Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Clothespin Ornaments

I recently purchased an ornament for my mom at a local shop. After bringing it home, I realized, "Hey, the girls & I could make these!" Ours are much more juvenile, but the concept is the same: a clothespin base.

These were soooo fun to make! All you need are clay & clothespins. I bought two different sizes of 'pins at JoAnne's: a regular size & a smaller 1 1/2" size. I also gathered up whatever tool-ish things I could find to help us in our clay molding efforts.

Wreath by Zoey (age 8)

(A word about clay: The girls & I have clay around to play with on occasion. I am not a clay expert. It is not my medium of speciality. I purchased this giant package of Sculpey III clay because it was on sale or I had a coupon or something. But, it's horrible to work with. Surprisingly my 6 year old was steadfast. But my 8 year old had many fits. Basically, it's really hard to work into a smooth consistency & it is very crumbly. Crumbs everywhere. Takes so long to knead into something you can work with. Although, because of its firmness, I do like the way it holds its shape when you are putting your pieces together. We've had other brands of clay that seem to work better for us. This is just my opinion & I'd love any tips or advice from clay experts out there!)

Snowman by Pazely (age 6)

Here is the cup of hot cocoa that Zoey made.

She inspired mine.

After creating our miniature pieces, we baked 'em in the oven, following the instructions. (About 15-25 minutes depending on the thickness.) While the pieces were baking, we decided to paint our clothespins. They can also be stained. Or left plain.

Once the clay pieces have cooled down, glue to clothespins with E6000.
Pazely's ornaments are pink & purple. She made a tree, a candy cane, a s'more with red graham crackers (to make it more holiday-ish--hee hee), a snowman, a melted ice cream & 2 cookies. Zoey made a cup of cocoa, a ball ornament, a tiny gift & a wreath.

Clip 'em on your tree or on a gift!


  1. Those clothespins are absolutely *adorable!!!* The girls did a fabulous job, fits and all . Really. They should be proud of their creations. You too! :)

  2. These are just adorable. I agree with you about the Sculpey III. It used to be lots softer than now..don't know why they made it so hard to knead, but after you get the crumbs scooped up and back into the main ball, sculpt and bake, the results are wonderful.

    Have a wonderful weekend.


  3. These would make super cute gift tag attacher thingies. Very cute!

  4. adorable pins! great idea to make xmas decoration with them :D

    my seasoned clay maker friends told me sculpey 3 isn't a good clay. it's children's clay (but i suppose that serves your purpose if you play with the kids). fimo soft is also a for children. for professional use they suggest to use fimo classic, kato, or premo. those are the "good brands" in terms of quality. but these are supposedly harder than sculpey 3 & fimo soft so they're not suitable for little children.

    anyway, to get passed the crumbly stage sooner, i found this technique in google where you hammer the clay with a nylon/rubber hammer for a good while before you let the clay out of the wrap. i covered my "naked" (unwrapped) clay with waxed paper before hammering.

    just google "conditioning kato clay" and it's the first result (a PDF file). this is the link to that PDF file

    for smaller pieces of clay, i use my acrylic roller ends (mine's rounded) and pound the clay with it on the table. you can cover the table with waxed paper to avoid oil stain from the clay.

  5. These are so wonderful....what great creations you and the kids made. I love the idea that they just clip on the tree too.

  6. Wow, what a great idea! They're awesome and how easy for children to just clip them onto the tree! Maybe my toddler could 'help' make a few! :-)

  7. I love these!! I want to try to make some this season. What fun!!
    I am going to try Fimo Soft per a comment above.

    I read your blog regularly and really enjoy it.

    Cheers from Utah

  8. SO cute! I will be getting some fimo soft too - thanks for asking for us. ;)


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