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Friday, June 24, 2011

Polymer Clay Bird's Nest Tutorial

I'm so excited to share with you a quick tutorial on how to make my very popular bird's nest hairpins. These are great attached to a bobby pin, brooch pin or attached to a bail and worn as a necklace.

Tip: Be sure to follow the baking instructions on your package of clay!

If you've never worked with polymer clay before, it's actually fairly simple. The best clay to start with is SculpeyIII as it is incredibly soft and easy to mold. You can also try FIMOSOFT. Other clays can be harder to work with because they take more time to warm up. If you choose one of the harder clays, rip off a small chunk and hold it in your hand for several minutes to warm it up. This makes it easier to work with.

Once it's warm, you can roll it in your hands and fold it to make it more workable. Polymer clay is ready when you fold it and it no longer cracks.





For this tutorial, you will need the following:
  • Brown polymer clay
  • Light blue polymer clay
  • A smooth working surface
  • Exacto knife
  • Something to attach (bail, pin, etc)
  • Glue (E6000)
{This tutorial will make approx 4 nests}


1. Cut or tear off about an inch of blue clay

2. Work clay till it's soft and manageable by folding in half and rolling

3. Tear off 3 equal pieces of the softened blue

4. Roll each blue piece into a tiny ball

5. Holding one side of the ball with your finger, roll across your hand until it forms an egg shape (set the eggs to the side for now)

6. Make an inch ball of the brown. Take a small piece of brown (about 1/4 of your ball) and roll it into a smaller ball

7. Using your fingers/hand, flatten that brown ball into a pancake

8. Separate the remaining brown clay into equal pieces -- 2 or 3

9. Roll each piece into long snake-like strands


10. Take one strand of brown and wrap around the base of your nest (the brown pancake)

11. Wrap the strand around the pancake, piling higher onto itself, about three times

12. Use an exacto knife to cut the strand and press it gently into itself so it sticks

13. Roll the remainder of the strand till it's as skinny as it can get

14. Cut the skinny strand into several small lines (about 5 or 6)

15. Drape each small line across the nest, unevenly, so it looks like sticks and strands of straw

16. Once you have draped to your liking, pile 3 of your blue eggs inside the nest

17. Gently press the eggs and nest together so they will adhere to each other

18. After you've made as many as you want, bake the pieces according to the package instructions

19. Once they've cooled, use the glue to attach each nest to your finding

20. Wear them proudly -- oh yeah! You are so crafty!!



{P.S. Click each tutorial photo to enlarge for details}

6 comments:

  1. These are really, really cute!

    ReplyDelete
  2. oh wow. what a great tutorial! :) i am so impatient with polymer clay...but maybe i'll give this a shot.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Thank you, I was wondering how to do the egg (: Making necklace with speckled eggs <3

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi there! Depending on the size of the egg you want, roll a small ball of clay and then make one end pointier (like a pear shape) by pressing with your index finger at one end of the ball as you are rolling it in your hand

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