DIY Jewelry Basics: Use Clay to Make Marbled Stud Earrings
Hot off the heels of our indigo dye daze, we’re still “head over” about anything that bears a groovy twisted pattern. This time around, we’re DIY-ing the look without the need for dyes, gloves and rubber bands (aka making a mess!) using two colors of polymer clay to make marbled studs. The swirly accessories will take just an afternoon to make, but will be a summer-long pick-me-up for your hot-weather style game. Just grab a pack of white clay + one of your favorite hue and get ready to roll (literally!).
– 2 packs of polymer clay: 1 solid colored and 1 white
– flat earring backs
1. Use your hands to stretch out a 1/2-inch piece of white clay until it’s warm, soft and malleable. From into a ball and set aside.
2. Break off a pea-sized piece of white clay and about a quarter of that size of colored clay and mix them together until they make a consistent lighter hue. Form into a ball.
3. Crumble some of the newly mixed, lighter-hued clay into small flecks over a hard, flat surface. Roll the white clay around on them. This is the start of your marble pattern.
4. Work the clay between your hands into a long, thin tube and roll it back up into ball. Repeat these steps until you can see the marbled pattern begin to form. Don’t go too far and mix it into a new color!
5. Now crumble some of the solid color clay over your surface and roll the marbled clay into these flecks. Make your tube and roll it up again, but be careful not to over mix now as you need bold highlights to form a beautiful marbled pattern.
6. Once you’re finished mixing, split your marbled clay into two equal halves.
7. Shape each piece into a cone with your fingers. Press the bottom against a flat surface to give it a flat edge.
8. Bake the clay according to its packaging instructions. Once it feels firm, carefully remove from its heat source and leave to cool.
9. After they are cooled, use E6000 or another strong adhesive to secure the cones onto the flat earring blanks and leave to dry for 24 hours.
This DIY basic is all about finding the right color balance, or knowing when to STOP rolling out your clay. It can be tempting to want to stretch it out just one more time, but really, less is more with this marbling tutorial, as you’ll soon see!
Scatter some of your mixed color clay onto a hard, flat surface and roll the white ball of clay all up in its business. Form it into a thin tube, roll up into a ball, and repeat a few times until you can see your marbling pattern start to form. Then add in a few flecks of your solid color clay and do the same. Remember — don’t over mix! The pattern will look more compact (read: faaar out) once your clay is divided in half and formed into flat back cones (See? We told you!). Bake according to its packaging instructions and once the pieces are cooled, glue them onto your flat back earrings.
Once the glue has completely dried, you’re ready to rock these studs out in the sun!
We love how this material takes a little edge off of the look of these spiky studs. Like our watercolor-inspired version, these are totally pretty enough to wear to your roster of summer weddings… maybe with a matching statement necklace? Now that you know the technique, the possibilities for more and more marbled clay accessories are pretty much endless!
What accessories have you made out of clay? Tell us in the comments below!