Tuesday, May 9

Animal earrings in polymer clay DIY

Ever experienced the thrill of wearing something you made with your hands? It could be a dress, a cap, a necklace, a pair of earrings, anything...

Learning to make and appreciate the value of labour is the need of the hour in today's consumerist world. My friend and the ever-dynamic Sankgetha Sripathy who runs Smudgy Trove, has shared a tutorial of making cute animal earrings with clay.  She has used polymer clay to make the stud earrings that you can easily learn and keep aside for a toddler, teen or wear yourself to show off at a party. 

These simple pieces are conversation starters.

What you need:

-- polymer clay black, and white

-- super glue or multi-surface glue 

-- knife

-- jump rings

-- cutting plier (jewellery tool)

-- nose plier

-- black stud with screw

-- headpin (jewellery finding)

-- and of course a must for these projects, an OTG oven

It's best to share one that a friend has bought if you do not have one yet and do not want to buy right away.

Roll two tiny round balls from the black polymer clay, using your palms and fingers. Press one ball between your palms and flatten it slightly. Repeat with the other ball.

Roll two tiny white balls and fix on the flattened clay to form an animal's eyes. You can add a super tiny ball to fix near the eyes, for effect.
For the eyes, use another set of black polymer clay dots and fix to form animal expressions.

Poke using a headpin to form its mouth, a little below the eyes and between them.

Use another little mound of the clay to roll a cone.
Repeat for other earring. Flatten the cones a little to form your animal's ear.

Fix the ears on top of the animal head that has come to shape.

Now insert the headpins through another cone that you roll, bigger than those weeny bit ears and the face, to form the creature's body.
Roll tiny balls and fix below this body-cone, to form legs.

Go back to the head or face now. Roll two tiny balls and place under the head.

Bake these two pieces that are ready, separately in the OTG oven for about 15 minutes. Allow them to cool down

Time to take the stud, glue it using the super glue on to the rear of the face.
Repeat for the other earring too. Move over now, to the body pieces, where the headpin is protruding from the body. Use a nose plier and bend the piece that is jutting out, into a loop, towards the body. And then insert the stud through this. Use a stud screw to fasten to your ears.

The earrings are ready for use. You can experiment, and make them with animals of your choice, in different colours.

These earrings make for great personal gifts. They can be worn by teens and adults alike. And make for perfect gifts.

PICTURES COURTESY: Sankgetha Sripathy of Smudgy Trove

Content by  Sankgetha Sripathy and Radhika M B

Tuesday, May 2

Travel tic tac toe case from Jewellery box DIY

What do you generally do with the jewellery cases from stores? I have forever been fascinated by the size and sturdiness of the jewel boxes that would find their way to mom's large cupboard made of iron, and get hidden away from prying eyes.

A box of that size can be put to umpteen uses after its original purpose gets served. I decided to embellish it, but not much. I love, love and love tic tac toe games.I love making tic tac toe boards. And the jewel box obviously came in handy. I have seen this game get used in umpteen spaces.

What I used for the piece:

-- a jewel box

-- cardstock to match or contrast it

-- optional is a thick felt sheet

-- a pair of scissors

-- hot glue gun loaded with a glue stick

-- embellishments are optional

-- paint pen (I chose metallic silver) to match the jewel box

In the jewellery case that I had at home, the velvet piece covering the hood of the box on its inside was missing. The other half it was half stuck on the inside. The first step, was to glue hanging pieces towards the cardboard.

I cut out a piece of cardboard from the cardstock I had. You get cardstock the width of large bookmarks. It is about trimming it to fit into the box. Insert it on the surface. I did not want to glue away everything. Just inserting worked.

Once you have adjusted them, use a paint pen to mark out the lines for tic tac toe game.

I used a popsicle stick, or an ice cream stick to mark out the straight lines.

For a tic tac toe box of this size, we would need small items to make it for the game. So the best bet for me was buttons.

You can also use beads.

If you noticed, there was an ugly sticker on the box. I just cut out another piece from the cardstock and stuck it on top of the jewel box. And your on-the-go tic tac toe case is ready. Tuck it into your bag or slide it into your pocket with the wallet, and indulge yourself with a fellow player on that plane, train or automobile.

Pictures and content: Radhika M B