Want to learn how to make these guys? I know you are saying “oh, I can’t do that!” But yes you can!

I will show you step by step how. You can watch my Facebook live video here if you would rather watch a video.

The supplies you need are DAS air dry clay (Hobby Lobby), aluminum foil (Dollar Tree) and a little bit of water.

So the first step is to tear off a good size piece of aluminum foil. Wad it up and form it into a cone or gnome shape. You can roll it on your table to get it round and make the bottom flat too.

Once you get your cone made, you can get a good chunk of your clay. Be sure and put the remainder of your clay in a ziplock bag or an airtight container. It will dry out quickly.

Now take a rolling pin or a glass jar and roll out your clay about 1/4 inch thick.

After you get your clay rolled out, take your foil cone and start covering it with the clay. If you need more clay, then get more and roll it out again. To make the clay seamless, get your fingers wet with your water and begin smoothing the seams together. They clay will join together. Just keep smoothing.

Once that is done, wet your fingers again and begin smoothing out the entire gnome body. It’s ok if you have bumps and dent places. It just adds character.

Also make sure you put the bottom on the table to get it smooth and level.


Now you can make his hat brim. Take another smaller piece of clay and begin rolling it on the table to form a snake shape like we did as kids in kindergarten. Make sure it’s long enough for go all the way around the gnome.

Then place the rope or snake on your gnome. I always put the front higher than the back. Wrap it around and join in the back. Again, wet your fingers and work the seam together.



Wet your fingers again and start smoothing out the brim into the hat. Go all the way around smoothing it together until it all looks like one piece. Do this too under the brim.


I use a bamboo skewer but you can use anything to make lines in the clay where his beard is.

Take a really small piece of clay and make a ball for his nose. Set it aside to dry. I attach the nose after my gnome is completely dry with super glue.

Take your finger and make a little indention in the brim where his nose will go. See below picture.


Now set him aside and let him dry for at least a day or two. You may have to turn him so all the sides and bottom dry.

After he is dry, you can paint him up any way you choose. I painted this one like a candy corn for fall. You can seal these with mod podge or clear spray paint. I don’t recommend putting these outside in the weather.

Have fun with these guys! Twist the hats, make them small or big. There are so many ways you can do these! I hope you have fun!

Are you ready to follow your heart and create?

  • My website shop.theturquoisevalentine.com features my laser cut DIY kits to help others find and use their creativity to create adorable decor pieces. All of my wood kits are made in house right here in the USA.
  • My mini membership, A Lil Somethin Somethin Mini Subscription Box, delivers a lil somethin somethin to your house each month! This will be a lil gift to yourself monthly for you to get creative with.
  • My Facebook page is where I go live Mondays at 7:30pm CST and Thursdays at 7:30pm CST.
  • My YouTube channel is where you’ll find free DIY lessons to follow your heart and create.

Originally posted August 26, 2021. Updated April 9, 2024.