Valentine's Day Crafts
Homemade Clay Charms and Pendants
What you will make:
In this craft project, you'll see how to make charms and pendants for necklaces and bracelets using
Homemade Bread Clay or commercial air-dry clay. Make the
heart and flower pendants and heart charms for yourself, or to give as
gifts. When strung on cord or a chain, they make perfect gifts for
Valentine's Day! You can make beads to add to your necklace or
bracelet by following the instructions in the
This craft project is great for family, classroom, or group craft time.
The bread clay can be made in advance and stored in plastic bags.
Related crafts: For an alternative all-purpose clay, see
Homemade Modeling Dough Recipe. Bread clay is more
durable, while modeling dough is easier to shape by hand.
Here's what you need:
Homemade Bread Clay in red, purple, pink and white, or other
colors (or use commercial air-dry clay)
- Wax paper
- Thin wire and wire cutters
- White glue (Elmer's, PVA)
- Heart pattern to trace and cut (1" or smaller)
- Toothpick and plastic knife for tracing and cutting shapes
- Plastic candy molds for molded pendants
- Drinking straw and 1½" plastic cap or lid for cutting circles
- Optional: Markers, clay roller or rolling pin
This project is rated EASY to do.
How to Make Homemade Clay Charms and Pendants
Read all of the steps before starting.
- Step 1: Project Preparation
Read through the project, then gather the materials needed for making the
charms and pendants. Follow the craft recipe for
Homemade Bread Clay
to make clay balls in red, pink, purple, and white, or other colors
best for the charms and pendants you are making.
If doing this craft with a group, make one recipe of
Homemade Bread Clay
for every three children. It's better to have too much than too
little. Leftover clay can be saved in the refrigerator; should
it become dry, simply add a bit of water and knead.
- Step 2: Form Charms and Pendants
Select the charm or pendant you'd like to make from the options presented
below. Each option features a different modeling
technique. You can make heart-shaped charms cut from clay rolled or
patted flat, pendants or charms from clay pushed into candy molds, or
flower pendants with flowers shaped from bits of clay cut with a
- #1: Heart Charm
Prep work: Decide what color you would like to
make your heart charm. The charm can be made as a simple heart shape
or with a second smaller white heart layered on top. Make a 1" (or
smaller) heart pattern to trace on the clay. Hearts punched from a
heart paper punch work great!
Form charm: Pat or roll out the colored clay to a thickness of about ¼".
Place the heart pattern on the clay and trace around it with a
toothpick. Use the plastic knife to cut out the heart. Use your
fingers to smooth the edges and any knife cuts.
For a layered heart, make a 3/8" to 1/2" circle of white clay
that's about 1/8" thick. Use your fingers to shape the clay into a
small heart. Moisten the back of the heart and press it onto the
large heart. If the hearts come apart after the clay is dry, use
white glue to join them together.
- #2: Candy Mold Charm or Pendant
Prep work: It's easy to make charms and pendants
using candy molds! Candy molds come in a huge variety of designs
and sizes. When purchasing candy molds, select those with smaller
shapes—no more than 1½" in size for pendants and 1" or
smaller for charms. Some smaller soap molds are also suitable.
Look at your molds to decide on clay colors and amounts. You can
make charms and pendants using a single color of clay or multiple
colors of clay. You'll need enough clay to fill the candy mold well.
Mold charm or pendant: Make balls of clay that
are approximately the size needed to fill the candy mold well. Push
the clay into the well to fill it completely, including all the
details. Use your fingers or the plastic knife to remove excess
clay, leaving a flat back.
If you are creating a pendant using two or more colors of clay,
like the pictured "I Love You" example, press clay into the smaller
details first, without coming quite to the top of the well. Add the
primary clay color last, filling it to the top.
Allow the clay to dry a bit before removing it from the mold. As
the clay dries, it will shrink, and should come out of the mold
easily. Just turn the mold over and tap on the back to release the
shapes. If needed, run the plastic knife around the edge of the
well. Tip: If you plan to add a wire hanger, don't
let the clay dry too much before unmolding it, or you won't be able
to push the wire into the clay.
Decorate: Some candy molds have details that can
be enhanced with a bit of color. Select a contrasting colored
marker. After the charm or pendant is dry, trace over the details
with the marker. Tip: Test
your marker on a scrap of dry clay before using it on your charm or
- #3: Flower Pendant
Prep work: Decide on the colors for your flower
pendant. You'll need to cut a 1½" circle for the
pendant back. Either make a 1½" circle pattern to trace on
the clay, or find something that will cut a 1½" circle. For
the example pendants, the foil holder from a tea light was used to
cut the circle.
Cut clay: Pat or roll out the clay for the
pendant back to a thickness of about ¼".
Use the pattern to trace a 1½" circle on the clay and cut it
out with a knife, or use a circle cutter. Use your
fingers to smooth the edges and any knife cuts. Shape the clay into
somewhat of a teardrop-shape, refer to the picture.
Pat or roll out the
clay for the flower petals and center to a thickness of about 1/8".
Use the end of a drinking straw to cut out circles to be shaped into
petals and the flower center. Use your fingers to shape the flower
Arrange the flower petals on the pendant back, leaving room at
the top to cut the hanger hole. Moisten the back of each petal and press it onto the
pendant back. Moisten the back of the flower center and press it
into the center of the flower. Tip: If the flower comes
apart after the clay is dry, use white glue to put it back together.
- Step 3: Add Hangers
Your charm or pendant needs a hanger for attaching it to a bracelet or necklace.
- For the heart charms and the candy mold charms and pendants,
make a hanger from thin wire. Cut a 1" length of wire and
bend a circle at one end. Stick the straight end of the wire into
the top of the charm or pendant. Let the clay dry. Tip: The wire
hanger may loosen as the clay
dries. To secure, add a drop of glue to the end of the hanger.
- For the flower pendants, use the end of a
drinking straw to cut a circle near the top of the pendant.
Let the the charms and pendants dry for a day or two before
adding them to a bracelet or necklace.
That's it! Your charms and
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