How to Make a Watercolor Block! Save $$$!

Hi friends! I was struck by an idea the other day that had me running down to my studio to try it! I wanted to make my own watercolor blocks but I did not have the special glue called “padding compound” that manufacturers use to make blocks and pads. I thought about trying mod-podge or one of my thicker white glues but in the end decided I was too lazy to build a device to clamp the block or wait for it to dry. But then I thought of another way!


I used hot glue! And it was perfect! I even took my block to the beach with me and did a little painting on it to test it out. I am so impressed with this that I plan on making many more! Watch the video to see how you can make one too!

Another idea is to buy a pad of watercolor paper and simply seal the other 3 unbound edges of the pad, just be sure to leave a notch for removing the sheets.

Watercolor paper
Regular paper or decorative/scrapbook paper
Hot glue gun & hot glue sticks
Silicone spatula
paper trimmer, knife or scissors
Clothespins or binder clips


  1. Cut papers and cardboard to size and secure with clips.
  2. Apply a bead of hot glue to one edge and smooth with a silicone spatula. For longer paper you might have to do half a side at a time. Make sure all paper edges are coated. Repeat for all 4 sides but make sure to leave an inch unglued on the pad somewhere so you can remove your sheets.
  3. Make a wrap around cover using scrapbook paper.
  4. Insert a palette knife(or butter knife) into the notch and slice off the sacrificial sheet and you are ready to paint!

Will you make one of these? I hope so, they are great for painting on the go this summer! Happy crafting!

19 thoughts on “How to Make a Watercolor Block! Save $$$!

  1. Lindsay, ClubScrap has a bookbinding glue that works for this process. I have never used it on all four sides but I have used it to make pads of paper and books, of course!! Watercolor blocks seem to be so expensive so now that you’ve inspired me, I’m going to make a block. Thanks for ALL of your videos and all the hard work that goes into them.


  2. I will definitely do this. I have a couple of postcard pads that need to have the other three sides sealed. Thank you for all the good ideas.


  3. Thanks for the great idea with the hot glue. I have been doing something like this for years. I buy the tablets and glue the other three sides together with the thick white glue leaving a space of a couple of inches unglued. I use spring loaded clothes pins to hold the pages together tightly until dry. I put the clothes pins on first, then put the glue over the edges of the papers. I can move the pins easily if I need to.


  4. Thank you thank you thank you.. I just made one and love it, however dont use glitter paper to cover it lol. ooopppps. I am going to be making my mom one too…..but I have to tell you I did have a silicone spactula but it was a pb&j jar scrapper lol…


  5. I have made four of them since watching your video…and they came out great! Thanks so much for sharing this idea with us…I love it!!


  6. OMG! I will definitely be making making these in the very near future. I love the blocks but they are soooo expensive and now (voila!) I can make my own. Thanks a Bunch Lindsay


  7. Such a great idea. My wife and I just made two of these by cutting down larger sheets. We wanted small blocks that could rest inside the lid of an Altoids tin pallette.


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