Ceramic Photo Holders

I am on the "Birthday Committee" at school, which means that I am in charge of handing out cards and a small gift to each staff member on their special day. When others are on the committee we usually get a candy bar or small token (which is nice, don't get me wrong!) But, when I am on the committee, I like to make something a little more special. Two years ago, I made sets of magnets, which I really need to blog about......... but I digress. On to the project.

You'll need clay, texture mats, a knife (mine is a cheapo lettuce knife from the Dollar Store), glazes, kiln, etc.

This photo shows a Mayco texture mat, the clay I use Amaco #25 White Art Clay, and the knife.

I cut the clay into cubes, approximately 2" X 2" X 3". Smooth the edges.

Next, place the texture mat on the sides of the clay.

Use a rolling pin to press the design into the clay. Repeat on all sides.

Use the knife to make a slice in the clay, going to approximately 3/4 down. Make sure the slice is large enough to slide a card or photo in and allow for some shrinkage of the clay.

Smooth the edges and remove any bits of clay that are hanging on the edge.

Here is a finished piece, waiting to be fired. Be sure to allow ample time for them to completely dry before firing. I waited a full week.

After bisque firing, glaze as desired. I used Mayco Crystalites and Amaco Crystaltex glazes.

We added a poem inside each card that reads:

This little gift today

holds a card filled with

Birthday glee,

And later may hold

a photo for all to see!

And here is the finished product all ready to go to its new owner.

The feedback has been wonderful so far!


  1. This is a really great project and I would really appreciate it if it were given to me. Unfortunately, I don't have a kiln, so I can't make the photo holder, but I love the owl (card?) in the holder. Can you give me any info on how that was put together, please? It is SUPER cute!!! Thanks, Chrisitna

  2. This is a great idea for using up leftover clay scraps! Thanks so much for sharing - I see many of these in my future.

  3. The owl card is a print of one of my mixed media pieces that I made on canvas. I used acrylics, scrapbooking paper, and various techniques to make it.

    Thank you for your comments!

  4. what a great gift idea- pretty and useful!

  5. Cute! I saw a teacher who makes these for all her students, can you imagine that??

  6. I CAN imagine & I just may have to steal that idea!!



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