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Easy Gift Idea: DIY Custom Keychains with Fingerprints

Years ago, I had a massive keychain with about a dozen keys of various sizes, various keychains I had collected and random reward cards (you know the ones from grocery stores?). It was a HOT MESS. I kid you not when I say it looked like I was a groundskeeper or prison guard! Hah. This year, I was determined to simplify all the things, and my crazy key ring was one of them. I decided I wanted to make some custom keychains that were simple and meaningful and keep the 2 keys I need (car and house!) and get rid of the rest. 


When I thought of the different ways I could make custom keychains, I had a lot of ideas, but in the end, I knew I wanted to incorporate Lily—what can I say, I’m obsessed. So, I had a crafting day with my four-month old (the same day we made the Mother’s Day gift frame with her footprints!). Can I just say I can’t WAIT until she can craft with me on her own? 🙂 I LOVE this project—there will seriously never be a sweeter way to carry my keys! And—bonus—my purse feels so much lighter now!

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DIY Custom Keychains with Fingerprints

To make your own thumbprint keychain, gather your supplies:

First, grab your clay and cut it into even slices that are about 1/4″- 1/8″ thick, depending on your preference. I heard a rumor out there that you can cut clay with floss and it definitely did NOT work for me. So, use a craft knife, or a clay slicer to cut it. 

Clay in different colors to make personalized keychains

Then, use your clay cutter to cut out shapes. 

Stamping a heart into clay

Once you have your shapes cut, it’s time to do the fingerprint. I wanted to use Lily’s tiny finger, so I had Scott help me hold her. (If you aren’t a blogger and taking pictures, you probably could do it just fine on your own ?) I pressed her finger into several of the clay shapes. You have to press pretty firmly, but it doesn’t hurt since clay is soft. 

baby finger pressed into clay for personalized keychains with thumbprints

The fingerprint was there, but it was faint, so I wanted to try rubbing some non-toxic black paint on her thumb, then pressing it onto white clay. This worked better in my opinion, but it all depends on the look you want.

Baby pressing finger into clay

You could also use a best friend’s fingerprints, grandmother, husband, etc. It doesn’t have to be a baby!

***IF YOU USED YOUR BABY…make sure you go wash their hands really, really well. Oven-bake clay isn’t meant to be consumed and those sweet babies stick fingers in their mouths all the time. BE CAREFUL! 

Once you have your fingerprints all done, use a toothpick or chopstick to poke a hole in each shape. Make sure you do it far enough from the edge, and make sure you go all the way through—I had a few that didn’t!

clay pieces being pierced with metal Clay shapes with holes

Now it’s time to bake your clay, according to the directions on the clay package. While you are waiting on your clay to bake, gather up the jewelry supplies listed above.

jewelry supplies for diy personalized keychains

Once the clay is baked and cooled enough to handle, insert a jump ring into each hole. 


clay hearts with jump ring

Then, take the jewelry string, thread it through the tassel and tie a knot. Here’s how I did mine:

How to tie a jewelry knot with a tassel    

Once your string is secure on the tassel, tread your beads in (as many as you want!) and knot in the lobster clasp to the top. Don’t forget to trim the extra string!

tassel with beads and clay heart

beads and tassel with lobster clasp

picture of how to add a lobster clasp to jewerly

Add the clay fingerprint on and you are done!

3 tasseled custom keychains with thumprint pendants

Here’s a visual of the keychain deconstructed next to a finished one:

visual of how to make personalized keychains with clay thumbprints

Aren’t these DIY custom keychains so cute? These would make the perfect Mother’s Day, Birthday or Christmas gift!

3 keychains tasseled keychain diy

3 diy keychains

Whose fingerprints would you want to carry around? 




Photo of Tania Griffis, owner of Run to Radiance
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Tania Griffis is an accomplished writer, blogger, and interior designer with a Journalism degree from the University of Oklahoma. She started her popular blog, Run to Radiance, in 2011, demonstrating her design expertise through the personal remodeling of six houses to millions of readers across the globe.

Tania also owns The Creative Wheelhouse, a respected ghostwriting agency for bloggers, further showcasing her talent for creating engaging and informative content.

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