ArtistMum: Christmas is in the Air or Art!

I don’t know about you but I can’t wait for Christmas to come each year. I love putting up lights and decorating the tree. My angel tree has ornaments that I’ve collected over the years. Many are from friends, family, and even some I’ve made myself. All my friends know that I’m an ‘angel’ person!
So I’ve decided to share a few ornaments that I’ve created myself. They’re a little artsy but they are cute and can be achieved by anyone, even kids of about 8 and up.
These ornaments are made from a simple salt/flour clay. This clay is easy to make, shape, and paint.
The recipe for this clay is so simple even kids can help making it. I start out by measuring my ingredients into a large bowl and then mix by hand until you have a smooth dough. Measurements are as follows:
2 cups regular flour
1 cup table salt
1 scant cup of water (you can always add a bit more if needed)
Knead the clay dough for about 5 minutes until it’s smooth and workable.
That’s it! So simple!
I keep the clay I’m not using in a plastic bag so it doesn’t dry out. Also, this dough will make about 7-8 ornaments depending on how large you form the body. Mine was about 4″h x 2″w.

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Now you’re ready to form your clay ornaments. I shape the body into a bell shape for both the angel and the Santa. Then a roll a bit of clay in the palms of my hand and form a head. I squish it gently until I have a slight oval, then attach it to the upper part of the body. Next comes the halo, also starting as a ball of clay. I shape that and place it behind the head.
Now comes the texturing part. You can use a fork to add texture or rubber stamps work really well. I also have flexible texture stamps that I use in my classes. These can be purchased through art supply catalogs and come in a package of 12.

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I press the stamps into the body before I add the arms. The arms are formed by rolling the clay into a narrow sausage, then snipping two pieces off for the arms. You can wet the area where you’re attaching them with a little water, but not too much! Press them gently in place. Add legs in the same way.
Next come the wings. I shape two triangular shapes, texture them, then press them behind the body as shown in the photo.
The Santa is formed in a similar fashion, minus halo and wings….unless of course you want to add them! I shaped a little triangular hat and put paper clips, that have been snipped apart with a wire clipper, into the boots so they looked like ice skates. You can get as creative as you want!
Don’t forget to make a little hole in the top for putting a ribbon through for hanging. A straw pushed into the clay works well for this.
Place the figures on parchment paper ( found in the supermarket in the food wrapping isle) and either air dry or bake in a low 225 degree oven for about an hour or so, until hard but not burned. They have a honey color when done.
You can paint them with acrylic paints. Use two coats of paint and a sealer to protect them. You can also add on extras such as ribbon flowers, rhinestones,doll hair, and I usually put on a little ‘rub & buff’ to bring out the clay imprinting. Santa can get a fur beard, something I still have to give him!
One word of advice…..never leave them in a damp basement. I learned the hard way and lost several of them. They get damp and crack. Keeping them in tissue and a plastic bag will ensure many years of enjoyment!

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Who would have thought you could make some art in the kitchen? So what’s stopping you? Get your cooking gear and make a little art ornament!
Warning……….they are very addictive! Once you make one, you’ll want to make more 🙂
And if you want to try some real cooking in the kitchen, try fruitsaladlife.com or subwaytiledkitchen.wordpress.com, both very fun blogs about real food!

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About artistmum

Artist
This entry was posted in angels, art advice, art blogging, Christmas ornaments, how-to and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to ArtistMum: Christmas is in the Air or Art!

  1. Robert Bergman says:

    I am definitely going to follow the recipe and make me some angels. Thanks for the details on how to make. Will enjoy doing so.

  2. alotonyourplate says:

    This is such a super fun and easy idea! I can’t wait to try these. I was reading through your site to find some unique Christmas ideas because I was positive you had some and I was right! xo!

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