"Sand Cast Leaves"
My ornaments are sand castings of leaves from my yard. It is very easy to do this and so much fun to paint them. Plan your project and what leaves you will use. Do not pick them until ready to use or if you do pick your leaves keep them in water to keep them fresh.
Bag of Portland concrete (can be purchased at Lowe's or Home Depot)
Bag of play sand or fine sand (Lowe's, maybe even Walmart)
Bucket or dishpan to mix recipe in
Thin plastic gloves (to protect your hands)
Large board to lay everything on (and support the weight of the concrete/sand)
Plastic wrap to cover the artwork with
I do my larger project outside in a covered and protected area if possible in case it rains while the project is setting up. I always mix my recipe outside. If really cold, I do smaller projects indoors on a large board.
Mix 1 part Portland concrete with 2 parts sand. Add enough water where your recipe is like a brownie mix.
Place sand on your board. Mound the sand. Place plastic wrap over the sand. Place your fresh leaf over the plastic wrap. Cover the leaf with your recipe making it a little thicker in the middle. Cover to edge of leaf. Cover the top of your project with plastic wrap if you want to. I don’t always do this. If you do cover your project you will need to place something on the edges of the plastic so it won’t blow away if you are outside. If you are going to hang your project (for ornaments), you need to put a hole in the clay now or a hanger while it is wet. You can also initial or sign your project on the back now, while it is wet.
Let the leaves sit for up to 48 hours before moving or removing the leaf. – DO NOT put the leaves (materials) in the sun – it will create moisture under the plastic and cause everything to dry too quickly.
Let the leaf dry completely before painting. Paint with acrylic paint in any way you choose – Be creative!
Spray with sealer (polyurethane) to protect if using outdoors.
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