Polymer clay jewelry is everywhere right now, and it’s no secret why. Clay jewelry is cheap, easy to wear, and comes in nearly every color. Shops online boast an endless amount of styles for you to choose from, but making your own pair is a fun, unique way to express your individuality and style!
Best of all, it can be easy and fun to craft your own polymer clay earrings. Whether you want to match your jewelry perfectly to your favorite outfits or create special, totally unique gifts for your bridesmaids, polymer clay earrings will add class and fun to the occasion!
When you’re starting a brand new craft for the first time, it’s hard to know where to begin when it comes to the materials. But knowing what to buy, especially for a beginner, is important.
So, here’s a list of what we consider to be really good choices for clay earrings. I’ll also include a few tips on how to make clay earrings and how to find the best polymer clay for earrings and making your own DIY jewelry.
First, I want to talk a little bit about the “don’ts” of making polymer clay jewelry.
Worst Polymer Clay for Earrings
There are so many options available in the store, but don’t choose your material based only on the prettiest colors. You could end up with something totally wrong for your DIY jewelry project, like a soft clay-like the kind a pre-school would use for art class.
Many clays like these will not hold up in the oven and could come out broken or warped. When choosing a polymer clay for jewelry, it’s important to look for clay that will be strong once baked. Avoid soft, sticky clays that are not labeled for use in DIY jewelry.
Please note, brands make a lot of different products, so pay close attention to their names. Sculpey and Fimo make wonderful polymer clay for jewelry DIY projects, but they also make clay that would be totally wrong for jewelry!
Best Polymer Clay for Earrings
There are so many options available in the store, but don’t choose your material based only on the prettiest colors. It’s more important to focus on how you want your finished product to look. Also, you want it to hold up to daily wear, so finding a strong clay is key!
Clay will take on different textures once baked and hardened. Some will have different finishes, as well. Decide what you’d like your finished project to look like, then select the right clay for your polymer clay earrings.
These recommendations are chosen for their strength and texture once baked, ideal for DIY polymer clay jewelry.
Sculpey Premo Polymer Clay
Widely known as a great choice for polymer clay earrings and polymer clay jewelry projects, Premo has a medium firmness and is easy to work with. This polymer clay comes in a wide range of colors, even metallics and pearl-tone shades.
Once baked, Premo is strong and flexible. You’ll be able to wear this jewelry many times and feel comfortable that it won’t be breaking halfway through your day.
Lots of color choices
Not as strong as some other clays
Sculpey Souffle Polymer Clay
Souffle is another choice by Sculpey, and this one is much softer and therefore perfect for beginners. Many makers love it for its great, suede-like texture once it’s out of the oven.
If you’re planning to paint on your polymer clay earring with acrylic or even draw with marker, Souffle by Sculpey will end up being a great choice for your jewelry DIY project.
Souffle is cited by many crafters as the best clay choice for beginner makers. If you’re new to making your own polymer clay jewelry, this Sculpey product will be great for you.
Takes paint and color well
Great for beginners
Too soft for some more experienced jewelry makers
Fimo Professional Polymer Clay
Fimo is one of the stiffer options to work with, which can be difficult for beginners. It’s great for crafters who want to add a lot of fine detail to their polymer clay earrings. The differently colored clays won’t blend together as easily, ensuring your design holds its shape.
What you’ll love about Fimo is it comes in true primary colors, so it’s perfect for crafters who want to do a lot of color mixing and blending. You’ll be able to get your colors exactly how you want them using this polymer clay.
Good for fine detail
Holds shape well
Good for mixing and blending
You’ll have to blend your own colors
Can be harder to work with for beginners
Kato is the strongest clay on the market. It is also the smelliest! It has a dry, stiff feel when you work with it, but your polymer clay jewelry will come out of the oven nearly unbreakable.
When baked, it has a nice, satin finish, which is perfect for many polymer clay earring and jewelry DIY projects. You won’t get this finish from other polymer clays.
Lovely satin finish when baked
Can be harder to work with for beginners
Cernit Polymer Clay
Cernit clay can be tricky to find. It is an extremely strong clay and flexible after baking, like Premo, so it’s another great choice for polymer clay jewelry projects. There isn’t much of a smell, unlike many polymer clays, so crafters with sensitive noses will like Cernit polymer clay.
Cernit clay comes in different finishes, as well. You can choose clay to give a more porcelain-like appearance to your polymer clay earrings.
Different types of finishes are available
Hard to find
How to Make Polymer Clay Earrings
Simply put, polymer clay earrings are formed with clay then baked in the oven. There are so many fun ways to combine clay, but once you’ve made your design and baked it, all that’s left is to glue on your backs and show off your amazing polymer clay earrings!
Tools and work surface
Your tools and your process will really depend on what type of earrings you’re making. And, once you get into the craft a bit more, you’ll have a better idea of how to personalize your equipment and your working space. But, there are some common tools and practices that every beginner can utilize.
Common tools for a basic style of earring are:
- Jump rings
- Ear posts
- Two sets of needle nose pliers
Some basic techniques include beginning work a work surface and making sure your clay is prepared for working.
Always start with a clean, flat surface with plenty of space to work. If you work somewhere that isn’t completely clean and free of dust, crumbs, and other everyday bits and pieces, you will end up with all of it in your polymer clay earrings.
Warming your clay before you start your work is always a great idea. You simply need to work it a little bit with your hands so that your clay becomes a bit more pliable and easy to use. You’ll also start to get a better feel for the clay by doing this.
Rolling and cutting your clay
Next, you’ll roll out your clay to a uniform thickness so you can cut out shapes more easily. You can use an old rolling pin or a press specifically made for clay. Inexpensive pasta makers are also quite popular in the DIY clay earrings world. It typically takes about 15 to 20 sets of folding and rolling to get the clay just right.
Cutting your shapes can be done in several different ways. You can cut them freehand, or you can use any number of items to cut shapes. One tip is to peruse the baking aisle at your local big-box store to find cutters in all kinds of different shapes. These are usually used in cookie and cake making, but they’re great for earrings too. And, of course, there are cutters specifically made for jewelry making.
Some makers poke holes in their earrings at this stage for the findings to go through. This is a bit of a risky technique, as you could damage or warp your clay. The best practice is to drill into the clay after it’s been baked. If that sounds too involved, stick to earrings with posts.
Final steps for making clay earrings
Once you have your earrings cut, the final steps are to bake them and then attach your backings or findings. You may want to use a fine sandpaper to smooth your finished clay and buff with a towel, as well. Then, enjoy them!
Doing your own polymer clay DIY earring project is so easy, you’re going to be wondering why you never did it before! If you plan to do a lot with these crafts, a smart idea is to invest in a toaster oven to keep your crafting separate from your food prep.
Buying Guide – How to Choose Polymer Clay for Earrings
A little polymer clay goes a long, long way, so don’t overbuy if you’re just starting out. Try to pick colors you’ll like the most. The clay may look small in the packaging, but after you roll it out, you’ll find you have much more to work with than you thought!
Manufacturers don’t print an expiration date, but clay does go bad. Test the clay in the store, the way you might squeeze a fruit in the grocery store. Don’t apply too much pressure, but it should mush a little in your hands. If it doesn’t mush, it will be bad to work with.
Generally, avoid store brands when you can. Sticking to name-brand clay makes a world of difference when it comes to your finished product. A store brand would be fine if you weren’t planning to wear your craft, but if you want to enjoy your polymer clay earrings for years to come, stick to the recommended brands.
Polymer Clay Earring Ideas
One of the benefits of being in the crafting world is that you get to know some really talented people. My incredible friend Christy owns the Etsy store LoveRefracted. Christy has years of experience making beautiful polymer clay earrings, and she was happy to lend her know-how to us! Many of the tips in this article are all thanks to her.
Christy’s advice is to keep your mind and creativity open to all the wonderful possibilities of crafting with polymer clay. If you stick to this beautiful craft and master the learning curve, there’s no limit to the amazing things you can make.
Since Christy is a total expert, she does all kinds of creative things with her polymer clay earring creations: metal charms, resin, mica powder, even alcohol dyes and much more. You can see some examples of her talent – and get some inspiration for yourself! – on her Instagram.
Best Polymer Clay for Earrings – Our Conclusion
As with nearly every crafting project, materials and tools can be a very personal decision. If you get bitten by the clay earring bug, in time you will discover your favorite clay, your favorite cutters, and so much more.
As you’re getting going, however, we’re all aware that some help from someone experienced can make all the difference. So, I hope this list of clay for earrings and the tips included as well will help you on your jewelry-making journey.
Think about what you want to make, and use these tips to pick the best clay for your DIY earring project. Any of the brands I listed will be great for earrings. It just depends on the way you like to work – and your style!
If you’ve discovered a new favorite clay or tool, or if you think we’ve left a great choice out, let us know in the comments below.