Looking for a fun way to spend an afternoon? Or a good kids’ craft? Discover how to make a clay bowl by hand. Gift to friends or family, or keep one for yourself.

They are so handy! Throwing little bits and baubles in there throughout the week. I love working with air-dry clay. There’s no need to use the oven, and the final projects turn out beautiful. 

diy gold nesting bowls. Makes a great gift or a pretty catch-all for everyday small items!

My idea with these was to create a set of nesting bowls, and then gold leaf them. I wanted them to have a vintage look to them. I found this gold paint in my craft stash, and I just decided to use that instead of gold leaf. Let’s get started!

Things You’ll Need

  • Air Dry Clay (I use this brand and love it)
  • Wax paper
  • Gold Paint
  • Set of small and medium rounded bowls or cups to form the nesting bowls. (I used a small glass vase and a stemless wine glass).

This clay project takes no time at all. The hardest part is knowing when to stop. My perfectionist nature wanted every little crack smoothed out. At some point, I had to call it quits.

And, after all, we are going for a somewhat vintage look here. Right? I wanted my bowls to have a slightly collected feel like I snagged them from a thrift store or something.

How to Make a Clay Bowl by Hand

How to Make a Clay Bowl by Hand

how to make nesting bowls out of clay.

Total time: 2 days

  1. Roll out your clay

  2. I learned that putting your air dry clay on wax paper helps it not stick to the surface. So I sandwiched the clay with wax paper and rolled it out a bit. You can use a jar to roll it out. It also helps to put water or lotion on your hands!
  • form bowl shape

    How to Make a Clay Bowl by Hand

    Take your rolled clay and form a loosely shaped bowl. Use your lotioned hands to smooth it out and fix any cracks. You can use your hand to help shape the bowls too. Set the clay on top of your rounded objects, gently forming it over the shape. I want a piece-y look to my edges. So I made little rips in the clay at the edges.

  • Repeat with the second bowl

    How to Make a Clay Bowl by Hand

    Create another bowl, but this time, you want it to be larger or smaller than the first one so you can nest the bowls together. You can test your two nesting bowls to ensure

  • they fit right together. Then just let them air dry for 48 hrs (check your specific clay instructions).
  • Paint your Bowls (optional)

    How to Make a Clay Bowl by Hand

    After 48 hours, you are ready to paint! This is optional, but my brand of air-dry clay dries to a grayish color. I wanted white. So I spray-painted them white. Then I let the bowls fully dry before moving on.

    After the paint was dry, I took my gold paint and painted the insides and rims. I let that dry for 24 hours.

  • how to make nesting bowls from clay.  Makes a great gift or a pretty catch-all for everyday small items!

    Now you have a set of gold nesting bowls! Put a pretty ribbon around them and gift them to someone. I used mine to hold a faux succulent at one point on our mantel. I will say this gold paint is lovely. It dries to a beautiful, shiny gold color.

    gold tipped clay bowl with greenery.  Inside the post:  how to make a clay bowl by hand.
    How to Make a Clay Bowl by Hand

    Karen Sloan

    Karen Sloan is the founder, editor and syndicated content writer of www.decorhint.com. She offers hints of inspiration for everyday living, including home ideas, DIY projects and lifestyle content. Her work has appeared on Google News, MSN, Pioneer Woman, Apartment Therapy, and Bustle, among others.