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How to Make Polymer Clay Cufflinks
Polymer clay cufflinks

Polymer clay cufflinks with surface texture created with rubber stamps.

Kate Pullen
Use your rubber stamps and polymer clay to make a pair of handcrafted cufflinks. Handmade cufflinks make an ideal gift for Father’s Day or for a birthday present for the special man in your life.

Cufflinks are simple to make and very little in the way of special equipment is required. All that is required, in addition to your normal stamping supplies is some polymer clay and a set of cufflink backs. There are many different types of cufflink backs available, some examples can be found here Cufflink Back Price Comparison. If you don’t have cufflink backs or findings to hand then you can make a pair of cufflinks using a piece of ribbon or cord to complete the cufflink. See the next page for more information.

There are two ways to decorate the polymer clay with your rubber stamps. You can either decorate the polymer clay before it is baked which means that the clay is still soft. The other option is to decorate the polymer clay after it is baked. This means that you will have a hard and flay surface on which to stamp. The key difference is that stamping into unbaked clay will create a texture on the surface of the clay. More information can be found here Polymer Clay and Rubber Stamping.

Materials

  • Polymer clay – any form of polymer clay is fine for this project. I like using white as this gives plenty of opportunity for coloring with paints and other coloring methods. However, polymer clay comes in a wide spectrum of colors and as such there will be plenty of scope for you to create cufflinks in any color scheme.
  • Rubber stamps – choose a rubber stamp or two for your design. Both all over images and single feature images are suitable. You could also consider using alphabet stamps to stamp a word or special message into the polymer clay.
  • Inks and paints – you can use most types of inks and paints to add color and design to your cufflinks. As you can finish the cufflinks with a coat of clear varnish then you can use virtually any paint or ink as there is no need for you to worry about the pain being waterproof.
  • Cufflink fittings or findings– a cufflink finding is the base of the cufflink. You will adhere the polymer clay piece to the cufflink fitting to complete the project. There are many different types available and if you don’t have a cufflink finding available then you can use ribbon or cord (see next page).
  • Varnish, glue and miscellaneous decorations – a coat of clear varnish will help to seal the finished cufflink and protect the paint or ink. Varnish finishes are available with shiny as well as matte options, therefore pick a finish that is best suited to the overall look that you are hoping to achieve. You will also require glue to attach the polymer clay piece to the cufflink blank. An epoxy resin glue will work well for this project. You may also like to consider other decorations. Stick on jewels, beads and other embellishments will work well.

Equipment

You will use some basic equipment for working with polymer clay including a craft rolling pin and sharp craft knife. A cutter, such as a small cookie cutter or craft cutter, may be useful for cutting even shaped and sized pieces of polymer clay to make the cufflinks.

How to Make Polymer Clay Cufflinks

Here are the instructions for polymer clay cufflinks. You may need to vary some of the steps depending on the type of polymer clay you are using. Please refer to the manufacturer’s instructions before proceeding.
  1. Condition and roll out a sheet of polymer clay
  2. Use a cutter to cut shapes of polymer clay
  3. Stamp into the surface of the clay to create a texture
  4. Bake the polymer clay according to the manufacturer’s instructions
  5. Paint or decorate the surface of the polymer clay and varnish when the paint is dry
  6. Adhere the polymer clay piece to the cufflink fitting to complete the cufflink
This simple project can be adapted in a wide variety of ways. Why not make a matching tie or lapel pin to match the cufflinks?
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