YES! Paste / BEST! Paste

If you work with kids and don’t already know about YES! Paste, you need to. YES! Paste puts your traditional glue stick to shame. How many times have you used a glue stick to attach something, only to have it pop off a few days later?? Or maybe you’ve tried mounting art with a glue stick and then had it refuse to lay flat even after being pressed under a stack of books?? Well, both have happened to me (more than once) and as a result, I’m now “stuck” on YES! Paste.

YES! Paste is an all-purpose glue with some great features when it comes to working with kids. First of all, it’s non-toxic and safe for kids. It can be used on paper, leather, cloth, tin, wood, glass, metal and more, and it cleans up with water. It sets slowly, which allows you to slide something around til you have it exactly where you want it. Best of all, it won’t curl, buckle or pop off when it dries, which is especially important when mounting artwork to hang in a show. YES! Paste is permanently flexible, making it great for bookbinding, collage, and card making. There’s been some debate among professional artists about the archival quality of YES! Paste, but for use with kids’ art that’s usually not a concern.

Out of the jar, YES! Paste is about the consistency of cream cheese, but I like to dilute mine a little to make it more spreadable. I add about a tablespoon of water per cup of paste and mix it with a fork, making it more the consistency of yogurt or sour cream. After diluting, I use a 1″ foam brush to spread or dab it where needed. (Note: You could compromise the “stick-flat” quality of YES! Paste when you dilute it, so consider the weight of the paper you’ll be gluing with it before you add any water.)

For quick touch ups, YES! Paste can’t compete with the convenience of keeping a glue stick in your desk, but once you try it for larger projects, you’ll be hooked! It comes in pint, quart or gallon containers. A little goes a long way, so although it may seem like a bigger investment than a class set of glue sticks, just wait til you see how much longer it lasts!

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6 Responses to YES! Paste / BEST! Paste

  1. Sheila July 26, 2009 at 12:51 am #

    Where did you find Yes Paste?
    Any Craft Store, Retail Store or School Supplies Store?

  2. TeachKidsArt July 26, 2009 at 9:01 am #

    Any art store will for sure have it and some craft stores may carry it as well. You could always order it online through a place like DickBlick.com if you can't find it locally.

  3. Faige July 29, 2009 at 6:24 am #

    How similar is yes paste to the old time pastes that I used to use with my preschoolers 20 years ago. and do you find that kids like to use this with their fingers.
    I know with glue they spend lots of time peeling dried glue off of their fingers

  4. TeachKidsArt July 29, 2009 at 8:51 am #

    YES! Paste has been around for a very, very long time, so it's possible that it could be what you used, but because it's generally thought of as being “artist quality”, it probably wasn't the same stuff. I suppose you could have younger kids use it with their fingers, but I usually have them use a stiff brush or a popsicle stick to spread it. It's VERY sticky, so you would need to have them wash well with soap and water afterward.

  5. Mrs. Skojec February 13, 2011 at 8:19 pm #

    I just bought YES! Paste for a school auction project because we wanted it to be nice. Boy, is it nice! I love it!

    Do you take some out of the jar and stir it, though? I just got a brush and used it straight from the jar. I even used my fingers a bit since I was working with someone else and somewhat impatient. Cleaned right up.

  6. TeachKidsArt February 13, 2011 at 9:23 pm #

    Mostly I just use it straight from the jar with an inexpensive stiff bristled brush, but sometimes I'll add a small amount of water if I need it to be more spreadable. I haven't found anything better!!

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