Make a leaf tile

There are many shapes and textures in nature that are perfect for using in art. This activity will allow you to make some salt dough tiles, out of leaves and seeds that you might find outside. Once painted, they can make the perfect decorations or gifts. It’s a great way to let nature’s beauty last a little longer!


Leaf tile prep © Catherine Leatherland

What you will need:

  • Plain flour (2 cups)
  • Salt (1 cup)
  • Water (1 cup)
  • Cooking oil (2 tbsp)
  • A mixing bowl
  • A wooden spoon
  • A rolling pin
  • Leaves and/or seeds and pine cones – remember to only use fallen materials
  • A knife
  • Paints (acrylic works well)
  • Paintbrushes
  • A baking tray
  • Grease proof paper
  • Newspaper – to protect the surfaces

How to make your leaf tiles:

  1. Mix the ingredients together in a bowl.
  2. Roll out the dough until its about 1cm in thickness.
  3. Carefully press the leaves into the dough, with the veins facing downwards – this will make a clearer print.
  4. Gently peel the leaf away, leaving an imprint in the dough.
  5. Using the knife, carefully cut a tile shape around the imprint – ask an adult to help with this.
  6. Place the tiles onto a baking tray lined with grease proof (baking) paper.
  7. Bake them in the oven at gas mark 2 (100℃) for two hours.
  8. Carefully take out the tray and leave your tiles to cool.
  9. Paint your tiles! You could go for natural colours, or try something more imaginative.
  10. Your tiles are ready to decorate your home!

To find out how to dye your salt dough using natural dyes, click here.


Share photos of your tiles using #DiscoverLearnPlay



Time to complete

4-6 hours

Suitable for age

Suitable location

Resource Level

Curriculum linked

Expressive arts (Arts and design)

Technologies (Food technology; craft and design)

Sciences (Biology, ecology, natural history, Planet Earth topic)

Numeracy and Mathematics (Number and measure)


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