T.G.I.F! I really love Fridays – the thought of sleeping in on a Saturday and hanging out with friends after always makes me smile. If you have spare time this weekend, here’s a D-I-Y project for you: making jewellery out of clay polymer! Add to your jewellery collection without breaking the bank! In this post, we’ll be making marble-detailed necklaces and earrings out of clay.
We got our materials and tools from Tinkle Arts, a social enterprise that specialises in all things Arts & Craft. Recently based at the headquarters of the Movement for the Intellectually Disabled of Singapore (MINDS), founders Agnes and Charlene employ beneficiaries from MINDS to help with day-to-day craft preparation.
They not only conduct workshops (there’s an upcoming one you can sign up for, more details at the end of this post!), but sell art supplies and craft supplies too. All sales will help Tinkle Arts and their social initiatives.
What You’ll Need:
- FIMO Coloured Clay
- Metal Scraper
- Rolling Pin
- Round Cutter
- Needle Tool OR Satay Stick
- 80cm Cotton/ Leather Cords (this will be for the necklace chain)
- Baking Paper and Tray
- Oven with Temperature Control
- Stud Earring Backs and Backings
- Super Glue or Jewellery Adhesive
*You can purchase your clay and craft supplies from Tinkle Arts‘ online store, or head over to their studio at MINDS HQ to check out the full range of products they stock!
Instructions for Necklace:
1. Decide on the colours and number of the beaded balls you want on your necklace.
- We used 4 colours – white, peach, aquamarine blue, and navy blue for a contrast. If you like, I’d advocate for a pinch of gold or silver clay because it adds an extra touch of elegance!
- We made 4 beads, but ended up using only 3 beads on the final necklace.
2. With a metal scraper, slice the clay into thin 0.5cm strips or follow the pattern of the clay.
3. Use a rolling pin to knead and soften the clay until it is soft and pliable. You may also use a glass bottle if you don’t have a rolling pin.
4. For those who are keen to take it up a notch, we recommend using the FIMO Clay Rolling Machine to help flatten the clay evenly so all the strips are of similar thickness of around 0.3cm.
5. Flatten all the coloured clays to the same thickness. The clay has now been conditioned!
6. Use a round steel cutter and cut the clay for greater consistency with size consistency.
- We used 4 pieces of cut clay and rolled them together to make a beaded ball. You can tweak the number of pieces you use if you want to make your beads a smaller size.
- For those who want to achieve a marbled effect, we recommend using 3 pieces of one colour, and 1 piece of another colour (as pictured). Mash, twist and roll them together until it becomes a long strip, and repeat this two more times. This helps to create an authentic marble effect with thin swirls and stripes. Don’t overdo the blending and mixing of both colours though – you need the marbled effect to be noticeable!
7. With your palms, roll the clay till it becomes round. You can use your fingertips to gently smooth out any irregularities on the surface.
8. Once the ball is complete, use a needle tool or satay stick and poke through the clay, so you can string the necklace chain or cord through the beads later on.
9. Preheat your oven for 7-10 mins to 110 degrees.
10. Place clay balls on baking paper, and insert tray into oven.
11. Bake for 25 minutes.
12. While waiting for your clay beads to finish baking, you can start preparing the necklace. Cut a cord of about 80cm in length.
13. After taking the clay beads out of the oven, wait for them to cool before sliding the cord through.
14. Tie a double fisherman knot, also known as a sliding knot. For those who prefer a visual guide, click here! This will make your necklace length adjustable.
15. Viola! Your necklace is done!
Instructions for Earrings:
1. You can use the leftover clay from the previous DIY! Again, decide on the colour, size and shape of earrings you want.
2. Condition the new clay. Slice and flatten the clay evenly.
3. Cut the clay with a round steel cutter or with the metal scraper. Generally, anything smaller than a five-cent coin will be more than sufficient! Make sure both pieces of the clay earrings are of similar sizes, unless you want an asymmetrical pair.
4. For those who want to create something with a marbled effect, mix and fold two colours into one another until you see the marbled effect. Alternatively, you can roll the clay in between your palms.
5. Make sure there is a tiny, flat surface where the earring backs can be fastened on, especially if you are creating rounded earrings.
6. Pre-heat the oven for 7-10 mins at 110 degrees.
7. Place clay pieces on baking paper and insert into oven. Bake clay pieces for 25 mins.
8. Once time is up, take clay pieces out and let it cool.
9. Add adhesive glue to where you want to place the earring backs at.
10. Leave to dry for 10 mins and you’re done! Put them on!
I hope this tutorial has been helpful. Let me know if you have further suggestions on what you’d like to see next! Tassel earrings, maybe?
If you want a more hands-on tutorial experience, or wish to work on this DIY project but don’t have the relevant tools, Tinkle Arts is organising two “Minimalist Trio Necklace Set” workshops in the month of April. See below for the dates and times!
14 April 2018, Saturday: 2pm – 5pm
29 April 2018, Sunday: 10.30am – 12.30pm
14 April 2018, Saturday: 2pm – 5pm
Each session is priced at $120/person with all materials included, and you can get your tickets here. Do remember that profits earned will go to helping Tinkle Arts by providing employment opportunities to beneficiaries of MINDS! More information can be found on their Facebook Page.
Till next week!