Playdough activities

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Playdough recipes - edible and non-edible
an alphabetical list of playdough activities and ideas
playdough colour themed activity ideas for children's play and adults well-being
Playdough activity ideas for children and adults An elderberry dye recipe. The elder tree or shrub is a personal favourite and we've loved experimenting with the berry's deep red, purple'ish juice as a colouring for playdough. The blossom and berries ordinarily make the sweetest teas, cordials, and delicious, albeit heady homemade wine, so playdough seemed a great way to share the versatility of this plant. The berries do need cooking before use so as to break down the small amount of toxins they contain, and even though the activity is a recipe to stain playdough which is already inedible, we still play safe by simmering the fruits before blending, using it as an opportunity to talk about the care needed around familiar and unfamiliar wild fruits.

Making playdough with natural fruits - elderberry dye recipe

The elder tree on Woodlands on , Sambucus on wikipedia and a little about the myth and folklore attached to this ancient native includinga recipe for elderberry syrup on

Elderberry dye recipe

50g destalked elderberries
200ml water

Wash the fruits carefully and rescue any unexpected bugs. Then simmerin the water for 10 minutes, keeping a careful watch that it doesn't evaporate too quickly. Remove from the heat and blend. Strain the mixture through muslin cloth and measure the separated liquid. Make the amount up 120ml if needed.

Elderberry dye recipe ingredients to make coloured playdough
 Homemade playdough recipe
  • 150g plain flour
  • 120g salt
  • 120ml elderberry liquid
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1 tbsp cream of tartar
  • a few drops of scented oil (optional)
  • Hand moisturiser (optional)    

Place all the ingredients except the lotion into a saucepan and cook over a medium heat until everything comes together in a ball. Leave this to cool and then knead until smooth. Add a few spoonfuls of hand cream and enjoy the squelchy texture as the two mediums combine into a soft pliable dough.

Activity ideas include craft stems and match sticks for inserting into the dough and pony beads for threading patterns.

Elderberry dye recipe for playdough activities

Elderberry fabric dyes on google images

Making natural dye recipes from plants
 Grass dye
 Rosehip dye
 Red cabbage  
 Onion skin dye  

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Buy muslin strainer cloths on


  Playdough Recipes
 Edible playdough recipes
 Not for eating  playdough recipes
 An alphabet of playdough

Aa - Bb - Cc - Dd - Ee - Ff - Gg - Hh - Ii - Jj - Kk

 Ll - Mm - Nn - Oo - Pp - Qq - Rr - Ss - Tt - Uu
 Vv - Ww - Xx - Yy - Zz   

 Seasonal playdough activities  
 Playdough books  
 Colour themed playdough activities
 Mixed - metallic rainbow and duos
 Red playdough
Pink playdough
 Orange playdough
 Yellow playdough
 Green playdough
 Blue playdough
 Purple playdough
 Brown playdough
 Black playdough
 Grey playdough
 White playdough


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Sensory playdough activities

Playdough textures

Copyright notice - designed, written and illustrated by Ruth Grimes