Polymer clay is likely one of the most versatile crafting media available; its uses and applications are practically endless. From handmade jewelry to chic wall art, polymer clay is an easy-to-use, readily available option. While it may take a little practice to expertly sculpt using clay, the skill-building itself is meditative and enjoyable.
No matter where you choose to begin your work with polymer clay, be sure you have a sharp craft knife (or clay cutter) available, aluminum foil to create molds and forms, and that you preheat your oven before baking your projects to eliminate cracking. Peruse the ideas below to find the perfect starter project for your entry into the world of polymer clay.
01 of 15
While these adorable trinket boxes use a plain wooden bangle bracelet to get things started, it’s the clay accents that really set them apart from other simple crafts. Nervous to free-hand each of the fruits’ texture? Use a bit of washi tape to stencil off your design before applying the painted pattern work.
02 of 15
Add a touch of homemade flair to any outfit with a set of geometric earrings. A duo of neutral and pastel colors keeps these designs relatively subtle, and therefore, absolutely wearable. Finish with a polymer-safe clear coat to add a layer of shine or leave them matte for a softer effect.
03 of 15
For a little mid-century modern-inspired decor, create a set of geometric wall hangings. Brass and peach work perfectly together, but don’t hesitate to experiment with pastel blue and silver hardware as well. Either way, add string tassels to finish each piece with style.
04 of 15Continue to 5 of 15 below.
05 of 15
For a fresh way to add a bit of life to your walls, consider sculpting planters from polymer clay and filling with succulents. Ice cream cone shapes are not only especially whimsical, but they’re also easy to make—just roll a circle of clay, score it with a dull clay tool, and secure it around a cone of aluminum foil before baking into shape. It’s best to fill these clay potters with faux plants; they don’t stand up well to daily watering.
06 of 15
A chic jewelry storage solution can be tricky to work into your bedroom’s decor, so opt instead for a whimsical, do-it-yourself display. This cactus-shaped ring holder can be made in any color, and it holds quite a few of your prettiest pieces, so make a few to gift to your friends as well.
07 of 15
Fresh flowers can add a delicate beauty to your home, and a simple, single bud vase can stretch your bouquet to multiple spaces. Take your cue from A Beautiful Mess and create a modern, neutral stand vase, then fill with a single tulip.
Hide a metal wire in the stem of your vase to give it a strong structure.
08 of 15
Capitalize on the popularity of emojis with this tech-inspired jewelry design. While these cute necklaces are simple enough to create, they come together much quicker with the help of a sharp craft knife and a small heart-shaped cookie cutter. Don't forget to gift one half of the heart pendant to your BFF once the clay is set.Continue to 9 of 15 below.
09 of 15
While you could use professional clay-stamping tools to create a set of subtly-patterned planters, a piece of strategically-edged cardboard or etched glass will work just as well. Create three or four of these planters at a time in the same color to display together—they look best in clusters.
10 of 15
For a simple solution to keep your garden vegetables organized, turn your scraps of polymer clay into easy stick-shaped labels. To help these DIYed markers stay readable, paint each one thoroughly with a weather-proof clear coat once it’s stamped and baked.
11 of 15
A great way to add a fun pop of color to your coffee table, this handmade tic-tac-toe set is also a practical piece for entertaining. Set it out before guests arrive to encourage spontaneous tic-tac-toe matches (or just admiration of your handiwork).
12 of 15
There are few things in life better than curling up with a good book, but adding a personalized, handmade bookmark to your story session just might up the ante. You can definitely source leather-effect clay from a craft store easily, but adding a simple pebble texture to regular polymer (try pressing with a heavyweight drawing paper) works just as well.Continue to 13 of 15 below.
13 of 15
Get your feet wet with polymer clay with a super simple jewelry craft. Try your hand at a couple of different bead shapes and sizes, and aim for consistency to ensure a professional-looking project. This is an especially great starter project for kid-crafters—no sharp tools or painstaking sculpting required.
14 of 15
A gold leaf edge really helps these faux marble coasters pop, so don’t skip that metallic finishing touch. This comprehensive tutorial guides you through creating the swirling, faux-marble clay effect, which is surprisingly simple to achieve, so don’t hesitate to get started.
15 of 15
If your office supplies seem a bit tired lately, give a few plain pens a makeover with a handful of polymer clay. Try rolling a few complementary colors together for a more interesting finish, and be sure to remove the ink well before baking each pen to set. A couple of these and a little notepad would make a wonderful teacher’s gift too.