Thursday, January 22, 2015

Crafting with Kids - Air-Dry Clay Jewelry

Seems like I can rarely go shopping these days without my daughter asking if I will buy her a new necklace, bracelet or hair clip. I promise, she has quite a collection already and I am not one for whine-induced purchases.

So I decided it would be fun to teach her to make her own jewelry.

I actually have several different methods in mind, but first I wanted to start easy. I invested in a Crayola Jewelry Boutique set. It came with everything we needed to get started on making simple air-dry clay bead and pendants. It is rated for kids 6 and up.

The first thing I needed to do was set it up. That was easy. Then we dove right into playing with the model magic clay.

Now, I love working with Sculpey, this was more crumbly and the pigments were quickly absorbed into our skin. (Luckily it all washes out easily).  So before you get started, be sure to put down a cloth or wax paper to protect your table or counters.

We started with 4 colors, the three shown here and white. I like the built in storage option, but I have a feeling my kids will use it all up long before it has a chance to dry out.

My hope for our beading project is that we could start working on Valentine's presents. This method was definitely easy to do.

A small hole on either side of the station is for measuring out clay.

For swirling, it is suggested that we twist the clay colors together.

Then it goes in the middle to be pressed and rolled. This swirls the colors together. This also helps to keep the clay off of our hands. The top piece here comes off for easy cleaning afterwards.

This was my finished bead. Not quite as well-swirled as the box photos, but it still is unique and fun.

Then I poked a hole in my bead, and put it on the drying rack. Once it dried for 24 hours, it was ready to seal with clay sealant.

I let my daughter experiment and try out her own beads. I also showed her all the other shapes she could create for different effects.

She is really into the big, chunky sized beads like this.

Is she hooked? I think so. I like to think that all my kids have my crafting jeans. But, only time will tell. The air-dry clay beads were fun and easy to create. In fact, I am pretty sure my kids could spend an entire day making these beads.

Do you make jewelry? What type of jewelry making should we try next?

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