Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Valentine Clay Heart Necklace Tutorial

Sometimes I cringe at the thought of buying boxed Valentines for my kids to hand out at school, knowing they usually are destroyed and land in the garbage before the day is out. So I try to come up with fun, yet inexpensive gifts for my kids to make.

This year the girls decided to make clay marbleized heart necklaces for their school girlfriends.

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Supplies Needed: Oven bake Clay (I used Sculpey III), a very small heart shaped cookie cutter, 1 inch eye pins (found at most craft or bead stores, a jewelry jump ring, clay varnish, and ribbon.

My kids love to help – so I wear them out warming up the clay for me. We just keep molding it until it’s nice and pliable.

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To make the clay look like a marble we break off small hunks of two different colors and roll them together.

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Fold and repeat until you have desired effect.

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Roll it too much and you’ll have pink. Once you have a nice smooth sheet of clay, approximately 1/4 to 1/3 inch thick, go ahead and cut hearts out with a cookie cutter.

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Then insert a jewelry eye pin carefully down the center of the clay heart (this step might have better results when completed by the adult instead of the kids). Speaking from my own personal experience that is.

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Then put your hearts in a GLASS bottomed cake or casserole pan and bake in the oven following the clay manufacturer's guidelines. I ended up baking my hearts at 275 degrees F, for about 30 min.

Remove from oven and let cool. Once cool you can seal the clay with a clay friendly varnish. I made sure a tiny bit puddled around where the eye pin was inserted into the clay, just to give it an extra adhesive.

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Once the finish was dry I added an extra O-ring to the eye hook.

Then thread some ribbon through the ring and you have a perfect little heart necklace.

We made around 50 heart necklaces from around three small packages of clay. It’s so hard to choose which were our favorites.

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Happy clay crafting!