How To Make Sawdust Clay

Sawdust clay is a great craft project for kids of all ages. It is easy to make and very inexpensive. Cleanup is also easy. Sawdust clay can be used for making models as well as cutouts, and it often yields very impressive results. This recipe will allow you to make as little or as much as you would like.

Before you start making your sawdust clay, you will need the following supplies:

  • sawdust
  • flour
  • water
  • newspapers
  • a large bowl or bucket
  • and a wooden spoon

Cover your work area with newspapers to avoid any messes and to make cleanup easier.

Combine two parts sawdust with one part flour. Mix these ingredients together well before adding water. Gradually add water while mixing until the mixture reaches a stiff consistency. If the clay becomes too runny, add more sawdust. If it is crumbly, add flour. Once all ingredients are well-mixed, begin kneading the clay with your hands. This will activate the gluten in the flour, making the clay more elastic.

Alternatively, sawdust clay can also be made using wallpaper paste rather than flour. To do this, substitute the flour with one part dry wallpaper paste. The rest of the recipe and instructions are the same as those for making the clay with flour, except less kneading is required. This recipe is more appropriate for older children.

Once the clay becomes easy to work, it can be used for sculpting or it can be rolled flat for cut out pieces. Always allow craft pieces made from sawdust clay to dry for at least 24 hours, preferably in the sun. Do not try drying in an oven or kiln! Sawdust clay dries very hard. Once your art is dry you can sand it smooth and paint it. Acrylic is the best type of paint for this. A clear acrylic spray can add a glossy finish to your project. Extra unused clay can be stored in an airtight container.

Due to its cheapness and easiness to make, sawdust clay is a great project for kids. Cleanup is also easy and can be done using simple soap and water. Loose sawdust can be swept up using any household vacuum cleaner.  


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