Gone Swimming Beach Plaque

This was something I made a few years ago after a trip to the beach. Many people decorate their bathrooms in a nautical or beach theme, so this is a great addition to that decor. If you don’t have any shells you’ve collected, you can buy them at the craft store. I hung mine on the wall and it looked lovely.

Unfortunately, it didn’t survive my last move, so I guess I’ll need to make another one. What a shame, it would have gone great in my current bathroom! :( Also, because I did make this several years ago, I’m afraid I don’t have step by step photos, but the instructions should be clear enough. :)

Gone Swimming Beach Plaque
printable version

What You Need

oval paper mache hanging plaque
acrylic paint, antique white
acrylic paint, tan
black craft pen or Sharpie pen
assorted sea shells and starfish
1 large starfish
scruffy paintbrush
flat paintbrush
hot glue gun
white craft glue
acrylic sealer spray, matte

What you do

Using the flat brush, paint plaque with antique white. Repeat with a second coat and let dry.

Hot glue the large starfish to the left side of the plaque, and glue the seashells and remaining starfish around the right side and bottom of the plaque. Refer to photo for placement. Pull excess strings off left over from hot glue.

In the center of the plaque, use black craft pen to write “gone swimming”.

Mix together a nickel size amount of white craft glue and a little water, just enough to thin the glue out and make it “paintable”. Using the flat brush, paint on the glue mixture wherever you would like the sand to stick. This must be done in about 3-4 sections so that the glue doesn’t dry before you add the sand. Start at the top of the plaque and work your way to the left, painting the glue mixture around the large starfish. Pour sand over the glue, let sit for a moment, then tap off the excess. Repeat this process around the shells and other starfish, wiping off any glue that may get on the tops of the starfish or shells (before adding the sand).

ANOTHER CRAFTY IDEA >>  Peppermint Candy Wreath

Dip scruffy brush into tan paint and dab off all excess onto a paper towel. Paint brush should be almost dry. Add tan touches around the words and along the edges of the sand.

Spray entire surface with acrylic sealer and allow to dry completely. Hang!

Note: Live creatures should never be removed from their natural habitat. Only collect shells that are empty and starfish that have expired. You can also purchase everything you need for this craft (including decorative sand) from your local craft supply store.

Stumbles, shares, tweets and faves are always appreciated! :)


  1. Deeba PAB says

    I think my kids would LOVE to make this. We have bags of shells we've collected! It's so effective! WOW!

  2. Jenglamgirl says

    HI Amanda~ thanks for your super sweet comment. I am so flattered you dig my Picture Knob Plaques so much. Thanks for your love. You have a darling craft blog with some fun stuff. I must follow. Happy day! Jenn

  3. Jenglamgirl says

    Your follow widget isn't working.. I have tried re-freshing the page… but it still isn't working. I noticed this prob. on another blog too. So it must be a blogger issue. They have been having them lately. I won't give up though. Jenn

  4. Angie @ The Country Chic Cottage says

    This is so cute!! And I love your "star" jars in your side bar. Why did I not see those before the 4th??

  5. [email protected] says

    I don't have beach decor, but it sure makes me want to go there! Thanks for sharing … I've posted a link. I'd love it if you'd come join my link party sometime!

  6. Carmie, the Single Nester says

    I love this! I never think to make something like this on my own. I always wind up buying beachy decor.

  7. rainbowcreek says

    This is so cute, and just perfect for me. I think I will hang it on my front door. Thanks for sharing!

  8. Christine says

    Hi, I found you on the Tip Junkie! Don't you love those plaques? The possibilities are endless…I love what you did. I'm a new follower too.

  9. Helena says

    Aw man, I'm sad it didn't survive! This is by far my favorite beach/sea shell plaque. I am keeping this in my to-do file :)

    Thank you for participating in the Creative Therapy Session with Life in the Pitts!

  10. creativejewishmom/Sara says

    Thanks Amanda, I just love this! great to have you on Craft Schooling Sunday! all the best!

  11. Jessica says

    I can not tell you how many times I will get a phone call from someone asking "are you home, because I just stopped by and you didn't answer", to which I need to reply "I'm out by the pool". My kids can stop missing their little friends stopping by, so this is great, thanks for sharing!

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