Making a new set of polymer clay earrings is a fun activity for the whole family. And with the ability to make these earrings at home with an oven, crafting DIY polymer clay jewelry is a perfect activity for any afternoon at home. Learn how to make your own stunning earrings today!
Related: New Arrival Earrings
What Are Polymer Clay Earrings? And Why Make Them?
Polymer clay may sound like a level-ten intensity crafting experience, but it's very easy to get into it! It's great for designing home decor, making artistic clay structures and holiday decorations, or using it to make earrings.
Polymer clay earrings are such a great DIY because it's soft clay during molding, but after a few minutes in the oven, it becomes rigid for a long-term jewelry option. Once it’s cooled down, you can gloss the clay for a punchier, clean look.
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Where to Start
Before you pick up your tools and dive right into crafting your earrings, think of a game plan first. You’ll want to do some preliminary research on the brand of clay to buy for the project.
For example, some clay is too rigid and inflexible and won't work as it's tough to mold into an earring shape. Meanwhile, some clay can veer too soft, translating to droopy art that can fall apart with one or two uses.
Lost in the crafting store aisles? You may want to reach for Sculpey Soufflé; it's incredibly lightweight and, as a result, it's very pliable and easy to manipulate. Not only that, but it presents crafters with a clean look and matte finish.
Cernit is a great choice if you're looking for specialty colors. Cernit also has translucent options for those extra creative DIYers.
Lastly, Premo Sculpey is a perfect brand for making earrings due to its firmness. Because it starts a bit more firm, it doesn't sag or droop much and can better hold the sculptor's vision.
As you may have guessed, you'll need a few other tools besides a hunk of colored clay and your artistic vision. You'll also need materials like glue (think Gorilla Glue or Superglue), foil, an acrylic rolling pin, a clay slicer, a toothpick, a baking sheet, and pliers. Make sure to get an acrylic rolling pin instead of wood, as clay will stick to anything wooden. Also, if you don't have a clay slicer, a small paring knife can work, too.
Choose Your Design
In order to create this design, you will need to make a pattern on a flat piece of clay. You have the option to create an abstract, floral, botanical, or geometric design. Begin by rolling three thin ropes of clay using your fingertips with little pressure.
This step is all about getting creative and expressing yourself. There's no wrong design to choose, but it's helpful to have an idea of what you want to make before you begin so you don't waste clay, time, or other materials.
It's Time to Condition!
If you plan on making earrings with polymer clay, it's important to condition it first. Conditioning involves kneading the clay to make it softer, more flexible, and easier to shape.
There are various ways to condition polymer clay, such as by hand, using a polymer clay pasta machine, or even a craft mixer for very old or hard clay.
Many artists develop their own methods depending on desired results. The two most common ways are by hand or using a pasta machine, which will yield well-conditioned, smooth, even clay suitable that will work for most projects.
If your clay is too stiff, you can mix it with a soft block of clay or apply a light brush of mineral oil to help soften it. On the other hand, if your clay is too soft and sticky, you can place it between two absorbent papers for about half an hour to drain the excess moisture.
Warm clay is the most malleable, so warm it between your hands first. To prevent your clay from curing too soon, avoid heating it in an oven. You can also prevent color mixing by washing your hands between colors.
When creating clay shapes for your metal jewelry components, it's crucial to make small holes in them before baking. You can use a blunt tapestry needle, a sharp toothpick, or a paperclip to do this.
Ensure that the holes are big enough to accommodate your jump rings and other components in the next step. Moreover, it's advisable to place the holes near the edge of the piece for ease of use.
Turn on The Oven
Now you can bake polymer clay in your regular home oven. You can also use a toaster oven, so as long as it maintains a consistent temperature without any hot spots. However, you should never attempt to bake polymer clay in a microwave.
Don't forget to check the instructions on the back of the package, as different brands may have varying baking temperatures. Once your oven has preheated, place your tray of earring pieces inside and cover them with aluminum foil to preserve the color.
To ensure that your earring components are baked to perfection, allow them to bake for 30 minutes.
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After you’re finished, you can give the earring as a present or enjoy it yourself. Use fine-grit sandpaper to ensure the edges of your baked earrings are smooth. Finally, add metal jewelry components to transform your clay shapes into earrings. If you want to make stud earrings, you only need posts and backs. Get creative and have fun!Related: How to Make Jewelry To Sell: Tips From A Handmade Store