Monday, December 26, 2011

Tool Tips

In the following videos, craft artist PJHornberger shares her tool tips for working with Creative Paperclay and other air-dry clays.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Paperclay Dolls by Anna Zueva

Today I'd like to share with you the works of Anna Zueva . Anna is a professional doll artist from Russia. She has been a doll maker since 1990. Her sculpted paperclay art dolls are highly rated in the artistic world by doll art professionals and her customers.  I'm attracted to her unique simplicity in design combined with detailed decoration.

Friday, December 16, 2011

A is for Armature

This doll was made by author using Creative Paperclay and
following instructions in  book "Sculpting Dolls in Paperclay"

I'm often asked, "Which is the best armature to use for dolls?"    The answer is....there isn't one easy answer!  Which type of armature might work best for your project depends on many things, including whether you're making a doll or a figure, how big will it be, which clay are you using and how detailed do you want to make it.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Make a Cute Reindeer

Today we have a video demo showing you how to create a cute little reindeer with polymer clay.  But this blog is suppose to be about air-dry clay, right?   It is.   This demo is a good one to use as an example of how to modify a polymer clay tutorial when using air dry clay.   The types of air-dry clays that work best for this sort of project are the soft, pre-colored clays such as Makin's Clay, Hearty Clay,

Monday, November 21, 2011

Tips for Working with Creative Paperclay

Creative Paperclay is a unique air hardening modeling material that requires no firing in a kiln or baking in an oven. It is clean, odorless and easy to use. It feels similar to an earthen clay; however, it contains no clay in it at all!

A page full of tips for working with Creative Paperclay from the people that make Paperclay can be found at


Thursday, November 17, 2011

How to Use Amazing Mold Putty

A few different videos demonstrating Amazing Mold Putty with some tips for getting better detail and making a 2-part mold.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Fast Drying Tip

Chicken Lips (David Everett) is in the business of making cute and clever characters with Creative Paperclay and needs to speed up production here's his tip for getting your Paperclay to dry a bit faster.

Note:  Drying TOO fast (such as oven) is NOT recommended for most ADC creations.  Air dry clay needs to dry evenly inside & out.   Also, Styrofoam is often used for armature with air-dry clays and heating Styrofoam in oven can create toxic fumes!   Not good !

Monday, November 7, 2011

Make a Tool Caddy

Do you need something in your workspace to hold all your sculpting tools, paint brushes, markers, etc?  This tool caddy was originally designed for keeping colored pencils organized but could be modified to store any number of things!    I especially like the stair-step levels that keep the back row accessible!    The following video shows, step-by-step, how to make your own "storage station".

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Halloween Spiders

You can call off the search party....I'm not lost!!!  LOL   I'm here and still trying to get caught up with my email and projects.   It's been a month since my last post and I have to say I'm sorry I'm having such a hard time getting back into the old blogging routine since my surgery!    Some new tutorials have been posted at my Air-Dry-Clay Tutorial Directory and the Cold Porcelain Tutorial please check those sites.   

I've been thinking about doing more articles about all the air-dry clay artists, along with more reviews about the different self-hardening clays and other materials.  This could be a new focus for the New Clay News but there will still be lots of tutorials on my other blogs (with latest tutorials listed in sidebar here).   If you have any ideas or suggestions for the New Clay News,  all comments are welcome!

For today I wanted to tell you about this Halloween spider project from "Simple As That".   This Spooky Stone Spiders tutorial describes making the spooky critters using some scraps of wire, rocks and a few other things (see above photo).   These are really creepy and simple to make with stones found around the yard....but we're clay crafters, right?   Let's try making some of these using air-dry clay for the body.   Quick and easy!!   Kids will love 'em!!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Make Some Clay for the Kids

This homemade play dough "clay" recipe from The Wyrd Sisters is super easy and includes a special's scented dough. Take a break from your usual routine and make some with the kids/grandkids. 

Saturday, August 27, 2011

New Tutorials This Week

The newest tutorials posted this week over at my tutorial directory  are:

A bowl made with Creative Paperclay   This is big!  Not a simple round bowl!

A cute little bookmark mouse   Cute, easy and quick.  Makes a great little gift!

Monster face keychain charms    Funny faces with a steampunk attitude!  Also good magnet!

Make a rainstick with Paperclay   Listen to the sound of rain in the middle of Summer heat!

Saturday, August 20, 2011

How to make a Rainbow Clay Mouse

Rainbow Clay is a new air dry modelling sculpture medium. Described as paper based modelling medium, non toxic, odourless & safe.  Air drys.  Lightweight, soft & easy to use.   Distributed by Rainbow Clay Australia.  The following video demonstrates a cute and easy mouse.  Kid-friendly and a good beginners project!

(note:  There's a Rainbow Clay available at but I'm not certain it's the same product.  Packaging looks different.   If anybody has the answer to this, please leave a comment!)

If you're a distributor of Rainbow Clay in the USA (or other countries), please let us know!   Our Air-Dry Clay Yahoo Group has members from every continent!  (Well, except Antartica maybe...LOL)

Monday, August 15, 2011

Things have been quiet around here!

...but Mary will be back soon!

Like it? Create your own at It's free, easy and fun!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Clay Animation

This could also be titled "What to do with your leftover scrap clay!"....LOL

London-based artist and animator Nicos Livesey creates these mind-exploding animations using intricately built loafs of plasticine clay. The colorful clay is formed into morphing and shifting geometric patterns that are revealed as he slices and photographs the cross-sections at painstaking 2mm intervals.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Make a Decorative Apple Tree

This looks like a fun project.   Create this decorative "Apple Tree" with Creative Paperclay and an apple-shaped gourd.   Click here for instructions written by Barbara at Creative Paperclay.   If you don't have a gourd like the one used by Barbara, there's inexpensive foam apples that look very real and can be purchased in various colors or you can shape your own from Paperclay.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Types of Modeling Clays Explained

Figures made with air-dry clay (paperclay) by Tine Kamerbeek 
There are a few different types of clays popular with today's hobbyist that don't require a kiln or any special equipment.  The 3 basic types are oil-based, wax-based and water-based.*   We can also categorize them as heat-cured, self-hardening, air-dry or non-hardening.
*Note: There are also ceramic and stone-based clays, but these usually require a kiln to be cured and aren't included in our discussion.

The most popular heat-cured clays are the polymer clays.   Polymer clays are oil-based and must be heated to cure, however, a home oven can be used and a kiln is not required.   Polymer clays are available in many brands and many colors.  Most are very stiff when first removed from package and must be kneaded before using.   Polymer clay will be plastic like, waterproof and very durable if cured properly. 

Wallace and Gromit
are made of plasticine
on metal armatures
Wax-based clays are the plasticine clays. This type of clay stays flexible and never hardens. If heated, it will melt.   Plasticine is what's generally referred to as "modeling clay". It's also known as "Plastilena", which is a brand name.   Plasticine is often used to create clay animations because the flexible clay allows the figure to be re-positioned over and over. Air-dry and polymer clays are sometimes used for non-moving body parts.

The air-dry clays are mostly water based formulas, both commercial brands and homemade clays (cold porcelain and papier mache).  Because the water content evaporates as it cures, projects created with air-dry clay will shrink a certain amount.  There are hundreds of brands all with different characteristics and the shrinkage rate varies.   The finer quality brands of air-dry-clay harden to a matte, smooth, durable finish but must be top-coated and sealed because air-dry clay is not waterproof (with a couple of exceptions).

The New Clay News is all about this last type of clay.   If it's no-bake, air-dry or self-hardening...we'll talk about it and search out artists and tutorials!   Many new brands and new formulas of air-dry clays have recently become available and this "new clay" is increasing in popularity every day.  There are also a few new polymer-based air-dry clays sometimes referred to as "resin clay".   Two-part epoxy clays are included because they are also self-hardening.

So, you can see there is a lot to learn about air-dry clays.  If you are used to working with polymer clay and want to try air-dry clay, it will take some practice and some experimenting before you find the one that's just right for you.  Air-dry clays are not all the same and which brand would work best for you depends a lot on what you want to make with it.   The best way to learn is to join our Air-Dry-Clay Yahoo Group, where we have many generous members willing to share their expertise and experience.

The clay artisans in the Air-Dry-Clay Yahoo Group use and discuss all the commercial brands of no-bake, air-dry, self-hardening clays plus homemade clay recipes such as cold porcelain and papier mache. This includes brands such as Creative Paperclay**, Delight, Makin's Clay, LaDoll, Hearty Clay, Deco ClayCraft, DAS Pronto, Apoxie Sculpt, Lyra, Artista, Angel, Aves, FormoFit, Darwi, Flumo, Lumina, Celluclay, Sculptamold, Cold Porcelain, Crayola Model Magic, Crayola Air Dry Clay, Sculpt It, Paverpol and many more brands.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

How to Make This Cute Scarecrow

air-dry-clay demo

This video tutorial from Linda Peterson shows us how to use several different colors of Cloud Clay to make an autumn scarecrow.   By changing the face (to look less like a scarecrow), this could be a cute figure for many other occasions..or maybe a clown!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

How to Personalize Ornaments and Charms

In the following video, Glenn & Debi from Deb & Co show you how to personalize Christmas ornaments with simple, easy to learn techniques to give your ornaments a professional look.  The lettering techniques are demonstrated on cured polymer clay ornaments, however, personalizing air-dry-clay ornaments and charms would be done the same way.    

They also show a few ways to correct errors when working with permanent inks.    I haven't tested these correction methods with air-dry clay, so I recommend doing a test on a cured sample of your own favorite brand.   The various types/brands of air-dry clay may react differently.   You also might try top-coating & sealing the ornament first, then write your personalization ....and then seal again!

Monday, June 6, 2011

Make a Clay Poppy

Make some of these colorful Poppies with air-dry clay. Step by step instructions, with photos, are provided by SifBeth. Although this demonstration shows how to make flowers using gumpaste, the techniques are very similar for air-dry clay and cold porcelain flowers. One difference is, if tutorial calls for edible glue, you can use regular glue with air-dry clay flowers. Gumpaste and cold porcelain are both used to create cake is edible, one isn't!

If you don't have the proper petal cutter for this tutorial, you can make your own.   See some previous posts for Making Your Own Cutters  and a video with Free Cutting Tool Ideas.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Clay Recipes to Make for Kids

Today I came across a collection of homemade air dry clay recipes at "Crafting a Green World" that are kid-friendly and earth-friendly.   Recipes include basic natural play dough recipe, aromatherapy play dough, gluten-free cornstarch dough, edible play dough and modeling beeswax.  See Five Natural Modeling Materials You Can Make Yourself.

Author says:  "I tend to choose to make our modeling materials for a few reasons. I’m much happier spending a hour in the kitchen every few weeks mixing up several batches of natural play dough than I would be spending that hour driving to the store and back for Play Doh."

Monday, May 30, 2011

How to Photograph Your Clay Jewelry for Online Sales

Homemade Photo Studio
How to Make a Homemade Black Ice Photo Kit.  Desired Creations share tips for photographing your hand-crafted jewelry.  Professional photographers often use a black background with a very soft bright spot highlighting the jewelry.    Author says:  "....not being a professional photographer, I saw no justification to spend lots of money for the special kit."  Read article to learn  how to create, at a low cost, the photographic lighting style used in better quality publications.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Make Miniature People with Darwi or Paperclay

This French artist (Lauren) has created a whole village of miniature people from Darwi air-dry clay.   These are uncomplicated little dolls with painted features and clothes made of paper.  Creative Paperclay would work well for this project also.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

How to Wrap Foam Balls Without Trapping Air

Many air-dry clay projects call for Styrofoam shapes as armatures for figure modeling. On my other blog, "Cold Porcelain Tutorials", we've featured a series of videos from Marisol Romero showing the proper way to wrap Styrofoam shapes with cold porcelain (without getting cracks or trapped air).   The very same methods could be used with any brand of soft air-dry clay.    Check 'Cold Porcelain Tutorials' for video demos showing how to wrap small and large foam balls, half-spheres, double-spheres and more.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

How to Create Craft Porcelain Clay Roses

Clay Roses by Linda Peterson
As featured on Livin' the Creative Life, Linda Peterson shares how to create delicate roses from the air-dry clay called "Craft Porcelain"  (from Amaco).    This product is said to be similar to the homemade cold porcelain paste we've often mentioned .... but I'm told by those who've used both products that the

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Mixed Media Clay "Face of Mother Nature"

Hearty Clay and mixed media combine to create this nature-inspired wall hanging.  Created by Judy Ross of Sun City, Arizona.   Judy first creates molds from quick-set plaster or mold compound.  Next, Hearty clay is pressed into molds to create embellishments.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Got a Glue Question?

Sometimes you just don't know which glue would be best to glue two different kinds of materials together.   Here's one place to start looking for answers....the "Glue It To It' widget at Michaels.   Just select the name of the two items you want to glue together from the drop down lists and Michaels will suggest a glue product that'll do the job!

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Make a Miniature Stack of Pancakes

Make these realistic mini-pancakes for your dollhouse, roombox, diorama or even as a jewelry charm.
This video from Kawaii Supply shows us how to make a short stack of pancakes (with butter) in miniature using air-dry clay.  Cosmos Clay (from Japan) was used for demonstration, but almost any air-dry clay would work, including cold porcelain.  Acrylic craft paints were used to tint the white clay before modeling.

Monday, April 25, 2011

How to make a Petey Penguin Figurine

Today I'm breaking my own rule of only featuring tutorials that use air-dry clay because I wanted to share this polymer clay tutorial with you.   These penguins are so darn cute and the process to make them with air-dry clay would be essentially the same as shown in this video....just don't bake it!   ;-)

Deb from shares with the viewers, step by step, how to make one of her famous Petey Penguin Figurines. Petey Penguin was inspired by the movie Happy Feet.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Create these cute dolls with cold porcelain or other air-dry clay.

Materials needed are pre-tinted clay in white, black, blue, yellow, red, brown, green and flesh plus barbeque skewers or lollipop sticks for legs.

Page is written in Portuguese, but lots of good photos show step-by-step without translating ....or use Google Translate.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Polar Bear Tutorial

Cute polar bear charm made with air-dry clay.  Video demo by CuteTanpopo.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Air Dry Clay Name Tags or Ornaments

Stephanie shows us a no-calorie way to use candy molds. She uses air dry clay (Creative Paperclay) to create name tags or ornaments.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Marisol's Cold Porcelain Recipe

Cold Porcelain is a "clay" or paste that can be made at home and is composed of white glue and cornstarch. Cold porcelain is known throughout the world by many different names. It is also known as porcelana fria, masa flexible, biscuit, pasta di mais, among others. It is soft, white and flexible and can be modeled into small figures or large. Hard and durable when cured.   Cold porcelain requires no baking to cure and air-dries at room temperature.

There are many recipes available for cold porcelain, including microwave recipes. Which one to use depends on your own experience and what you will be making with the cold porcelain. Some recipes are softer, some harder, some more flexible or rigid.     See my other blog,  "Cold Porcelain Tutorials" for a 2-part video by Marisol Romero of Porcelana Fria Paso a Paso demonstrating her stovetop method for preparing the cold porcelain paste.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Demo: Paperclay Dolls by Polka Dot Pixie

Air-dry clay tutorial from The Polka Dot Pixie showing how she makes her small dolls/fairies using Styrofoam, Paperclay and a wire armature.  This is an easy tutorial for a basic painted doll figure, with your choice of paperclay painted hair or applied hair!   Head, hands and feet are made of clay but body armature is padded out with foil and wrapped in white floral paper tape.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Happy St Patrick's Day

PaddysDay is a celebration of the Irish spirit in humor, art and music .   The Irish sense of humor and gift of gab is legendary and we've gathered a bit o' blarney to share with you. In addition to the jokes and folklore, you'll find a collection of Irish music lyrics, greetings and blessings plus graphics to copy and enjoy at Paddy'sDay.    

Monday, March 14, 2011

Tutorial: Make Some Funny Bunnies

Video demo from TatyanaBel  doesn't say what kind of clay she's using but this would be a good project for the pre-colored air-dry clays such as Cloud Clay, Makin's Clay, Hearty Clay and Model Magic. Cold porcelain should work well for these bunnies also.  Bunnies are colorful and the simple shapes make it kid-friendly.  TatyanaBel says: "This is just to show how easy to create something that can bring an instant smile on your friend's face or someone's you care about. I've created few dozens during Easter and placed them in the kitchen at work. Easter Bunnies had their new friends very quickly!"

Thursday, March 10, 2011

How to Make Clay Roses

Today we have a video slideshow from Lydia, demonstrating her method for creating cold porcelain roses.   The  instructional text in the video is written in 4 languages.   You may have to use the PAUSE button in the video player to stop slideshow long enough to read text.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Miniature Teddy Bear

This video demo from sugarcraft artist Aine shows us how to make a tiny miniature teddy bear.   This demo is using gumpaste to create figure, but the process is exactly the same for air-dry clay.   Just use regular glue where she calls for edible glue.    This is a kid-friendly project and suitable for just about any clay, including the softer air-dry clays like Model Magic and Cloud Clay.


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