Handmade Air-Dry Clay (Baking soda clay)


Earlier, during one of our yearly Christmas ornament-making sessions, we discovered the magic that is baking soda clay. Baking soda clay decorations have just become a staple in our home — and not just for the holidays! We have been using the handmade model-based clay for a range of initiatives, but this year we’re utilizing it for two additional ones — one spring-themed and one Easter-themed – so hang tight for both those! Meanwhile, if you haven’t used this before, I strongly suggest giving it a go. It simply takes three simple household items, can be used for a variety of applications, and air dries in a few days.

We’ve tried a few different modifications to the recipe over the years, and it’s often worked out. With that said, every one of our variants has used three major components – cornstarch, baking soda, and water – and there is one cooking method that we are using more frequently than any others, simply since it is the easiest to memorize.

To prepare the clay, just combine all of the materials in a medium-sized pot and cook over medium heat, stirring regularly.

The solution will harden as it warms up. You need it to have the texture of boiled or beaten potatoes. Continue to whisk and flip the liquid over on itself and until you move to the next stage, then remove from the heat instantly.

Give it a chance to simmer in the saucepan for a few moments or until you can manage it without being burned. Once you’re ready, put the remains of the saucepan onto a dry tabletop, shape it into a fastball, and cover it in a moist dish towel or washcloth.

Set aside to cool for approximately 15 minutes in this manner.

When the baking soda clay has cooled enough, unwrap it and give it a thorough kneading. This will smooth out the dough and remove any leftover stiffness.

You are now prepared to start creating! You can build almost anything with clay, so here are a few lessons we’ve learned from experience.

1) To protect the extra dough from drying out first before you want it to, cover it in a moist towel while not being used.

2. Denser portions start to break more throughout water evaporation, so if feasible, keep your works on the shorter side. We normally target a thickness of 0.75 to 1 cm.

3. Use wax paper to your advantage! Baking soda clay is much more delicate than shop modeling clay as it is much thinner. Spreading out the clay using a piece of waxed paper on each side helps tremendously!

4. To minimize cracking, you would like the drying process to be gradual. In other terms, air drying is preferable, and it is better to do it someplace away from a heat source. In Kuwait, where the temperature is hot, and the a/c is constantly on, we’d wrap our platter of decorations with a slightly moist towel to halt the drying time. Rolling the decorations over softly occasionally also works.

5. Once your pieces have dried, you may decorate them in nearly any manner you choose! We coated them using acrylics and watercolors, coated them with adhesive and glitter, embellished them with crayons and Marker pens, and pasted accessories onto them. Everything is allowed!

Okay, now about the ingredients.

Air-Dry Modeling Clay Made from Scratch

  • Baking soda (2 cups)
  • Cornstarch (1 cup)
  • 1 and 1/4 cup water

In a medium-sized saucepan, combine all of the ingredients. Mix thoroughly fairly continually till it hardens and resembles fluffy mashed potatoes. Allow cooling before kneading until creamy and no longer greasy. Awesome! Now go make something!