Christmas: How to make clay decorations or gift tags.

28 November 2014

Instagram is the place where imagination and creativity lives, breathes, grows. Everyday I am inspired by people eager to share their talent. At the moment, Christmas ideas abound … food, gifts, crafts. 

One talented person who continues to inspire me is Mandy from Redagape. Mandy started preparing early for Christmas. Firstly, a tree made from gathered sticks; her requested family birthday experience. I just love this tree. Then air dried clay decorations or gift tags. Now, another twig Christmas tree covered with pompoms. Who knows what will be next?

Find her blog and all her great ideas here. (With links to her Instagram and Pinterest sites.)

So, I take no credit for this concept. I'm just a follower who loved the idea.

Air dry clay is apparently available from Officeworks, but I was unable to get it at mine. I tracked it down at my local art supply store and bought a good size block for $5. I had some Christmas cookie cutters, but a recent trip to Ikea gave me a more exotic collection: moose, snail, bear, squirrel. A Bunnings expedition provided me with gold paint and I was ready to go.

Oh, baking paper and my trusty rolling pin (One of many. I have a bit of a collection.) and a paint brush too.

So, other than using clay, it's just like making cookies. But no oven required.

Everything I read said to work with the clay in small sections and to not overwork the clay. So that's what I tried to do.

Roll the clay to about 1cm, cut the shape with the cookie cutter. I put my clay on baking paper to make it easier to manage.

I rolled my rolling pin across the top of the cookie cutter a couple of times for a clean cut.

Use a straw (Sorry, I forgot to mention you need a straw. Every house has a clutch of straws for G&T?) to create a hole for the string then place somewhere flat to dry.

How easy is that!?!

I started with mine on an cooling rack, but moved them onto the bench for a flatter surface. I wouldn't use the cooling rack next time.

Now the hard part, leave to dry for at least two days.


It seemed like for eVER.

Once they're lovely and dry and crispy white, it's time to play.

You could just add lovely string and add them to your tree or dress your gifts. I decided I wanted to be all fancy smanchy and paint mine with a little gold paint.

So using trusty Washi tape again, I became artistic, taping off random sections.

And happily painting away.

And then Mr Australia Post delivered my new Christmas tree. What timing!

 And I played a little.

But the tree is still a work-in-progess. There's lights and who knows what to add yet.

And what about the gift tag concept? A little trial run.

I could write names on these tags or just leave them as they are to be re-used, re-gifted by the recipient next Christmas.

I'd love to receive a gift dressed with one of these tags to add to my tree next year or to decorate a present for someone I love.

What about you?

Are you heading off to find air dry clay?

I'm definitely making cookies too, real cookies, to also hang on the tree.

For a midnight snack, maybe.

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