Salt dough is a fun, easy, and extremely cost-effective way to flex your creativity. Great for kids and adults, salt dough projects are simple and fun to make – especially when you’d like to make a commemorative ornament, finger or handprint press, or small trinket. If you’re interested in salt dough crafting, here are the basics of this hands-on activity.
Prepare your space.
You will want a cool, dry room in which to work. You’ll also need a few tools, including a rolling pin, cookie sheet, extra flour and water, ruler, and thin, wide-putty knife. Other modeling tools, like a table knife, toothpicks, embroidery scissors, a garlic press, and cookie cutters, will come in handy. Finally, don’t forget to grab plastic wrap to keep unused portions fresh until you can use them.
Make your salt dough.
All you need are a few household ingredients to make salt dough. Simply mix the following, adding more water or flour as needed:
• 2 cups flour (all-purpose)
• 1 cup salt
• 1 cup of water
The simplest salt-dough ornaments and other projects are made by rolling out the dough to be a quarter of an inch thick, then cutting out shapes with cookie cutters. You can also try your hand at three-dimensional figures. Use your modeling tools to make the finer details. Embroidery scissors can be used for fine feathers or lines, and a garlic press will turn out brilliant hair for people or long-haired dogs.
Let your project dry.
The best way to dry salt dough projects is by letting them dry slowly. Air drying is the best method, though you can use an oven to speed up the process. Set the oven at the lowest temperature, then vary the position of the oven door for the three hours of the drying process: half-open for the first hour, a quarter open for the second hour, then closed for a final hour.
Apply paint and other finishing touches.
Acrylic paints or water-based varnish (or polyurethane) can be used to paint and seal your salt dough creation. Always test a small patch of color or varnish before covering your entire project with it. Once you’ve reached the desired look, allow a piece to dry for at least a day before use or storage.
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