Make a Painterly Pendant and a Pair of Earrings with Polymer Clay
Inspired by abstract watercolour paintings and dripped paint, this pendant and earring set will add an artistic twist to your next outfit. Made from fun and easy to use polymer clay, I'll show you how to finger paint (it's not just for kids!) with the clay to create your very own wearable masterpiece.
- Polymer clay
- Craft knife
- Cotton cord or leather thonging
- Earring hooks
- Jump rings
- Baking paper
- Baking tray
- Pliers (optional)
1. Make a Painterly Pendant
Place a sheet of baking paper on your table.
Using the knife, cut a large piece of the blue clay (ours was 1.5cm x 4.5cm x 2cm) and then a piece of black clay that is half the size.
Using your fingers, knead the blue clay until it softens. Repeat with the black clay.
Press the black and the blue clay together and mix your fingers until you have one smooth colour - it should end up navy blue.
Cut off three quarters of the navy clay and roll into a ball with the palms of your hands. Place the other quarter to the side. Once smooth, place on the table and flatten, again with your palm until it is about 1cm thick.
Leave the round disc of clay to sit for about five minutes. This will allow it to hard slightly again, making it much easier to work with.
Using your skewer, place a hole about 5mm from the edge - it needs to be big enough to fit your chosen cord through twice.
Cut a small piece of the blue clay and then a piece of the yellow clay that is half the size. As in steps two and three, knead the individual blocks of clay and then mix together to create turquoise.
Break off a tiny piece of the turquoise clay and knead again with your finger tips until soft. Place it on the navy pendant, in the spot where you want to start painting.
Using your fingertip, drag the turquoise clay across the surface of the navy pendant. Smooth the edges so that the clay is flat on top of the pendant.
Repeat a couple of times with the turquoise clay and then repeat with the remaining colours. Don’t be afraid to fingerpaint over the other colours - this will add depth to your design.
You should now have a beautiful painterly pendant.
Using the quarter of the leftover navy clay, cut it into three pieces. Taking one of the pieces, cut it in half and then roll each piece into a ball with the palms of your hands.
Using your skewer, place a hole through the centre of the ball to create a bead. These beads will sit at either end of your cord.
Place the pendant and two round beads on the baking tray and bake following the manufacturer's instructions.
Once baked, allow your pendant and bead pieces to sit until cool.
Cut one metre of the cotton cord and then fold in half. Take the looped end and insert through the hole in the pendant from front to back. Place the loop over the the top of the pendant and pull the ends through.
Thread one of the beads onto one of the ends of cord. Place a knot at the very end of the cord - depending on the thickness of your cord and the size of the hole, you may need to do a double knot.
Push the bead to the end and place another knot directly below it. Repeat with the other end of the cord with the remaining bead.
Admire your handiwork. With the cotton cord left untied, its easy to make the necklace long or short, simply by tying it at the length you want.
2. Make a Pair of Painterly Earrings
Using the rest of the navy clay, split it in half and roll two balls with the palms of your hands.
Using your fingertip, flatten the balls to a round disc.
Take your skewer and place a hole at the top of each disc.
Break off tiny pieces of clay and as with the necklace, knead them so they are soft and then drag them across the surface of each disc. Don’t worry too much about making each disc look exactly the same.
Place the two discs on the baking tray and bake according to the manufacturer's instructions.
Once baked, allow the two discs to sit until cool.
Gather together the materials you need to put your earrings together: a pair of earring hooks and four 6mm jump rings.
Open one of the jump rings using your fingers - if they are stubborn you can use pliers. Thread one of the discs and a closed jump ring onto the open ring. Push the open ring closed so the two ends of the circle meet again.
Open the top jump ring and thread the earring hook through it, making sure that the tip of the hook is facing away from the front of the disc. Push the open ring closed so the two ends of the circle meet again.
Repeat for the other disc.
Try on your beautiful new earrings!
Wear Your New Jewellery Set
Well done! You should be happy with your new jewellery creations.
In this tutorial we've shown you how to mix clay to create unique colours, create a beautiful painterly pendant using your fingertips as the brush and topped it off with a pair of matching earrings.
Why not try mixing it up and make the discs for your earrings a different colour to your pendant? Or try experimenting with mixing clay to create new masterpieces.
Do you like making your own jewellery? How did you find this tutorial? Let us know in the comments section below – we’d love to hear from you.