Screw Eye Findings For Polymer Clay Pendants

Adding Screw Eye Findings - Polymer Clay TutorVideo #724: Have you ever lost a jewelry charm because the eyelet came loose? Well… today’s video addresses that problem!

If you have ever made a polymer clay charm, pendant or earrings that you wanted to hang from something, you will need to add some sort of loop to it.

What a lot of people do is take their charm and stick an eye pin into it before baking, and leave it at that. But before long, that eye pin will fall out and you (or your customer) will lose the charm :(

I do have a tutorial on how to make those eye pins work better, by bending the end before inserting into the unbaked charm. But an even more secure way to attach a loop to a charm is to use a screw eye.

You may have seen them before… they are kind of an industrial looking little fastener that you wood get at the hardware store or jewelry supply store. They come in different sizes and finishes.

Here is a tiny one I found years ago at a jewelry supply place that is about 1/16″ OD (Outside diameter)… and one that is about 3/16″ OD I found at a hardware store (I mistakenly said 3/8″ in the video)… and one that is about a 1/4″ OD made by Tim Holtz that I got at Michaels. The nice thing about the Tim Holtz ones is that they come in three antique finishes and there are 36 in the pack.

There are lots of places you can buy screw eyes. The nice thing about them is that they screw into the polymer clay and are very secure…. especially if you put them in the way I show in today’s video… by adding a drop of super glue to “lock” them in.

I show you some examples of how I used the screw eyes in a Leopard Cane Pendant with a Copper Tape wrap… and on a Happy Camper Cane charm bracelet.

The advantages of using screw eyes instead of eye pins on a polymer clay charm (especially charms that will go onto a charm bracelet)… (1) They are much sturdier and they don’t get bent open with all the twisting that a charm does on a bracelet… and (2) they don’t pull out since they are screwed into the clay and secured with a drop of glue.

There are different reasons why you may want to use a screw eye on a particular shape of polymer clay charm or pendant. Perhaps your piece is too large to drill all the way through… or an unusual shape that does not work well with a bail type finding. In these cases, a screw eye may be the perfect solution.

Just like putting a screw into wood, it is best if you pre-drill a small pilot hole into your polymer clay piece before threading in the screw eye. This will ensure that the finding goes in nice and straight without cracking the clay.

However, it is important that your drill bit is smaller than the outside diameter of the threads, so that the screw shank ends up with just enough material to “bite” into. If the hole is too big, the screw will just fall out.

In the video, I show you what drill bits I use, and how to drill into the polymer clay. I got a great set of tiny drill bits for only $6 at Contenti, which is a Jewelry Making Tool Store Online.

You will also need to add a drop of super glue or something similar, to secure the screw eye and keep it from turning and unscrewing from your piece. I show you how to do that as well in the video.

You have put a lot of effort into making your polymer clay jewelry and charms… so make sure you put some care and attention into installing eyelets that will keep your pieces secure. .

Do you have any suggestions for videos on tips, techniques or products you would like to learn more about? Let me know in the comments section below!

My goal is to help you to learn quicker and easier ways to bring up the professionalism in your polymer clay art.

Oh and don’t forget to give these videos a Thumbs Up click at YouTube if you are enjoying them. The more Likes a video gets, the higher it rises in the searches. And that means even more people will be able to join in on this polymer clay journey of a lifetime.

Also, by subscribing to our YouTube Channel directly, you will receive notifications as soon as new videos are uploaded. To subscribe, click here… Adding Screw Eyes to Polymer Clay Charms and Pendants … the Subscribe Button is right near the top of that YouTube page.

Looking forward to hearing from you!

Cindy Lietz SignaturePolymer Clay Tutor
  1. Catalina, 15 March, 2016

    Great timing!! Just had a student of mine wonder how to keep her eye pins secure! Screw eyes are great. I really Iike adding them after the piece is baked, too.
    Also, just a quick question. I’m working on the color recipes and I’m placing all the color recipes on one page that belong to the palette. (The program I’m using is obsolete so I have to upgrade to Adobe Illustrator. A big job with 86 color palettes!) I’m missing a few colors due to not downloading them quick enough. On the new platform you are working on will I have access to all the A and B palettes? I would like to complete the whole collection. Hope you are seeing the light at the end of a very long tunnel!

  2. Cindy Lietz, 17 March, 2016

    Hi Catalina, sorry for the slow response… Willow’s engagement party was this weekend so I am a little behind getting caught up with the commenting.

    In regards to the color recipes… when the new site is ready we will be adding the recipes in the new format and will make them available for purchase. So you will be able to get the ones that you are missing at that time.

    I would also like to take this opportunity to remind everyone (as we have said several times before), to make sure and download your A-series color recipes now. Because when the new site launches, they will no longer be bundled together in the back issue packages.

    Here is the link to more discussion on this.

    And as far as seeing the light at the end of the tunnel… we can see the light but someone keeps adding new sections onto the end! :)

  3. Judy Corona, 15 March, 2016

    Love this video on attaching the screw eyes. I would love to know where you got your little hand drill. I found something similar on ebay but was wondering where you got yours. I always look forward to your videos. They are always informative and they are very well-produced. I appreciate your hard work.

  4. Judy Corona, 15 March, 2016

    Oh, I think I just figured it out. Is that an xacto blade holder that you’ve put a drill bit in? If so, ingenious! If not, still curious about drill.

  5. Cindy Lietz, 17 March, 2016

    Hi Judy, you are right! That was an Exacto Knife handle. There are other options out there as well. They are called pin vises. You can get them that are double ended too, if you want to have two drill bit sizes at the ready.

  6. Judy Corona, 20 March, 2016

    Thanks for the reply. Sounds like you’ve been busy, so I appreciate it. I have a tiny pin vise somewhere in a drawer. I think I used it on a wire project many years back. I’m ordering those micro drill bits from Contenti after I explore that site a bit. Thanks!

  7. Cindy Lietz, 21 March, 2016

    You’re more than welcome!

  8. Dixie Ann, 15 March, 2016

    Thanks for the video Cindy. I really never thought much about using screw eyes since you showed us that neat trick of securing the eye pins but I see this is much more secure. Such a clever teacher you are!

  9. Cindy Lietz, 17 March, 2016

    Thank you DIxie Ann! It feels good to be called clever! :)

  10. Marion Rayner, 16 March, 2016

    Hi Cindy
    Thank you so much, I can’t believe I’ve been struggling al this time trying to keep an eye pin in my pendants, when the answer is so simple and easy. Also the fact that it can be added to rounded shapes is fantastic. I have a whole bunch of large round beads that I can get ‘screwing’ with straight away!

  11. Cindy Lietz, 17 March, 2016

    Happy screwing Marion! :)

  12. Krithika P, 17 March, 2016

    I’ve been using screw eyes for charms for a while now. I like using larger ones from hardware stores for large pieces that will become keychains or purse charms. The super glue idea is great! I love the idea of some additional security.
    Also, the bead used for the illustration is gorgeous! Is that a variation of the aurora technique?

  13. Cindy Lietz, 17 March, 2016

    Thanks Krithika! No that is not an Aurora bead, but actually one made up of scrap translucent clay and crackled paint. I should put some thought into recreating that and coming up with a tutorial. I do like how it turned out too!

  14. Barbara Knight, 18 March, 2016

    Thanks so much for this and ALL your videos as I learn something new each time! I am new to
    Polymer so every bit helps.

    I have often wondered about my work space and how best to situate it and tools. Seems I’m always trying to find the best tool or item to start or finish something and can’t quite get my hand on it! Being short on patience, I’m forever arranging and rearranging the location of things.
    Has there been any information of how you and others arrange things for working (or playing) with clay, or is it more of a personal choice?
    Thanks again, B

  15. Cindy Lietz, 18 March, 2016

    Hi Barbara, thank you soomuch for your comment! I do have a video on how to organize your workspace into zones. I believe it is important to organize your tools and supplies according to what they are and how often you use things. This video should help you…

    How I Organize By Zones In My Polymer Clay Studio

  16. Jeanne Wertman, 18 March, 2016

    Hi Cindy…I love that you have put me onto wonderful tools to buy for my polymer clay…I first got the big slicer from Lucy …then just got the “everything in the bag” extruder…really gotta quit this..but I can’t find a good site to tell what discs go with what…thought you could help. I know the heart one
    as it is easy, but could you show some of the others? I think it is heard to tell what they are by just looking at them….thanks……………Jeanne

  17. Cindy Lietz, 18 March, 2016

    Hi Jeanne, I plan to do more with showing people which disks go with which ones, but there are only so many hours and there are lots of products and techniques that I also need to show everyone. You may want to check out the Lucy Clay website. They have done several patterns showing cool combinations of lots of the different disks which should give you plenty of ideas for now, until I can get around to making them myself.

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