All the thumbprint ornaments and Christmas decorations I've seen lately have led me to think about making a smaller version for a necklace. I love anything that helps me savor and preserve these precious years and moments with my little ones. So, I started researching ideas for thumbprint necklaces. There are lots for sale out there for nearly $150-$200...yikes! But there are also some DIYs out there. We tried a few styles and techniques this week...some were okay, others didn't work out at all, but this one was nearly perfect! Simple and sweet! We modified it a little to make the THUMBPRINT NECKLACE work for us and I just love how they turned out!
I made one using my thumbprint for L to hang around her neck and we made one using L and WB's thumbprints for myself. (Pssst...we also made a little keepsake for Daddy to keep in his pocket too! L can't wait to give it to him for Christmas this week!)
-Sculpey, silver (oven-bake clay)
-tiny heart cookie cutter
-letter stamps (optional, though leather printing kits work great!)
First, roll and knead the clay until it becomes soft. Finish by rolling it into a ball.
With wax paper underneath the ball and wax paper on top, flatten the ball using a hardback book. Board books work great for these little project...flattens the clay evenly and quickly.
Next, using the cookie cutter, cut out a teeny, tiny heart.
On the backside you can print a name, date or initials using the letter stamps. Of course you could print the word "love" or skip this step altogether.
Carefully flip the clay over and on the opposite side press your thumbprint onto the heart. With little thumbs, you can carefully press one on each half of the heart as I did with L and WB's.
Next, poke a hole in the heart with a toothpick. You can place the hole in the middle of the heart, though we chose to put ours to the side. Notice I left one heart without a hole...that's the one we'll give to my husband to keep in his pocket.
Now to bake! Preheat the oven to 275 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper (or foil) and bake the thumbprint hearts for 10 to 15 min. When they come out of the oven, wait a few minutes for them to cool. Sculpey typically hardens completely upon cooling.
Once the hearts have cooled, you can gently rub a crayon over the thumbprints to make them more visible. I tried using a gold crayon first, but on the silver clay black definitely shows up best! If you made this necklace using white or pearly-colored clay, I think any color would shine through. We may try that next time!
Of course, you can also leave the thumbprint as is, without rubbing crayon over top. Just as sweet if you ask me!
Finish your necklace by adding a jump ring or some wire (as we did) and a chain. L and I are pretty smitten with our new creations! So much love!