KaitlinSheran Photography » because life is meant to be lived in a remarkable way.

Handmade Clay Snowman Ornaments

These little guys don’t take long and look like you slaved over them!!  Actual working time was maybe 20 minutes each at the beginning but after making one or two, I’d say it only took me 5-10 minutes for each one (actual working time)…this doesn’t count time waiting for paint to dry and cooking time….but who’s counting!

If you have the desire and 20 minutes, you can certainly make these!! Anyone can!

First I got the supplies I needed:

  • Sculptey clay, this can be the most expensive thing, but if you use your local craft-store coupons you actually can get it at a reasonable price!
  • Acrylic Paint, various colors to taste.  It really depends on what you want to make.  For the santa I used red, black, brown, white, pink, green etc.  It is really up to your imagination!
  • Buttons, ribbons, etc.  Anything you want to use to make your figure fancy!
  • Antiquing stain.  It doesn’t take much, so a little can will do!  I didn’t see this at the craft store, I had mine from an antiquing kit that I used to refinish some furniture in my home.  I got the kit at a local home repair/hardware store.
  • barbecue skewers or something similar for adding texture and attaching pieces.
  • Jewelry wire
  • Parchment paper
  • cooking sheets
  • oven
  • paint brushes, from very fine to fairly thick
  • Hot glue gun

After I had my supplies together I started creating!  The first step to mold, shape and create your figure.  The easiest thing to make is the snowman, so I will start with that.

  • Start by rolling a small ball for the head.
  • Make the nose, shape a small piece of clay into a cone shape.  Curve the tip of it up or to the side a little to create character. Next make little lines along the side of it with the tip of the skewer to add texture.  These texture areas are where the stain will fill and give it the old antique look!
  • Make the hat.  This is similar to making the nose, but is it an area where you can be really creative!  Make it straight up, fold it to the side, or make it completely unique!  Don’t be afraid to poke and prod and draw in it with the skewer,  these type of additions make it truly unique and give the stain somewhere to lay. If you want the brim of the hat to look different than the rest (check out my figures post for a picture, CLICK HERE) I simply made a long skinny snake-like strip of clay and put it on the base of the hat and flattened it there. I would then roll the round part of the skewer along it or push it in for texture.  I did the same thing with the ball of the hat.
  • Using a small piece of jewelry wire, bend it into a shape that will hold the ribbon for hanging the ornament.  Press the loose ends into the top of the hat or where desired.
  • Place the hat and the nose (one at a time) onto the snowman body.  Use the skewer to push the clay together where you are connecting them, the same as you did when you connected the body.
  • Make the eyes and the mouth.  To make the eyes, use the blunt edge of your skewer to press into the snowman head and make two indented eyes.  If you mess up, or don’t like them, simply smooth out the clay and start over!  You can do the same thing for the mouth, making a “coal” smile, by making several indents in a smile shape, or with the pointy edge of your skewer you can draw a smile in as desired.  When everything is attached and you are happy with the body and head, place on baking sheet carefully.
  • Bake your snowman,  according to the directions on the clay box.  Mine was 275 for 15 minutes, but I baked them a little longer because they are so thick.  Just be careful not to go too long because it will crack.
  • Let your snowman cool almost completely.
  • Paint everything as desired.  It make take several coats, because the clay sucks everything in.  Just make sure you let each coat dry in-between the next.
  • Using a SLIGHTLY damp paper towel or rag dip one corner slightly into the stain.  Rub on small area until covered and all crevices are saturated.  Using a clean paper towel or rag, dry or SLIGHTLY damp, GENTLY wipe the stain away until you have your desired look.   When doing this step don’t rub too hard because you will rub the paint right off of your figure. Continue to do this until you have the desired look.  It is important to make sure any indents/lines/eyes/mouth are filled with stain initially so that when you wipe it away they remain darker than the rest of the smoother areas.
  • Let this dry for a few minutes, until not sticky.
  • Cut a piece of ribbon as desired and string through wire on the top of the hat.  Tie it into a knot or a bow as desired.
  • Hang on your tree!

You did it!!!

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