DIY Polymer Clay Plant Stakes

Over the last couple of months, I’ve been seeing all sorts of new shops popping up on Etsy and Instagram promoting cheap and cheerful jewelry made from polymer clay and I am here for it.

Polymer clay is super easy to work with, lightweight (which is why it is PERFECT for earrings), relatively inexpensive, and doesn’t require a ton of specialized tools or equipment. Most people have heard of it—Fimo, Sculpey, etc.—but I don’t know too many people in my circle who have actually worked with it. It could just be the best kept secret in crafting… until now.

I have used polymer clay for a Canola Eat Well Camp craft before, so when they came to me looking for an easy DIY to include in a virtual workshop kit, I knew a clay project would be a good fit for their brand and easy for participants to execute on their own.

Because the theme of the Eat Well kit was “planting,” and would include a seed planting activity, I decided to do a clay plant stake project. It ticked all the boxes: easy, fun, excellent chance of success, on budget, and mailable. As well, the nature of the material makes the project open to creative interpretation, which is always a plus for the Eat Well gang.

The Kits

Because the kits were being mailed out as part of a larger package, I tried to keep them as compact as possible, including only the things that participants might not have at home: polymer clay, a small pot of acrylic glaze, a foam paintbrush, a craft stick, and a small handful of dried grasses (for an authentic prairie touch). To keep things simple for the crafters, all that is needed to complete the project is a work surface, a rolling pin or bottle, a cutting tool, and an oven.

Remember that point about creative interpretation? Participants are encouraged to supplement the dried grasses with stamps or small objects that could be pressed into the rolled-out clay to truly make this DIY their own. I also made a point to not include a template—once the clay is rolled out it can be cut into any shape the crafter desires.

The Video

To get their participants off to a great start with their kits, the Canola crew put together an amazing how-to video. You can watch it here!

The How To

You’ll need:
white or natural oven-dry polymer clay (Fimo, Sculpey, etc.)
acrylic paint or glaze (see note below)
wooden stick (to stir paint)
impression items (grasses, leaves, stamps, buttons, etc.)
foam brush or paintbrush
cookie sheet and parchment paper
rolling pin
knife
paper towel

  1. Warm up your clay by rolling it back and forth in your hands. Next, roll it into a ball, then into a snake. Repeat a couple times, until your snake can easily and fully bend in the middle without cracking.
  2. Place your clay onto a piece of parchment on your work surface. Using a rolling pin, gently roll your clay out to slightly thicker than 1/4,” flipping at least once to prevent sticking.
  3. Lay your impression items on the surface of the clay. Gently and evenly roll over the surface one more time, pressing them into the soft clay. TIP: To ensure a sturdy stake, do not let your clay get any thinner than 1/4” thick.
  4. Carefully lift item(s) off the surface. If anything sticks into the clay (small seeds, etc.), wait until after the clay has been baked to remove.
  5. Using a knife, cut your clay into whatever shapes you desire. Cut the bottom of each shape into a point or triangle to make it easier to insert into the soil.
  6. Carefully transfer your shapes to a baking sheet lined with parchment. Bake at 275°F for about 15 minutes. (Less if your clay is thinner.) Clay will be slightly soft when removed from the oven but will firm up as it cools.
  7. Once your plant stakes are cool, apply glaze to highlight the pattern. Use foam brush to apply to the entire surface, pressing into the impressions, then gently wipe away the excess with a paper towel. Repeat, if necessary, until you get the desired effect.

Note: You can use any acrylic craft paint for this project. To get the weathered, transparent look, mix one part acrylic paint and one part acrylic medium or clear glazing/antiquing liquid, OR thin your paint with plain water until it is more of a wash. To test your glaze/wash, brush a small amount over a piece of newspaper or junk mail. You should be able read the type.

Gifty gifts!

If you are looking for some sweet gift ideas, check out our sister site, Zenbars.

We have the yummiest granola bars, granola and, just for a treat – the best handmade, chocolate-dipped sponge toffee! Everything is beautifully packaged for giving, and can be shipped or delivered until December 23. Prices range from $3.50 to $16.

Delivery within the city of Winnipeg is free on orders of $20 or more.

Oh, honey!

I am so, so, so excited about this stuff! 
My lipbalm is naturally moisturizing and contains only four ingredients  – natural beeswax and raw honey from Canadian prairie bees, organic canola oil, and vitamin e. 
That’s it. No colour. No flavour. No sparkles. (But don’t let me stop you from using it under your brightest, sparkliest lipgloss!)
Oh, honey! Lipbalm – $4 each

Upcycled Candle Sconce

This sweet, one-of-a-kind candle sconce is made from a reclaimed cabinet door inset and a vintage glass insulator. It features a textured paper detail and is painted a fresh, creamy white. Can be used with a tealight or taper candle, and there is a hook on the back for hanging.
Candle sconce – $30
(shipping not included, free pick-up or delivery available in Winnipeg, MB)

Great gifts for Guys

All pillows are made from upcycled t-shirts and brand new, super-soft feather fills. Perfect for the living room, dorm room, man-cave or den.

Playboy Pillow (18×18″) $25
Dick’s Hard Wood Pillow (18×18″) $25
Canadian Club Pillow (18×18″) $25
Rub My Belly Pillow (18×18″) $25
Happy Hour Pillow (16×16″) $20
Green is the New Black Pillow (16×16″) $20
Family Guy Pillow (18×18″) $25
Che Pillow (18×18″) SOLD
(shipping not included, free pick-up or delivery available in Winnipeg, MB)

Gifts that rock!

Looking for a gift that sings? (Ha!) Look no further! I have great gifts for music lovers in stock, or you can have an awesome pillow made from a favourite band shirt.
Moog Pillow – $22
Rhythm Section Pillow – $22
Domino pins – $6 each or 3/$15
Custom pillows – $20 
(shipping not included, free pick-up or delivery available in Winnipeg, MB)

Gifts for gamers!

Fact: gamers spend a lot of time on the couch. Why not give your favourite gamer a cool pillow to keep them company? Each pillow is made from an upcycled t-shirt and brand new, super-soft feather fill.
Mario “Score” Pillow (18×18″) – $25
“Sonic is My Homeboy” Pillow (16×16″) – $20
Pac-Man Pillow (18×18″) – $25
(shipping not included, free pick-up or delivery available in Winnipeg, MB)

Gifts for Skateboarders!

There are tons of great gifts for skateboarders, but if you are looking for something other than bandaids and sunscreen, have I got something for you.
This pillow is made from an upcycled Independant Trucks tshirt (which has probably seen its share of ollies and frontside grinds) and a brand new, super-soft feather fill. The pillow is 18×18″ and features graphics on both sides.
Pictured with the pillow is one of my awesome Domino Pins. 
Pillow – $25
Pin – $6
Pillow + pin – $30
(shipping not included, free pick-up or delivery available in Winnipeg, MB)