Tag: art fundraiser

Art Classroom Decor: Sharpie Doodle Chairs

Two modern white chairs that have been decorated with Sharpie doodles.

Every two years my school hosts a large gala as a school fundraiser. The silent auction is a huge part of that and every gala the art department is asked to create a class project to donate to the auction. I had tried a number of projects in the past from centerpieces to wall hangings, and was never satisfied with a project, until the doodle chairs.

While brainstorming with a coworker and the art gala liaison, someone suggested a piece of furniture as an art item. We did research and found some examples of doodle chairs. I was immediately hooked, this was going to be fun and create a very successful final product.

The parent organization that plans the gala provided the chairs and we set to decorating them. These same chairs can be found at Home Depot. I did a a lot of experimenting before getting to work. I was hoping to find a way to draw the doodles with sharpie, then spray the chair to help protect the drawing. I tried at least 6 different spray coat products and every single one peeled off of the plastic finish. In the end I decided to keep the doodle mostly on the back of the chair, where sitting would not rub the doodles.

Two modern white chairs that have been decorated with Sharpie doodles.

I left the legs off while we doodled to make it easier to access the bottom. I set the two chairs on a table in the back of my classroom and whenever students finished an assignment early or needed a break, they would doodle. I started the design on one chair so my students would have an example to get started, but then I mostly let them run with it.

Two modern white chairs that have been decorated with Sharpie doodles.

My students covered the back and bottom of the chairs and I decided to wrap part of the design onto the front. I kept it minimal in hopes that it wouldn’t rub off after a lot of use.

Two modern white chairs that have been decorated with Sharpie doodles.

The final product was beautiful. I loved the contrast in the design and the modern look. I was sad to pass these onto the auction, but glad my class was able to help.

A modern white chair that has been decorated with Sharpie doodles.

If you are looking for an art fundraiser, this could be a great way to go. You could ask for donations from parents to purchase the chairs or you could find wooden chairs at Goodwill or similar to paint white with acrylic paint or chalk paint, then add the sharpie design on top.

A modern white chair that has been decorated with Sharpie doodles.

I hope these chairs are being loved and enjoyed in a happy home! I am very tempted to purchase another pair to create a doodle chair set in my classroom.

Thanks for taking the time to check out my blog! Interested in other crafty projects? Check out what else I have worked on here. Looking for art lesson ideas? Check out my posts here. Thanks for stopping by!

Artwork: Ceramic Bowls

Every year my students and I host a fundraiser called Empty Bowls. It’s an amazing even that raises money and awareness about hunger. Empty Bowls started as a grassroots movement, and has grown into nationwide fundraiser since. Every year I am touched by the amount of time and effort my students put into this to help out their community. All the proceeds we raise are donated to a local food shelter, a place that in the past has also helped many of the students at our school.

For the fundraiser I have all my students make two bowls out of clay. They plan out their bowl, the shape, design, technique they will use. They put time and thought into it, and in the end they have to give them away. For the fundraiser we take all of the bowls and host a dinner, we serve chili, bread, chips, and drinks. To attend you buy a ticket, which covers the cost of the food and drink, and you get to take home a handmade bowl. The bowl is meant to be put on display, and stay empty, to serve as a reminder that there are people who are chronically hungry, worldwide as well as in our community.

This is one of my favorite projects because I get a chance to see another side of my students. I am always surprised to see how dedicated they are to helping out others in their community. It’s a lot of work to get an event like this running, but it is incredibly rewarding to see how it impacts these kids.

In addition to my students making bowls, I also make bowls to raffle off and place in a silent auction as extra funding for our event. Last year one of the items I put up for the raffle was my bird bowl. To create this bowl I threw it on the wheel, or made it using a pottery wheel. I then used underglaze to paint the bird design. Underglaze is a type of glaze you can use to paint designs on clay with because it doesn’t “move” as much as typical glaze when it is fired. I used tawny low fire glaze near the bird, and blue-green low fire glaze towards the outside. I painted the glaze on thick, then ran a paint brush through the glaze to take off the excess, which created the wavy pattern.








This is a bowl I made for the silent auction year before last, which was also made on a pottery wheel. If you decide to start working on the wheel pick out a tools with different shapes. Every tool creates a different look and design in a pieces of clay. I used a metal loop tool, with notches taken out of one side, which created an interesting line pattern when I dragged it along the side. To create the pattern on the inside I took a paint brush, dipped it in glaze, and without removing the excess glaze put a dot on the side, which dripped down to the center.










This bowl was made two years ago for my first Empty Bowls silent auction. I used white clay, which always makes colors pop. I used a similar drip technique as the first, which caused more glaze to gather in the bottom of the bowl than on the sides. I like this technique because it creates a pop of color in the center of the bowl. When you finish creating the bowl form on the wheel, you remove it and let it dry out just a little bit until it is leather hard. When it reaches this state you put it back on the pottery wheel, but upside down, and cut the excess clay off to form the bottom. While trimming this bowl I liked the way the pieces looked that I trimmed off. I decided to take the pieces and score and slip them to the bowl to create a design. I was really happy with the end result!

I hope you enjoyed my clay bowl round up! I love making bowls, they are a great first project if you are first starting to learn how to throw on a potters wheel. If you want to learn more about my clay pieces and using the pottery wheel click here to read about one of my teapots.

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