- Step 1: Project Preparation
Read through the project then gather the materials needed for making the
pencil toppers. Follow the craft recipe for
Homemade Modeling Dough
to make dough balls of green, yellow and pink, or other colors
best for the toppers you will be making. For example, Aunt Annie's
teddy bear topper requires brown, pink and white modeling dough.
If doing this craft with a group, make one recipe of
Homemade Modeling Dough
for every three children. It's better to have too much than too
little. Leftover modeling dough can be saved for weeks in the
- Step 2: Basic Modeling Technique
Spread a sheet of wax paper on the table so the dough won't
Pinch off enough dough to make a ¾" ball, and leave the
rest in the sealed bag or container. Push the ball onto the eraser
end of a pencil and start shaping your creation. Attachments like
petals, noses, and ears can be shaped from smaller balls and
in place with a dab of water. See
Modeling Ideas below.
To make several balls of dough the same size, roll the dough into
a long snake and cut into equal-sized pieces with the plastic knife.
To make ¾" (1.5 cm) balls, roll the dough into a snake
about ½" (1cm) in diameter and cut into 1" (2 cm)
- Step 3: Dry and Seal Topper
When you have finished molding your pencil topper, put the pencil
with pencil topper aside to dry in a pencil cup or other tall
container. It should dry in a day or two to a hard finish. Toppers
may be left plain or painted with nail polish or varnish for added
durability. Be sure to work in a well-ventilated area when using
nail polish or varnish.
The modeling dough will dry to a hazy finish. To restore the bright color of
the dough, rub some vegetable oil into the dry topper.
- Modeling Ideas
- Easy Toppers:
Pink hearts, yellow stars, and green leaves are simple shapes to
make. Start with a 1" (2 cm) ball and use your fingers to
create the desired shape.
- Flower Toppers:
Make flowers by starting with a ½" (1 cm) yellow ball.
Shape petals from red or pink and leaves from green. Attach the
petals and leaves to the yellow center. You may want to use a
drop of water to glue your leaves and petals in place.
- Silly Heads:
Use flesh-tone dough to make heads. Shape ears and a nose from
tiny balls of dough and use a toothpick to make eyes and a
mouth. Add hair and hats of any color. The funnier you make the
face, the better! Try green hair or a pink nose. How about a big
red clown nose? Use your imagination!
- Teddy Bear: Shape a ¾" ball of
brown dough into the bear's head. Make two small brown balls for
the ears, two smaller brown balls for the eyes, and another brown
ball for the bear's snout. Make two tiny pink balls for the ear
insides, one white ball for the muzzle and one brown ball for
the nose. Refer to the illustrated instructions for sizing and
placement ideas. After the topper is dry, use a permanent black
marker to draw a mouth, color the nose black and make black
pupils on the eyes.