How to Make 4th Of July Beads- A Star, Flag, Stripes, & Swirl

It’s almost the 4th of July, and I am so excited to share these diy patriotic beads with you! Working with polymer clay is fun, especially for older kids and even adults! I think you would be surprised at what you can do. It’s easier than it looks! Today I am going to show you how to make a polymer clay star bead, a striped bead, a jelly roll bead, and an American flag polymer clay bead. 

How to Make 4th of July Polymer Clay Beads

To anyone who knew Sarah Harkin, she was known online as “The Clay Rosary Girl”. She died tragically in 2014 at the age of 32 while carrying her 5th child, who also died. She made beautiful clay rosaries, and she came over to my house and taught me how to make polymer clay beads as well. She was such a sweet person, and I am sad every time I remember what happened to her. And I think of her every time that I work with polymer clay. So thank you for passing on the trade, Sarah. You are missed. 

For the 4th of July, I made a bunch of red, white, and blue polymer clay beads. They are a lot of fun to make because they have such high contrast, and they’re really cheery! Once you make them, you can use them for religious necklaces, bracelets, rosaries- whatever! 

Star and Stripe Patterned Clay Beads

I used Sculpey for making mine, although any polymer clay will work. You can get sculpey at any craft store- in fact I think you can get it at Wal-Mart! It’s great for kids and adults! But use a cutting board for working because it will ruin your finish. I seriously don’t care about my table- I have already ruined it with past crafts. Lol! So here’s my picture tutorial on making your own patriotic beads.

Materials Needed To Make Polymer Clay Beads

How To Make Star Shaped Polymer Clay Beads:

1. Take some white clay and make 5 triagular “prism” shapes by pinching with your thumb and first finger while “smooshing” the clay against the table for the 3rd side. Also, make one fatter round coil.

Long Clay Triangles

2. Arrange the prisms around the coil as evenly spaced as possible, and stick them on firmly. Then trim off the edges to make all the ends even.

Clay Triangles Made Into Star Shape

3. Make 5 more long triangluar prisms with some blue clay, and fit them in between the spikes of the star pointing inward.

Clay star with blue clay being inserted into it

4. Make a nice big flat pancake with some more blue clay by rolling it out, and wrap your star cane inside.

Blue clay being wrapped around clay star

5. Trim the edges to make everything even again.

Blue and white clay cut by knife into disks

6. Roll the cane with your hand until it is the desired size for your bead. Be sure to do this slowly and evenly so you don’t distort your shape too much.

Rolling Out Clay Lengthwise


7. Slice it into beads about 1/4 inch thick.

Two long blue and white star clay cyllinders being cut into disks

8. Put holes through your beads using a paper clip, or whatever you want.

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Paper clip poking into clay star bead


9. Bake according to package directions.

Baked red stripe clay beads and star clay bead


How To Make Patriotic Stripes Beads:

1. Roll out your red and white clay.

Red and White Clay


2. Stack the clay and trim the edges to make them both the same size of rectangle. Cut this in half and stack it on top of each other again. Then slice it four times.

Red and white striped clay segments


3. Rearrange the four pieces into your desired design.

Red and white clay segments being pushed together


4. Press the cane smaller into a square rather than rolling it into a tube. You can also flatten it with your fingers and keep flipping it on different sides as you go. Finish up as you did with your star beads.

Red and white clay segments being flattened

How To Make A Patriotic Swirl Bead


Here’s a patriotic “jelly roll” bead. I just stacked red white and blue, then rolled it jelly roll style! Use your hand to roll it out to your desired bead size.

Red, blue, and white clay being rolled up


Here’s a variation on the stripes to make a little flag. Just rearrange your stripes differently, then add a blue square to the corner. Roll it out as you do with square beads.

American Flay Clay Squares


When you bake them, try not to burn them. Unless you want a really cool “antiqued” look. That’s what I did. Burnt them on purpose. *eyes shifting*. Ya. Purpose…. (Ok, I’ve only ever claimed to be an artist, not a chef!)

Baked Clay Beads

They did come out kind of cool.
Clay Bead Necklace Worn

Hope you guys have as much fun with this as I have! Be careful- making beads is totally addictive! 😉

Display of Clay Beads

Christian 4th of July Craft for Kids
You can find more Saint feast days and fun ways to living the liturgical year in July here.
July Feast Day Resources


  1. Sugar Pie says

    Hi Lacey,

    LOVE your beads, thanks for showing us how to make them & thanks for introducing us to Sarah & her blog & website I have just been over there & ordered some of her Rosaries…to be honest I want one of all the ones she makes…is that gluttony ??? I have also put a post about her sites on my blog…. Lovely Lady Dressed In Blue.

    Have a great day Lacey, I love all you do,
    God Bless & take care,
    In Christ,
    Hugs Robyn xx

  2. Wow, they look awesome! I want to make them. Thanks for showing us how to make them. Have a great Fourth of July. God Bless!

  3. They look awesome! How easy!

  4. Sarah Harkins says

    Lacy, the jewelry turned out so well- way to go! You make it look so easy! Just so everyone knows not to leave the uncured clay on the table or it will take off the finish! I wouldn't want anyone's nice tables to be ruined by this cool craft. Use a cutting board, please!

  5. Lacy @ Catholic Icing says

    Good point, Sarah! I updated the post to let people know 🙂

  6. Oh my, these are adorable and making me want to go out and buy some Sculpey! But we just finished a tie-dying cake-pop-making Sacred/Immaculate heart Tea Party yesterday (thanks to your ideas, I'll get some photos up soon), so this will probably have to be one of next year's patriotic projects. I'd love to hear exactly how to make the rosaries; looks like a beautiful thing to start making this fall to give as Christmas gifts! I'll have to go check out Sarah's blog!

  7. Laura Ingalls Gunn says

    I adore your patriotic spirit. It is red, white and bluetiful!

    I hope you'll stop by for my bbq on an Anthropologie inspired white tablecloth. 🙂

  8. Too cute!! can't wait to give this craft a try.
    Amy Hutcheson

  9. That Rosary is gorgeous!! Can I buy one? 🙂

  10. Centsational Girl says

    Wow, you are incredibly creative ! Thanks for sharing this, and for linking up !
    Happy Fourth


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  12. From The Heart Crafts says

    Your beads are truly wonderful, looks like so much fun. I know if I started making these, I WOULD get addicted and end up with a whole houseful of them!

  13. Elizabeth C. says

    Loved the rosary!

  14. That looks like so much fun! They turned out so pretty.

  15. Thanks Lacy! You saved me again. My faith formation class is going to make these as sacrafice beads for lent and I'm going to let them know they can also be a rosary. 🙂

  16. I found this site from The Beading Gem's Journal..What a wonderful find..I love the beads and needed something to inspire me as I have been in a funk lately..God Bless..