Make your own colorful story stones with painted rocks and vinyl stickers made with your cutting machine. These camping story stones are perfect for taking along on camping trips, since you can use your trip activities as story ideas. But they also make an entertaining activity for kid camps, backyard campfires, or an everyday family story time.
Story stones are used to build a group tale. We’ve used Story Cubes for years, to stay entertained at restaurants or hotel rooms. But for camping, it’s easy to lose small pieces in the dark or in the grass. The stones are a crafty alternative that work much better outdoors. Each person plucks a story stone from the bag and adds a short piece to the adventure based on the picture they choose. Then the bag passes to the next camper. The resulting story is always funny as each person gets creative.
How to Make Story Stones with Vinyl
To make camping story stones, you will need:
- Cricut Explore Air 2 machine (or similar) and Cricut Design Space
- Camping Story Stone Icons Project Canvas by Carla Schauer
- Black permanent vinyl
- Transfer tape
- Smooth flat stones
- Acrylic paint in desired colors
- Small paintbrush, approx. 1/2″
- Acrylic sealer (spray or brush on)
Start your story stone project by painting your stones using acrylic paint and small paintbrush. Rocks will need 2 coats of paint to cover and provide a smooth surface. Set aside to dry thoroughly while you set up and print your vinyl stickers.
While your rocks are drying, open the story stones project canvas I set up to find the camping icons I used for this project. Resize the icons to fit the stones you are using. (I used 1″- 1.5″ icons for my small rocks.) Set your cutting machine to the “vinyl” setting, then follow the on-screen directions to cut out your vinyl stickers.
Since these vinyl cutouts are pretty tiny, I used a sewing pin to weed the designs.
Once your painted rocks and vinyl cutouts are prepared, it’s time to apply the stickers. Match up your camping icons with similar sized stones, then use transfer tape to move each sticker from the backing to a stone.
Burnish the camping design using a burnishing tool, fingernail, or other hard surface to make sure the sticker sticks to the rock surface. Gently peel away the transfer tape, leaving the image on the painted rock. Repeat with the remaining camping stickers and stones. Finish the camping story stones by spraying or brushing on a coat of acrylic sealer to protect your paint and images.
Store your DIY Story Stones in a drawstring bag to keep them together for easy storage or transporting to your campsite.
Enjoy a new campfire story every time you play!
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