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Faux Brass Botanical Ornaments

There is something about brass that has a timeless quality to it. This project will have people wondering if these ornaments real brass. We used air dry clay, metallic paint and real pine branch sprigs  to create these faux brass botanical ornaments. They look almost like real metal and the plant impressions have a pretty natural look almost like they were molded or cast that way. This project can also be switched up by changing the paint finish to silver or even copper.

Faux Pressed Brass Botanical Ornaments

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To create these pretty ornaments, start by flattening air dry clay to about 1/8 inch thick. While you can cut ta free-form circle out,using a cookie cutter, or circular ring to cut circles out of the flattened clay will result in a more even shape. I used a container lid as my cutter.

You can find the supplies here.

Use stiff greenery such as pine to press into clay

Here’s a tip when working with clay… using parchment paper under my clay made made it easier to move and flip while drying.

For my botanical impression,I used a small sprig from my Alaskan Cedar, and my Scotch Pine. Any evergreen that has stiff and retains needles will work. I liked the Alaskan Cedar, because it has small berry-like pine cones that I knew would look cool. Boxwood, Juniper and White Pine also work well too. (I made sure to poke the hole for my hanger right away, so I knew which side was up on my ornament.).

Use a dowel rod to press greens into clay

While the clay is still wet, press the branches into the clay. Using a dowel rod helps to apply even pressure and create a deep impression. After rolling, carefully lift the branches  straight up so the impression doesn’t smudge.

Painting clay to look like metal J

Let the clay disk dry a full 24-48 hours before painting. When the top had completely dried, I flipped it over the make sure the underside dried too. If you experience cracking, see this post here. Once the clay is dry, mix a 50/50 mixture of gold and Chocolate paint in metallic acrylic to paint over the front, making sure to get in all of the pattern, including the sides. Once dry, flip over and paint the back.

Use gold paint to paint dried clay

Once  the ornament is dry, hang on twine or ribbon and then let everyone guess if these faux brass botanical ornaments are real metal or not!

Making botanical pressed brass ornaments

You could also create these with letter stamps to make a monogrammed initial ornament.

Using pine branches to create clay ornaments

Looking for more Christmas Crafts and decorating? Make sure to check out my book, Creatively Christmas!

And  make sure you don’t miss this year’s Holiday Housewalk!


Faux brass botanical ornaments from clay



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