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Weekly Craft: Easy Clay Leaf Bowl for Tchotchkes and More

Summer is in full swing in North Carolina, which means the weather is hot and humid and gardens are exploding. I am particularly thankful for the large trees in our backyard, which give us lots of shade and allow brief moments outdoors to soak up some of the much-needed Vitamin D while working in the garden. We are still under a Safer At Home order here, so any moment in time outside of our house is greatly appreciated. 

NC Garden Image
My North Carolina Garden

While browsing Pinterest, I found several ideas (like this and that) of how to create a bowl, using a leaf from my backyard as the template. Being a sentimental sort, I immediately loved the idea. Here is my step-by-step to create an Easy Clay Leaf Bowl to hold your Tchotchkes.

Easy Clay Leaf Bowls Final 1
Easy Clay Leaf Bowl

Materials for Easy Clay Leaf Bowl

Go ahead and gather:

Creating Your Easy Clay Leaf Bowl

Select a leaf for your template. My first bowl is modeled from a leaf from a sweet gum tree in our backyard. 

Gum Ball Leaf
Modeling Clay for project
Modeling Clay for Leaf Bowls

Cut a slice of the modeling clay and roll to the desired thickness (my first bowl is about 1/8-inch thick, while the second is about ¼-inch). Press your leaf form into the top of the clay, then use your knife to cut out the leaf. 

Pressing Gum Ball Leaf into Clay
Here’s my Gum Ball Leaf pressed into clay.

Don’t limit yourself to tree leaves! The second bowl is modeled from our purple-podded pole bean plant. 

Purple Podded Pole Bean Leaf in Clay Collage

Line a small bowl with plastic wrap, and lay your clay leaf inside. Allow to dry for at least 24 hours, following package instructions.

Leaf Bowls Drying Collage

Spray paint each bowl in a well-ventilated area. When this paint is dry, use the Mod Podge sealer for a final coat. I selected the sealer version that is dishwasher safe, because everything in my house (save the nice kitchen knives) will be washed in the dishwasher! Mama don’t play with germs. 

Gift Ideas

I am keeping this craft idea in my back pocket for future gift-giving occasions. I love the idea of creating a keepsake for a family from a favorite tree or plant. In fact, if you have to move away from your favorite tree someday, this might be just the thing to invoke good memories and hold your keys. This craft is super easy, quick and inexpensive. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

Bowl for Tchotchkes
How cute is this clay leaf bowl for Tchotchkes?
  • About Jackie Baird Richardson

    Jackie Baird Richardson is an interior designer, editor at The WON and avid junker. Watch for her design tips and occasional crafting ideas, bringing the outdoors indoors.