The combination of polymer clay and wood gives jewelry pieces a totally different look.  The option of staining or painting the wood to match designs is a great customization option. We've seen how Gloria Uhler combined patterned polymer clay with wood frames for easy designs.   In that past post, I also showed how I combined textured polymer clay with the wood and explained more about baking with wood and polymer clay.

But my friend, Helen Breil, a polymer clay artist and designer, came up a lovely approach for textured clay.  Her method makes the textured clay "puffy" . She kindly shared her tutorial below along with images and short video clips to help illustrate the steps.

Helen is using  her wonderful texture ideas created using common household items.  I highly recommend her Six Exceptional Textures class.  You can see my review here.


1.  Prepare the wood frame – I  used metallic acrylic paint.

2. Prepare veneer. Roll out sheet at a medium thickness. These examples are all textured but caned or mokume gane veneers would also work as well.

Polymer Clay Pendant Tutorial Using Wood Frames

3. Prepare clay back sheet at a medium-thin thickness. Texture it if desired.

4. Create the dome effect: Position the frame to capture the pattern you’d like. Press the frame into the clay to secure it. Fingers in the back opposite each other and positioned on the inside edge, pushing up gently into the frame.

5. Attaching the back : Place textured side down on work surface. Place frame on top. Using a flat bottomed tool, press the 2 layers together.

6. Cut away excess clay. First do a rough cut with a craft knife.

7. Then another pass with a blade.

8. If no post-curing finishing is necessary, you can put the pendant in the oven as is with the frame attached. If you need to do finishing work such as painting or sanding, carefully remove the clay from the frame. You might want to put it in the fridge for awhile to stiffen up before you try this removal.

9. Cure at the manufacturers recommended temperature for approx 45 minutes.

Polymer clay and wood frame pendant tutorial

10. Do any final finishing (painting, sanding, etc.)

11. Glue the frame onto the clay. I used a 2-part clear epoxy.

Helen actually finished 6 pendants with some amazing textures.  One classic round shape but each has a dramatically different look.   I love them all!

This is the finished back of one of the pendants :

Please check out the various frames available on my Etsy - different shapes and sizes including the new polygons!

The antique gold bail here is courtesy of Tierracast - they are my favorite to use. You can purchase them here. Also see my post on How to Stop Clasps from Moving to the Front of Necklaces.

I used  my iPhone 8+ for final product photography in natural light. I used  the Orangemonkie studio which comes equipped with LED lights - for artificial light photography in my windowless basement studio. The Foldio2 Plus is excellent . I use the Foldio3 because I need the room for tutorial photography. 

My online class Easy Guide to Smartphone Jewelry Photography is now available. Read more about it here.  

Before You Go:

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Original Post by THE BEADING GEM
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