Christmas Crib With Salt Dough, An Original Nativity

November 20 2013

THE NATIVITY OF SALT DOUGH, AN ORIGINAL CHRISTMAS CRIB

For Christmas time, especially among the peoples of the Mediterranean basin, but not only them, it is very common to prepare the Crib, the representation of the Holy Nativity of Jesus.

For the construction of this small picture of the world of over 2,000 years ago the tradition would suggest the use of various typical materials. These materials range from traditional products such as cork, wood, paper-mache, cardboard, etc., to get to more modern and innovative materials such as plexiglas and polycarbonate or even few as ancient as ….. bread dough!

Indeed, among the various materials with which you can model your crib, few would probably have thought of using …. salt and flour.

An excellent result with little expense to create a nice crib that remains over time and that, year after year can be also enriched with new elements and characters: the crib of salt dough.

To realize a very uncommun crib, you just must have a little bit of fantasy and a certain manuality for this kinf of DIY work .

Now you may start to make your own original crib version of

THE NATIVITY MADE WITH SALT DOUGH

The base material to build your crib is obviously represented by the salt dough paste, a compound that is obtained by mixing flour and salt chopped the most end as possible with the addition of water and a few teaspoons of wallpaper paste or vinavil glue to obtain an easily workable paste. In addition to the salt dough we will also need some materials that will be useful to build statues of the Nativity’s scene and the various objects, such as sticks, straw, wire, and so on.

The tools needed to work the salt dough are the same used to work Das or clay and, ultimately, also to prepare homemade pasta:

  • spatulas,
  • rolling pin,
  • pliers,
  • scrapers,
  • spoons,
  • boxcutter,
  • scissors,
  • the wheel for the ravioli,
  • the garlic press.

STEP BY STEP HOW TO PROCEED TO BUILD THE CRIB IN SALT DOUGH

In order to mold the Nativity’s figurines usually they begin by forming a kind of cone or pear for the body and a small ball for the head. For the characters’ hair you can use the garlic-press that produces a kind of vermicelli of pasta suitable for this purpose. Then we take a little well-stretched dough with a rolling pin and form a kind of canvas on which cut off with a boxcutter as a atelier’s fashion designer in a cloak, a scarf, a collar, sleeves, and even a girdle, shoes, caps, etc.

Then you will assemble the parts to form the shapes of various characters. Similarly a layer knead a little thicker to build the hut and houses, cutting rectangles for walls and roofs which then you will join with the touch of your fingers, maybe helped by two drops of glue.

REFINISHING OF OUR CRIB MADE WITH SALT DOUGH

At this point it is possible to leave the natural color as it is, which has an all its own charm, to do this you have to put the statues to bake in the oven after having brushed them with a little egg yolk to give the typical amber color.

The alternative is to color each figurine. In this case you may follow two ways:

  1. coloring small amounts of salt dough with various colors depending on what you want to build , or
  2. after the figurines and other objects (houses, palms, etc) have been duly shaped, you will paint them, one at a time, by using a brush.

Now after the work, beside your beautiful Christmas tree you will also have your own, unique and very special Christmas Crib.

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