Today my son decided that whilst his sister was asleep he wanted to make something cool with our leftover clay. When i handed him a chunk to model with, he immediately began rolling it out saying that he was making a snake. So, with this is mind i suggested that we make our own little snake pots. I’m not quite sure why, but i can remember as kid that every time we made something with clay at school I would always make these pots without fail as my 1st choice! I’m not quite sure why or where I got the idea, I just remember having them all lined up across my windowsill in different colours. I used to think they looked amazing and that I was an amazing potter. Truth be told, I had no idea what i was doing then and i’m still learning now!
Here’s what we used
Air dry Clay
Score and slip
Score and slip is a process used to join pieces of clay. It’s important to join your pieces properly to prevent breaking and cracking whilst drying. To attach two pieces together using score and slip you first score lines or hashtags across the two pieces you want to join or the pieces that will touch. You then take your slip (a mixture of very watery clay) and spread it across both sides of your lines as a kind of glue before securing your two pieces together and moulding them as one with your hands.
First take a ball of clay and flatten it into a disc shape. You will want it around 1-2 cm thick as this is going to be the base of your pot, rolled out to the width you wish your pot to be. Once you have your shape score some lines around the outside where you will stick your snake shape.
Take another larger ball of clay and using two hands roll it into a long snake shaped piece.
Add some slip to the scored part of your base, then similarly slip and score the underside of your snake where it will attach to the base. Then wind your snake slowly round and round itself, repeating the process of scoring and sitting where two pieces will attach to each other. You may also need to use your fingers to work the two pieces of clay together.
If when you have wound your snake around your pot, you find that it is not long enough you can roll out and add another. Just remember this is again joining two pieces so you will need to score and slip both sides and then work them together with you fingers.
Once you reach the top, take a ball and roll out the shape of your snake’s head. Attach it your body by scoring and slipping then working the pieces together by hand.
Bend your pipecleaner into a Y shape and press it into the centre of your snake’s face to make the tongue. Then press a gem/bead either side of your tongue to make two eyes. Now it’s time to leave your pot to dry. You’ll want to make sure it drys evenly, to do this we normally pop a plastic bag over the top and leave it for a day or two until hard.
Once your pot is dry you can add your base coat. If you find your paint is not thick enough to cover in one go just let it dry before adding a second. When we painted ours we just popped the tongue out to stop it getting covered.
Once your base coat is dry you can paint on any additional decoration. When your pot has dried you are finished! Don’t they just look amazing, you can use them for so many different things too! We have a tall one as a pen pot and a short one as a jewellery dish.
We’ve had a busy few weeks making valentines cards and gifts for my son to give to his loved ones. These little handmade berry heart gifts have been drying on our shelf for a lot longer than planned but we’ve finally got around to painting them. I think they look pretty cute and my son was really pleased with them (and himself) too! They’re really simple to make and are perfect as handmade gifts for valentines day, mothers day and many other occasions! You can use either Salt dough or clay, We used air drying clay as we have a tonne to use up but salt-dough works great too, you will just need to bake them until they are solid enough to paint!
You will need
Clay or salt dough
Red, yellow, green paint and paintbrush
Knife (for cutting out shapes)
First you will need to create your heart shapes. We usually roll out our clay (or salt-dough) and then cut out a paper heart to use as a template to cut around. Once you have your heart, pierce a hole in the top centre so you can thread your ribbon through later on. If you used air drying clay they will need to be put aside for 1-2 days however if you used salt dough just pop them in the oven and bake until dried and hard.
Once dry, coat them in red paint and allow to dry.
Splodge some green paint around the top centre to make the stalk and then use the end of a paintbrush or a q-tip to dot on some yellow seeds.
Cut out your tag shape and use a hole punch to make a hole at the top. Take your chosen ribbon and thread it through the hole in your berry and then through your tag. Secure the two loose ends by tying them in a knot.
Add your special message to your tag and all that is left to do is gift your berry to a loved one!
If you’ve followed the blog at all you’ll know that i absoloutely love making keepsakes. They’re a beautiful way of looking back at previous stages of life and they really show how much our children have grown and developed over the years. We’ve made a couple of these cute little hand print bowls for my son to give to some special people for valentines day (including myself!). I think they’re absoloutely gorgeous. These bowls will definitely require a grown ups help as you’ll need to use a knife, but they really are quite simple and so much fun for kids to paint!
You will need
Air drying clay (alternatively you could use salt dough and bake them) Red and white paint Knife Paintbrush Q-Tip
Take two equal sized lumps of clay and roll them into two equal balls, Roll them out into flat disks. Next you will need to cut out your two hand prints. The easiest way we have found to do this is to draw around my sons hands on a piece of paper, cut out the hand prints and use them as a stencil to cut around with a butter knife.
Now mould your hand prints into a bowl by overlapping them at the palms and then pulling the fingers round to overlap. You can use a bit of water to act like glue if your clay isn’t securing together easily. Bend the outer edge of your bowl upwards. You may need to rest it upgainst something to keep the edges turned up whilst drying. put your bowl aside and leave it to dry for 1-2 days until solid.
Once dry, coat your entire bowl in red paint.
Now all thats left to do is add the final decorations to your bowl. We dipped a q-tip into white paint to make the spots and heart. Leave to dry and you’re finished! Such a gorgeous keepsake to display and treasure or gift to a loved one!