Friday, 19 June 2015

How to Alter Colour of Black and White Handprints

One of my most precious momentos from our time with Mila are her hand and footprints, I have created a variety of things using her handprints, such as these ornaments, but I really wanted to be able to have colour versions of her handprints.

This tutorial uses wiidely available basic software and is intended as a guide for those who do not have the relevant experience to use Photoshop, Illustrator or similar software.  There are no doubt many other ways of altering the colour of your child’s black and white handprint, if you know someone who is a graphic designer they may be able to help you do this in a different way.  I use Firefox as my browser, and Windows operating system; this uses the website StencilGram (version as at 18 June 2015).

Follow these simple steps to alter the colour of your child's handprint ...

1.  Scan handprint to your computer.

2.  Open scanned image and crop as required.  Cropping away excess background helps us to more accurately size the handprint later on.

3.  Open web browser and navigate to  

4.  Click ‘Upload an image to begin’ button.  Find and select your scanned (cropped) handprint image.  It may take a minute or so for the site to process your image.

5.  Edit your image as required:

Use these controls to alter colour and balance

  • Click on ‘Foreground’ to select a different colour.
  • Click on ‘Background’ to alter the background colour
  • Click on ‘Border’ to alter the border colour.  If you don’t want a border, set the Border colour to white (or the same as the background colour).
  • Slide the ‘Balance’ slider left or right to adjust the ‘stencil’.  For Mila’s handprint, I moved the Balance slider about ¾ of the way to the right.
  • Slide the ‘Border’ slider to the right to widen the border.

6.  When you are happy with the image, click the ‘Push to Finalize!’ button.  
7.  To save a copy of the image on your computer, click the ‘View/Download Full Size’ button.  This will display the finalized image in a new tab.  Right click on the finalized image, and select ‘Save image as…’ to save a copy of the image onto your computer.

You need to repeat this process for each desired colour.

Before printing and using your image, you may need to adjust the size of it – I do this in Microsoft Word as follows:

1.  Open new Word file.
2.  Select Insert | Picture.  Find and select the image you created on the Stencilgram website
3.  Once inserted into your document, right click on the image.  Select ‘Size …’
4.  Adjust size accordingly.  For Mila’s handprint, through trial and error I discovered that setting the height to 2.7” was as close to the actual size as I could get.  


  1. Thanks for sharing this. It's such a wonderful idea for those who only have so little to remember their baby by.

    1. Thanks, Sue. I wish I had time to post other ideas I have.


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