How to Make Your Own Mockingjay Pin
As a fan of the Hunger Games books, I really wanted to get a mockingjay pin to wear to the movie. However, being kind of cheap I didn’t want to have to buy one. I decided to try to make my own out of some supplies I already had. Making a mockingjay pin for myself turned out to be surprisingly simple. All you need are a few basic supplies and a bit of patience.
- Polymer clay
- Sculpting tools
- Super glue
- Gold paint (optional)
The first thing you need to do is cut off a section of clay. This project won’t take very much, so you’ll have a lot leftover for other projects. I prefer to use Sculpey polyclay; it more pliable than some other brand which tend to break apart when you try to mold them. You can get gold-colored clay if you like. (That’s what I used to make mine). If you chose to paint over your pin like I did, however, color isn’t very important.
The pin is easiest to make in pieces. Start with the head and body and work out from there. To make the head, just form a small oval and draw out some of the clay to make a long point on one end for the beak. The top of the mockingjay’s head is pointed, so pinch the other tip gently so that it tapers back into a small point. It should look something like this:
The body is made almost the same way. Make a larger oval and pinch the lower end a bit for where it will join with the tail. Flatten out a small space where the neck should be to make it easier to attach the head. To stick the head onto the body all you need to do is apply gentle pressure. It should stick. to get rid of that ugly line and to keep the two pieces together better take a pointed instrument and gently smooth it out. You can buy the fancy polyclay tools at a craft store if you feel like they will work the best. Like I said before, I’m pretty cheap. What I used was a really skinny knitting needle that I happened to have on hand, and it got the job done just fine. Pretty much anything will work here. When you get the head and body attached it should look something like this:
The forked tail piece is a little more difficult. You’ll need a piece of clay a bit smaller than what you used for the body. Split on end of the clay and work it into two separate strands. The shape of the tail overall should be like an open triangle. Stick the top of the tail to the bottom of the body piece like in the picture below (you may need to do a little trimming to the top of the tail to make it look right) and you’re halfway done!
Now you’re ready to make the wings. The wings are fairly easy to make. All you really need to do is make two long triangles and then do some fine tuning. One wing should be a little fatter and be bent at a slight angle. The other is straighter and thinner. Really the best advice I can give for getting them to look just right is to look at a picture an eyeball it. After you have them looking right just attach them to the body like you did the tail.
The ring around the mockingjay is the simplest part. Just roll out a ling thin piece of clay and then flatten it out.
Now all that’s left is the arrow and the fine detailing. The arrow can be done in a couple of ways. The polyclay isn’t firm enough to hold its shape when you roll it out really thin so you’ll need some sort of wire. A straightened out paper clip cut to size will work here. You can roll it up in a really thin layer of clay like I did, or, if you plan on painting your pin, you can just leave it bare. Covering the wire in clay helps the fletching pieces stick, but it is extra work that you don’t really need. Place the wire under the tip of the beak and across the tail piece. The front of the arrow should extend past the circle. Next, roll out some very small, thin pieces for the fletching and make a small tirangular piece for the arrwohead. Gently press them onto the arrow, and the pin is just about finished. You can take a pin or a needle and do some fine detailing if you want.
All you need to do now is bake it and attach the pin. The time your pin will need to bake depends on the type of clay you purchased; it should say how long on the packaging. After it’s done just glue on your pin with some super glue and you’re ready to go!