I’ve been a huge fan of all those dahlia earrings popping up on etsy lately, and then realized that the flower shape was always exactly the same, and they were always the same size (15 mm). And then I was reading Stitch-Craft the other day, and she talked about getting a mold that made those exact same dahlias I’d been craving! I ran over to MoldMuse on etsy and got myself one of these molds:
It worked out great! I used some polymer clay, because that’s what I had on hand (Sculpy brand from Michael’s, if you’re interested). Once they were baked (I did 20 minutes at 275°F), they popped right out of the mold, were very light, and kept very good detail.
The molds were pretty easy to use, but after my first try I learned to be a little careful jamming the clay in – the mold is flexible, and if you push too hard it will distort some of the flower petals. I also learned to make sure the back was flat and even with the top of the mold – when I left excess mold on top it didn’t seem like a big deal, but it looked a bit messy from the front afterwards. Having a flat back really helps if you plan on making jewelry out of it or gluing it to anything.
I tried turning them into stud earrings by simply super-gluing an earring post on the back, but they were a little too large for my taste (see above). I don’t think I have particularly small earlobes, and I know some people like that look, but I prefer smaller stud earrings. I ended up deciding to turn them into drop earrings instead (below).
Making these earrings was a bit harder, as you can not simply superglue the kind of earring hooks I have to the back of the clay flowers and expect them to stick. If this is something you want to do with these flowers or anything similar, here’s how I did it:
First, form some thin wire into a shape similar to the one below. It’s not important that this is the exact shape. There needs to be a loop at the top for you to use to attach the embellishment to something else. There also needs to be a flat shape below it which takes up a surface area just smaller than the back of your embellishment – I find a rough coil works well.
Then superglue this wire shape to the back of your embellishment, so that the ring is just at the top. You’ll need to apply some kind of pressure to the coil, which generally involves getting superglue on something – so either wear gloves, be OK with getting a bit of superglue on your hands, use an unwanted object to press the coil into the superglue while it dries. I usually just get some superglue on my hands. It’ll come off in a day or two as the skin on your hand sheds away. If I want it off immediately, I’ll dip my fingers in a small bowl of nail polish remover and it just rubs off.
To turn this embellishment-with-a-ring-on-top into an earring, you need to attach it to an earring hook. The way my earring hook comes, if I attached the clay flower to the earring hook via one jumpring, it would hang sideways. To fix this, I just took some flat nosed pliers and rotated the loop at the bottom of the earring hook, as below:
I look forward to trying this mold out with resin when I get back to my crafting stash in Texas at the end of the summer. I also think this would look great as a necklace – gluing a coil with a loop on top would also turn it into a great pendant, I think.
I’m sharing this post at some of these places.