Combine 2 cups baking soda, 1 cup cornstarch, and 1 1/4cup water in a pot and heat on medium heat.
Continue to constantly stir the ingredients until the mixture begins to thicken. It will take several minutes to thicken.
When the mixture starts to come together and looks like mash potatoes, scoop it out onto a Silpat mat or parchment paper to cool down. Cover it with a damp cloth.
4. Roll out dough into 1/4″ thick sheet and use cookie cutters to cut shapes or free hand design your shapes.
5. The make the starfish, take the 5 balls and use your thumb and pointer finger to shape and flatten into triangles. Take the triangles and combine them together, pinching the edges on both the front and back into the shape of a starfish. *Very important to smooth out the edges where the pieces connect or you will get seams and lots of cracks* The circles were used to make sand dollars.
6. Start to decorate your starfish. I used the round end of a pin and the end of my paint brushes to make decorations on my starfish.
7. Sand dollars were made using a circle cutter and decorated using the pin head and a butter knife. The coral was made free hand.
8. Bake at 175F degrees on Silpat mat or parchment paper for 45 minutes to 1 hour. Let cool. *Dough can be air dried for 2-4 days.*
9. While the shapes are cooling, place newspaper or some type of covering on your table surface to protect it from the paint. Then, get creative and start painting! *I painted my starfish white and used my silver nail polish to highlight.* Let paint dry and seal with a clear acrylic spray. You can stop here and use the shapes as is or continue on to make a picture background.
10. Since I wanted to mount my starfish on a sea colored background in my shadow box frame, I painted an ombre blue background. Do this by starting with the darkest color on the bottom and gradually add white paint till you get to the top. *I tried to separate my paper into three sections and concentrated on three shades of blue.*
11. Once dry, glue the starfish on the background. Place in frame.