Most of us grown-up girls fondly remember the Easy Bake Oven–whether we had one ourselves or coveted a friend’s. But me? I have the best memories of the Easy To Do Oven. I even still get the commercial jingle stuck in my head! “I love what I can do, with Easy To Do, Easy to Do-ooo!” Please tell me another early ’90s child remembers this.
Anyway, The Easy To Do Oven came with clay and tools to make your own jewelry and beads, which was basically a crafty kiddo’s dream come true. If I recall, the oven didn’t work too well, so we ended up baking my creations in our kitchen’s conventional oven, but man, that kit lasted me through many a Mother’s Day and Christmas gift season.
I recently became interested again in making my own jewelry, especially since as a barista at Starbucks it seemed my only freedom of self expression was in decorating my earlobes. These earrings struck my eye one day while scrolling through Pinterest, so I thought I’d make a version that was a little more my style–bold and gold. I had most of the supplies on hand and just needed to run to the store for some Sculpey clay. It was so easy to do, I was singing that ’90s commercial jingle in my head the whole time I worked on them. Which thankfully wasn’t that long.
– Primo Sculpey clay in a metallic gold
– Glittery gold nail polish
– Fine gold glitter (optional)
– Earring backs (not too wide of a base)
– Pencil + paper
– Craft blade
– Scissors (or you could just use the craft blade)
– Strong waterproof craft glue
– Rolling pin
– Wax paper
– Baking pan + access to an oven
Total Cost: $1.65 (approximately broken down according to the portion of supplies purchased)
– Clay: $.50 – I used less than 1/4 of an entire package, which cost $2.
– Nail polish: $.50 – I used less than 1/8 of a $4 bottle of nail polish.
– Earring posts: $.15 – I’ll be generous and round up. This was crazy cheap–a set of 36 earring posts and backs only cost me $2.09!
– Glue: $.50 – I just used two tiny dabs of an $8 bottle. Again, I rounded up generously.
Total Cost (including leftover supplies): $16
Step One: Practice drawing thunderbolts, keeping in mind how large the widest point must be in order to affix your earring post. I kept my earring post standing by so I could check to make sure my thunderbolt was drawn large enough. Then cut out your favorite thunderbolt to use as a template.
Step Two: Roll out your Sculpey on wax paper to be about 1/8″ thick. Lay the thunderbolt template over the top of the Sculpey and cut around it with a craft blade. Then pull up the template and cut out another one. Be careful not to extend the blade too deeply into the corners or a cross hatch will be visible. Although, honestly, if you did leave a cross hatch it might end up being completely covered up by the polish later.
Step Three: Pick up the two thunderbolts you just cut out, and gently use your fingers to fix any misshaping that may have occurred when pulling away the scrap clay. Then lay the thunderbolts to be mirror images onto a baking sheet. Press the earring posts onto the middle of the thunderbolts, leaving just a slight indent, and then set aside the earring posts. Bake the clay thunderbolts at 275 degrees for 30 minutes. When they’re finished baking, allow them to completely cool before handling. They will set up to be hard, but not brittle like traditional clay.
Step Four: Paint around the edges and top of the thunderbolts (not the side with the earring post indent) with the glitter nail polish. While the first coat was still wet, I sprinkled some loose, fine gold glitter on it. You may need to do half of the earring at a time so you can handle the part that doesn’t have wet polish on it. After the glitter and polish dried, I did one more coat of nail polish to seal in the glitter.
Step Five: Place a dab of permanent, waterproof glue onto the post indents you made on the back of the earrings, and gently press the earring post into place, being careful not to let too much glue seep out around it. You can see in the above right image the glue that has begun to dry and the glue that was just dabbed onto the earring back. Allow the glue to set up for 24 hours before fiddling with the earrings.
I was honestly surprised by how much I loved this project! I thought it would be fun to do and figured the thunderbolt earrings would be cute, but I didn’t expect to completely fall in love with the earrings like I did. Just try to get them out of my ears, I dare ya! Actually… don’t do that. That might hurt.
Credits // Author and Photography: Mandi Johnson