Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Make Sand Dough Sculptures and Ornaments

Whenever we go to the beach and build with sand, I always feel slightly sad knowing that our creations will eventually wash away.  Do you ever feel that way too?  I recently found this great book at the library Kids' Crazy Concoctions (affiliate link) that shared a recipe for making homemade gluten free sand dough!  Yup.  You just need 3 ingredients to whip up a batch of this stuff.  Then, once you're done making your creations, wait over night and they'll dry nice and hard.  Isn't it cool? You can make your very own long-lasting sand dough sculptures and ornaments!

Make Sand Dough Sculptures and Ornaments!

Make sand dough! Great way to bring summer into kid's play
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So this is what the sand dough looks like once you're done making it.  It feels like sticky, sandy play dough.

Make sand dough! Great way to bring summer into kid's play

As you can see, it is pliable and soft.    

Boy playing with sand dough

In addition to setting out the sand dough and cookie cutters, I also put out some tooth picks, beads, and stamps.

Beads and stamps to put in your sand dough

At first Chuck used his cookie cutters and trucks to play with the dough.  Then, he got really involved in making a puffer fish.  

boy sticking toothpicks in sand dough to create puffer fish

Once we finished, I set our sand dough creations on paper plates to dry.  

Make sand dough! Great way to bring summer into kid's play

:) His puffer fish is my favorite creation. 

up close shot of puffer fish sand dough

We set them to dry overnight and then flipped them over so both sides dried. 

Fun kid's activity- Make sand dough.  This is a great way to bring summer into kid's play!

Our final ornaments have been hanging for about 2 weeks now and they're still looking great! 

Make sand dough! Great way to bring summer into kid's play

Would you like to make sand dough ornaments and sculptures of your own?  Here's what you'll need!


  • Sand
  • Corn Starch
  • Water 
  • Old Pot (You don't want to cook food in this pot afterwards)
  • Old Spoon (You won't want to use this for cooking afterwards)
  • Optional:  Tooth picks, Perler Beads, and Alphabet Stamps


1.  Combine 2 Cups of sand, 1 Cup of Corn Starch and 1 Cup of Water in an old pot.  
2 . Cook the mixture over low heat.  Keep stirring it!
3.  Once the mixture thickens (you'll know because it'll feel like mashed potatoes and seem very difficult to stir), pull it off the stove.
4.  Cover your work area.  Once your sand dough cools down, have fun and play with it!   (Note:  The dough will stick a bit to your hands and table.  Also, a bit of sand will fall out of the dough as you play with it.) 
5.  To dry you sculptures and ornaments, leave them out overnight.  Then, flip them over to let the other side dry. Everything will become hard and your artwork will no longer feel as sandy.

(We kept unused sand dough in a sealed plastic bag. It seemed ok, but we never got back to playing with it.  After a week it looked kinda funky, so I tossed it out.)

And that's it!  I hope you have fun trying out this recipe with the kids!

If you liked this post, then you'll also enjoy these other homemade concoctions:

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Like kids crafts and activities?  Then you'll definitely want to check out this awesome craft ebook!
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Happy making, friends!