Melted Crayon Background

by Beate Johns

Create landscape or abstract backgrounds by melting crayons on glossy cardstock.


  • Crayons
  • Craft Iron, or travel iron without steam holes
  • Cardstock, glossy used here
  • Scrap Paper
  • Tissue Paper


  1. Step 1

    Set your iron on medium heat. Once it is warm, start scribbling crayon over iron surface. The crayon will melt.

  2. Add several colors for an interesting look.

  3. Step 2

    Place your cardstock on top of your scrap paper on a heat resistant surface. Pull your iron over your entire piece of cardstock for a smooth finish.

    To achieve the ridged look shown here, move your iron in zigzag motion over your cardstock.

  4. Step 3

    Add more crayons to your iron. Several greens were added to the center of the iron and a brown crayon line was drawn on the left outer edge.

  5. Apply crayon to the lower half of your cardstock. Here a figure eight was drawn with the iron to achieve the wavy look.

    To get edge to edge coverage, make sure you start on your scrap piece of paper and go over the entire cardstock, to the other side of your scrap paper, with your iron.

  6. Step 4

    For more texture add addtional green crayon colors to your iron.

  7. Tap the bottom part of your cardstock with the iron. You will create a textured look.

  8. Step 5

    Take a tissue paper and gently buff the cardstock to make it shine.

  9. Step 6

    Use crayon background as it is, or stamp on it.

    Jet Black Archival Ink and Black Stazon™ will both work. The ink will take a few minutes to dry.



    Make it really sparkle!
    Glitter or Metallic crayons create a different background.

    Wax paper method
    Cover your ironing board with wax paper. Put the cardstock down and add crayon shavings on top. Cover this with another piece of wax paper. Iron over the wax paper until the crayon is melted.

    Different surfaces
    Be adventurous. Try different surfaces for different looks. Matte cardstock will give you a matte look.

Your Turn

You've seen the tutorial, now you try it! We've got a section of the gallery set aside for Melted Crayon Background. Try this technique, then upload your artwork to the gallery. Show us your creations!

***Please note - Internet Explorer/Edge is not a supported browser, and will not allow you to see the videos. Please use Chrome, Firefox or Safari to view our tutorial videos.

Questions and Comments

We'd love to get your feedback or questions. Leave your comment below.

I will begin carrying them in January but until then you can get them from The "craft" irons that are sold are cheap but they are not regulated for low and you heat the up then have to unplug the, use them awhile, plug them in etc. I was really disappointed when I bought one of them. For encaustic art the encaustic iron is the best. You can also use a heat tool and use different tips on it. I love the one with the brush. So much fun.
Mary Kun  |  Wed Oct 6, 2010 at 10:24 AM
Hi Gail - I got mine from Encaustic Art also and it's great.
lydia  |  Wed Oct 6, 2010 at 10:28 AM
I love this technique! I have seen your other work and am very impressed. Thanks for the info
yvette  |  Sun Oct 10, 2010 at 4:46 PM
I've used this technique for a bit now but stopped because the crayon begins to peel and the aroma is very strong. If you have a suggestion for coating it I would appreciate it. I've used a thin coat of gesso but am not happy with that. Oh, I've also tried placing a piece of cardstock on top of a hotplate and drawing with a crayon too. That works ok too!
Baronista  |  Mon Nov 1, 2010 at 1:38 PM
OMG! This is amazing! I am just finding this video. This technique is so simple but has such a great outcome. Thanks for the idea!
ScrappyKsue  |  Fri May 20, 2011 at 9:08 PM
I am also wondering whether melted crayon art needs to be *sealed* with anything special to ensure it lasts a long time??

Any helps and/or ideas appreciated!
Dallas  |  Wed Oct 5, 2011 at 10:04 PM
Baronista and Dallas,
I didn't seal mine, but I think I would use either a matte acrylic sealer (like Krylon) or place a piece of transparency over it (if you are using a frame like I did.
Beate  |  Thu Oct 6, 2011 at 4:50 AM

Since I recently purchased GOLDEN Gel Matte Medium for a different project ~ do you think that would work as a sealant?

Dallas  |  Thu Oct 6, 2011 at 5:29 AM
I am not sure. I wouldn't brush anything over the crayon surface. I would use a spray.
Beate  |  Thu Oct 6, 2011 at 5:51 AM
Thanks for responding so quickly -- I guess I better buy a spray smile
Dallas  |  Thu Oct 6, 2011 at 8:39 AM
Here's a link to a professional encaustic instructor and artist explaining various types of *sealants* that can be used to protect wax paintings or cards -
Dallas  |  Fri Oct 7, 2011 at 10:14 AM
i really like the way you did the card...and i will be trying it our with my artsy fartsy childrens group here in inuvik
artic artist  |  Sun Oct 16, 2011 at 10:15 PM
I sell the irons if you are interested. Just email me at [email protected] I also have the encaustic wax.
Mary  |  Sat Dec 24, 2011 at 8:24 AM
I love the way you did this but I had a question for you. Have you ever used the iron/crayon process on canvas? Or just cardstock? And if you haven't, do you think the iron will burn the canvas if attempted?
Jessica  |  Mon Jan 9, 2012 at 5:06 PM
Hi Jessica,
I have never used it on Canvas, but I think that's a great idea. I don't think it would burn the canvas. It should withstand the heat better then cardstock, don't you think?
Beate  |  Mon Jan 9, 2012 at 6:10 PM
Canvas might be a little hard to get it to flow, normally I use it on glossy cardstock or I think a smooth art board would work.
Mary  |  Mon Jan 9, 2012 at 6:48 PM
I think it might look cool on canvas with the texture looking through. I might have to get my sticky canvas out and try it.
beate  |  Mon Jan 9, 2012 at 8:10 PM
Let us know how it works out.
Mary  |  Mon Jan 16, 2012 at 11:03 AM
how do you get the crayon off the iron?
Anne Slabinski  |  Mon Mar 18, 2013 at 4:46 PM
I just used a paper towel to clean off the leftover crayon.
beate  |  Tue Mar 19, 2013 at 10:42 AM

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