Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Sand Casts

After a few beach vacations it seems we have baggies of shells, "magic" rocks and other collectibles all over the house, time for an art project!

I took some recycled containers (we had takeout Friday) and added some sand from the sandbox.  Sift out any leaves or twigs that might interfere with your cast.

If you are doing a whole class you can also use those little Styrofoam bowls like I used for the sand candles.

I started off thinking we would do hand or foot prints but our sand was way too coarse for that.  We couldn't get a good impression so on to Plan B.

We pushed in a bowl shape but you could also form one with your hands, just digging out a form.

Then the kids started placing in their special shells, bits of sea glass and rocks.

You want to have the side you want to see facing down into the sand.

Once you have your composition the way you want's time for the plaster.

Now you can pick this up at the hardware store or Wal mart.  At school I have it by the sack.  I use it to make stamps for ceramics as well as for projects like this.

You want to mix it up in an old recycled container that you will throw out when done.  I'm also using an old salad dressing cup for the measuring.

Mix well with a chopstix or old spoon.  Make sure it is nice and smooth.  You have about 20-30 minutes before it will harden.

Only mix up as much as you can deal with in that time frame.  For a class set of projects you are better to do up 2 batches than have it harden on you before you can dish it all out.

Scoop into your sand bowls carefully so you don't dislodge any of the treasures.

Let sit for an hour or so until it has really hardened up.

Remove from the sand and give it a quick scrub under the tap.

That's you can use this method on your little collections!

Ryan wants to cast his rock collection but I'm going to try to get some finer sand so we can cast it in the shape of his hand.

We'll see you next time.


  1. hey, just saw that it was YOUR tutorial in the Family Fun magazine. Just read that issue tonight at the gym. I thought that tree weaving idea was really cool :)

  2. This is a GREAT idea! I was getting ready to throw out the sand, rocks, and shells that my kids have collected over the years (yes, they've brought sand home from the desert and from different beaches!) This will be a great way to save the memories! After the casting is done, I'll label the back with the dates and the place where we visited!

    Thanks so much for a wonderful idea!

  3. I love this! You have wonderful ideas.