Ratty Corner

Modelling Clay Ratties

I find it hard to resist buying ratty ornaments on the very rare occasions that I see them, but I keep finding myself thinking "I could do better than that!"

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With memories of some success at school pottery club, many, many years ago, I bought myself a tub of air-drying clay and set about making my very own clay ratty. The result looked recognisably rat-like, but not anything special. Because I forgot that you have to work the clay first, he slowly cracked as he dried.

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Having done some web searching, I found a site called The Polymer Clay Pit which sells a variety of brands of plastic clay - the stuff that you bake in the oven to set it. My second ratty was created using Creall-Therm polymer clay, with an aluminium foil and brass wire skeleton. I bought a large block of flesh coloured clay, with the idea that I could leave his ears and feet unpainted, and use acrylic paint for the rest of him. His head turned out rather large, but I was so pleased with it that I carried on and made a body to fit. So here's Toby! I'm quite proud of him, although he does look a little dog-like and I didn't do a very good job with the paint.

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Attempt number three began, trying to create a smaller ratty. At first he was meant to stand up, but I held him horizontally while I was shaping his body and realised that he looked as if he was hanging his head over a shelf, just like my ratty boys do. This little chap has turned out very skinny and not particularly rat-like, but quite cute. He's called Piper and lives on my kitchen windowsill.

There's still a lot of learning to do before I make anything that looks professional, but in the meantime I'm gathering a collection of ratty models and enjoying the process. It's occurred to me that I've been making the mistake of giving my ratties a neck, which they just don't have! Just got to get some more clay and have another go.


This is fun! The more ratties I make the more they actually look like ratties! My project is to make a model of each of my eight boys. I've already got Pogo, Fox and Pirate.

Pogo Pogo Fox Fox Pirate Pirate Pirate Fox and Pirate Pogo and Gonzo

See my ratty sculptures for sale.

Annette, May/June 2003

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Last modified: Saturday, 18-Oct-2014 18:59:36 BST

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