers, lions and even reptiles or birds. Sponge paint one distinct colour or layer a few different colours to complement the rest of the project. Stencils in the shape of paw prints are widely available online and at craft stores or you can freehand the paw prints.
Affix paw print stencil to a clean dry surface with tape or spray adhesive. Smooth away any bumps or air bubbles for a completely flat stencil.
Wet sponge thoroughly and squeeze out any excess water. Sponge should be evenly damp but not wet. Choose your sponge carefully according to the texture you wish to impart on your project. Another thing to consider is the size. Work with a sponge small enough to fit in your hand for smaller work but for larger wall projects use a bigger sponge.
Dip sponge into the first colour of paint gently and evenly. Blot the sponge onto a paper towel to remove excess paint.
Dab paint into the open areas of the stencil. Saturate the paw print with as much or as little paint as you see fit for your design.
Remove stencil and repeat process if you are creating a trail or pattern of prints.
Experiment with animal print stamps to use in combination with the stencils for a variegated look. Cut potatoes and sponges into paw print stamps. Another idea is to look for rubber stamps with animal prints on them. Rubber stamps are ideal for smaller work and paper crafts. Play with colour saturation and texture. For instance, you can make a trail of paw prints disappear by making them lighter and lighter the farther they move away from the original spot.
Test the stencil with your paint choices on a test area. For a wall project, test your stencil on a canvas board both for placement and colour saturation to avoid time consuming mistakes on the wall. Pay attention to how much paint is required before the paint bleeds below the stencil.