Clay

Fabulous Fall Leaves Décor

By  Diane W. Villano, Laura Griffin  for  Polyform Products

Materials

  • Studio by Sculpey* Polymer Clay: Antique Gold; Cappuccino; Coffee Bean; Desert Sand; Nutmeg; Spanish Olive; Butterscotch; Antiquing Medium: Chocolate Brown; Satin Glaze; Shape Makers: Leaf Set III; Leaf Set IV; Clay Tool Variety Set: Needle Tool; Style & Detail Tools; Texture Wheel (with four heads); Oven Thermometer
  • Twig wreath, 14”
  • Wooden mail holder
  • Gold metal bookplate
  • Gold brads (for bookplate), 2-1/8”, two
  • Metallic rub-on kit #1: gold; red

Tools

  • Sassy Alphabet Stamps (Hero Arts)
  • Sculpey* Acrylic Roller or clay-dedicated pasta machine
  • Scruffy or soft paintbrush
  • Small Leaf Cutter (American Art Clay)
  • Tissue blade or craft knife
  • Green floral wire, 22- to 24-gauge
  • Craft-dedicated toaster oven
  • Index cards (for baking surface), 5”x8”
  • Hot glue gun and glue sticks
  • Wreath - Make the Leaves
  • 1. Condition clay by kneading it in hands until it becomes soft and smooth. Shape clay into a pad. Flatten pad and roll out to 1/16" thickness.
  • 2. Using Maple veiner and cutter from Leaf Set III and large and small Oak veiner and cutter from Leaf Set IV, make a variety of leaves in Antique Gold, Nutmeg, Spanish Olive, and Butterscotch. (Note: Sample wreath has the following amounts, types and colors of leaves: three large and four small oak Antique Gold; four maple Nutmeg; three small oak Nutmeg; five maple Spanish Olive; three maple Butterscotch.
  • 3. Using fingers or water mister, very lightly moisten sheet of clay with thin spray of water. Place large oak veiner on clay. Apply even pressure to veiner with hand or acrylic roller. Peel clay away and pat dry any excess moisture with paper towel.
  • 4. Position small oak cutter over textured clay; cut out shape. Place leaf in palm of hand. Use 12mm ball end of Style and Detail tool and press firmly along edge of leaf, rolling tool as you go. Repeat with large oak and maple veiner/cutter sets.
  • 5. With needle tool, make two holes for wiring in vein of each small oak leaf, approximately 1/2" apart. Make two holes in vein of each large leaf at both ends, evenly spaced.
  • Wreath - Curing
  • 1. Curl leaves into position and place on index cards. (Note: Studio by Sculpey is the only polymer clay that does not need support to maintain a curved surface.) Cure leaves in 275°F oven for 30 minutes. Let cool completely.
  • Wreath - Antiquing
  • 1. Apply small amount of Antiquing Medium on leaf and spread all over and into all indentations. Wipe away excess with paper towel and let dry. Repeat with all leaves.
  • Wreath - Assembly
  • 1. Cut some 6" lengths of floral wire. Thread one length of wire from front of a leaf to back through both holes. Use needle-nose pliers to snug wire into vein by pulling gently on wire from back if needed. Insert wire through twig wreath; twist ends together. Cut excess wire. Use needle-nose pliers to turn cut wire ends into back of wreath. Repeat with desired amount of leaves.
  • Mail Holder
  • 1. Condition all clay by hand or through pasta machine.
  • 2. Roll out sheet of Spanish Olive clay on 2nd largest setting of pasta machine, or use acrylic roller to roll sheet to 1/8" thickness.
  • 3. Press large leaf vein texture sheet from Leaf Set III deep into clay to leave impression (Note: Spray sheet lightly with water mister beforehand to use as a release agent.)
  • 4. Repeat and cut out two leaf impressions using leaf cutter.
  • 5. Roll two small balls of Cappuccino clay.
  • 6. Lightly pinch out one end to create an acorn shape.
  • 7. Roll two smaller balls of Coffee Bean clay; flatten with palm of hand.
  • 8. Use large ball tool from Style & Detail Tools set to make curved indentation into flattened ball.
  • 9. Apply to top of acorn-shaped piece and texture with needle tool set.
  • 10. Add tiny snake of clay to top of each acorn to create stem.
  • 11. Arrange acorns and leaves together; set aside.
  • 12. Stamp "Mail" into sheet of Desert Sand Clay.
  • 13. Place bookplate on top of clay sheet; cut out.
  • 14. Place stamped word on top of Spanish Olive sheet.
  • 15. Using texture wheel, roll border around bookplate.
  • 16. Cut out rectangle around border, push two brads into holes on bookplate, trimming metal ends if needed, and set aside.
  • 17. Cut out four small leaves from Spanish Olive clay; use needle-tool to create veins.
  • 18. Follow manufacturer's instruction to bake small leaves, bookplate, and leaves/acorns. Quick Tip: Use fiberfill stuffing under part of leaves while baking to support and provide a dimensional look.
  • 19. When cool, antique all clay items with antiquing medium, applying paint liberally to tops of pieces and letting paint go into each crevice, then wipe away surface with paper towel, letting design show through.
  • 20. Once it is dry, lightly brush on metallic rub-ons in gold & red to leaves for added detail.
  • 21. Coat all clay pieces with satin glaze to seal and hot glue to mail holder.
  • More
  • 1. Use same techniques to embellish other household items, such as a wastebasket.