I know you want one!

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Forget about Tiffany's. I have a salt dough bead and button necklace! So how do YOU get one of your very own??? Well, I'll tell you:

Ingredients:

Salt Dough: 1 cup salt 1 cup flour 1 T. oil aprox 1/2 cup of warm water

Poster Paint

Large Buttons

Twine (or pipe cleaners) 

Toddler (optional)

1. make up the salt dough. I do this by having Ellis measure the dry ingredients (with help) and mixing them together. Then add the oil for elastcity, then the warm water. Add water bit by bit, mixing as you go until the dough is a good pliable consistency.

2. make into bead shapes. we did this a number of ways. by rolling balls and leaving them. by rolling balls and flattening them. by rolling the dough into a worm shape and cutting them with a butter knife. E Man hellped by giving me the dough to roll, by flattening the balls and doing the cutting with the butter knife.

3. lay them out on a cookie sheet. We used our silpat baking tray liner, but they would be fine on any non-stick surface.

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4. Poke holes in each bead. For older kids, you could easily use a skewer, but as Ellis is only 21 months, we used a 1/4in dowel. Ellis helped poke the holes, but it was a very violent experience that I would not want to repeat anytime soon. No one was injured, but some of the beads had to be made 3 and 4 times!

5. Bake in the oven at 100 deg celsius (about 200 deg Fahrenheit). Ours took 2 hours and were about 1/2 in thick. the smaller the beads are the shorter baking time is. When they are dry, just turn the oven off and let them cool so they don't crack.

6. Painting them was the tricky part. I couldn't figure out how to have Ellis participate. we tried putting splodges on paper for dunking. We tried using a paint brush. We tried just shaking the paint over them. Then I had the miraculous idea of putting them in a plastic baggie with paint and shaking them. It worked a treat.

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7. We laid them out on baking paper to dry for a couple of hours.

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8. Then the fun begins. Ellis picked out some bright buttons from my tin. He really liked laying them out and organising them before stringing them. I used simple packing twine, with a very large darning needle (rounded tip, of course) but you could use pipe cleaners, but they are hard to get here. If I would have had wire in the house, I might have tried that as we did struggle a bit with the stringing.

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each step really engaged with a lot of the things he is want to do and explore at the moment:cooking, painting, stringing. He kept calling the beads his "balls" and was asking all morning if we could make more...too bad I've run out of salt!!

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