With Lughnasadh/Lammas coming up in a couple of weeks, a fun project to work on is a wheat plaque to decorate the family altar, hearth, or nature table. I used ordinary salt dough for this project (1 cup salt, 2 cups flour, and around 1 cup water). You can add paint or food coloring to the dough if you like, or paint after the project is completely dry.
First, I rolled out my well-kneaded dough, thickly and evenly. I used a mixing bowl and pizza cutter to get a clean even arch at the top. Then I used a ruler to cut a straight bottom edge. I used a teardrop shaped clay tool to press in tall grasses, and a knife tool for the wheat stalks. I used a couple of methods for the wheat grains; one is to press in each grain with the teardrop shaped clay tool, and the other is to make little snippets up and down the stalk with the end of a pair of small scissors. The latter method is my favorite, because it adds interesting dimensions to the plaque. I added swirls and small holes for a finishing touch. The plaque can be hung on the wall when dry (don’t forget to poke a hole in the back with the blunt end of a tack when turning over to dry the back), or propped up on a shelf.
If you’re feeling adventurous, try curving the plaque around a foil-covered vase to dry, then attach salt dough rings to the back to hold candles. If you poke holes all the way through the plaque with a straw, you can add amber colored beads that would shine in the light of the candle.