DIY Seasonal

How to make simple air dry clay decorations

This is a simple home DIY that is very quick and easy to do and the simple air dry clay decorations look very impressive, without too much effort. You can use them as Christmas tree decorations or tags to attach to presents. You can get the kids involved as the air dry clay is fun to work with. They can make decorations for friends and neighbours and sign their name on the back to make a unique and personal Christmas gift.

Drying air dry clay decorations on a tin and a mat underneath

What you will need

You can use any air dry clay in any colour to make your decorations. I went for white and left them as they were but you could of course paint them using acrylic paints or add glitter to them. The possibilities are endless and air dry clay is such an easy medium to work with.

What you will need:

  • Air dry clay – I used DAS from Amazon
  • Cookie cutters or kids dough cutters or simply a drinking glass
  • Stampers – I got these in Sostrene Grene
  • Rolling pin – I got this in Sostrene Grene
  • Foliage – little twigs or leaves (not essential)
  • String
  • Skewer or straw (to make the hole in the decoration so you can hang it)
  • An old plastic mat or something to protect your table when rolling out the clay
  • A tray (to lay out the decorations to dry)
what you need to make simple air dry clay decorations - air dry clay, cookie cutters, stampers, string, skewer

Roll out the air dry clay

Take a small piece of clay and warm it in your hands (If you use hand lotion it will help to stop the clay sticking to your hands)

Roll out your clay using a rolling pin. Roll it out to about 1/8 to 1/4 inch thickness which works well

**A few tips here. If you roll it too thick it takes longer to dry and if you roll it too thin it is likely to crack and even roll up at the edges.

rolled out air dry clay and a star cookie cutter

Cut out the shape in the air dry clay

Cut out the shape you want. If you have a cookie cutter you can use that or you can use a sharp knife to cut the shape you want. You could also cut your shape out in paper first and then trace around it on the clay before you cut. I used a star, a heart and a round shaped cutters.

cut out star shape from the white air dry clay

If the edges are a little ragged after you cut the clay, you can just smooth them with your finger. You can leave it at this point but if you want to add some more decoration and texture you can imprint leaves, twigs or foliage onto your air dry clay decoration. I gathered some evergreen Arborvitae foliage from our back garden,

star shape and cookie cutter and piece of evergreen foliage

Imprint foliage on the air dry clay

Tear off a piece of the greenery that will fit on your air dry clay decoration. I like to use a piece that has a main spine and then some little feathery leaves coming off it but anything will work.

Press it down firmly onto the clay, if you don’t press it firmly enough it won’t leave enough of an imprint.

star from air dry clay with leaves pressed into it to leave a shape

Hold it in place for a couple of seconds before lifting it up. The beauty with air dry clay is that if you aren’t happy with it you can just roll it up and start again.

simple air dry clay star decoration with imprint of leaves

Another option for the air dry clay is to use a stamper to imprint a pattern on the decoration.

Choose your stamper and push it down onto the decoration. Again you need to push down quite firmly to make sure the pattern appears.

stampers for air dry clay decorations
stamped imprint from stamper onto air dry clay

Add a hole for the string

Next you need to add a hole to the decoration so you that you can add string to it so you will be able to hang it up.

Decide where you want the hole to go and line up your skewer and stick it in straight. Make sure it goes the whole way through and that the opening on the back is smooth.

sticking skewer into the decoration to add a hole before drying
skewer in air dry clay decoration

Lay your decorations out on a tray to dry. I used parchment paper underneath them but just to protect the tin, they won’t stick to the tin or wooden board if that is what you use.

Dry the air dry clay decorations

The clay should be dry in about 24 hours but I left mine for 48 hours just to make sure they were fully dried out.

I turned them over a couple of times in this time. You will know when they are dry as they will dry out completely white without any damp patches.

tray full of decorations with imprints of leaves and stampers
Dried simple air dry clay star decoration with hole in it for string
tray full of simple air dry clay decorations and ornaments

Attach string to your air dry clay decoration

Cut your string and attach it through the hole in the decoration. I found knotting it at the top of the decoration and again at the end of the string worked well.

single air dry clay decoration with hole and string in it
round decoration with imprint and string ready to be hung on tree

I left them at that. You could of course paint your decorations or put some glue on the indented parts and add glitter.

I also made some really tiny stars to add to my branches leftover from my Halloween decorating.

black branches in a spray painted wine bottle with little white stars made out of air dry clay
sitting room scene with mantel display and black branches and black wine bottle with air dry clay decorations hanging on the branches

It’s definitely a craft I’m going to do again. It’s very simple and was lovely to make something that I was able to gift to people for Christmas.

If you are eager to make even more things with your air dry clay there are lots of tips and ideas for more advanced projects on Cosy Craft Club.

I hope you enjoyed my post on creating simple air dry clay decorations. Be sure to let me know in the comments below.

Canva image for pinterest for air dry clay decorations
Canva image made for pinterest for this blog on air dry clay decorations
canva pin for blog post on air dry clay decorations

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