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Miniature Sculpy Owls: Party Favors
Sculpey baby owl
Owls as party favors
So once again my sister’s Harry Potter themed wedding is getting me to make some fun projects. This time my mother is planning a bridal shower and wanted something to hand out as favors. Now the wands were already being done for the wedding itself so we needed to come up with something else that was pretty easy to do.
I was playing with the idea of what I could make with sculpey. Sculpey is a pretty easy medium to work with. It is an oven bake polymer clay that bakes in the oven. I had made a previous project (frog pendant or charm) with it. It was also for this wedding coming up. I thought about all the things that could be made from the world of Harry Potter when I received my sister’s “OWL” in the mail. Everyone in the wizarding world should have an owl. A full grown owl is a little intense to make but a baby owl is very simple and I could make a good amount of them by the time the shower comes at the end of August.
1oz of Clay
Put it in the fridge and freezer
Making the Owl
Making the owl can be pretty easy and fun to do. The only part that can make the process a little bit of a pain is that Sculpey softens as it gets "worked." As you use the clay the friction from you forming the clay, along with the temperature of your hands, starts to turn your clay into a soft puddy. When this happens, a little trip to the fridge or freezer (depending on how soft it is getting), and your clay is as good as new again.
Now with this in mind the rest of the process is quite simple.
- Firstly, you need to pick out the clay you want. You just need an oz of the color you desire. I use White because after sculpey is baked you can paint it with acrylic paint in whatever colors you want. You also need a glass plate or dish to cook the clay in along with a tool to use to cut and carve the clay. I have clay tools but have also been known to use toothpicks, butter knives, and even a fork.
- Now with your chosen 1oz of sculpey, remove a small piece to save for later. (this will be any appendages or the like you want to add later, like eyes, beak, and feet). The rest of the clay round up into a ball.
- Next take the ball and push into one side with a finger to create a little indent. Then start to pinch around the indent. You are going around and pinching clay from the inside of the clay ball towards the base to begin to create a kind of cup.
- You might need to place the clay in the fridge or freezer every few pinches or so, depending on how warm and soft your clay is getting. You do not want the cup shape to wobble.
- Keep pinching around the base pinching clay from inside. You can control where the clay is going by using your outside finger as a guide. I use my thumb and forefinger and where I believe the head is going to be I pinch in a little deeper to create where the neck feathers will be. I keep putting it in the freezer because I give off heat myself and I like to get the clay pretty thin.
- The Fun part of making things from clay is if you mess up at anytime while you are making your project and before you bake it, you can mush it up and start again. I start over a lot. For instance, if you are pinching your clay along and you decide you don't like the shape it is forming. Squish and redo.
- As you get close to a bottom of the form that is starting to look more and more like an owl, start to pinch a little inward so that when the owl is sitting down you do not see that the owl is hollow.
- I especially need to keep putting the owl in the freezer or fridge for this. As the clay gets thinner I need to freeze it more.
- Now that you have a silhouette shape of an owl baby. You can start to add to it. I used my little clay carving tool, or sometimes a butter knife or fork, and lightly carve a sort of highlight where the wings are. Kind of like if the feathers are ruffled a little. Just a little bit of shoulder and a little feather tip.
- With the extra clay from earlier I use a little to roll out and make some claws. I score (scratch up the surface) where they are going to be attached and then push them on a little and then smooth the two surfaces together enough that they will not fall off.
- I use a tiny bit of clay and make a beak. Sometimes I just pinch a beak out of the clay of the silhouette. I attach the beak the same way I did the feet, except I might not smooth it so much so it looks a little like feathers around the beak.
- The remainder of the clay, if there is any. You can opt out if you have other plans for the eyes, but the remainder can be round up, cut in half and placed on the head. I carve where the pupils will be and or id the eye is closed or not. Another option for eyes is to add beads, flat marbles, or simply paint or carve them in.
- You then preheat the oven to 275 degrees. Place the owl in the oven on a glass plate or dish and depending on how thick the clay is, bake for 15 minutes for every quarter of an inch of thickness. So for 15 minutes.
- After the owl is baked and cooled, you can paint it.
- If you made the owl thin enough you can also put a light inside of it and it will glow.