How to Make Jewelry From Flour Clay

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Even though you’ve reached adulthood, you don’t have to give up the fun of playing with clay. Use a simple flour, salt and water mixture to fashion your own whimsical beads to string for necklaces, bracelets or earrings. Go big with clay shapes for colorful rings too.

Mix Up a Batch of Clay

You can find nearly as many variations on the clay recipe as there are types of beads. Most recipes use a 1 to 2 to 2 ratio of salt to flour to water, but adding cornstarch helps beads hold their shape even better.

Things You'll Need

  • 1 cup cornstarch
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 cup salt
  • Warm water

Mix the dry ingredients thoroughly. Add enough warm water to make a dough.

Tip

  • To color the beads without painting, add a few drops of food coloring as you mix the dough. You can also use spice, such as cinnamon, nutmeg or chili powder, for natural colors, or sprinkle in a little glitter for some sparkle.

Create Your Beads or Pendants

You can make round beads or other shapes; use cookie cutters for shaped pendants, or press dough into candy or soap molds to make embossed elements.

Shaped Beads

Things You'll Need

  • Dough
  • Toothpicks or ice pick
  • Acrylic paint
  • Paintbrushes
  • Acrylic clear sealer or spray, or epoxy clear coat

Step 1

Pinch off a piece of dough about the desired size of your bead. If you want a bigger bead, add a little more dough; for smaller beads, pinch off a little from your original bit.

Step 2

Roll the dough in your palm to make a round bead. To make it square, press the edges between your fingers after making the ball.

Step 3

Push a toothpick or ice pick through the bead to make a hole for stringing.

Step 4

Allow the clay to dry overnight, rolling or turning the beads two or three times. If the humidity is high, your beads may need a little longer to dry thoroughly.

Step 5

Paint the beads and let them dry. Paint or spray on the acrylic sealer.

Tip

  • Make subtle changes in your beads by switching between glossy and matte sealers.

Flat and Fancy Pendants

Things You'll Need

  • Dough
  • Toothpicks or ice picks
  • Rolling pin
  • Cookie cutters or mini cutters
  • Acrylic paint
  • Paintbrushes
  • Acrylic clear sealer or spray, or epoxy clear coat

Step 1

Roll the dough out to 1/4-inch thickness.

Step 2

Use cookie cutters or a knife to cut the dough into shapes. For a round pendant, trace around a quarter or other coin with your knife.

Step 3

Make a hole for stringing at the top of the shape. For a hole that's a part of the design, use a drinking straw to punch it.

Step 4

Allow the shapes to dry thoroughly.

Step 5

Paint the shapes with metallic acrylic paint and sprinkle glitter on the wet paint.

Step 6

When the paint is completely dry, apply an acrylic or epoxy sealer coat.

Tip

  • To speed up the drying time, bake the shapes in a 350-degree oven for an hour.

Embossed Beads

Things You'll Need

  • Dough
  • Toothpicks or ice pick
  • Candy or small soap molds
  • Acrylic paint
  • Paintbrushes
  • Acrylic clear sealer or spray, or epoxy clear coat

Step 1

Pinch off a small bit of dough and press it into candy or individual soap molds.

Step 2

Pop each shape out carefully and make a hole for stringing. Let the shapes dry overnight or in the oven.

Step 3

Paint the shapes as desired. This design is especially effective with colored dough.

Tip

  • The dough should pop out of the molds easily, but a light spritz of cooking spray first may be helpful.

Assemble Your Jewelry

For the simplest design, slide the beads or pendants onto a silk cord or leather thongs and tie the ends. You can also add silver, gold or copper spacers between the beads. Turn your beads into charms with jump rings and jewelry chain.

Things You'll Need

  • Flat or embossed beads
  • 10 mm jump rings -- one for each bead plus two
  • Chain-nosed pliers (2)
  • Chain -- 18 inches for necklace, 7 inches for bracelet
  • Lobster claw clasp

Open the Jump Rings

Step 1

Use two pairs of chain-nosed pliers to grasp the ring near the opening. If you don’t have two chain-nosed, use one each of chain- and flat-nosed, or use your fingers and a pair of pliers.

Step 2

Carefully move one side of the ring up and one down to open it.

Make the Charms and Add Them to the Chain

Step 1

Match the ends of the chain to find the center. Slip a jump ring into the center link.

Step 2

Slide a bead onto the jump ring.

Step 3

Close the jump ring by rocking the side in the opposite directions used to open them, bringing them together until they overlap slightly.

Step 4

Continue to add rings and beads along the chain at even intervals.

Add the Clasp and Closing Ring

Step 1

Slide the lobster claw onto a jump ring.

Step 2

Add the jump ring and clasp to one end of the chain. Close the jump ring.

Step 3

Slip the other end of the chain into the last jump ring, and close the ring.

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