Monday, 15 December 2014

How to Make a Large Clay Snowflake Decoration

Cookie cutters turned Christmas decoration.
Living next to a supermarket is dangerous enough as it is, but when it has a fab kitchen/baking area, you are sure to be filling all your kitchen cupboards with enough accessories to make Mary Berry herself jealous.  If this sounds familiar, here is an excuse to buy more.

What I Used:
Air Dry Clay
Large Snowflake Cookie Cutter [Sainsburys - they also have a bauble and tree!]
White Enamel Spray Paint
Silver Acrylic Paint
Rolling Pin / Board / Greaseproof paper

After a good clean, I'll be using this to make huge cookies for Christmas [or with leftover Christmas chocolate], but as soon as I saw this super-sized cookie cutter, I immediately found the need for some giant, pretty clay snowflakes to hang around my apartment.  It's a really simple, perfect Christmas DIY.  Kid friendly too - and I love any excuse to add even more decorations to my grotto-like rooms.

Start by rolling out your air dry lay to a thickness of around a CD case - the thinner the clay, the more fragile, delicate and - well, - breakable, so keep this in mind.  I rolled my clay straight on to some parchment/baking paper to help with the cutting, transferring and general moving about later:
Once your clay is at the thickness and size you need, make your impression and remove the excess:
Remove the cutter and, with any luck, the relief section will come away with the cookie cutter - if
you have any problems, lift up the parchment/baking paper to try and help, or enlist the help of something [a pencil, paintbrush end] that you can use to gently move the clay from the cutter:
Now, the drying can begin - leave somewhere that reaches the Sunlight during the day [not such a crazy statement this year for December] or a warm place that will speed up the drying.
I ended up leaving mine for a good 48 hours before I had chance to start the decorating phase:
With fine sandpaper, I filed the raw edges of the snowflake.
Everything about this boring stage makes you want to be as quick as possible with the paper, but this is where the clay is just waiting for a wrong move to break and crumble, undoing all your previous hard work.  Take your time - be as consistent in the filing [like when filing nails, all in one direction] as you can and all should be good:
Once you've completed the sanding, you can decorate.  I went for a slightly minimalist decoration, first, spraying the snowflake front and back with white enamel spray - mainly to give a block colour finish and also provide an extra layer of strength to the clay:
...and then once dry, moving on to adding a little silver detail.  I enlisted the help of a round cookie cutter and painted a curved block of silver to one 'side':
  Once dry, your decoration is ready to display.
I've had mine as a table accessory but I think I'm going to make a little collection,
with the silver detail painted in slightly different designs, and hanging together:
[add a simple loop of ribbon to one end to create a hanging decoration]
Supersized decorations that also make fab, giant present embellishments [you know I'm a fan]
More Christmas clay ideas here, here and here.  Others here, here, here and here.
see you tomorrow x

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