{From the Archives} DIY St. Patrick’s Day Bubblegum Necklace

I have a confession.  I have become an online shopper.  I say that like it’s taboo.  My thoughts immediately go to a childhood friend’s mother…who I would catch watching HSN in the middle of the night, phone and credit card in hand.  But I guess it isn’t strange at all nowadays…even downright thrifty, with the online coupons and daily deals sites.  I’m even an affiliate at zulily.com, Jane.com, and Pick Your Plum.  And let me tell you, it’s dangerous.  They have really cute stuff on there.  Stuff you didn’t know you wanted or needed.  And you better get it now, because it will be gone in the next five minutes and you will never see it again.  Ever.  But this marketing strategy has worked like a charm on me because I have purchased more items online this year then I have in stores for the past 5 years!

 One of the items I’m seeing over and over on these online sites is bubblegum necklaces for little girls.  They are big, chunky, brightly colored round beads that have patterns on them, and are hung close to the neck.  Like, a little girl version of the southern pearls.

{Leprechaun Pearls} DIY St. Patrick's Day Bubblegum Necklaces

And online, these silly things are like $14.99.  Nope.  I figured there had to be a way to easily make them on my own.  And with St. Patrick’s Day coming up, it was the perfect excuse to make some bright green ones.  Lincoln will have his DIY Shamrock tee-shirt, and my girls will have their own Leprechaun Pearls {I’m officially coining that phrase…}

Leprechaun Pearls cost about $4 to make for a total of 4 DIY St. Patrick’s Day Necklaces {with many materials left over at the end too!}, and take about an hour and a half including baking time.

{Leprechaun Pearls} DIY St. Patrick's Day Bubblegum Necklaces

You’ll need:

An old cutting board {that may get stained from the clay}
A sharp knife
A shallow dish {for rolling balls in glitter}
A jelly roll pan
Some ribbon or yarn
Some glitter
A paperclip
Parchment paper or foil to create and bake on
Sculpey Clay {or other oven bak clay} from craft stores

{Leprechaun Pearls} DIY St. Patrick's Day Bubblegum Necklaces

Your clay will come in packages that have four rectangles in them.  Cut those apart with your knife, and then divide each rectangle into four smaller pieces.  Each of the smaller pieces is how much clay you will use for one bead.

Roll the 4 small pieces into balls.

{Leprechaun Pearls} DIY St. Patrick's Day Bubblegum Necklaces

If you want, divide the small pieces in half and combine two colors gently.  When you roll it into a ball it will create a marbleized effect.

{Leprechaun Pearls} DIY St. Patrick's Day Bubblegum Necklaces

Roll some of your balls in the shallow dish of glitter.  Roll the ball with glitter in your hands again, so that the glitter is gently pushed into the clay {this will prevent a glittery mess each time your daughter wears her necklace}.

{Leprechaun Pearls} DIY St. Patrick's Day Bubblegum Necklaces

So pretty!  If you are a little OCD like me, make sure you have enough of each design to create some pattern for your necklace.

{Leprechaun Pearls} DIY St. Patrick's Day Bubblegum Necklaces

Open one end of your paper clip, and use it to poke a hole in each bead.  You want to move the paperclip around inside the hole to widen it enough for your ribbon/yarn to go through.  There shouldn’t be any hole shrinkage in the oven.  Spread all the beads out on foil on a jelly roll pan {a cookie sheet with edges}.

Bake for an hour at 275 degrees.  Let cool completely.

{Leprechaun Pearls} DIY St. Patrick's Day Bubblegum Necklaces

Measure your ribbon around your daughter’s neck, and then add about 6 more inches to the length….you can always trim it after the beads are on.  Fold the ribbon in half to find the middle, and working your way from the middle, lace your beads.  I laid all mine out in order beforehand.  I highly recommend tying a knot in between each bead, to keep them in place.  Also, you may want to use a lighter to seal the ends of your ribbon to prevent fraying.

{Leprechaun Pearls} DIY St. Patrick's Day Bubblegum Necklaces

And that’s it!  SO pretty!  The beads should be really hardy…my girls have dropped their necklaces several times and we haven’t had any breakage.

{Leprechaun Pearls} DIY St. Patrick's Day Bubblegum Necklaces

The project was a hit because even the little ones could do it {with a little help rolling into balls}.  The little boy next door even came over and just made “marbles” instead of beads.  Obviously, these will be choking hazards so keep ’em away from kids under 3!

We are excited to make more of these in different colors!
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