TUTORIAL: “Paint the Roses Red” Necklace

I’ve always loved the scene in Alice in Wonderland when they paint the roses with big paintbrushes laden with globlets of bright red paint. I decided to create a necklace inspired by that scene, but with a twist. I went for a darker approach- I stuck to black, white and red only. I stuck to a rustic feel, keeping any “imperfections” visible and even highlighting them.
I am aware that this design won’t appeal to everyone, but that’s fine. I just wanted to write up this quick tutorial for those of you who would like to recreate it for yourself or a friend. Enjoy! :)

What you’ll need:

  • Polymer clay (white, dark green)
  • Paintbrush x3
  • Acrylic paint (bright red, dark brown)
  • Varnish (I use regular Fimo gloss)
  • An oven
  • Links
  • Necklace chain
  • Small charm (optional)
  • Cutting tool
  • Small leaf cutter
  • Rolling tool
  • A strip of textured material (preferably a lace-type pattern)
  • Liquid polymer clay

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Step one: 
Begin by forming approximately 20 small white roses (around the size of your thumbnail). Do this by pressing out lots of tiny circles so that they look like petals. Wrap the first one into a simple upwards spiral, then wrap the others around that one, overlapping each one slightly. Keep going until you’re happy with the size, then use your fingertips to gently spread each petal out a little.

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Step two: 
Place the roses out so that you know roughly what size you need the background to be. I went for a collar-type necklace. Try to copy the shape in the photo above.

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Step three:
Roll out a large sheet of white clay (approximately 1.5cm thick all over), and cut around the roses, leaving around 1cm of extra clay around them. You should end up with two long shapes with the edges curved- both becoming thinner towards the middle. Both middles will be connected later and will hang under your neck at each side.
Now gently press your material all over so that you can see the texture in the clay. Don’t press hard enough for it to distort the main shape of the clay, though.

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Step four:
Use your cutting tool (or something small, round and hollow) to cut out a little circle of clay at both ends of each shape. This is where the links will go later.

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Step five: 
Use some dabs of liquid clay to press your roses into place onto the large white shapes. Make sure they feel reasonably secure, although the liquid clay will harden up in the oven, too. Now cut out approximately 9 or 10 leaves and place them around the roses, poking out further than the background, again using liquid clay. Bake in the oven until hard. This should take approximately 40 minutes on gas mark 4 (or 180 degrees Celsius).

Step six: 
Once hard and cool, get your dark brown acrylic paint. Paint it all over both the roses and the backgrounds. Now use an old rag or a paper towel to rub the surface, so that the paint is only visible in any indents, but the surface is white.

Step seven: 
Drip small amounts of red paint onto the tops of the roses, leaving some gaps. You want it to look a bit messy, so don’t completely cover them!

Step eight: 
Leave the paint to dry completely, then cover everything in a layer of varnish. Once that is dry, too, just add on your links, necklace chain and charm (I used a little key), and you’re finished! 

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Thanks for reading!
For more craft tutorials, check out the rest of my site or follow me on Facebook.

Have a lovely day! :)

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