DIY Air Dry Clay
By Dianely Luis, Arlington Parks & Recreation
Posted on May 05, 2020, May 05, 2020

Staying home 24/7 may have you running out of ways to keep the kids busy while having fun. Taking on a crafty clay project is a wonderful way to spend some family time away from screens, and since clay is such a versatile material, the possibilities for creative crafting are endless. Instead of heading out to get store-bought clay, you can #StayHome and make your own with only three ingredients you already have in your pantry.

This natural air-dry clay is super simple to make and a perfect substitute for store-bought clay so you and your family can stay home and stay safe. This clay dries to a stone-like texture, so there is no need for baking.


  • Baking Soda – 1 cup
  • Corn Starch – ½ cup
  • Water – ¾ cup


  • Small Pot
  • Spatula or Large Spoon
  • Cutting Board

Combine the baking soda and corn starch in a small pot and stir the dry ingredients to mix well. Add the water and stir until the mixture is thoroughly combined.

Set your burner to medium-low heat and stir the mixture on the heat until it comes together. It is normal to have a few clumps form at first; simply continue stirring for a smooth mixture. It will take 5-10 minutes of cooking for the clay to form properly.

Once your mixture has reached a doughy consistency, turn off the heat and remove it from the burner. Continue stirring for 1-2 minutes to help the remove extra moisture from the dough and to speed up the cooling process. After this, leave the dough to cool for a few minutes.

While the dough is cooling, prep your cutting board by dusting it with cornstarch. Once the dough is cool enough to handle, turn it out onto the dusted cutting board. (The dough should still be warm because if you wait too long it will begin drying out.)

Knead the dough until it is smooth and cool to the touch. If your dough is a bit sticky, you can add additional corn starch as needed to reduce the tackiness.

Have fun making your own creative clay creations!

Since this is air dry clay, it will dry if it is left out, so store your clay in an air tight container or zip bag when it’s not in use to keep your homemade clay malleable. When your clay creations are done, leave them to dry over night to harden. This clay is perfect for kids and adults that want to explore their creativity: try making figurines, keychains, coasters, succulent pots, or whatever you can imagine! Share your creations with us by tagging @ArlingtonParks and using #NaturallyFun.

DIY, Crafts
Parks & Recreation