Air Dry Clay Beads and Incense Holder

As you’re probably starting to realise after reading these posts, I tend to get fixated on a technique or material, make a bunch of DIYs, and then, because I have a low boredom threshold, move on to the next shiny thing that’s caught my eye.

One of these materials is air dry clay.

At around rs120 (AUD5) a packet, you can make all of these items for a fraction of their purchase price (if you ignore the amount of time spent working on them!).

As usual, click on an image to enlarge it.

Bead Garlands

Buy them:

Or make them:

I went a bit mad with these.

I found a wood and jute curtain tie-back at Mr Bricolage and used it as an oversize tassel

then I made a bunch of small ones to hang on my door handles

and a long one to add to my gallery wall.


Ashlee White – no, there’s nothing wrong with the volume on your computer – she just likes to whisper-speak for some reason. We can’t hear you, Ashlee!!!!!

My Tips

If you’d like evenly-sized beads, weigh the clay out on a digital kitchen scale – 12g makes for a good-sized bead once it’s dry.

Air dry clay shrinks as it dries, so make sure the holes you make for stringing are larger than you think you’ll need. If they shrink too much, use a small drill bit (minus the drill) to carve them out. Or do as Ashley did and dry them on the skewers. Wish I’d thought of that.

Incense Holder

Buy it:


By Crafty Crafts

I first made a small one, but though it was cute, it was not fit for purpose – it was too small to catch the ash, and I kept ending up with a mess.

So I traced around my hand, then ruled straight lines to get rid of the old-person lumpy knuckles (not a good look – either on the incense holder or on my fingers!).

I copied the markings from the Muddy Heart ones, thinking they had a spiritual meaning, but now I suspect that they were just the artist’s design. Next time, I’ll carve my own patterns and make it a bit more interesting.

Once dry, I lightly sanded the edges, then painted it with an acrylic and talc mixture for a smooth, but matte, finish, and when that was dry, I used a paint pen to highlight the carvings.

It still doesn’t catch the ash, but looks pretty, so it can stay.

So far, air dry clay has been my favourite material to work with – it’s very versatile and easy to use – anything you see made from traditional ceramic, you can make with air dry clay.

There are a couple more projects to show you, as well as a few more things I’d like to make, but those can wait until I buy my Tasmanian house.

Mmmm – sounds like a good name for a blog!

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