I’ve been loving the clay trend that seems to be going on right now, so I grabbed some air drying clay the last time I was at the craft store to see what I could come up with. I had this vision of making some wind chimes like the Mississippi Pottery that I loved so much in college.
I can’t remember the name of that potter, but it was beautiful! Oh, wait. It was McCarty Pottery from Magnolia, MS. So glad I found that!
They kept theirs all white, but when after updating this fun planter that I shared over on the DecoArt blog, I couldn’t help myself!
What you need:
- Air Drying Clay (<= amazon affiliate link)
- a small bowl
- plastic wrap
- wooden skewer or other object for poking holes in the clay
- shape template – to download, just login to your account and go to the Downloads page. Not a member? Create an account here!
- DecoArt Patio Paint Outdoor – colors used in this project are Glorious Gold, Blue Bahama, Grey Skies and Coral Sunset
How to make DIY Clay Chimes
First, take your bowl and cover it in plastic wrap so you can slide your clay off easily.
Then roll your clay out to about 1/4″ thickness and cut a circle that will fit over your bowl.
Shape your clay on the bowl, gently smoothing it so it takes the shape. You might have to coax it a bit. Bribe it with some Watermelon Sour gummies if you must, but get that clay smooth.
Keep a bowl of water nearby so you can dip your fingers in it. That will help to smooth things out better.
Trim the bottom so it’s as even as you can get it.
Then, while it’s still wet, poke a hole in the top with a wooden skewer.
Then move on to make your shapes. Just cut out the various sized shapes from cardstock to use as templates. I cut out three sets of shapes so I could have three stands on my chimes.
Once you’ve cut out your shapes, make sure to use your wooden skewer to poke holes in both the top and the bottom, except for three small shapes. Only poke one hole in them so they can be at the ends of your three strands.
I also made some clay beads to break up the shapes. Just grab a hunk of clay and roll it around in your hands to create a ball. Then take your wooden skewer and poke it directly through the center of each bead so you can string it on the chimes.
Let everything dry for about 24 hours. It might take longer depending on the humidity of your area.
Once they are thoroughly dry, you can remove your “bowl” from it’s mold and start painting.
Just a note: To get the blocked color design on the “bowl”, I tried taping off the bowl and painting, but when I pulled the tape off the paint came right with it. I went back and painted it in the same design without the tape, and the paint stayed put.
When the paint is dry, string your beads and shapes together. I thought I might could use one long strand, but that proved to be a no-go. So just cut smaller stings and tie them individually.
To create your strands, just lay out all of your shapes in three lines to get the order that you like. Pop the balls in between the shapes wherever you want.
I will say that I recommend actually hanging these indoors as a decoration rather than outside. We had a big storm come through while I was out of town, and I came back to a less that full sting of chimes.
Have you ever worked with air-drying clay? What did you make?