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Mushroom Table Decorations

Cute clay mushrooms add a rustic woodland element to holiday decor. This how-to comes from TV crafter Kristin St. Clair.

Photography: Rob Tannenbaum

Source: The Martha Stewart Show, November 2011


  • 16-gauge wire

  • Wire cutters

  • Small pliers

  • Air-drying clay

  • Paintbrush

  • Pencil

  • Paint

  • Cross section of birch or other tree branch

  • Drill

  • Preserved moss

  • White glue


  1. Cut a 7-inch piece of wire and use pliers to bend the top half-inch at a 90-degree angle.

  2. Make a ball of clay and push wire through ball, stopping about one centimeter from the bend at top. Roll clay and wire between hands to make a stem, tapering at the bottom. Secure wire with stem in a block of Styrofoam or a sturdy cup overnight or until hardened. (Tip: Use a paintbrush dipped in water to smooth imperfections.)

  3. For the cap, make a larger clay ball and press onto bended top of stem. Use your index finger to blend the clay together, joining cap to stem. Tip: To avoid cracking at the joint, let stem dry completely before making cap.

  4. Place mushroom cap-side down on a flat surface. Use thumbs to push cap down flat onto surface until desired cap size is reached. Lift from surface and gently curve the edges of the cap.

  5. Smooth top of cap with a wet paintbrush. Turn mushroom upside down again and use a pencil to create gills on underside of cap.

  6. Let mushroom dry and paint desired color.

  7. For a display base, drill holes into a cross section of birch bark and cover top surface with preserved moss. Fit bare wire at bottom of mushroom into holes, using glue to secure, if desired. (Tip: Mushrooms can also be displayed in houseplants.)

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