How to Make Jewelry With Clay

(Image: Lindsey McCord )

Statement necklaces are the hottest summer accessory -- and easy to make! Use polymer clay to create large colorful beads and string tropically inspired jewelry. Make a large batch of handmade necklaces to give as economical gifts and party favors.

Things You'll Need

  • Bake-able Polymer Clay in Various Colors
  • Bamboo Skewers or Toothpicks 
  • Clay Sculpting and Cutting Tools 
  • Clear Sealer 
  • Cotton or Nylon Cord 
  • Scissors
  • Wood Beads 
  • Brass Washers or Hex Nuts 
  • Cookie Sheet 
  • Parchment Paper 
  • Optional : Silicon Mat


  • Make sure the clay you've purchased for this project is oven-safe polymer clay -- modeling clay melts and can ruin your project.

(Image: Lindsey Crafter)

Step 1: Prep Your Work Area & Materials

Work on a piece of parchment paper or silicon mat to prevent clay residue from staining surfaces. Be sure your work surface is free of dust-- debris will stick to unbaked clay and lighter colors will show lint easily. Use a knife or cutting tool to cut workable pieces of clay and knead in your hands to soften.

Standard blocks of polymer clay can be cut into 8ths for large beads or 16ths for small beads.
Standard blocks of polymer clay can be cut into 8ths for large beads or 16ths for small beads. (Image: Lindsey Crafter)

Step 2: Make Small Beads

Roll small pieces (16th cuts) into balls and flatten with your hands to a 1/4" thickness. Use a coring tool or toothpick, pierce a hole through the center of the bead and set aside for baking.

(Image: Lindsey Crafter)

Step 3: Make Large beads

Roll a 1/8 piece of clay into a ball with your hands and set aside. To create Polka Dots pinch off small bits of clay in a contrasting color and roll into small balls. Space evenly, and roll in your hands to flatten into dots.

(Image: Lindsey Crafter )
(Image: Lindsey Crafter)

Step 4: Coring Beads

Create two flat sides by pressing the sphere with your fingers or a flat surface (I used a ruler). Using a bamboo skewer or coring tool create a hole through the center of the bead large enough to string a thick cord through it.

(Image: Lindsey Crafter)


  • Use toothpicks or metal tools to add textures or scalloped edges on beads before baking.

(Image: Lindsey Crafter)


  • Wash hands between colors to avoid leftover residue from being mixed into lighter shades of clay.

Step 5: Baking

Space beads evenly on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper and bake according to directions on packaging.

(Image: Lindsey Crafter)

Step 6: Stringing

After your beads have baked and cooled they're ready to string! Baked beads have a matte finish--if you're looking for shine just add a coat of gloss sealer and let dry before adding to a necklace.

(Image: Lindsey Crafter)


  • Use a 32" length cotton cord to string your beads for the perfect long necklace.

String your handmade beads along with wood beads on your choice of cord. Use brass washers or hex nuts from the hardware store for alternative spacers. Symmetry is optional -- add eight to ten large beads to a cord, tie ends in a knot and wear!

(Image: Lindsey Crafter)
Wear one...or four!
Wear one...or four! (Image: Lindsey McCord )

Related Searches

Promoted By Zergnet


You May Also Like

  • How to Make Fimo Clay Jewelry

    Fimo clay is a brand of polymer clay. Polymer clay, or polyvinyl chloride, is a plastic-based clay that does not harden until...

  • How to Make Silver Clay Jewelry

    Silver metal clay allows for jewelry designs that are not possible with traditional silversmithing techniques. Silver metal clay is made of pure...

  • What Are Faux Lapis Stones?

    Lapis stone has a rich, deep blue color with trace amounts of gold-colored flecks running throughout it. During the 19th century, painters...

Related Searches

Check It Out

DIY Wood Transfer Christmas Ornaments

Is DIY in your DNA? Become part of our maker community.
Submit Your Work!