Make this humorous and cute ornament to put on your tree this Christmas or to give as a gift.
Please keep in mind that you are pushing clay over a round glass surface. Caution should be used what pushing and smoothing the base layer of UltraLight onto the glass ornament. These ornaments tend to have thin walls and if too much pressure is used the ornament might break.
Preheat oven to 275 °F. Test temperature with oven thermometer for perfectly cured clay. Condition all clay by kneading until it’s soft and smooth or running it through the Clay Conditioning Machine for several passes on the widest setting. Fold the clay in half after each pass and insert the fold side into the rollers first.
Step 1 Body
The body should be made first because it is all White and will otherwise easily pick up stray fragments of colors either from your work surface or your hands. Making the body first will help it remain as white as possible. Remember to have clean hands—dirt smudges will also show up!
Step 2 Body
Take some UltraLight and make a ball about the size of a quarter. Take the hanger mechanism out of your glass ornament and set it aside. Squish the ball of UltraLight clay on top of your glass ornament. This will be a mound that will help form the head.
Step 3 Body
With another lump of UltraLight clay, make a pancake about 4 inches in diameter and ¼ inch thick. Push the white pancake on top of the ornament, over the clay ball that should already be there, and mold the clay until it begins to resemble a melted snowman. This step can be tricky because of trying to keep fingerprints from forming on the clay.
Step 1 Arms
Take an ordinary ornament hook and straighten it out.
Step 2 Arms
Take a piece of Hazelnut clay about the size of a quarter and flatten 3/4 of this into an elongated rectangle. Take some Beige and roll it into a 3/8 inch snake and lay it on the rectangle of Hazelnut. The Beige becomes the wood part of the branch, however you need to have enough Beige so that you can still see it after it’s been reduced and cut.
Step 3 Arms
Next, take the two ornament wires that you straightened out and lay them end-to-end in the middle of the Hazelnut rectangle. Pull the sides of the Hazelnut clay up and wrap it around the Beige clay and wires to form a rough cylinder. Pinch the edges of the Hazelnut clay together. Using your hand or fingers, roll the whole thing back and forth, reducing it until it becomes a thin snake. Although at first the wires will stick out of each side of the snake, as you reduce it, the clay will slowly cover the wires and eventually push out well beyond the tips of the wires. As you reduce the snake it will be more manageable if you cut the snake in half somewhere between the two wires.
Step 4 Arms
When the snake gets about ¼” thick, add a couple of specks of Black clay for detail. Continue to roll the snake until it becomes about 3/16” thick. This will be the stick-arms.
Step 5 Arms
Make another snake of Hazelnut clay with beige in the center. Reduce it to the same dimensions as your other sticks. This will be used to make the stick-hands.
Step 6 Arms
Cut the smaller length snake into ½” sections. Attach them to the ends of the stick to become branch hands. I put one or two at the end, with another piece a little bit down the arm to add variety. When you’re done, your branches will have Hazelnut bark, Beige wood in the center, and some knots along the shaft. Place your stick arms onto your baking surface.
Take some Just Orange clay and roll in into a carrot-shaped cone. Using your Super-Slicer score the carrot in light, straight lines similar to a carrot. Trim off any excess. Set your carrot nose onto your baking surface.
Step 1 Hat
Roll some Black clay into a pancake large enough to cut the brim for the hat. I used a 35mm film canister to make a perfect circle.
Step 2 Hat
Take some more clay and make two clay disks about 3/16 inch thick and the dimension of a dime. Squish them onto the brim of the hat.
Step 3 Hat
Because we are making a melted snowman, a slightly lopsided hat might be more in character.
Step 4 Hat
Take another ornament wire, form it into a long "u" shape. Press it through the hat leaving a loop about ¼” beyond the top of the hat with the two ends of the wires sticking out of the bottom of the hat.
Step 5 Hat
Place the hat onto your baking surface. Now bake the hat, arms, and nose (NOT the body) for 15 minutes at 275 degrees and let them fully cool. If these items are cooked first, they will be much more workable when adding them to the snowman’s body.
Step 1 Scarf
Take some Red clay and form a ¼” thick rectangle. Place a few small Emerald clay balls on top of the red clay.
Step 2 Scarf
Using the Acrylic Clay Roller, flatten out the clay into a long, thin ribbon. Slice off the excess clay to create a narrow band of Red and Emerald clay about 7 inches long. Using the Super-Slicer, cut a series of even lines into each end of the scarf to make a fringe.
Step 1 Adding Details
Make eyes by pressing small Black balls into position. Add a mouth in the same manner as the eyes. Likewise add buttons by taking small Black beads of clay and pressing them into location. For added detail, press tiny Red beads into the Black buttons you have just created. Push the carrot nose into place.
Step 2 Adding Detail
Push the hat into a slightly askew position on the head of the snowman, this will add to the melted effect and also hide any imperfections. If the wires that are sticking out from the bottom are too long, bend or trim them. Now, drape the scarf around the shoulders of the snowman.
Step 3 Adding Detail
Make a thin Emerald disk of clay about the size and slightly thinner than a penny. Cut away most of it so that it resembles a mistletoe leaf. Add tiny Red beads of clay. Place on the hat of the snowman and add slight pressure to mount it into place.
Step 1 Adding Arms
Take the arms, which should be cool, and position them onto the snowman’s body. Give them a slight push to sink them into the White clay. If they appear too long, pull them off and cut or trim them with wire cutters.
Step 2 Adding Arms
Because this ornament has to endure being packed up every Christmas, and the arms tend not to last, secure the joint with some more UltraLight
Step 3 Adding Arms
The finished product will have arms that are slightly bendable but I would caution against expecting to play with them. While the arm may bend into a desired position, the shoulder socket might not endure much movement. Finally, don't forget to write or carve the year into the back!
Make a little aluminum foil nest in a custard cup to hold the ornament upright while it bakes. Bake the snowman for 15 minutes at 275 °F.
A glass ball ornament (preferably clear without any glazing).
At least 3 ordinary wire ornament hooks.
A 35mm film can to cut circles or something similar.
Aluminum foil, custard cup and a cookie sheet or other baking surface.
Needle-nosed pliers with wire-cutters.