DIY Air-Drying Clay Bowl
Making something out of air-drying clay means instant satisfaction: instead of having to go to a potter class and enduring the time-consuming task of firing the clay in a kiln, you can make something out of air-drying clay at home and it'll be dry and ready to be decorated the next day.
I saw a picture of a bowl with lace detail on Pinterest I wanted to make. There wasn't a tutorial but several pictures, and I just kind of figured out the steps in between.
Here is my step-by-step guide to make a pretty bowl out of air-drying clay:
You will need these supplies:
- Air-drying clay (white)
- Plastic cutting board (or plastic placemat or a laminate table)
- Doily or something similar you can push into the clay; also stamps, keys, pen, etc)
- Rolling pin or bottle
- Little bowl
- Dental floss
- Acrylic paint
- Paint brush
Clay Bowl Tutorial:
- Take a handful of clay and roll it out thinly on the cutting board. I didn't have a rolling pin so I used a glass bottle. Make sure you don't roll it out too thinly so it won't break.
- Press the doily – or in my case table runner with floral patterns because I dind't have any lace – into the clay. You could also use stamps or anything else that leaves a pattern or outline in the clay. If you want this bowl to be the place you'll put your keys, why not imprint the clay with a key, for example?
- Turn over your bowl, put it on the clay, then cut around the bowl's edge to get a round cutout.
- Remove the bowl and the excess clay, then use dental floss to gently lift the clay circle off of the cutting board.
- Place the clay circle into your bowl while being very careful not to push on the pattern. I didn't feel there was enough of a pattern on my clay bowl so I used the back of a pen to add some additional indentations.
- Let the clay dry and harden (this will take about a day).
- Next, gently remove the clay from the bowl. It will come out pretty easily because it will shrink a bit while drying. I really liked how the outside of the bowl turned out due to me using dental floss to cut it off the board.
- Use sandpaper to smooth out the rough edges of the clay bowl, being very careful not to break it.
- For the last step, seal the bowl with white or colorful acrylic paint and let it dry (about 30 minutes for each side).
Now you are ready to enjoy your handmade clay bowl to keep jewelry or change or other small items in one place! Side Note: I need to make one for my finish-carpenter husband – for all of the drill bits he leaves all over the house.
What would you use to push into the clay? And what color would you paint your bowl? I hope you'll have as much fun as I had making this clay bowl.
Images via Dagmar Bleasdale