This air dry clay hand dish makes a great gift for Christmas, Mother’s day or even birthdays. You can make it using your child’s hands, as a keepsake. And teens will love making it for themselves to keep all their rings and jewellery in.

It’s pretty easy to make these, but little ones will need your help with tracing and cutting around their hands.

You will find that most kids love playing with the clay, and discovering all the different things they can make with it. Or (like mine) they will simply just love squishing it between their fingers.

I say, ‘let em play’! The tactile nature of the clay is really fun, and quite addictive, so just let them go for it. You could always guide them through the project first, then save some clay for a bit of free-form creative fun afterwards.

How to Make an Air Dry Clay Hand Dish

You will need
Air Dry Clay (I used Jovi Clay Air Hardening White)
Resene test pot paint in Cleopatra
A rolling pin (or a bottle to roll with)
A sharp knive
A tooth pick, or something with a sharp point like a needle
Ear buds
A fork
Doily, ribbon or lace
Scissors
Baking paper or Tinfoil – baking paper is best though
A bowl

What to do

1. Lay down a sheet of baking paper to roll your clay onto. This will stop it sticking to the bench.

2. Roll out your clay until it is about 5mm think.

3. Press your hand down onto the clay to create an imprint.

4. Using a sharp knife cut around your imprinted hand and remove the excess clay.

Air Dry Clay Hand Dish rolling

5. Now is the fun part of decorating. There is no right or wrong way to go about this, just have some fun. A good idea is to start from the centre and create a mandala type pattern by indenting the clay with ear buds and tooth picks.

Air Dry Clay Hand Dish printing

You could also use textured material, like lace, to imprint a pattern onto the clay hand. Simply lay the material onto the clay and lightly roll over it to create the imprint.

Air Dry Clay Hand Dish pressing

6. Once you have your desired print carefully lift your hand up and lay it in a bowl so it creates a slight curve. You will need to put this aside to dry for at least 24 hours.

Air Dry Clay Hand Dish bowl

7. Once your hand is dry you can paint it. I used Resene in Cleopatra.

air dry clay hands resene paint

If you’re in the Christmas spirit and want some more DIY Christmas craft ideas check out our eco friendly Christmas tree, our Air Dry Clay Feather Decorations and these Whimsical Wooden Christmas Angels. Or, check out 100s more crafting ideas in our Creative arts and crafts section.

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Alayna lives in Pukerua Bay with her husband and two beautiful children, where she runs Laynescreative.com. She's a qualified primary school teacher with a passion for the arts. Alayna believes when children engage with the arts they develop their language, fine motor and problem-solving skills, and improve their overall confidence.

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