Lately I’ve been so busy with house projects and assignments that keep me glued to my computer. I really have had no time to just be creative and make something with my hands. Messy making is just plain good for my soul. A brand that I use everyday in my home, method, encourages folks to FEAR NO MESS. So, we dove right in and got elbow deep into playing with clay.
I’ve been itching to take a ceramics class for a couple of years now. In college a took a very basic intro class, and ever since I’ve always wanted to find a way to explore that art a little further. So, while I don’t have access to a kiln or wheel yet, playing with a little air-dry clay is a nice alternative. This last week my two youngest kiddos and I sat at the kitchen table for a couple of hours just played with clay. They made a whole variety of little figurines and tiny set of tea cups. I was less ambitious and decided to make a few little pinch pot bowls or dishes for holding jewelry or the change from your pocket.
Here’s what you’ll need:
- Air-dry Clay
- Craft Paint (I used black and white)
- Paint Brushes
- method Gel Hand Soap
Starting with a tennis ball sized amount of clay. Pinch the clay from the center out, shaping the sides of the bowl as you go. (Be sure to keep any clay that you are not working with sealed in plastic bag so that it doesn’t dry out.)
To smooth out cracks and imperfections, wet your finger tips in a little water and rub on the clay. I wanted my pieces to feel organic and handmade, so I purposefully kept them from being perfectly round and smooth.
Allow your pieces to dry at least 3-4 days. I live in the desert, so mine dried in about 3 days, but I could see a thicker piece of clay in a more humid climate needing a few more days.
There really is something very therapeutic about getting your hands just caked in clay. And when you done playing, clean up is a breeze. I’m a huge fan of method products. method believes that clean should smell like cucumbers, not chemicals, that’s why their non-toxic soaps come in 70+ great-smelling scents. The Lemon Mint Gel Hand Wash is one of my all time favorite scents. method products are so much more then just a great scent, they are biodegradable, made from recycled materials and are 100% recyclable! These are all things my High School Biology/Ecology teacher husband loves.
When the clay is completely dry, you can paint your pieces. I decided to stick with a bold black and white combo. I painted each piece with two coats of paint, allowing them to dry completely between each coat. And then I took the mess and step further and spatters painted them by flinging paint onto them with a loaded paint brush.
When the pieces are completely dry, they are ready to be used. I have a couple beside my bed for jewelry and a place to lay my watch at night.
(These dishes are not intended for food, they are only for decorative purposes.)