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An Easy Clay Craft for Kids: Autumn Leaf Bowls!

An Easy Clay Craft for Kids: Autumn Leaf Bowls!

by Jocie Hagan (email Jocie) | | September 5, 2014 | 36 Comments »

This easy clay craft for kids tutorial was originally posted in the Fall of 2012. But as fall approaches, I am excited to make these again this year and wanted to share it with you! Don’t the girls look so young?!


This was a wonderful craft to do with the girls and made great table decor for the grandparents. Also, it was CHEAP!!!! We used clay left over from making ornaments last Christmas and other supplies we already had around the house.

Izzie and Lucy both had a blast and it looks way better than the typical kid craft.


  • Leaves
  • Air-dry or Oven-bake clay
  • Rolling pin
  • Acrylic Paint
  • Gold spray paint

Izzie and Lucy had a blast picking leaves off the trees and searching for all different kinds. The bigger the leaf, the bigger the bowl. The more intricate leaves, like from a maple tree, were my favorite, but really any leaf will do. Also, we used leafs just off the tree since they are less brittle and will keep their shape when making the bowls.

We used oven-baked clay, cheap and easy to find!

We worked the clay until it was warm and soft, then rolled out the clay, thin and even.

Izzie and Lucy each picked out their favorite leaves and placed them, centered on the clay and used the rolling-pin to press the leaf into the clay..

I used the rolling-pin to press it in so deep that the clay actually covered the stem and leaf in some places. Press harder than you think you need to.

We then very carefully lifted up the leaf, starting with the stem.

I rolled more clay than I want use for the bowl so, using a sharp, pointed knife, I cut an oval around the leaf. For another, I cut the outline of the leaf.

Once the girls removed the excess clay, I lifted the clay leaf and placed it in one of my stoneware bowls, since they are oven-safe.

I baked the clay as directed on the package, removing from the oven and allowing to completely cool before removing the clay leaf from the bowl.

I was kinda worried that if I let them paint the bowls, they may not be pretty enough to display. I let that go and embraced the process! (It turned out that they bowls looked awesome and not at all painted by kids).

I gave the girls four different pools of acrylic paint, in fall colors, and Q-tips for each color and let them go at it!  Tip: Yellow and gold paint did not look as good on the final product, so we stayed clear of those colors.

Then, after the acrylic had dried, I lightly spray painted the bowls with gold metallic spray paint.

Done and beautiful! 

What do you think? Where would you put an autumn leaf?

As Always, thanks for reading!

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Conversation on This Article

36 Responses to An Easy Clay Craft for Kids: Autumn Leaf Bowls!

  • frazzled5 responds...
    September 20th, 2012 9:20 am

    WOW!!! These honestly look like something you would find in a high end home decor shop. I cannot say enough, they turned out amazing and would make for amazing gifts and home warming parties. Cannot wait to pin and try:)


    Jocie Reply:

    Thanks, Jen! I was really pleased with how they turned out too!


  • poiboybf responds...
    September 20th, 2012 9:47 am

    Very cool looking! I think I’d use one to hold keys… that way I’d see it every day!


    Jocie Reply:

    thanks, Poiboybf. Keys would be a great idea!


  • Chris responds...
    September 20th, 2012 11:17 am

    Those look great. I really like the maple leaf and how you cut out the shape of the leaf.


    Jocie Reply:

    The maple leaf was my fav too!


  • trebor responds...
    September 20th, 2012 10:41 pm

    What about holding some M&M’s or something? The big, curved one looks like it could be good for that


    Jocie Reply:

    m&ms are good no matter where you put them! lol!


  • paintergal responds...
    September 20th, 2012 11:51 pm

    My sister-in-law has a rhubarb leaf bowl on her deck. It is huge and way cool.
    Yours turned out great. I love that you involved your little ones.


    Jocie Reply:

    a rhubarb leaf – how cool! did she make it herself? :)


    paintergal Reply:

    Nope- she bought it at a craft fair. The maker used luminescent paint so it changed colors in the light.


  • Ashley responds...
    September 23rd, 2012 7:55 pm

    These are awesome! I absolutely love them, and how sweet that your girls painted them! :)


    Jocie Reply:

    Thanks so much Ashley! I had such a good time with the girls making them too! :)


  • JustME responds...
    September 24th, 2012 12:17 am

    Jocie, what a pleasure to watch your little girls craft these very pretty leaves. They are just adorable. And so are the leaf bowls.


    Jocie Reply:

    Thanks JustME, they are pretty adorable for sure….the bowls too. :)


    JustME Reply:


  • Megan responds...
    September 26th, 2012 4:00 pm

    So beautiful!


  • karen@somewhatquirky responds...
    September 27th, 2012 5:43 pm

    Oh I love these! What a great project for the girls! I would have had a hard time letting them paint – maybe I could have been as patient as you – only maybe! They turned out beautifully!


  • katieQ responds...
    October 2nd, 2012 9:42 am

    This is a super project and is perfect for working with young children.


    Jocie Reply:

    Thanks Katie, and thanks so much for visiting and commenting. Hope to keep seeing you back! :)


  • Chris Paulis responds...
    November 8th, 2012 4:54 pm

    Izzie was so cute when she presented it! Thanks!


  • Brady responds...
    February 28th, 2013 9:14 am

    Nice work. Great bonding time. Nice to get these sorts of ideas when looking to building a family in the near future.


  • Melissa@TheHappierHomemaker responds...
    August 21st, 2013 8:49 am

    LOVE this! Seriously-they turned out amazing!!!


  • Gwen responds...
    August 21st, 2013 10:53 am

    Those are GOREGOUS, Jocie! And you are super-smart with allowing them to paint them and then spray paint the gold over them! I’ve never seen a “kid-craft” look so sophisticated and chic!


  • keri @ shaken together responds...
    August 21st, 2013 12:20 pm

    Jocie – these are SO awesome and that gold spray paint is genius!! Pinning for sure!


  • Jacque responds...
    August 21st, 2013 7:55 pm

    I love this project, the girls did an awesome job!


  • Ashley responds...
    August 22nd, 2013 10:59 am

    These look so cool! I love them! Great idea!


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  • Tricia responds...
    November 6th, 2013 11:23 am

    Hi! These are so pretty. I have a couple of questions, though. Is the finish food safe? Not sure I’d want to put unwrapped candies on a spray painted finish. Also, approximately how many bowls can one make from one package of clay?



  • jenny @birdsandsoap responds...
    November 20th, 2013 4:08 am

    I am doing this with my girls. perfect fall craft. they get so excited when a rolling pin comes out. and paint- painting is their favorite!


  • Elisa responds...
    November 25th, 2013 1:35 am

    These are beautiful! I am curious about what Tricia a(above) asked–whether these are food-safe and/or washable. Also, what colors did you end up using? On my screen, it looks like green, orange, pink, and purple–is that correct?

    Thanks so much for sharing this project!


    Jocie Reply:

    they are not food safe or washable, but would make a great little candy dish for wrapped candies or jewelry holder. :) those were the colors we used, but i think any would have been pretty with the light gold spray over top. happy crafting!


  • 15 Fabulous Fall Leaf Crafts for Kids - DIY & Crafts responds...
    September 3rd, 2014 1:03 pm

    [...] You can make beautiful leaf bowls for your fall décor or to give away as gifts with just a few leaves, some clay and a few other essentials. These bowls are gorgeous for fall decorating and make wonderful Christmas gifts. Your child can paint and decorate the bowls however they like and these are really cheap to make. Source – Oneprojectcloser [...]

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    September 5th, 2014 7:00 am

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