Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Super Mario Piranha Plant Earrings

I didn't start my Super Mario Brothers obsession until later in life... around 10 or 11, I'd say. Hey, compared to kids nowadays, that's pretty late! It started with the Game Boy and moved on to Nintendo 64 during college and Wii thereafter. When I came across these piranha plant earrings on Instructables, I knew they would be cool enough for the 10 year old in me (or the almost-30 year old me today). However, I don't recommend making these if you have a bad case of OCD because you might drive yourself insane trying to make these perfect!

All you need is:

1. White, red, and green polymer clay
2. Earrings (front and back)
3. A hobby knife to cut the clay (I used an x-acto knife)
4. 1 toothpick (and a back-up, just in case!)

First, take your red clay and make two balls, roughly the size of large marbles. Next, take your knife and cut out 1/4 of the ball.

Stick the earrings inside the red balls with the points facing up (what I'm holding in the photo) and cover it up with clay (like the one to the right). One mistake I made was putting in the earrings at a slight downward angle, so make sure they are exactly perpendicular or you might have to bend the earrings when it comes time to wearing them!

I took photos of the clay pieces next to coins so you can see just how large the piranha's are (about the size of a quarter). You're all done with the red clay... for now.

Next, take your green clay and make the pots for the plants. They should be roughly the size of a mini marshmallow or a dime.

Roll out some green clay like a green snake and then flatten it with a rolling pin. Now I recommend you take what you just rolled out, cut it in half, and use that to wrap around the top of the pot.

So you've got the base completed, now it's time to move on to the plant's stem. Roll out two pieces of green clay and snap a toothpick in half. 

Stick the tooth pick inside each piece of clay to strengthen the stem and stick it in the pot. You can see they're much bigger than a Sacagawea coin now.

Add some leaves to make it look a little more like the original.

Once your leaves have been added, it's time to put the top (red) and bottom (green) pieces together. Start by sticking the heads on by having the toothpick go through the red head. Make sure the toothpick doesn't pop out of the mouth or the side! Next, roll white clay like a long snake (on clean paper, if possible... you'd be surprised what white clay can pick up when being rolled!). Try to make it as thin as you can and outline around the "mouth" of the plant with the white clay.

Once the mouth is outlined, take some small white piece of clay and put three dots on the back of each head.

Now your clay might have different baking instructions than mine but I put mine in the oven at 275 on parchment paper for 25 minutes and gave it ample time to cool down before moving. Too little time and they might not harden, too much time and they might burn!

Once they're cool, put 'em in and enjoy having a creative and unique pair of earrings!

TOTAL COSTS: About $10 to make at least 14 pairs (which is how many earrings came in the set)
$1.49/clay from Michael's
$2.99 for earrings front from Michael's
$2.99 for earrings back from Michael's
X-acto knife and toothpick already on hand

1 hour to make the earrings (because I'm OCD and wanted the pot a different size than my first try)
25 minutes to bake
1 hour to cool (which is ample time - I'm sure it takes less time to cool)

EASY-PEASY SCALE (1 super easy - 5 very difficult): 3 out of 5
As I said, if you're super nit-picky about details and perfection, this project might drive you up the wall (white clay staying white, the thickness of the stem, the details on the leaves, etc.). However, it's a relatively easy project to knock out in an hour or two, depending on how attentive to the details you are, and would make a great gift for the gamer in your life!


  1. SUPER cute! But, isn't it the tiniest bit heavy?

    1. Surprisingly no. The clay looks heavy but is actually quite light!