TUTORIAL: Polymer Christmas Doggy Ornament

In my house, our dog is treated as part of the family. I’m sure the majority of you pet owners out there feel the same way! But how do we make sure that they feel included at Christmas? Well, I’ve come up with one small way! Here’s a special doggy hanging ornament that will fit perfectly on a Christmas tree. It even glows in the dark, so it’ll stand out amongst those sparkly fairy lights!
Your pup is bound to feel special after receiving this present- just make sure it isn’t eaten! Polymer clay is safe to display, but it contains lots of yuckies which can be dangerous when consumed. It’s safe enough to touch if you want to try this project with an older child- just make sure they wash their hands afterwards. It’s also important to note that when baking the clay it lets off fumes (especially when burnt), so don’t let anyone breathe it in for long periods of time, and try to keep your kitchen ventilated. Other than that, just have fun and enjoy your Christmas activities!

What you’ll need: 

  • Clay (glow-in-the-dark or plain white, red, green)
  • Thin wire (I used bronze)
  • Clay varnish
  • Metallic clay powder or acrylic paint
  • Thin paintbrush
  • Strong craft glue
  • Cutting tool
  • Dotting tool
  • Small letter stamps
  • Small bow mould

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Step one:
First of all, roll out your white clay. You’ll want it to be around one centimetre thick so that it isn’t too delicate.

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Step two: 
Cut out a simple bone shape, like the one above. Mine measures approximately 9cm in length, but you can make yours as big as you like. Gently round off the edges with your fingertips so that it looks neater.

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Step three:
Use your letter stamps to spell out your dog’s name in the centre of the bone. I also used my dotting tool to create a little paw print shape next to it. Try to press into the clay at half a centimetre. You want it quite deep but not enough so that it comes out the other side!

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Step four: 
Use your dotting tool to poke two small holes either side of the top of the bone. Ensure that they are big enough to fit the wire through later. Bake until hard. Mine took around 20 minutes at gas mark 4.

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Step five: 
When your bone has cooled, take your powder mixed with a little water or paint and neatly dab it into the holes that were left by the letters and paw print.

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Step six:
Grab your wire. Mine is very thin so I cut off double the length I needed, then folded it over and twisted it lots so that it stayed together. You may not need to do this- use your own judgement, but keep in mind that this will be hanging on a tree so you don’t want the wire snapping or bending too much with the weight of the bone!
Push it through the hole, leaving at least 2cm excess, then twist the excess with the main part of the wire until it feels secure. Repeat on the other hole, until you have something that looks similar to the photo above. Put what you’ve made so far to one side.

 

IMG_0695Step seven: 
Now it is time to make the holly. Grab your green clay, pick off two small balls and squash it in your fingertips until it is still reasonably thick but flat. Pinch the top and bottom to form thick spikes, then create one more of these on each side. Roll up three small balls for the berries.
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Step eight: 
For the bow I took a ball of red clay and a ball of green, rolled them into long sausage shapes and twisted them to form a kind of spiral affect. I then pressed it into the mould, cut off the excess and popped the bow out. As you can see, it leaves patches of each colour. Alternatively, you could just make the bow in one block colour.
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Step nine: 
Take your bone and glue the holly and the bow wherever you want them. I stuck the holly at the bottom left of the bone and the bow in the centre top of the wire.

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Step ten: 
Leave the glue to dry completely, then paint all of the clay with a thin coat of varnish. Place it in some pretty, Christmassy packaging and give it to your special boy/girl!

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Thank you for reading! Please leave a message below with any questions or to let me know how yours turned out. Check out the rest of my site for more tutorials. Have a beautiful day! 

 

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