New Air Dry Clay Recipe, with Better Measurements

I wanted to standardize the new air-dry clay recipe, so it will come out exactly the same every time. To do that, I measured the ingredients, and took special care to weigh the toilet paper after the water was squeezed out.

The toilet paper can be squeezed too dry, and if that happens you end up with lumps in your clay. The only way to know for sure that you’re squeezing it exactly the same amount every single time is to use a scale. I know that most people in Europe use a scale in their kitchen, but you may not have one if you live in the States – unless you’re into baking great bread. If you don’t have a scale, you might still want to watch the video to see how the paper looks before it’s mixed in with the other ingredients.

Note: This clay is intended to be used as a thin layer over an armature, like regular paper mache. It won’t dry all the way through if you use it as a solid mass, like ‘real’ clay. Also, there are some tricks to using it. Be sure to watch this video to see how it’s done.

The air-dry clay recipe, with both cups and gram measurements:

First, mix together –

  • 1/2 cup toilet paper (24 grams dry, 110 grams wet)
  • 1/2 cup Drywall Joint Compound (200 grams) – Note: DAP brand joint compound will not work. Use any other brand except DAP.)
  • 1/2 cup Elmer’s glue (130 grams)
  • 1/2 cup corn starch (70 grams)
  • 3 tablespoons mineral oil (baby oil)
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour (70 grams) to start

Then, add up to 3/4 cup (100 grams) all-purpose flour and mix.

971 thoughts on “New Air Dry Clay Recipe, with Better Measurements

  1. Hi Jonni,

    I’ve just came across your recipe as I’m looking for a no-crack paper clay. I would like to make a fun project – garden figures and home decor figures using plastic bottles picked up from the local beach.

    I was wondering would the clay survive well outdoors? I’m planning on painting and varnishing the completed figures.

    Thank you in advance for any advice!

    • Hi Anna. My original paper mache clay recipe is very strong, so it rarely cracks if used in a thin layer over an armature. However, my own experiments with trying to waterproof it (or any other paper mache) have not been successful. I now use an epoxie clay, like Apoxie Sculpt or Free Form Sculpt, for my outdoor projects. That said, several readers have done their own experiments, and they believe they might have found a material you can use over paper mache to make it weatherproof. Tom’s bear is ‘living’ outside, and his guest post explains his process. I’m sure if you leave a comment below his article he’d be happy to answer any questions you might have.

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