Cooking with Alison

DIY Paw Print Impressions for Decorations or Keepsakes

In DIY and Crafts on August 14, 2011 at am

I wanted to make paw print impression keepsakes of my “new” old dog.  But the only kits that I could find were surprisingly pricey (or had poor reviews) and came with display frames that I didn’t want.  So I decided to save some money and make my own.  These are fun and easy to make and they’re great as a kids’ craft project.  You could make childrens’ hand prints too.  How-to instructions are provided below.

How to Make Paw Print Impressions


Note:  You will get the best results if you trim your dog’s nails and the fur between the pads of his/her feet first.

  1. Any oven-bake, polymer clay will work, but I prefer the Sculpey brand, UltraLight white coloured, oven-bake clay.  (Note that decorations made with a non-bake clay will not last as long.)  I purchased a 10.3 ounce package that cost under $20 (CAD) and it was enough to make approximately 8 large dog paw print impressions.
  2. Preheat the oven to 350 F with a rack in the centre of the oven.  (Or follow the instructions on the package of clay.)
  3. Work with one piece of clay at a time and keep all clay covered in plastic bags when not in use.  Knead the clay in your clean and dry hands until softened and smooth.
  4. Mold the clay into your desired shape and size.  Make sure that your work surface and tools are clean and dry.  I used my hands to form the clay into a ball and then I flattened it into the shape of a circle with a rolling pin.  You could use plastic containers, molding rings, cookie cutters, or even the lid from a margarine container.  Make a few extras in case your pets aren’t cooperative.
  5. Place your shaped clay piece on a sheet of parchment paper and place it on a hard surfaced floor.
  6. Try to wipe clean your dog/or cat’s paw.
  7. Then place your pet’s paw onto your clay piece and press down gently.  Don’t press too hard or the clay will get stuck to your pet’s paw, particularly the nails and the fur between his/her pads.  Transfer your paw print impression to a parchment paper lined baking sheet.
  8. If you’d like to hang this as a decoration, use a straw to punch out one or two holes where you want the string or ribbon to be tied.
  9. Bake the impression for 15 minutes per each 1/4 inch of thickness.  (Or follow the instructions on the package of clay.)  Then remove from the oven and allow to cool completely.  It will be firm to the touch and very light.
  10. If using, tie a piece of string or ribbon through the hole(s) and hang up your decorations (ie. on the Christmas tree).
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  1. […] taken on very many (see my DIY stocking advent calendar here and DIY paw print keepsakes here), because they usually require a lot of basic tools and/or materials that I don’t have the […]

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