These stunning DIY projects—which includes candleholders, napkin rings, and necklaces—are the easy-to-make essentials you need right now.

By Nashia Baker
April 14, 2021
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woman sculpting clay vase
Credit: Jose Luis Pelaez Inc / Getty Images

Crafting can call for a whole slew of supplies, which can take time to source and end up costing a pretty penny. Clay is one material that's not only affordable, but is also extremely versatile. If you're looking for things to make out of clay, we have you covered. The malleable material can shift and transform into anything from candleholders and bowls to pendants and napkin rings.

If figuring out how to cure clay has been keeping you from trying the craft, not to worry—no kiln is necessary for these DIY projects. In fact, these ideas require various types of clay, from air-drying terra-cotta to oven-baked polymer, so there's something here for everyone and their specific set-up. Ahead, explore some of our favorite clay-based projects to beautify your home and jewelry collection.

terracotta candlesticks
Credit: ADDIE JUELL

Terra-Cotta Candleholders

Making things out of clay doesn't have to be a challenge. One of the easiest crafts to start with? Creating custom holders for your fragrant candles. In this DIY project, we kneaded terra-cotta clay and simply pushed candles in the material to give them easy new homes. Try different colors of clay, then experiment with new shapes to really personalize your display.

clay vases

Air-Dry Clay Vase

Creating your own vase is an easy way to make your very own work of art. Luckily, our air-dry clay vase is stunning and easy to make (no kiln required!). You really only need air-dry clay and a craft knife to shape it into your design of choice.

woman wearing clay pendant necklace
Credit: CHELSEA CAVANAUGH

Polymer Clay Necklace

If you want to try your hand at making jewelry, look no further than this DIY clay necklace. You can make crescent-and-tube pendants using a craft knife to trace and carve out half-moon shapes—the resulting pieces are gorgeous and entirely unique.

diy scalloped clay trinket dish

Scalloped Clay Jewelry Dishes

If you love jewelry, then it's also safe to say that you make it a priority to keep your prized pieces safe, sound, and in their best condition. These scalloped clay jewelry dishes can help. You'll be able to corral any rings and earrings, or even your keys, in the decorative jewelry organizers.

terracotta dinnerware

Terra-Cotta Napkin Rings

If you're ready to start hosting intimate gatherings again, you might want to upgrade your tabletop essentials. We love the idea of sculpting your own sun-kissed terra-cotta napkin rings with no-bake air-dry clay. A set would also make an incredible housewarming gift.

terracotta pots
Credit: ADDIE JUELL

Terra-Cotta Decorative Bowls

Make a decorative piece out of clay, like these beautiful terra-cotta bowls, that you can use anywhere in your home or in your garden. Painters' tape marks the pattern, and all that's left for you to do is paint between the lines. Once everything is dry, remove the tape and bask in your creativity.

Martha Stewart
Credit: ROB TANNENBAUM

Clay Floral Wreath

Wreaths aren't just for the holiday season. In fact, you can brighten up a room with a floral wreath any time of year, and this clay option is a great one to make for spring. Once you've nailed down your design, just let it dry for 24 hours before hanging up the colorful piece in your home.  

terracotta candlesticks, vase, and incense holder
Credit: Addie Juell

Terra-Cotta Incense Holder

If you love burning incense at home, you already know the importance of using a high-quality incense holder, which keeps the burning sticks from falling over. And now you can make your very own holder—all you'll need to do is roll air-dry terra-cotta clay into a ball and make a small hole in which you'll eventually place the incense.  

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Terra-Cotta Bird Bath

Anyone who loves birds has likely created a homemade feeder. Why not take things up a notch and make a bird bath for a full-on sanctuary right in your own backyard? We recommend adding a fun design, too, so have an oil-based white paint marker on hand to make your clay masterpiece.

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