by craftbits (shellie wilson)
What you need
Beads any colors you like (glass, plastic, etc)
Stretch material for jewelry I use Stretch Magic 1mm size
Polymer clay any brand red, orange, yellow, green, blue & purple (or colors of your choice)
Tissue Blade (very sharp adult supervision required!)
Clay knife, or plastic knife
Toothpick or bamboo skewer
Acrylic roller or dowel (optional)
Work surface ceramic tile, file folder or wax paper
This St Patricks day craft project shows you how to make a fun rainbow bracelet for St Pattys day using fimo or polymer clay. It is a great St Patricks day project for kids young and old.
Oven for baking – it is recommended to use a clay – only oven (toaster oven). You can also enclose your project inside two baking pans; clamp closed, & bake in regular oven. Remove once cooled.
Condition each color of clay until soft and pliable by rolling and squeezing in your hands. Test to see if it cracks when you bend it – that means it needs more conditioning!
Roll out an even log of purple. Start with a ball and apply even pressure with your fingers as you roll.
Roll the blue clay into a ball and flatten. Roll it smooth with your acrylic roller or dowel. A clay dedicated pasta machine will speed up this process!!!
Wrap the blue clay around the purple log. Trim the ends so the edges butt up evenly against each other. You can gently pull and stretch the clay if it’s a bit short. Trim off excess & roll out to smooth the surface and assure adherence of the clay.
REPEAT steps 3 & 4 for the remaining colors. You will need more clay of each color as you go, since the log is getting bigger. I used an entire 2oz block for the red in my cane.
Roll out the entire log until it is smooth and an even thickness. *Don’t worry if the ends get messy – trim those off!
You have just created a bulls eye cane!!! Reduce the cane to desired size by rolling, rolling, rolling. You can gently stretch it too. Cut the cane in half if it gets too long to handle.
Once you get it to the desired size, let it rest for about 30 minutes or put it in the refrigerator for a short time. This helps to firm it up and limit distortion when cutting.
Use your tissue blade to cut the cane into thick slices. Roll as you gently apply pressure to limit squishing your cane. Be careful this is a SHARP tool!!!
Cut each slice in half to make a half circle or “rainbow” shape.
You can also cut very thin slices to cover a ball of scrap clay with the bulls eye design & rolling smooth to make a round bead. See pictures.
Poke holes in your beads & bake according to the manufacturer’s directions.
Glaze if desired. I use varathane – found in most hardware stores. For small projects, use the clay manufacturer’s glaze. The bottles are smaller & more affordable!
String your clay beads with other beads on your stretch material. Simply pull the knot inside the hole of one of your beads or secure with a drop of clear glue. You can also use findings and clasps for a more advanced project.
Enjoy your new piece of jewelry for yourself or give as a festive gift!
***SAVE those pieces you trimmed off and roll them together to make swirly accent beads!
***Dark colored clay, like red, green, etc. can leave some pigment on your hands. To help keep lighter colors from turning pink, etc. handle most of the light clay first. You can also use baby wipes to clean your hands and tools (alcohol is a solvent for the clay) or wear latex gloves & switch in between colors.
***Once you use cookie cutters, pasta machine, etc for clay, it is recommended to no longer use it for food. Shop around for inexpensive cutters at your local craft store.