Festive Clay Earrings: 3 Fun Holiday Styles | Kiley Bennett | Skillshare
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Festive Clay Earrings: 3 Fun Holiday Styles

teacher avatar Kiley Bennett, Artist + Online Educator

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.

      Intro

      1:05

    • 2.

      Supplies

      1:34

    • 3.

      Style 1: Holiday Wreath

      10:47

    • 4.

      Style 1: Holiday Wreath Continued

      9:53

    • 5.

      Style 2: Gingerbread

      11:53

    • 6.

      Style 2: Gingerbread Continued

      3:01

    • 7.

      Style 3: Sugar Cookie

      11:27

    • 8.

      Applying Gloss Glaze

      6:06

    • 9.

      Buffing and Drilling

      5:52

    • 10.

      Assembling + Wearing

      5:04

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About This Class

Welcome to Festive Clay Earrings: 3 Fun Holiday Styles! I'm Kiley Bennett, and forget about ugly Christmas sweaters... statement holiday earrings are where it's at! 

In 2019, I taught my first clay earring class here on Skillshare. In 2020, I leveled up my skills to bring more advanced techniques to my channel. Now, I'm bringing you a fun + light class where I'll show you 3 easy styles you can whip up for that holiday party. 

PRINT THE TEMPLATES HERE
*you may use printer paper or cardstock - I used printer paper and the templates have held up beautifully*

In this class, you'll learn:

- The supplies, materials, and tools needed to make the earrings
- How to hand-cut your own shapes using printable templates 
- How to use products like oven-bake adhesive and gloss glaze
- My technique for perfecting my earrings using a Dremel tool 

Get ready to bring your festive holiday earring dreams to life! I can't wait to see what you make!

PRINT THE TEMPLATE HERE

SUPPLIES USED
*I linked as much as I could to Amazon because of the fast + international shipping options, but please note there are no affiliate links here*
Xacto Knife
Clay Slicing Tool
Clay Cutter Variety Pack
Sculpey Oven-Bake Clay Adhesive
Clay Softener
Gloss Glaze
Clear Rolling Pin
Wax Paper + Baking Sheet
Glass or Acrylic Work Surface

CLAY - COLORS USED

Christmas Wreath
Spanish Olive
Red Hot Red
Ballerina
Gingerbread
Craftsmart (Michael's) Light Brown
Red Hot Red
White (any brand)
Sugar Cookie
Craftsmart Light Brown mixed with Craftsmart Light Yellow and White
Ballerina
Spanish Olive
Red Hot Red
Light Yellow
White (any brand) 

ASSEMBLY - TOOLS USED 
Dremel Tool with Buffing and Drill Attachments
Jewelry Pliers
Jewelry Hardware Assortment Pack
Clear Super Glue 

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Kiley Bennett

Artist + Online Educator

Teacher

Hi! I'm Kiley Bennett, an artist and online educator based in Lexington, Kentucky, USA.

Whether you are joining me for a class (or two, or three!) here on Skillshare, or you're hanging out with me somewhere else online, you can expect to feel encouraged, confident, and inspired to dig into your creative side. My favorite way to share what I know is through my growing library of online courses, covering everything from lettering to Procreate to oven-bake clay earrings! In between classes, you can find other tutorials and resources for artists and creative business owners on my blog.

What will you learn here on Skillshare? 
Answer: Simple processes for creating art in my favorite mediums: digital, watercolor, and lettering. On occasion... See full profile

Level: Beginner

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Transcripts

1. Intro: Hi, I'm Kylie Bennett. I'm an artist and online educator here on Skillshare and I am so excited to welcome you to my latest class, festive clay earrings, three fun holiday styles. In this class I'm going to walk you through a step-by-step process for creating each of these beginner level earrings. If you don't have exactly the supplies you need, don't worry because I am providing a full list for you to shop from as well as some printable clay earring cutters so you don't even need to worry about that part. While I am not a professional by any means, the good news is that you don't have to be either to create earrings that are not only going to express your personal style but they're going to pick the interests of everyone that's around you. What better way to show your joy for the season than with some fun and festive statement earrings that you handmade? Light a holiday candle, make yourself a cup of something warm, and let's sit down and make some earrings. 2. Supplies: Let's talk supplies and what you'll need for this class. First, I have two different types of cutting tools. I have a slicing tool and an X-Acto knife. I also have some traditional cutters in addition to the printable templates that I have available. I even have some bonus templates on there like this Christmas tree. I also have some Sculpey oven baked clay adhesive, some clay softener and not pictured here, some gloss glaze. I have this clear rolling pin which is perfect for clay and I cannot live without this tool. You'll also want to have some wax paper and a baking sheet for baking your pieces. I like to take a glass out of the picture frame to use for my work surface. This just helps your clay have a place to work without it sticking or staining your surfaces. Now for the fun part, you'll need clay. I laid out all of the different colors that I had in my collection that I thought could be fun to use for this class just to give you some ideas. But at the beginning of each earring, I will show you exactly what colors I'm going to use. I wanted to show you that Sculpey makes this really fun glitter option as well. The possibilities are truly endless. For assembling and perfecting your earrings, I'm going to talk about this more in depth when we get to that point, but this is a small sampling of what you'll need. Again, I have everything listed in great detail with links in the projects and resources tab below. 3. Style 1: Holiday Wreath: The first earring we're going to make is probably the simplest one because I wanted us to get started with something that's really fun and cute, but also pretty simple to achieve. This is going to be our Christmas wreath earrings, our holiday wreath earrings, and I'm going to be using three traditional cutters. I have two different circle cutters that I've nested together to actually create our wreath shape, and then I've got a square that's going to go with the top, and that's going to be where our earring hardware attaches. At the top, I've also got my bow template from my paper templates cut out. Remember that if you don't have circle cutters, if you don't have a square cutter, you can always create your own templates and print them out, and you're going to see how easy this bow is to use, even though it looks like a complicated shape. As usual, I've also got my slicing tool that I like to use and have that handy. Be very careful with that. I have an Exacto knife that I'm going to need in order to cut out my bows, and then I've got my rolling pin that I absolutely love using, can't live without. I've also got my Sculpey clay softener handy just in case I need to soften any of the clay that has been sitting around for awhile. Sometimes older clay can get dry, it can get hard to work with and take forever to warm up. So adding a couple of drops of this really helps speed up that process. We're also going to need our Sculpey oven bake clay adhesive to adhere our bows on top of our wreaths. Then in terms of the colors that I'm going to be using, I'm going to go for a pretty traditional Christmas color palette. I've got some leftover Sculpey Spanish Olive Green that I'm going to use. I've got a really bright orange red. I don't have the exact name for this because the wrapper is long gone, but you can easily find this in a variety of different brands. Then I've got some Sculpey Ballerina Pink that I'm going to be using as well. To get started, let's go ahead and start rolling out our Spanish Olive Green and cut our wreaths out. If you've never worked with clay before, then you might not know how much you actually need to work with it in order to get it warmed up and ready for cutting and also for baking. A good way to know if your clay is ready is to fold the clay over and if you're seeing cracks, then you need to keep going. I added a couple of drops of the clay softener and I'm just going to alternate between working with it in my hands and then also rolling it out with the rolling pin. That seems to be the fastest way to get it ready. You'll also note that the warmer the clay gets, the shinier it gets usually. Then you can also see that there's no cracks in it as I'm folding it over, but I'm going to keep going just a little bit more because it seems that you really can't overwork clay. So just keep that in mind. You can see I've got a couple of bubbles in my clay as well. So I'm going to use my Exacto knife to pop those bubbles and then I'm going to roll out the clay just to smooth it over and turn it over to the backside because that's the side I want to use. I have my clay all rolled out. I don't use any rolling guides or anything like that. But it looks to be about just shy of a quarter inch, which I think is a great size to aim for. It doesn't have to be perfect all the way around. My edges are thin. That's okay because where I'm cutting out in the center is all that matters, and I need to make sure that I can use my large cutter. I like to just make sure that my cutter can fit on my slab because if I have to re-roll out the slab, then I'm really having to try to match the depth of the clay and that's just too much work, you guys. Try to make a big enough slab that you can at least get two pieces out of your earrings. I'm going to go ahead and cut. Then make another cut. Let's see how easily this pulls up. Yes, it's beautiful. The next step would be to cut out the centers of our wreaths. I've actually got three circle options and I wanted to just show you why I'm going with the middle one because I could use any of these. If I use this larger circle, my wreath is going to be too thin. It's going to be way more fragile and more likely to break. If I use this one, it's obviously not going to look right. It's going to look more like a donut than a wreath, which could be what you're going for. If you want to make a donut earring, please feel free. I would love to see it. I'm going to go with this middle cutter because I think this is going to give me enough durability in terms of how thick my wreath is. It's not going to snap and break quite as easily. It's still going to get the look across that we want, which is that this is a Christmas wreath. Before I go ahead and cut into this though, I'm going to scrape these pieces up off of my glass surface because sometimes when my clay is sticking to my surface, if I do a second cut on it, it gets even more misshapen when I try to pull it up. Just be really careful, and my method for scraping up clay pieces that are stuck to a surface is to just go in with my cutter almost parallel to the surface and then barely lift it up, and you can even go in a little bit further. I've noticed that if you go in further though, your piece is more likely to get misshapen. So just be careful. It's not like you can't reshape it with your fingers, but as always, it's just a little bit harder to make it look perfect. I want to work smarter, not harder, and I also want to have the least amount of fixing to do with my fingers later on. This even got just a little bit misshapen, but that's okay. I'm going to get directly over top of this as best I can to try to get the circle for our centers into the middle of our pieces. But even if I don't, it's okay because these are handmade earrings. These are for fun. These are to bring joy the holiday season. So we're not going to worry too much about perfection. I'm going to use the same method of scraping this up to pull this apart from those little centerpieces. Then you can save these centerpieces also to be the tops of a different earring that we make throughout this class because we are making three different types. Definitely save these little circle pieces, and for storage long-term, you can put these on a piece of wax paper or you can put them in a plastic zip-lock bag of some sort and they will generally keep pretty well in a dark closed-off area. If you've got a drawer or a cabinet somewhere where you can save those little pieces, they do generally keep and it's nice to have some pre-cut slices whenever you are ready to use them. Pretty gently, I'm going to move this out of the way, just up here in the corner of my work surface, and then I'm going to use some glass cleaner to clean off my surface because I've noticed that it just makes working on my next project a little bit easier. Also, if you're using a clay that stains your hands, then you will want to wash your hands and make sure that you don't have any residue or any dye from that clay. There are some types of green and red for that matter that will totally stay in my hand. Make sure you have clean hands when you switch over to working with a new color. I'm going to go ahead and slice into our red and I know I'm going to need some clay softener for this, and I'm probably going to need a pretty good chunk of it too. This is really hard, I can tell. I'm going to go ahead and get this all mixed up and also make sure that your slicing tools are clean because there's a big hunk of green on my red. Even if it's just the tiniest bit, that stuff will infiltrate. So just make sure that you are not mixing any of your colors together on accident. I'll speed this up as I am warming this clay up and getting ready to work with it, and I'll see you when we're ready to cut out our bows. In the next lesson video, we're going to pick up right where we left off and I'm excited to show you exactly how these paper templates work. They're super easy to use, and I think you're going to love them. So I'll see you in the next video. 4. Style 1: Holiday Wreath Continued: I've got my red slab rolled out to about the same thickness as I had rolled out the green maybe just a slight bit thicker, but that's okay. Now, we are going to cut out our bows. All you have to do is cut out the bow template from the PDF that I've shared in this class. I didn't even do a very good job of cutting and I've used these templates multiple times on different slabs of clay and they still look great. You don't have to be a perfectionist about cutting it out. They are very reusable especially if you print them on Cardstock, which I did not. It's all good, no matter what you do, don't stress, have fun. Then cutting this out is exactly as easy as you think it is. Taking my X-Acto knife, what I like to do to just make things a little bit easier, is just cut around what we don't need and then I can start on what we do want. We don't really want any of this either. You can start wherever you feel comfortable. I've found that if you put in your X-Acto knife and drag it, it does work. Sometimes it gets a little bit in the shape and it can pull the clay. But honestly, it produces the best result. The other method would be putting your knife into the clay and then cutting, picking up, and pressing back down, cutting, and it produces a way more jagged edge, so you can try both and see what you like. But so far, I've had a much easier time with just making a straight slice just like this. Then I'm going to move any excess clay off to the side as I go. We can fix little edges like that. That's nothing to worry about. Then rather than moving your piece of clay, if you can, you want to rotate your surface because that makes it a lot easier to cut. It holds the shape of your clay a lot better that way too. I've tried picking up the clay, moving it, and then you have to reposition your template and it just never looks as good. After you've got your first bow cut out, you can lift up your template and see how nice that looks. We have a few areas we need to fix, but that's easy. We can fix those, no problem. I'm going to go ahead and slice off any little jagged edges that I see. I'm just using my X-Acto knife to slice in or move those. It's really easy. Then very carefully, making sure your cutter is totally clean, be careful. I should probably be using paper towel. Do as I say, not as I do. I'm going to lift away this bow from my surface. I've noticed that there is a little bit of a weak spot in the center where the little bow would be tied. It's okay if it breaks, because this bow's getting glued on top of our Christmas wreath or our holiday wreath shape. If it's not holding together for you, it's all right, because it's going to get adhere to a sturdier piece of clay and we don't have to worry about that as much. I'm going to pick this up and gently going to move it over to the top of our work surface and then I'm going to get to work on cutting out my second bow. Now that my bows is all cut out, we are ready to assemble the parts of our earring that are going to be attached and we're going to use the oven-baked clay adhesive to do that. First, I'm going to find the best part of my wreath and I'm going to make sure that that part is going to be visible on top. Because the bow is going to cover the bottom part of our wreath. If there's any little imperfections or edges that you want to hide, make sure those are at the bottom. I'm going to do for this one, it's a little bit thicker in some areas, so maybe I should actually put this skinnier area on the bottom and then there's just a little piece of something that I want to get rid of here. That's already so cute. Just want to make sure I've got a good placement and I know where to apply my glue. If you can get them looking about equal on either side, you might have to move the little tails of your bow or readjust, do whatever you need to do. So far that looks pretty good. I'm not going for identical. They're going to be sisters. They're not going to be twins, because I don't think I could make them identical even if I really wanted to. It's just not possible most of the time when you're using hand-cut templates and I'm not a professional and this was all for fun. It's handmade. It's supposed to look like it's a little bit imperfect. Taking your Sculpey glue, going to lift up, and then I'm going to apply some glue on either side of my wreath and I'm just eyeballing where those pieces were. Then you're just going to lay your bow right on top and gently press. If you have some glue that's coming out, that's fine. It's not a big deal. You can see I have a little right there. Don't need to worry about it. Gently, going to lift this up. We're going to move this to the top of our work surface and I'm going to glue the other one now. If you would like some extra glue underneath these areas, you can. One thing that you can also do is you can super glue these pieces together at the end after you've baked them. The thing that I have found with superglue or something like E6000, is that it can cause your pieces to snap. There's just something about it, it makes them really rigid. It can cause them to snap. Just be aware of that. But I've been able to wear earrings before that I've superglued together and it's been fine. I just like to make sure that I'm pretty careful with them. I'm going to go ahead and move this piece out of the way. Then all that's left for our Christmas wreath or holiday wreath earrings is to cut out our little squares that are going to finish out our earrings. I'll go ahead and do that. As you can see, once my clay was rolled out, I could not decide which piece I thought would be better for these earrings. I went ahead and cut out both options. Then once I have everything cut out, you want to move your pieces to a wax paper-covered baking sheet, and we're going to set these aside because we're going to wait and bake everything together at the very end. I'll see you in the next lesson when we make our gingerbread man earrings. 5. Style 2: Gingerbread: Next, let's move on to our gingerbread earrings which I'm so excited about because these are going to be adorable. What you'll need for this is surprisingly little. You'll need the most clay colors if anything, and even then you can improvise based on what you have. I found this brown color from Michael's. This is the Craft Smart brand and it's in the color light brown and I think this is going to be perfect for our gingerbread. But if you don't have this color, you will want to have some colors that you can mix and you most definitely have those in your collection. You can use, for instance, I've got this brown, which is Sculpey Souffle in the color cowboy. You can add some white to that to make that a lighter brown. I've also got this burnt rusty orangish color. This is cinnamon and Sculpey Souffle. You could use this and you can add some black to it to create a brown. You have a lot of different options. There's also lots of good color mixing recipes online that you could use. Next, you'll need your white. You'll just need a little bit of white to create the icing that goes on your gingerbread man. You'll also need a tiny bit of black for the eyes. Then I have some red that I'm going to use for the buttons on the gingerbread man. But again, you don't need to do all of that. You could use all white for everything if you wanted to. I've cut out my gingerbread template. We're not going to need any other cutters because we're going to be hand rolling everything because the pieces are so small. That's going to be really easy to do. I'm going to go ahead and get my brown rolled out. Now that our gingerbread men are cut out, we can go ahead and start applying the little details that are going to really set him off. Instead of doing an icing all the way around the edge of a gingerbread cookie, which is typically what you see, and I think that's the most classic look, you can totally go for that. That's pretty ambitious for what we're about to do. But I think an easier approach would be to just add some little details here and there. We can add a little stripe of icing on each of his legs and on each of his arms, almost like sleeves. Then we can give him a little smile made out of the white icing. You're just going to need 1, 2, 3, 4 little strips of your white icing, and that's all. I'll show you how we're going to do this. First, we want to warm up our white clay. Got your white clay warmed up. It's time to start rolling out the really thin pieces that we're going to use for the icing. I know for me, I have three cats and also I'm wearing a really fuzzy sweater and I can get little hairs and things. It seems like my white clay really attracts all of the hair, so just make sure that you don't have that. I want to show you a couple of techniques for getting this to be rolled out into our snakes. First, you just want to cut out a pretty small piece. You do not need much at all. We're going to work it with our fingers and roll it out like this. We're trying to make really thin pieces. I think it's better to start with a small amount and then we can work out from there. You might have to do this a couple of times until you get exactly what you want. Ideally, we're going to get all four strips that we need from the same snake. That means that we don't have to try to make another snake that's exactly the same size. If we can get everything from the same one, it's going to help with consistency. A little trick for rolling these out. I actually have in another clay earring class, it's my advanced clay class, I make hoop earrings out of clay, and I show exactly how to do this. If you've seen that class, you're going to know. But if you don't have something like a clay extruder, then it's really easy to get a really uniform snake. It's just going to take some patience. You can do it. I'm going to take it between my fingers and I'm going to start rolling it from the center and I'm slowly going to work my way out. You can see it's not perfect, but it's pretty close to uniform. If there's any thicker spots, then you're going to take your finger and concentrate on that spot, and move outward. Try that again. Start in the middle and roll outward, and you're pulling a little bit with your fingers as you're rolling outward. I think we're getting to a good spot. A little bit more rolling. I think that's good. I'm going to just chop off any uneven areas and then I'm going to eyeball about how much we're going to need. For his smile, I think we're going to need to make our snake even thinner. I've got a really thin little piece here in the center that I think is going to be great. I'm going to separate that from the rest. For the first one, I'm going to cut that in half, and then I'm going to shape it in my fingers about like that. He's frowning. That's an idea. By far, the hardest part is just getting that little piece to be where you want it on your clay and then once it's there, you can use the tip of your X-Acto knife to perfect it. Now we can move on to much easier parts, details of this gingerbread person, and that is little buttons, and then little eyes. To make our eyes, I want to grab the tiniest little piece of clay. You're going to roll it in your fingers. You're going to make a circle, a little tiny sphere. It's too big, so let's cut it in half even again. This is how small these have to be, really, really small. Just roll in your fingers like that. You'll be able to feel when it starts to feel like a circle. Not only do I feel like it's too big, but the placement is not quite right either. This piece that I'm rolling right now is even smaller. We can see if we like a smaller size better. Do we like the black? I don't know if we like the black. Let's remove it very gently with our X-Acto knife. Lucky for us, we've already got some very tiny pieces of white rolled out. Now we can move on to these little buttons and this red is pretty nice and warmed up. I'm going to cut out three uniform pieces for each gingerbread person's buttons. Then using the same method, you're going to roll out those little buttons and stick them on just like that. In the next video, we're going to pick up where we left off again. We're going to trim off all of the excess. We're going to glue the pieces down and we're going to make the final preparations for our gingerbread earrings to go in the oven. I'll see you there. 6. Style 2: Gingerbread Continued: Now it's time to glue and trim these little icing pieces. I'm going to carefully move him up just a little bit, and we're going to follow the same method. I'm just lifting up and there should be an indention from where it was so I can see where the glue needs to be applied. What I did for the buttons and the face was to really press those into my gingerbread person so that I don't think they're going to come off in the oven. This is how it works with some of the floral clay earrings that I've made in the past. I have a class that shows how to make floral earring designs. If you really press and work it into the clay, there doesn't seem to be an issue. Once you have him glued on, we're going to hold that piece with your finger. We're going to trim off, slash, wrap our icing piece around our guy. You can press and pull. Here we go. As you can see, I am following the indentation from the icing pieces where I had originally pressed them into the gingerbread cookie, and it's okay if you want to take your X-Acto knife and scrape away some of that excess glue. The glue does dry clear, once it bakes, it bakes clear, so if you have any excess glue, it's really not going to be that noticeable, but there's a little bit too much going on here for me personally, so it's totally fine to wipe some thought away. I just like to use the edge of my X-Acto knife and then clean off your knife with a paper towel or another cloth. You might also notice that not all of my edges are super clean, and that's because as the final step before I assemble the earrings, I am going to buffer around the edges with my Dremel tool, which I'm going to show you. If you don't want to take super precise care with this and you have something like a Dremel tool that's a great time-saver, just to go ahead and save time now. Then as soon as this little guy is all glued down and trimmed off, I'm going to move on to the next one, and then gently move those pieces over to your wax paper lined baking sheet because we are ready to move on to our final design. I'll see you there. 7. Style 3: Sugar Cookie: For our final earring, we're going be making a really fun sugar cookie earring. I've just done a basic circle shape. I've already made one just to show you what it's going to look like at the end. But you could absolutely go nuts with ideas about what kind of shape of cookie to do, what color icing, the sprinkles, you could go crazy and I certainly hope you do and please post a picture of those projects if you decide to do that. But for this project, to make this little sugar cookie, you are going to need a circle cutter. I've got one of my smaller circle cutters. You're going to need some type of clay mixed up in a color that resembles a baked cookie. For this clay, I took some of that brown that we used for our gingerbread man. I added a little bit of this shade of yellow and then a little bit of white as well. You're going to want to mix something like that up. You can also do something that's a little darker to make your cookie look like it's a little more well done. That's totally fine too. You're also going to need just some plain white clay. You're just going to need a little bit of that there. For your sprinkles, you can choose whatever colors you want. But I have done a little bit of yellow, some of our red, and then the leftover pink and leftover green. We're reusing what we've used throughout class so far. Then we're also going to need a cutting tool as usual. We're also going to use this cutting tool to make the texture on the cookie, to make it look a little bit more like a cookie. Then we're going to use our rolling pin pretty heavily to create our icing shape. You'll want to have that. The last thing is totally optional, but I decided I wanted to add some shine to the icing on this cookie. You can see that it's got a little bit of shine on it. I achieved that look using the Sculpey gloss glaze. This is something that gets applied after you've baked your earrings. This will have to wait until the final step. You can wait until then to decide if you want to pick some up. You can even add this gloss to it in three weeks from now, or a year from now, if that's what you decide. There's no pressure on that. But it is fun tool to use and it's nice to have. Let's go ahead and get started. This time as you're rolling out your slab, I want you to make the piece that will be your cookie a little bit thicker because that's going to help sell this story more than this is a sugar cookie. Then obviously the white that you roll out a little bit later is going to be thinner. I can see that I have this slab rolled out to a nice depth for this cookie. Then as soon as you've got it rolled out, it's okay this time, I think if the edges are imperfect because cookies are generally not perfect circles like this. I think it's totally okay and believable if your circle isn't perfect. Then after you get that all rolled out, you want to take the edge of your X-acto knife or you can use anything with a sharp point to it to create some little texture pieces around the edge of your cookie. I'm just doing around the outside because obviously we're going to have icing covering the inside. When you're ready to begin working with your white to create the icing, I'm going to show you a method that I figured out that creates the best result that you can get in terms of giving it that really soft icing look. Because we can't really use a cookie cutter to achieve this imperfect shape of the icing. Then we also can't really cut it out. You can try, but I tried many times in the process of coming up with this design and it didn't really ever work like I wanted it to. Once we get our clay warmed up, I'll show you what I've found that worked the best. I'm going to rip a piece off the white that looks about like this, and I'm going to roll that up into a ball. Once you've got that ball nicely formed, this is where our rolling pin comes in handy and you can use anything with a flat end like this. But I'm going to smash this down with my rolling pin just like that. Now we've got a really thick little circular shape. Now we can use our pin to roll a couple times in each direction to create that misshapen but still soft and circular shape. This might take you a couple of times to get right. Because I know it took me a couple times to get it right. I've also got a little bit of an edge that's not so perfect. Let's see what this looks like. This looks like icing. Yeah, I'm going to compare to make sure that my earrings look about similar. Obviously they're not going to look identical and that's okay. But I'll tell you what, this gloss really covers a world of hurt. If you mess up, think about adding some gloss because it's really going to improve the overall look. I'm happy with that. If you need to try a couple more times to achieve something that you think looks the closest to icing on a cookie, go for it. I've also got some little specks in my white clay because white clay is just so hard to work with. It's so hard to keep it pristine. Don't stress too much. Next we're going to add our sprinkles, which is why I wanted to talk about not stressing about any little specs in your white clay because I covered up every single little speck of anything with sprinkles in this one, and it looks great. We can always do that. For our sprinkles, we're going to be using such a small amount of clay that it's almost laughable. We're using like an eighth of pieces this size. You don't need a lot at all. I'm going to grab my four colors. Again, you can use whatever colors you want. You could also create a design that looks like icing, making a snowflake, or really anything you want. Think about how you would decorate your sugar cookies around the holidays. What kind of design would you like to have? When we make our little sprinkles, I'm pinching off the tiniest amount and then I'm cutting that in half. We are working tiny. You're going to be using about that much clay for your sprinkles. It's funny. Almost how small it is. Instead of making this into a ball, though, we are making this into a sprinkle shape. We are pretty much just rolling it down until it is resembling a shape of a sprinkle. I'm going to lay that one down right there. This yellow one actually looks bigger than any of the ones that I've put on the other cookie. Note to self might need to make them smaller. We can always pick them off and then try them again, if they're not looking how we want. I'm going to do two sprinkles in each color. You can just gently use your finger to reposition and roll those around. We're not going to be using glue for this. I did a test bank obviously on this earring, and not using the glue resulted in just as good an earring as I think using the glue. Then if any of these sprinkles feel like they're going to come up, if you add the gloss to them, they definitely won't. But once you bake, if you need to glue them down with some regular glue or some superglue, that's okay too. Just remember that you have options and what you do now always determine your final product. I'm going to continue with making two little sprinkles with each of our colors. I'll see you when we're done. Now that I've got all of my earrings completed, I'm going to place them all very carefully onto a baking sheet. Remember, I've got my baking sheet lined with wax paper, placed that on a baking sheet and we're going to put these in the oven at 250-degrees Fahrenheit for 50 minutes. You might have to bake some of these a little bit longer. For instance, these earrings, and in particular they're a little bit thicker. They might require some more time. What you're looking for as the end result is a flexible earring. It should, don't test the limits, of course. But you want it to be able to have some gift, you don't want them to be really hard. You don't want them to feel like if you bend them, you could just snap them in half. Usually the longer you bake, so air on the side of baking longer, the better of a result you're going to get. 8. Applying Gloss Glaze: My pieces are all out of the oven and they all turned out really well. I did have some cracking on the bow of my green wreath. I'm going to try to go ahead and snap that apart and then I'm going to super glue it back together. That's something I'm going to do off camera just because it will need plenty of time to dry. But I don't always have the best success or 100 percent success rate with my earrings, but usually it's pretty fixable and I'll do what I can to fix it. But I'm setting out some pieces here. I'm debating on whether I want to gloss my gingerbread men. I definitely need to gloss my other sugar cookie, which I'm going to show you in this video just in case you decide to do that with yours. But I'm going to move all of my other pieces off to the side and I'll show you exactly how adding the gloss glaze works. Remember we're going to be using the Sculpey Gloss glaze. If you read the instructions, it says that you aren't supposed to shake it up. You need to make sure and stir it. I'm going to swirl it around in the bottle like this. I am going to apply a pretty generous amount. It stays on the bottle to apply it with a paintbrush. But in the past when I've used this product and I apply it with a paintbrush, I end up getting a super thin coat and sometimes the brushstrokes show. To avoid that, I'm going to lay it on thick. I've got the little edge of a paper towel handy to wipe up any that spills off this side. Then I've also got my X-Acto knife that I'm going to use to pop any air bubbles that we get in the gloss glaze. Let's go ahead and do this. Comes out pretty fast if you don't watch it. Just be careful. Don't squeeze too hard. I'm going to apply enough that I can spread it around to the edge. Let me wipe this off and close the bottle before I use the tip to spread it around. I'm spreading to the edges of white clay. You could apply the gloss glaze to the entire cookie if you wanted to. I think that will look pretty too. I just decided to add some interests with just the icing. Everything is fully covered. I'm going to use my X-Acto knife to pop in any air bubbles. I'm going also to spread it to any areas where it didn't flood properly. That looks good. It's going to dry down pretty significantly. Right now, it looks like it's really thick on there and it's actually not. But I might even consider adding a second coat to this one. The coats are going to need about an hour to dry in-between, especially if they are this thick because this isn't really how you're supposed to do it per the instructions, but who really reads instructions anyway? I'm going to add a second coat. Because I do like that really glossy, luxurious look that we get from extra gloss, so I'm not going to add quite as much for my second coat, but see if I can spread it around that way. There we go. These needs to dry, like I said, about an hour in-between coats. So this one will be ready in an hour for hardware and then this one will need a second coat in an hour and then another hour to dry after that. This is how you apply this Sculpey Gloss glaze to your pieces once they finish baking. I think that this is such a fun touch to add. Definitely consider picking some upper ordering some. If you don't have any, and also tell me if you think I should gloss these gingerbread men or not. I'm thinking I should. I don't know. We'll see. I'll see you in the next video where I'm going to show you how I see use my Dremel tool to buff around the edges and to attach my earring hardware. 9. Buffing and Drilling: In this lesson and in the next, I'm going to show you how I use my Dremel tool to perfect my earrings and then we're going to assemble them together in the very next video. What you'll need is a Dremel tool. This is an optional tool and you'll want to have a buffing attachment which comes with the kit that I have linked below. You'll also need this little drill attachment that also comes in the kit. I like to wear a mask because I don't want to inhale all the particles that are flying around. You'll also want some cardboard or protective surface so that you don't poke holes in your desk. You'll want to have some needle nose pliers. I have two pairs of ones that I picked up from the jewelry section of the craft store and speaking of jewelry, you're also going to want to have your jewelry hardware attachments that you can also pick up at the craft store and some superglue. Getting started with the Dremel tool is actually way easier than you think. It can be really intimidating. But I find that using the buffing tool is such a valuable asset for me when I'm making earrings. As you can see here, I've got my buffing tool attached and I'm just going across the edges of each of my pieces to really soften and round those edges that weren't so perfect when I was cutting out my pieces. You'll see that the Dremel tool has a different power levels that you can turn it to so you can experiment with which one works best for you. But I'm going to go around each one of my pieces until I feel like I've got a really smooth and perfected edge or as much as possible, it's not going to be totally perfect, but I find that it always looks better in the end. Now you want to make sure you have that protective piece of cardboard. I like to use the back of a watercolor pad of paper just so I can have something protective that I don't mind poking holes into with this drill bit. In order to use the drill bit, you're going to want to be pretty much on top of your pieces right over them so that you can see where the holes need to go. I like to lay out the pieces of hardware that I'm going to need so I can plan for about where my holes need to go. In each plate you're in class that I've made, I have never measured. I have always eyeballed it and it's always okay. Jump rings generally come in a pack of small, medium, and large. If you need to move up the size because your holes were too far apart, that's not a big deal. I know my hand is in the way, but you can still see what's happening with Dremel tool. You're going to need to press in quite a bit in order to make it all the way through the earring. I've never had any issues with cracking or with snapping. You just want to make sure that your hole is far enough away from the top that you're not going to break through the very top. You'll also see that I like to drill into the front of the piece. Then I will turn it around and drill through the back to connect the front and the back. I can't always get through it on the first try from the front, so I need to turn it over and then go in from the back. Then sometimes I will turn it back over and do a circular motion inside the hole to clear out any little pieces that are jagged within the hole that I just made. For my ginger breadman, I decided to go with a little bit of a different earring hardware style that I haven't used before. I have this little pack of dangle attachments that I'm going to use and I ended up having to use a jump ring also with those. You'll see that in the next video when we assemble. But for now, part of my process when I am drilling the holes is just to make sure I know what my plan is as far as hardware goes, so that I'm prepared in my holes go in the right place. Another thing that I want to note is that I can always see where the hole goes from the back. I drill as far into the front as I can. Then when I flip it over nine times out of 10, the hole is barely peeking through the back, so I don't have to guess at all. Then you can see my little, I'm taking the little Dremel tool and cleaning off the edges of the hole. But you can also do that with the buffing attachment if you're not feeling really confident in using this drill bit just yet. In the next lesson, we're going to assemble these pieces together. I'll see you then. 10. Assembling + Wearing: Picking up where we left off, I'm taking a damp cloth and wiping off any dust that has accumulated on our pieces from all of the buffing and drilling, which was quite a bit. I'm going to do that with each piece before I proceed with assembling. Taking those pliers, what you want to do is grab your jump ring or your attachment. I like to use two pairs of pliers for this, but just because I think it's easier. You're going to grab one side with one pair and then you're going to pry it open with the other pair. Then I'm sliding that through the first earring hole and then attaching my other piece and then grabbing both ends with those pliers. Then you're going to see the struggle of how strong you have to be or maybe just me I'm not very strong. But you're going to see how much force is needed to pull these things back together. A lot of times this is my least favorite part just because even though it looks so good at the end, it's a lot of work to get to this point. I'm just ready to be done by now. lastly, I'm going to take some of that super glue. This is Gorilla Glue. It dries clear. I really like it, it's super thick. I'm going to use it to glue the posts onto the very backs of my earrings. I like to use super glue for this part. You could also bake them on as well. But I've found that I just prefer to do this step at the very end because I changed my mind a lot and I might've decided that I didn't want to do posts on these and so I don't like to commit until I'm ready to, at the very end. Once these posts are on, you want to allow about an hour or more to fully dry. I've learned my lesson with this. You need to definitely allow plenty of time for the post to dry on the back of your earring. If you would like to see a more detailed look at assembling the hardware, you can check out my advanced earring class because I go over all of this. Also in the beginner class too, I go over assembling and my process hasn't changed at all. I know that this is a little bit quick if this is your first class. Definitely go back and check out those beginner and advanced classes if you want an even more detailed look at how to assemble hardware onto your earrings. As I said before, I decided to do a dangle earring, which I haven't done before. You'll notice that I had some trouble with this attachment so I would suggest planning to have some jump rings available if you're using one of these hardware pieces just because I don't know that they're really conducive for a polymer clay earring that's going to be a little bit thicker than maybe your average piece of jewelry. You'll notice that there is absolutely no dangle with this piece. It's supposed to dangle and jiggle and shake and look really cute and fun on your ear. I added the jump ring between the clay earring and the dangle attachment, and it created a much more dangly effect. I went ahead and did that as well for my sugar cookie pieces, I put that jump ring on, then slit on that dangle attachment and now it looks beautiful and works like a charm. The best part of all is after you're done with this step, you actually get to wear the earrings, which is the most exciting part. It is so worth it to see your finished products come to life, to wear these to a holiday party or Christmas gathering, and to just feel that much more festive. The joy that you see on my face when I try on these really bold statement earrings, that's a true reflection of how I felt when I put them on for the first time. I genuinely hope that you've enjoyed taking this class with me and I can't wait to see what you make.