Sunday, December 29, 2019

golden clay star garland

I pictured it in my mind. Strung along our tree, maybe hung above our barnwood gas fireplace or on my garland branches by the dining area. The stars would be gold and provide a bit of shine to our white walls. I knew I could make it, but I didn't have everything I needed. I searched several stores for miniature cookie cutters in a basic star shaped. I finally found a set at Michaels that were just right.
I used a white clay recipe found all over the internet consisting of corn starch, baking soda and water cooked over the stove top until a dough forms. 
The precise recipe that I use for one batch that can be easily doubled is: 
* 1 cup baking soda
* 1/2 cup of corn starch
* 3/4 cup of water.
After cooling, I pulled it out of the pot onto my counter covered with cornstarch to prevent it sticking as I rolled it to my desired thickness.

Unlike most roll-out cookie dough, the clay scraps can be rolled over and over until you use it all up.

And then using a round toothpick or skewer stick, I poked a hole in the damp clay where I want to thread my cord. Now the stars go in a low heat oven and bake until they are hard.

Out of the oven to cool off and I made sure the poked holes are still open. Then each one got a light sanding with sand paper to smooth out the edges. Once they are cooled and sanded, I took them to my garage and spray painted them all on one side. After they completely dried, I flipped them and painted the other side and the edges.  I looked for missed spots and spray painted any white areas.

I took my hemp cord, put some tape over the end to prevent it from fraying and tied a knot on one end and added my first star. I quickly realized I don't want them to move on the garland and risk crashing into each other and chipping paint. So I decided to tie another knot directly after the first star is on. Now each star will be secure on the garland kept in place between two knots. I got a ruler and measured about 4 inches and then tied another knot before loading another star onto my garland. Then I knotted that one into place and measured another 4 inches before tying another knot. I continued tying knots and adding stars until I thought it was long enough. I didn't measure the garland because I didn't need it to be an exact length. I tied off the last knot and cut my hemp cord.

It's a golden starry line-up, ready to shine wherever I place it. Some of the stars are thick and some are thin. Some have marks and dings and funny curved parts. It's okay, this didn't come from a factory, it came from my hands.


  1. What a fascinating and treasure-filled post! All the books - like a feast. I will have to keep this page open and nibble a little here and there as I find time. Thank you :-) Happy New Year!

    1. Happy New Year, GretchenJoanna! Thank you for taking time read my posts!


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