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Rough And Tough Polymer Clay Beads Part 2
Making the polymer clay beads:
Now you are ready to start making the beads. Condition some scrap clay and roll into a thick log. Cut it in two and wrap one part in red clay and the other one in black clay. Cut each into segments. Each segment will be a bead.
Red flower bead:
Take one of the red segments and close the ends so that the red clay covers the scrap clay. Cut a slice of the remaining skinner blend cane and apply it to the bead. Roll the bead on your work surface or in your hands to smooth the surface.
Cut the cane in three and reduce two so that you have three canes in different sizes. Apply slices like petals on the other side of the bead, starting with the largest cane.
Cut a slice from the striped cane and put in the middle of the flower. Use a bamboo rod and make a hole through the center of the flower. This is for decoration only.
Pierce the polymer clay bead with a bamboo rod just after the largest petals. Wipe it clean with a baby wipe, and it is ready for baking.
Red striped cane bead:
Make another red bead. Cut four slices from the striped cane and apply them to the bead. Do not smooth the edges, but leave them as they are. Texture the red bead, but not the slices. Clean it and pierce it with the bamboo rod for curing.
Red striped polymer clay bead:
Again, make a red bead. Cut a slice of the black and white stack that you have left from making the striped cane. Run the slice through the pasta machine on the thinnest setting.
Cut thin stripes and apply randomly around the red bead. Roll it on the working surface to smooth the seams. Pierce it and clean it for curing.
Red and white structured polymer clay bead:
Make a red bead. Apply slices from the skinner blend cane and smooth the edges. Use a pointed tool and prick the surface of the bead, giving it a porous appearance. Clean it carefully without ruining the surface and pierce it for curing.
Shape a red bead into a cube. Apply slices from the second petal cane, one slice on each side. If the slices are too big, reduce the cane until the slices fit the size of the sides on the bead. If too small, make a smaller red cube. Smooth the seams between the slices. Clean the bead and pierce it from one corner to another with the bamboo rod, for curing.
Black striped cane bead:
Make a round bead and apply thin slices from the striped cane. Do not smooth the edges, but leave them as they are. Use a sharp tool or a stiff brush and roughen up the black surface of the bead. Clean it and pierce it for curing
Black striped bead:
Roll a slice from the black and white stack through the thinnest setting on your pasta machine. Cut thin strips and apply randomly onto a black bead. Do not smooth the edges. Use a knitting needle or the end of a pen, and make indentations on the surface of the bead. Avoid the stripes. Clean with a baby wipe and pierce for curing.
Black,red and white bead:
Cut a slice of the Skinner blend cane and apply it to a black bead. Scratch the black surface with a sharp tool. Cut strips from the black and white stack and apply around the edge of the slice from the skinner blend cane, and a few randomly on the other side of the bead. Clean the bead and pierce for baking.
Black flower bead:
Make a round black bead and apply petals as you did with the red bead further up the page. Cut a slice from the black and white stack and cut of a thin strip. Roll the strip into a circle and put it in the middle of the flower.
Apply tick slices from the skinner blend cane on the other side of the bead. Do not smooth the edges. Clean and pierce as usual.
Black bead with red and white slices:
Cut thin slices from the skinner blend cane and place them randomly onto a black bead. Do not smooth the surface. Use a thick, round tool or the tip of a pen and make an indentation I the middle of each slice. Again...(yes, you know what to do).
Black polymer clay bead with striped cane:
Apply 6 thick slices from the striped cane around a black bead. It is easier to put them on if you slightly shape the round bead into a cube. Apply a slice of the Skinner blend cane under two of the slices, on opposite sides. Reshape the bead but do not smooth the edges. And, do I have to say it?...clean and pierce.
Black striped bead:
Cut slices from the black and white stack and run them through the thinnest setting on the pasta machine. Apply them around a black bead. Use a texture tool to texture the surface along the black stripes. Pierce the bead so that the stripes run horizontally. Yes, yes, go a head with the baby wipes.
Black skinner blend polymer clay beads:
Cut slices from the skinner blend cane and apply to a black bead. Smooth the seams. Use a thick round tool or the tip of a pen, and make indentations in the black and in the middle of each slice. Finally, knock yourself out with the baby wipes and bamboo rod.
If you have some left of the canes, cut them into slices and thread them onto a bamboo rod. Or you can flatten the outer edges and bake them on a piece of polyester batting. When cool you can pierce them. These beads are great to use in rougher types of jewelry.
Bake the beads according to the manufacturer.
Congratulations, you now have your first batch of rough and tough polymer clay beads.
If you want the beads to look more worn and old, apply black or brown paint and then sand it away again when dry. The paint will be left in the indentations and around the raised slices from the canes, making the bead look old and a little dirty. If you want the textured structure to be more prominent, try with white paint. Or how a bout gold paint....the choice is yours. Experiment and you will probably get some very positive surprises.
Return to Part 1
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