Handmade Clay Coasters With Texture

by Sarah Freeman, Demand Media

    If you're making a homemade gift or looking for a do-it-yourself addition to your own home decor, creating clay coasters is a fairly easy project. Using a self-hardening clay, you'll be able to sculpt coaster designs that will dry on their own. But first, you can use a variety of methods to create texture across the coaster's surface.

    Make the Mold

    Before you begin adding textures to your coaster, you'll have to form the clay into the desired size and shape. A self-hardening clay is easiest to work with because it doesn't require a kiln. Start by rolling the material until it's about 1/4-inch thick. Then cut out a piece of cardboard into the desired shape of the coaster, such as a square or circle. Place the cardboard over the rolled clay and use a craft knife to slice around its shape.

    Household Items

    Before the clay dries, add some texture to it. Look around your home to find items that will leave an interesting impression on the surface of the clay coaster before it dries. Use the flat side of a screw to make a textured circle with an X or a line through it. Press the rings of a spiral notebook into the clay to make a series of textured diagonal lines. You can even look at the bottom of your shoe to find a unique design that can be recreated in your clay coaster.

    Nature

    Use the beauty of nature to create one-of-a-kind designs on your clay coasters. Before the clay hardens, arrange a leaf on the coaster and gently roll its impression into the material with a rolling pin. Pine needles can also be pressed into the clay and removed, leaving behind their shape, size and texture. Create more textured patterns across the coaster by hand-rolling a seashell, pine cone or rock across the surface.

    Add-Ons

    Add objects to the clay to create even more texture across its surface and sides. Find some decorative beads for this project, or collect mismatched buttons or other small, somewhat flat objects. While the clay is still soft, press these items into the material. Ensure they are evenly lined up across the surface, so that a drink will sit flat when set on top of it. Also, line the items around the side of the coaster for added flair. Allow the clay to dry with the items pressed inside for a lasting texture and design.

    About the Author

    Sarah Freeman has been writing professionally since 2005. She has written for publications around the world, including London's "Live Listings Magazine," "College Avenue Magazine" and "Fort Collins Weekly." Freeman works as the community reporter at the "Loveland Reporter-Herald" newspaper. She graduated from Colorado State University in 2006 with a Bachelor of Arts in journalism.

    Photo Credits

    • Hemera Technologies/AbleStock.com/Getty Images