This is a project that has major bang for your buck! A few small blocks of polymer clay become endless pairs of modern, cool earrings for you to wear or give as gifts. It's also a fun, easy DIY project to tackle for beginner level makers or first-time clay creators. Choose a few complementary colors and create shapes to your heart's content. The result will be DIY polymer clay earrings that are fun to wear and very eye-catching.
Equipment / Tools
- Clay rolling pin
- Baking sheet
- Small clay cutters or cookie cutters
- Clay carving tool
- Jewelry pliers
- Polymer clay in various colors
- Earring backs
- Glue gun
- Optional: Clay pattern sheets
- Jump rings
As you are gathering your materials, consider the colors that you'd like to combine to create your earrings. Think about a color palette that is complementary to your personal style, or something that a friend or family member would love as a gift.
You can also just use two to three colors and combine them in different ways or use them alone to create variety in the pairs of earrings that you create.
Roll the Clay
Polymer clay earrings can be made in so many different ways! Here's one option.
Start by softening your clay in clean hands. Knead it until it is soft enough to roll. Then place on a mat or clean surface and roll the clay until it's about 1/8" thick, even all the way around.
Imprint the Clay
If you'd like to create a patterned impression on your clay, now is the time to do that. Use your patterned imprint clay sheet to gently press a pattern into the face of your rolled clay. If you don't have a patterned sheet, you can get creative and use things that you have around the house. Carefully press the sheet or item face down onto the rolled clay and apply even pressure on all areas to ensure that the pattern imprints equally.
Cut Earring Shapes
Now that your clay is rolled and imprinted, you can cut shapes from the clay. Imprinted clay works really well for a stud-style earring. To create stud earrings, choose a clay or cookie cutter that's very small (small enough to fit on your earlobe). Then place the cutter over a part of the pattern that you'd like to cut. Carefully press down on the clay evenly until the cutter reaches the mat. Gently wiggle the cutter to release it from the clay.
Repeat to cut another earring. Then carefully weed away the excess clay from the two cut earrings. To release them from the mat, slide a sharp knife or the edge of a larger clay cutter underneath the base of each earring.
Mixing Clay Colors
For your next pair of earrings, try mixing colors! Place a few small pieces of multiple colors next to each other on the mat. Be careful not to squish them together too tightly; this will create color blending, and blur the lines between the two colors.
Roll to Flatten
Now use your clay rolling pin to roll the colors. Again, make sure to roll to about 1/8" thick, even in all areas. As you roll, you'll start to see the borders between the colors becoming more clear.
Cut Multiple Pieces for Dangle Earrings
This time, try creating dangle style earrings from your rolled clay. To do this, select two complementary shapes. The upper shape should be able to fit an earring back on it and lay flat on your earlobe. The lower piece can be more free-form, and larger if you like.
As you cut out of your multicolored clay, try to include interesting parts of the clay on the areas that you cut.
If you are creating multi-piece earrings (also known as dangle earrings), you'll need to add holes to connect the pieces with jump rings. Use a toothpick to add a hole to the bottom of the upper piece and the top of the lower piece. Be sure to create a hole that will be large enough for your jump ring to fit through.
Bake and Add Earring Backs
Once your holes are punched, bake the polymer clay according to the instructions on the packaging. Allow all pieces to cool.
Once thoroughly cool, add earring backs to each upper piece or stud. Place a dot of hot glue on the back side of the clay, and gently press the earring back into the glue.
Add Jump Rings
Use jewelry pliers to add jump rings, connecting any of your dangle style earrings that need to be connected. Carefully pry open the ring, slip it through both sides of the earring (being sure that they're facing the correct way), and close the ring again.
Wear or Give
Add an earring back to your earrings and try them on; these also make great gifts. Have fun!