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Air Dried Clay Leaves

This project is a really good way to get you looking at leaves properly; their shape, thickness, colour and most importantly their structure and texture.

 

Use leaves you have collected to make these beautiful little air dried clay leaves. Great, simple, fun craft for both kids and adults

 

We used the leaves we gathered both to make prints on our clay, and also as templates to make little leaf dishes. Here, we are using air-drying clay, so our pieces will not be waterproof; I'd recommend sealing them with a coat of varnish or pva glue if you want to extend their life and be able to wipe them over in the future.

Use leaves you have collected to make these beautiful little air dried clay leaves. Great, simple, fun craft for both kids and adults

First we donned our wellies, and went out to collect leaves. We looked for big robust leaves to make our dishes that had well defined ribbing; after lots of examining we chose plantain leaves and those from the creeper that grows on our house. We also collected smaller more delicate leaves to use for our imprints.

Use leaves you have collected to make these beautiful little air dried clay leaves. Great, simple, fun craft for both kids and adults

Once the kids had chosen a leaf each, they rolled out the air-dried clay to the thickness we wanted (about 3-4mm), then placed the leaf on it and rolled it flat into the surface.

Use leaves you have collected to make these beautiful little air dried clay leaves. Great, simple, fun craft for both kids and adults

Use leaves you have collected to make these beautiful little air dried clay leaves. Great, simple, fun craft for both kids and adults

The kids used a combination of knives and scissors to cut around their leaves and clay, and used tin foil to support the leaves in a gentled curved shape ready to leave to dry. Once safely cradled, they gently removed the leaf from the clay, exposing the pattern underneath.

Use leaves you have collected to make these beautiful little air dried clay leaves. Great, simple, fun craft for both kids and adults

Use leaves you have collected to make these beautiful little air dried clay leaves. Great, simple, fun craft for both kids and adults

We left our clay leaves overnight to dry. Once dry, the kids got busy painting them! Originally I had planned to suggest using pens to pick out the detail once the leaves were painted, but in fact, the paint really highlighted the detail as you can see in the photos, so we didn't need to.

Use leaves you have collected to make these beautiful little air dried clay leaves. Great, simple, fun craft for both kids and adults

We used the smaller, more delicate leaves to make imprints on plaques of clay, which also looked great! The kids loved this activity, it was clear they were delighted with the results, and there was lots of talk between them about why leaves might have the structure they do while they were working away.

Use leaves you have collected to make these beautiful little air dried clay leaves. Great, simple, fun craft for both kids and adults

 

For more nature craft inspiration, please check out our Making Willow Balls tutorial, and our Sticky Nature Pictures.

Use leaves you have collected to make these beautiful little air dried clay leaves. Great, simple, fun craft for both kids and adults

 

If you have enjoyed this post, please share with others x

 

Use leaves you have collected to make these beautiful little air dried clay leaves. Great, simple, fun craft for both kids and adults

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23 Comments

  • Reply 10 Nature Themed Fall Crafts for Kids to Try This Year - Ghastly Girl

    […] Air Dried Clay Leaves from Craft Invaders […]

    June 1, 2018 at 9:38 pm
  • Reply 10 Must Try Fall Crafts for Kids to Try This Year - Ghastly Girl

    […] Air Dried Clay Leaves from Craft Invaders […]

    March 12, 2018 at 9:14 pm
  • Reply 25 Inspirational crafts to get creative this autumn! – SANDRAAS

    […] | by craftinvaders […]

    September 13, 2017 at 2:54 pm
  • Reply sapana

    very innovative idea , I am going to try it and will tell others as well , thank you so much for the post .
    sapana recently posted…Pacifier Teeth – Causes & PrecautionsMy Profile

    October 3, 2016 at 10:17 am
  • Reply Debbie

    Hi Sarah, how clever and so much fun to do! Where were you when my two were small? They (and I) would have loved doing this. The detail of the leaf is so clear on the clay too. Excellent!
    Debbie recently posted…Baby Loggerhead TurtlesMy Profile

    October 2, 2016 at 11:10 am
    • Reply Sarah - Craft Invaders

      I was amazed at the detail – it’s fab isn’t it. We’re helping at a craft event during half term, and this is top of the list of the activities we’ll are taking!

      October 13, 2016 at 11:58 am
  • Reply Mary-the boondocks blog

    I love this so much Sarah. The paint really does look like veins in the leaves. And the purple plaque is a piece of art. Look at all the details that show through! I am left speechless. Really great, and it’s no wonder the kids had so much fun.
    Mary-the boondocks blog recently posted…Easy Fall Wreath – Int’l Bloggers Club ChallengeMy Profile

    September 26, 2016 at 6:57 pm
    • Reply Sarah - Craft Invaders

      Nature really is amazing isn’t it! And I hope the kids learn lots about it without even realising when we are crafting!

      September 30, 2016 at 10:02 am
  • Reply Michelle

    Oh my the kids must have had an absolute ball finding the right leaves and then seeing how beautiful their bowls turned out. Great craft Sarah.
    Michelle recently posted…Buckets, Spoons and a Jelly Mold – Int’l Bloggers ClubMy Profile

    September 26, 2016 at 1:37 pm
  • Reply Anca

    They look great, I love this idea.

    August 28, 2015 at 10:45 am
    • Reply Sarah

      It’s a really fun simple activity, Thanks for taking the time to comment x

      August 28, 2015 at 2:05 pm
  • Reply Sara | mumturnedmom

    These are brilliant, what a great idea! We waxed leaves a couple of years ago which was successful, but I really like the idea of doing this 🙂 #brilliantblogposts

    August 27, 2015 at 9:35 pm
    • Reply Sarah

      Thanks for popping by:) Just been admiring your beautiful blog x

      August 27, 2015 at 10:00 pm
  • Reply Mama, My Kid Doesn't Poop Rainbows

    Wow- lovely idea. So simple and effective. Will be giving this one a go!

    August 27, 2015 at 1:17 am
    • Reply Sarah

      Kids loved making these. Thanks for popping by x

      August 27, 2015 at 8:19 am
  • Reply Jenny

    I love these! I made something similar for my mum’s birthday when I was at uni and strapped for cash. The only difference is that I clingfilmed inside a bowl and placed the clay leaf shape inside to get a bowl shape. I love these, they look amazing and will be treasured for many years to come!
    Thanks for linking up to #Whatevertheweather 🙂 x

    August 16, 2015 at 8:59 pm
    • Reply Sarah

      Using a bowl is a great idea! Thanks for visiting and leaving a comment x

      August 16, 2015 at 9:08 pm
  • Reply Karen (@karenjwhitlock)

    I absolutely love this!! Such a simple idea but those finished leaves are so beautiful – the detail is amazing. I must have a go at this with mine this summer. Thanks for sharing this!
    #CountryKids

    August 2, 2015 at 5:45 am
    • Reply Sarah

      The paint really does pick out the detail nicely 🙂 Thanks for taking the time to visit and comment x

      August 2, 2015 at 8:57 am
  • Reply Coombe Mill - Fiona Cambouropoulos

    I love this, such a simple craft yet so effective, I guess the more structured the leaf the better as it will have the surface needed to create the pattern. Paining them really does bring out the design too. Thank you for linking up to Country Kids, though you may also want to link to my Monday linky Trash 2 Treasure which is for all recycling projects from rubbish or nature, this really does fit them both!

    August 1, 2015 at 5:50 pm
    • Reply Sarah

      Thanks for taking the time to visit and comment – looking forward to linking up on trash2treasure on Monday x

      August 1, 2015 at 6:26 pm

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