While crafting with a friend this week and I decided to make a sloth. Sloths are adorable on their own but I really thought this one needed to be functional as well so I made a magnetic pen holder. The sloth looks as though he’s hanging from the pen you place in his paws.
This super cute sloth magnet is easy and fun to make and doesn’t take much clay. I tried to keep him light so the magnets would be able to hold both the clay and the pen.
- Polymer Clay-tan, light tan, brown, and pink
- Seed Beads-black
- Strong Magnets
- Needle Tool
- Old Tooth Brush
- Basic Polymer Clay Supplies
Using half a block of your tan clay, I used Sculpey Souffle Latte, you will make the body of your slot. Rip 2 small balls of clay from your block to save for the legs. Roll each piece into a ball and then a cylinder.
Roll the rest of your half block of clay into an oval for the body of the sloth. About a third of the way from one end of your oval, roll the clay between two finders to create the neck and head. You want to make an indent to separate the main body of the sloth from the head.
Push 2 strong magnets into the back of the clay. 1 magnet on the back of the main body and 1 magnet on the back of the head. You will then need to reshape your clay a little to bring it back to the rounded look you need. You can roll it a little to bring the oval back but be careful to keep the magnets in place.
Take the 2 pieces of clay you saved earlier for the sloth legs and condition them well. These need to be easy to work with. Roll each piece into a ball and then a cylinder. One at a time place each leg on the body of your sloth, they should be at the top but towards the front (away from the magnets). Work with the clay at the base of each leg to smooth it into the clay of the body so you have one seamless piece.
Once you are happy with the way the legs are attached to the main body you can shape the feet. Squish the top a little to create a shelf at the back of the foot to hold the pen. Make sure that the shelf is the same on each foot so the pen will sit evenly.
Decide where you want the face of your sloth. It should be facing out a little so you can see it while looking at the magnet. If the face is pointed up you won’t see it and your magnet will lose a lot of character. Squish the face a little to give it a small point where you want the face to be.
Flatten a small ball of light tan clay, I used Premo Ecru, for the muzzle. Place the clay over the face of the sloth and work the clay into the dark clay so you don’t have a seam.
Flatten 2 tiny balls of brown clay, I used Fimo Chocolate. Squish the end to create a flat tear drop shape. Place these with the round part where the eyes should go and the tail down and towards the side of the face. Place a seed bead in the round section for eyes. Use another seed bead or a small ball of brown or black clay add the nose in the center of the muzzle.
Using the brown clay make 6 tiny balls of clay for claws. Roll each ball into a cylinder with a point. Using a needle tool or tooth pick, make 3 indents on each foot for the claws. Place the claws into the indents and curl the claws towards the back slightly. The more the claws stick away from the clay, the more likely they are to break. Keep this in mind while placing the claws.
Take a tiny piece of pink clay and roll it into a ball then into a flat cylinder. Sloth tongues are long and narrow. Use your needle tool to create another indent where you would like the mouth to be and push the tongue in place. Use the needle tool to push it into the clay and create a line in the middle of the tongue. Once again, the more the tongue sticks out the more likely it is to break if your magnet falls.
Run an old toothbrush across the body of the sloth where you would like fur. Use enough pressure to leave a mark without compromising the shape you’ve created. This gives a very subtle fur look. Follow the toothbrush with the needle tool to draw deeper lines and more definition. These should be slightly curved and never exactly straight to give it a more natural look.
Before baking your piece make sure that a pen can sit on the shelf made by the legs and that it will fit between the sloth and the surface behind it.
Bake the sloth according to the direction on the back of the package for the clay you used. You will need to have something to stand in for the pen while it bakes it. A metal pen would work but I didn’t have one so I used a metal straw I don’t use for drinking anymore. If you can’t find anything else you could roll tin foil into a cylinder. Place the metal in the sloths paws where the pen will go.
Once your clay has baked and cooled you can hang it on the fridge. Maybe this will encourage me to put the pen back where it belongs when I’m done with it. I never seem to be able to find a pen.
I would love to see how your project turns out. Post pictures to Instagram #boutsofspontaneouscrafting