10 Reasons Why You Should Try Air Dry Clay
I am always surprised to hear how many crafters have never tried using air dry clay. You would be amazed what you can create with this easy to work with clay.
In this article, I will give you 10 reasons why you should give air dry clay a try today.
1. Air Dry Clay Does Not Require An Oven Or Kiln To Cure (Harden)
Most clays require high temperatures to harden. This is where air dry clay differs from other clays. It doesn’t require heat to harden, all it needs is to be left somewhere at room temperature and enough time to harden.
The bigger your project the more time it will need, for small to medium-sized projects the average time needed is 24 hours. Usually, it is 1 hour for every centimeter of clay used.
Other clays require to be baked in a traditional home oven or a specialized oven called a kiln. A kiln can reach temperatures as high as 1,500 degrees Fahrenheit which is not possible with a home oven.
This is one of the biggest benefits of air dry clay. You don’t need any fancy equipment such as a kiln or your home oven for it to harden, saving you money on the electric bill.
2. Air Dry Clay Is Cheap
We crafters love to save money, this is why I love using air dry clay, It’s cheap and comes ready-made. For a 2lb pack, you will be looking to spend around $10.
With a 2lb pack of air dry clay, you can easily make 15+ projects that are small to medium in size, such as earrings, necklaces, keyrings, the list goes on and on.
There are many different brands, even if you go for a well-known brand you are still looking at around $12 for a 2lb pack of air dry clay, which is still fantastic value.
The brand I normally go for is Das. Their air dry clay is so easy to shape and mold and can last a long time in storage without drying out.
3. Air Dry Clay Is Non-Toxic
Air dry clay is non-toxic, which means it is great for kids to use too. Like most other things in life, make sure to wash your hands after using it, to be on the safe side.
Anything that keeps the kids busy during their days off from school is a winner in my eyes.
Even though it is non-toxic it is not food safe. You can’t make a plate and serve food from it, however, you can make plates for decoration purposes.
You will be amazed at what you can create using this clay, once you start your ideas will be endless.
4. Air Dry Clay Doesn’t Need Fancy Tools
No special tools are needed. In the beginning, you can use anything you have around your home to create effects, cut, smooth, curve such as:
- Old toothbrush (texture effect)
- Toothpicks (intricate designs)
- Cutlery (cutting and texture effect)
- Rolling pin (rolling)
- Small Paintbrushes (smoothing)
When you are ready to invest in some professional tools then you can expect to pay around $15 for a kit that contains all the tools you may need.
This is why I love using air dry clay, the cost is so low and you can create almost anything you can think of.
There’s just so much you can do with air dry clay, you can even get tools to create sculptures, if you know how to do it, unfortunately, that’s out of my expertise. Lol
5. Air Dry Clay Projects Can Be Sold
If you are like me who likes to sell what you create then you have just hit the jackpot.
Like I mentioned early a 2lb pack of air dry clay can cost around $10 and you could easily make 15+ small projects.
That’s only 66 cents per project, so as you can see there are great financial benefits for getting into air dry clay.
My best sellers are plant pot holders, they cost me about $1.30 to create and I sell them for $12.99, to me that is a great return.
Not only can this type of clay make you plenty of profit but it’s just so much fun to work with. I am far from an expert and consider myself a beginner, so if I can make a nice tidy profit from it then so can you.
6. Air Dry Clay Can Be Painted
Air dry clay is available in a few colors such as white, gray, terracotta.
If you are looking for a certain color you can easily paint this type of clay and then seal it with either white glue or varnish.
There are 2 main types of paints that can be used to paint your air dry clay creations.
- Acrylic paint
- Tempera paint
Acrylic paint is what most crafters go with as it is easier to come across than tempera paint.
A set of acrylic paints can be found online for around $10, which is great value as it helps to take your creations to the next level. The possibilities are endless.
When applying paint to your projects, always apply a thin layer and let each coat of paint dry completely before adding additional coats.
7. Air Dry Clay Is Easy To Store
Air dry clay is so easy to store, you don’t need any fancy equipment nor does it need to be stored in the refrigerator. All you need is:
- Saran wrap
- Ziploc bag
- Airtight storage container
How to store air dry clay?
- Wrap unused clay with some saran wrap and place it in a Ziploc bag or an airtight storage container.
- If using an airtight container make sure the lid is sealed securely.
- If using a Ziploc bag make sure to squeeze out any air in the Ziploc bag.
- Then store it somewhere at room temperature.
I prefer to use airtight storage containers.
This type of clay will not dry out while in storage if stored correctly.
8. Air Dry Clay Can Be At Home
You can actually make air dry clay at home using some basic ingredients you probably already have in your home, such as:
- Baking Soda
- White Glue etc.
There are many air dry clay recipes online and it can be overwhelming deciding which recipe to go with.
To help you decide I have written an article on how to make air dry clay at home. In this article, I compare 3 of the most popular air dry clay recipes.
Making your own clay at home is a great option to have if you ever run out in the middle of a project.
Making your own clay at home is quick and simple, you will be surprised how good the end product looks.
9. Air Dry Clay Creations Can Be Put Outdoor.
Projects made with air dry clay can be put outdoors once they have been sealed using a sealer with waterproof properties such as:
- Clear varnish
- Acrylic sealer
Even though air dry clay is not waterproof, it can be sealed using a sealer to protect it from water and moisture.
This said I would not recommend placing them somewhere that gets a lot of rain.
They will still be limited but sealing your projects not only adds an extra layer of protection but also gives them a nice shiny finish.
So if you are thinking of creating garden ornaments or something to be placed in the bathroom, then this clay is for you.
10. Air Dry Clay Is Fun & Relaxing
The way things are nowadays having a hobby that you enjoy helps with the stresses of life.
If you ever enjoyed playing with play-doh as a child then air dry clay is for you. The only main difference is that it hardens, unlike play-doh.
You will be surprised at how much fun you will have turning your ideas into physical creations.
There’s something about creating things with your hands. Not only is it so relaxing but rewarding at the same time and if you plan to make money from it, then even better.
If you have never used air dry clay then you are missing out on the fun and the possibility of making some extra money.
This type of clay is not only fun to play with but I find it helps with the stresses of life.
The best part is, that it’s non-toxic which means it’s safe for kids to use. Anything that can keep the kids busy for hours is a pass in my eyes. Lol
If you are looking for reasons why you should invest your hard-earned money on air dry clay then here are some of the reasons we covered in this article:
- Cheap (around $10).
- Comes ready-made.
- Doesn’t need to be baked in an oven or kiln.
- Sell your projects to make a nice profit.
- Don’t need any fancy tools in the beginning.
I hope this article has inspired you to give air dry clay a try, you won’t be disappointed.
If you have any tips or advice when it comes to air dry clay, please share them in the comments below.
Let’s share and learn together.