Oven Drying Clay

The dough takes five minutes to make and the children can then sit and create for hours! Don’t sit them down with it and use it as an excuse to go onto the computer or make phone calls….sit with them as it really is a lovely way to spend time together. Once your, I am sure, incredibly marvellous creations are completed they go in the oven and can be painted with acrylics when completely cold.

They become crooked and pick their own shape while cooking – this adds to the charm! Rustic, different and very home made!

You can pretty much make any creation fit to the season – we have made many candle holders and painted to fit (Orange for Halloween, Pink for Valentines, Gold and Red/Green for Christmas), hearts to hang from the Christmas Tree, Picture Frames also – they all make fantastic gifts!

These bats were for Halloween – we wrote messages on the back in black ink and presented them as party gifts

Pre-painted look

Add glitter, beads and glue – messy but so pretty!

300g flour
150g salt
200ml water (maybe slightly more or less – start with less and add if needed)

  • Pre heat oven to 150C
  • Combine salt and flour and add the water slowly – keep adding until the dough feels easy to knead. It should not be sticky.

Now you can get creative. If you have cookie cutters by all means use them. If  not, use a sharp knife to stencil out any shapes you can imagine!
If you want to make a tea light holder, as pictured all the way at the top, follow these steps:

  • Roll out dough to 5mm thickness.
  • Using a glass, press out a circle – this will be for the bottom of the candle holder. Ensure it is large enough to hold the tea light.
  • Roll out a rectangular shape, 5mm thick and not more than 5cm tall.
  • Fold and press the rectangular shape onto the circle – ensure it is on well.
  • Correct any dents and bruises! Ensure it stands tall and the tea light can fit into it.
  • If you want to have shapes, figures or small holes in the holder, to let the light shine through, scratch these into the sides using a sharp knife. Don’t make holes too big as this could make the holder collapse.

Once all your creations are done place them on a baking sheet lined tray and bake in the oven for 1 1/2 hours – 2 hours if items are really thick and 1 hour if they are small or thin.

Once baked, let cool on a wire rack and paint with acrylics when completely cold. Use glue to add beads or other bits. Contour gold pens and glitter are also beautiful on.

The picture frame requires some more work! Cut a piece of cardboard to fit the back side – cover it in a pretty piece of fabric and glue to the cardboard. Glue the fabric to the picture frame ensuring you leave enough of an opening to slip a photograph into it! Let dry, pick your favourite shot and wrap it all up as a gift! Beautiful.

Air Dry Clay

This is similar to play dough but silky smooth and wonderful to work with! It dries pearly white with a shimmer and can then be painted. A really lovely way to spend an afternoon with your children. Therapeutic!

1 cup baking soda
1/2 cup cornstarch
3/4 cup water
  • Stir the soda and cornstarch together in a saucepan then add water and mix well.
  • Cook over low heat, stirring frequently for about 5 minutes then cook another 2-5 minutes while stirring constantly until it looks like mashed potatoes.
  • Remove the pan from the heat, set aside and let cool before kneading.
  • When cool, put onto your work surface and knead it, adding more cornstarch if needed until you have a smooth workable clay. Silky to touch and pure white!
  • We usually leave it white and create our masterpieces that way. If you prefer it coloured, knead in a few drops of food colouring.
Using cookie cutter or just your hands – create your bits – our favourite things include hearts, stars, dice, a racing car and beads. If you like, press small beads into the clay when it is still wet. This has a lovely effect once dry.
When you are done, leave them on baking parchment and let dry. Depending on what you have created, the drying process will vary. For thin, small items, overnight will do. For larger items, several days. You can tell by the colour when it is dry – it will have a shimmer to it and be very white rather than slightly off white.

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