There are multiple ways to work with polymer clay to deliver stunning results. Although your options are virtually endless, there are five essential techniques involved when making polymer clay jewelry.

1. Conditioning 

Before starting any jewelry project, you'll have to condition your clay to make it soft and easy to work with. To do this:

  • Knead it with your hands and compress it until it's thin enough to pass through a Sculpey Tools™ Clay Conditioning Machine.
  • Prepare the clay for jewelry by passing it through the clay conditioning machine, ensuring it has the same consistency throughout. You can also condition clay by hand using a rolling pin and rerolling and folding it repeatedly.
  • If using your hands, use a heat lamp or hairdryer to make the clay easier to condition. 

2. Color-Making

You can mix Sculpey® clay colors the same way you condition the clay. Simply combine two or more colors and go through the conditioning process until you achieve the desired color or effect. Skinner blends that blend one color into another is considered a popular technique for creating beautiful jewelry pieces with polymer clay. 

3. Shaping and Forming

You can shape polymer clay in various ways — coil it, stamp it, texture it, layer it, mold it, weave it, ruffle it and even carve out designs! Caning is one of the most creative polymer clay techniques because it allows you to show off designs such as stars, flowers, leaves or other colorful patterns. 

4. Curing 

Curing refers to hardening and preserving your polymer clay jewelry creations. We suggest baking your jewelry pieces on disposable foil, wax paper, a metal baking sheet or the Sculpey Tools™ Oven-Safe Work Mat

For more information on how long to bake your piece or what Sculpey® brand is best for your project, check out our FAQ page where there are tons of techniques and tips for working with clay. 

5. Finishing 

After your jewelry masterpieces are cooled and cured, they can be finished like any other jewelry creation. Finishing polymer clay involves the following processes:

  1. Wet sanding with a sanding sponge or waterproof sandpaper
  2. Using progressively finer grits
  3. Dry polishing with a rotary tool and a cloth buffing wheel
  4. Coating with a thin layer of clear sealant or varnish to protect or highlight certain areas 

Bring Your Project to Life With Sculpey Premo™ Today 

At Sculpey®, we want to help you create confidently with the most beautiful color palettes on the market. Feel free to explore our tools and Sculpey® products for all the accessories you need to make your project unique. We recommend Sculpey Premo™ clay for making your swirling rainbow pendant. Order yours today to get started!