18

Modern DIY Clay & Wood Bead Mobiles

Add a touch of whimsy to your walls with these modern DIY clay and wood bead mobiles (using polymer clay).Today, I’m popping in to share these DIY Polymer Clay and Wood Bead Mobiles that I recently created for our foyer. This project had all the elements that I love about crafting: architectural shapes, hard and soft elements, a bright palette, varying textures, and best of all, getting my hands dirty with a new favourite medium – polymer clay.

I gotta say, polymer clay has quickly become one of my newest favourite crafting materials. There are so many varieties of projects to create using this medium from home decor, jewelry, art and everything in between. Last year, I created 3 super-easy DIY Clay Wall Hooks using polymer clay so that I could hang a trio of Mini Wall Weavings on something a bit more decorative. After that project, I ended up instantly falling in love with clay (if you can fall in love with clay, that is 😉 ). And since I love mixing textures in the home, clay has become a natural extension of my creative process.

So, if you are looking to add a bit more personality to your home, I would highly recommend you try crafting with polymer clay. It is a truly unique material that anyone can learn to use. With some practice and experimentation, you can create some wonderful projects with it.

(This post contains affiliate links. See my full disclosure policy here)

In order to craft today’s DIY, you’ll need the following MATERIALS:

DIY Clay & Wood Bead Mobiles - Materials Needed

STEPS

Step 1:  Roll Out Clay

Cut off a small piece of clay using the flexible clay cutter or other sharp tool.

DIY Clay and Wood Bead Mobiles - Cut Polymer Clay

‘Condition’ the clay by rolling it in your hands. This process warms the clay and makes it more pliable. If the clay you are working with is a bit dry (i.e., if there are still cracks when you bend it after conditioning) add a drop or two of clay softener or baby oil.  Once conditioned, roll the clay into a ball.

DIY Clay and Wood Bead Mobiles - Condition Polymer Clay

Place the clay on a non-skid mat (or wax paper) and roll out with a rolling pin to about 1/4 inch thickness. Using a cookie cutter, press into the clay to create your circle. Remove excess.

DIY Clay and Wood Bead Mobiles - roll out polymer clay

Taking a toothpick, tunnel out a hole through the side of the circle.

DIY Clay and Wood Bead Mobiles - poke a hole through the side of your polymer clay.

Tip:  Instead of pushing the toothpick through in one continuous motion, push through using small, quick, stabbing motions. This will prevent the circle from deforming. If you are using a wooden toothpick, as I did here, add a lubricant like baby oil or your clay softener for easier insertion.

DIY Clay and Wood Bead Mobiles - poke a hole through the side of your polymer clay.

Use the same steps for creating the rest of your circles, triangles and half moons. For this project, I used 2 different sizes of circles (4 the same size, and 1 slightly larger one for the center of the mobile).

Tip: If you cannot find triangular or half moon cookie cutters, simply use diamond and oval cutters and then cut them in half.

Step 2:  Bake Clay

Place the clay mat (or wax paper) with all your ‘clay cookies’ onto a baking pan and bake in the oven according to the instructions on the clay packaging.

DIY Clay and Wood Bead Mobiles - bake polymer clay in oven.

As a general rule of thumb, oven-bake clay is baked for a half hour for every quarter inch of clay. For more on this process see Baking Polymer Perfectly Every Time.

Once fully baked, remove the clay from the oven. Let cool before proceeding.

Step 3:  Paint Wood Beads (optional)

While your clay is baking, paint your wood beads. (If you love the look of natural wood, then you can skip this process. Because I have mustard yellow in my foyer, I decided to add the same colour to the wood beads).

Tip: When painting wood beads, the easiest/mess-free option is to load them onto a skewer and add washi tape between each bead to separate and secure.

DIY Clay and Wood Bead Mobiles - paint beads

Then simply paint the beads. Let the beads dry for 1 full hour before proceeding.

Step 4:  Add Yarn & Glue

Feed your yarn or twine through the clay and wood beads. Make sure to add a dab of glue at the opening of each hole and let dry.

DIY Clay and Wood Bead Mobiles - feed string through holes of polymer clay and beads.

Tip:  Lay out your mobiles on newspaper to allow excess drip from glue.

Step 5: Hang Your Mobiles

Now it’s time to hang your creation. I added mine to an empty wall in our foyer and really love how much personality they bring to the space.

Add a touch of whimsy to your walls with these modern DIY clay and wood bead mobiles (using polymer clay).

Add a touch of whimsy to your walls with these modern DIY clay and wood bead mobiles (using polymer clay).

Add a touch of whimsy to your walls with these modern DIY clay and wood bead mobiles (using polymer clay).

Add a touch of whimsy to your walls with these modern DIY clay and wood bead mobiles (using polymer clay).

Add a touch of whimsy to your walls with these modern DIY clay and wood bead mobiles (using polymer clay).

Add a touch of whimsy to your walls with these modern DIY clay and wood bead mobiles (using polymer clay).

You can also experiment a little. Hang one strand and see just how much style this subtle addition makes to any vignette (as it did on the opposite wall of our foyer).

Add a touch of whimsy to your walls with these modern DIY clay and wood bead mobiles (using polymer clay).

I truly believe that a house is not a home without a bit of whimsy to brighten a room. It’s all in the details 🙂

Happy crafting 🙂

Add a touch of whimsy to your walls with these modern DIY clay and wood bead mobiles (using polymer clay).

 

For more craft, DIY and home style tips from around the web, check out the following link parties: Merry MondayWelcome Home WednesdaysMad SkillsTutorials and TipsFamily Joy Blog Link UpPretty Pintastic PartyThe Creative CornerCraft Schooling SundaySnickerdoodle Create-Bake-MakeBest Friday Features.

  • Mary-the boondocks blog
    April 3, 2017 at 6:49 am

    I love this idea Jelica! It is crisp, clean and oh so modern! I’ll have to give clay a try. The only thing I’ve ever made with clay is a dragon egg.

    • Jelica
      April 3, 2017 at 4:39 pm

      I would definitely encourage you to try it, Mary. You have a real talent for creativity (as your latest bedroom refresh on your blog shows), so I could really see you making good use out of clay crafts. Have a great week!

  • Gail @Purple Hues and Me
    April 3, 2017 at 8:53 am

    Love your unique clay mobile, Jelica! I’ve had a clay project in mind for quite awhile now (at least a year) and just recently purchased some clay polymer – only because I had a 60% off coupon. I hope it doesn’t take another year to actually use it. Your easy to follow tute certainly helps to motivate me. It so well done!

    • Jelica
      April 3, 2017 at 4:45 pm

      Thank you Gail! I have to say, when I first encountered clay crafts, it all seemed a little intimidating. But after experimenting with it for a time, I got the hang of it and now have a few projects in mind for it. I really do love the creative possibilities. I am glad you had that coupon. I hope you don’t wait too long to use up that clay!

  • Deepti
    April 4, 2017 at 11:53 pm

    Too good!!very very modern. I would love to try this.but I dont have oven at my place. I have microwave. Any suggestions??

    • Jelica
      April 5, 2017 at 7:40 pm

      Hi Deepti! It’s not recommended to use the microwave because the process will deform and/or burn the clay since microwaves don’t heat evenly. There may also be health and safety concerns produced by the fumes. HOWEVER there are some crafters who have used a microwave but only after completely submerging the clay in water in a microwave-safe container. I have never tried this, but here are a couple of articles that discuss this process: 1. http://bit.ly/2oKDH36 and 2. http://bit.ly/2nZmEdy Here is a discussion board that discusses the pros and cons of using a microwave: http://bit.ly/2oKBJQ4 Hope this helps!

  • creativejewishmom/sara
    April 9, 2017 at 2:04 am

    Fantastic, love it! I’ve been thinking about beads and clay and wall hangings too, and have made a bunch of large beads in a few shapes at the ceramics studio that I go to with my son……waiting for them all to be fired, then need to use them some how! thanks for the inspiration and for sharing on craft schooling sunday!

    • Jelica
      April 9, 2017 at 7:41 am

      It’s great that you have a ceramics studio near your home. You can do so many more creative things there. I took a pottery class once a few years back and it was fun to see how things turn out once their out of the kiln. Would love to see what you end up doing with your items – you should definitely share it on your blog. Take care!

  • vasudha K.s
    April 9, 2017 at 9:43 am

    These are lovely and seems to be easy. THanks for the tutorials, and I am going to try it soon

    • Jelica
      April 9, 2017 at 11:00 am

      Thank you! I hope you do. It’s a great way to add something a little unique in the home and something that’s not easy to find in typical home decor stores. Take care!

  • Laurie
    April 9, 2017 at 2:00 pm

    Jelica, This is my favorite post of the week! I love your modern DIY Clay and wood bead mobile! Pinned! Thanks so much for sharing it at Snickerdoodle!

    • Jelica
      April 9, 2017 at 3:48 pm

      Thanks Laurie! You are such a creative gal, so I take your comments as a real compliment! Take care 🙂

  • Beverly
    April 15, 2017 at 9:53 am

    What a fun piece of artwork! It looks great. Thanks for sharing the tutorial with us at Snickerdoodle! We’ll be featuring this at today’s party! Hope to see you there.

    • Jelica
      April 15, 2017 at 11:06 pm

      Thanks so much for the feature, Beverly!

  • Christene Holder
    April 19, 2017 at 9:29 pm

    OOooo I Love the modern look of this mobile!!! So pretty and clean looking. I haven’t worked with clay in so long but reading this post really makes me want to try it out again. I also love the geometric shapes. Thanks for sharing this tutorial and thanks for sharing with us on the Family Joy Blog Link Party!

    >> Christene
    Keys to Inspiration

    • Jelica
      April 20, 2017 at 6:29 pm

      Thanks Christene! You should definitely start playing around with Polymer clay again. It will add a sweet touch to your home (which is beautiful, BTW)!

  • Cristina at Ava's Alphabet
    April 23, 2017 at 12:43 am

    Such a fun, clever project! I want to go out and get some polymer clay now! LOVE!!! Pinned and sharing. Thank you for joining us at Family Joy Blog Link-Up Party. I hope you will join our next party starting Sunday at noon EST.

    • Jelica
      April 23, 2017 at 7:50 am

      Thank you Cristina! It’s a new favourite medium that I plan on incorporating in more of my craft projects. I have a few ideas already ‘cooking’! (pardon the pun – dork alert 😉 )