Monday, September 13, 2010

Cornstarch Clay

I hope you all had a wonderful weekend.  We had a change of plans and ended up staying home.  It's great just to bum around home sometimes.  A little biking, a little running, some woodworking, eating, and time together.  Now it's time for some crafty fun.  Wanna make something?

This is for kids, for grandparents, for adults......for anyone who wants to mush their fingers in some clay-like stuff.  You could make a snowy scene, a favorite animal, a nativity set, a paper weight, Halloween decorations, and much more.  Just make something for very little dough.  *hee, hee*  Little dough!  I crack myself up. 

My munchkins and I tried out "Cornstarch Clay Creatures" from Disney Family Fun.  Easy, cheap, and fun.

Here's what you need:
2/3 cup salt
1/3 cup baking soda
1/2 cup cornstarch
Plus some items for decorating once the clay is done

Here's what you do:
In a small saucepan, mix the salt and baking soda with 1/3 cup of water and bring to a boil.

In a small bowl, combine the cornstarch and 1/4 cup of water and stir well.  (Great part for the kids to help on.  No heat, no fire, no injuries.....hopefully.)

When the salt mixture boils, remove it from the heat and add the cornstarch mixture. Stir vigorously for a minute or two to thicken the clay. (Stir vigorously is key!  The stuff clumps fast, almost instantly in my case!  There was no minute here, only seconds.)

Spoon it onto a sheet of waxed paper and allow it to cool before working with it.  (In my case, it cooled in about 1 minute.)

The recipe yields enough for 4 big chunks.  (Two per kid in my case.  Sometimes I can do math.) 

Then you shape and decorate to your hearts desire.  We shaped, molded and decorated on waxed paper.  Okay, the kids decorated.  I tried my best to stay out of their way and let them create their own things.  I only helped when asked...that was mostly to shape things.  Angels, squares, spiders, and snowmen.  Oh my!

Let the creations dry on waxed paper.  The actual directions say it can take days to dry.  In our case it only took overnight.  We live in a dry environment, maybe that helped.  The head and wings fell off the angel when dry, but that's nothing a little glue can't fix.  They actually look kinda neat, shimmery and all from the salt!  It might even be super terrific to add glitter to the dough.  "Awesome!" as my Scooter would say. 

So what are you doing for little dough?  A little dough?  Stick it to me....what are you vigorously crafting up?

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