I made another pair of forget-me-not earrings that I kept aside for a separate blog. And here’s why…
I have made a Patreon page. It’s a site for creators to find sponsors in order to spend more energy on creating and less time worrying about how to pay the bills. As part of making my page I clarified some goals for myself: I want to use more art beads (made by other artists) and I want to make more tutorials.
I planned for the earrings above to incorporate both goals. I’ve got the art beads: I made the ivory coloured floral disks from polymer clay and the blue ceramic beads are by Jenny Gholson-Morris. But the tutorial part: not so much.
Making a video tutorial is proving more time-consuming than anticipated – I’m struggling to get footage that is in shot and in focus. Oh, right! This is why I set up the Patreon page in the first place – because at the moment I haven’t got much time for figuring this out. So until I can make a full tutorial, here’s a little tip.
I made this cabochon as a way to use up the scraps from making carved beads. The muse wanted a matt concrete effect. My logical brain tells me this is to contrast with the shiny fragments. I wanted something more interesting so I drew in some scrolls and dots. I thought it still needed some subtle pep so I mixed green iridescent mica powder with a drop of water to paint into the dents. This caused the water (and mica) to puddle in the indentations and not all over the surface of the piece. I did the same thing for the petals of the flowers on the earrings.
I used Perfect Pearls for this technique as it has a built-in resin and I painted it onto uncured polymer clay. It didn’t seem to stick as well when painted onto baked clay.
By the way, if you would like to sponsor me, you can start from $1 a month and change your mind any time you like.
I made the background using transparent clay so that I could add the flowers to different coloured backgrounds. It worked pretty well on the plain blue polymer clay.
However it did cause a mica shift effect on pearl clay which is more visible from certain angles. It was a bit unexpected but I don’t think it’s necessarily bad as it gives the flowers a little halo.
This bookmark was one of the first things I made back in 2009 and I’ve been avoiding translucent clay ever since! Putting aside the confused design of flowers and stars together, there’s a long list of things I did wrong here. I cut my cane slices too thick and then squished the sheet through the pasta machine to try and flatten it, so everything got distorted. I don’t think the plaquing was entirely my fault (beyond the thick slices) but more to do with the fact that I used pre-formula-change Fimo. I used Pardo for my new forget-me-not cane. Anyway it’s quite encouraging to look back at old work and think: “Yuck, I can do better!”.
This year I signed up for the Polymer Clay Adventure. I’m generally not very good at following a tutorial literally, but I thought this year it would be a good exercise to try a run through at least once.
I used carved beads (from another of the retreat tutorials) for these earrings. I didn’t have gold hooks so I made some spirals that I attached to steel studs. I thought the focal beads were a bit too chunky so I added another bead to give the earrings more length.
I also made a pendant with a stamp textured bead. When I made this bead I thought the edges were a bit fat so I pinched them and added a slight wave. Some of the purple coating had cracked off the wire by the time I worked the bottom row, but I thought it picked up the gold mica on the bead quite nicely so I still used it.
I made another pair of carved beads, this time in silver, since I thought the first ones were a bit fat. I included some black beads in the wire crochet but they are a bit too similar to the bead colour and don’t really stand out.
By the time I got to the next silver carved bead my fingers were objecting to the crochet (I think my wire is too hard) so I decided to weave a little cap instead. I also scribbled in some scratches. This is purely for textural effect and is in no way related to the fact that the bead got scratched while I was working on the wire weaving. 😉
I also made a pair of purple beads similar to Kira’s, but I haven’t yet decided what to do with them.
If you’d like any (or all) of the pendants and you are willing to pay for the postage*, pop a comment here on my blog before the end of January. If more than one person wants a pendant I’ll do a random selection.
*Shipping is from England (95p to UK, £3.15 to US addresses).
I have been a little waylaid from my polymer clay so I’ve pretty much lost track of the 2016 Polymer Clay Challenge. Since it has been a while since I last blogged, here is some of the jewellery I recently made inspired by the broken teacup I previously wrote about.
I finished some earrings and a pendant using the shards I wrote about in week 36.
I also made some earrings to go with the necklace that I made in week 38 using canes inspired by the flower power pattern on the vintage teacup.
And since I had some canes already made, I made more earrings.
This month I decided to take part in the Art Jewelry Elements design challenge to make something using artisan made headpins. In an earlier post I showed the polymer clay headpins that I made to use for this challenge. I decided to make several so that I’d have scope to make something other than earrings. Therefore the first thing I made was a couple of pairs of earrings.
I bent the headpin wire into a circle and crocheted over it. I like the negative space that the circle creates. One pair of earrings had petals, and the other was just a simple circle.
Next I combined the petalled circle with the simple circle to create a necklace featuring a crocheted chain. There are a few things I’d like to do a bit differently, but it was so time-consuming to make that I’m not going to change this necklace. Perhaps one day I’ll have a go at making another version.
The yarn I used changes colour, so I decided to jumble the loops to create a patchwork contrast. I’d like to try crocheting from one end to the other to create a more subtle ombre effect. The other disappointment is that the chain links pretty much obscure the flower design. So I had a go at another pair of earrings to see if I could improve the flower shape.
I still need to think about how to link the flowers together without obscuring them to form a necklace. In the mean time I’m looking forward to seeing what the other participants have made.
Karin Grosset Grange
Cate van Alphen
AJE Team Members:
This week I have a pair of earrings to show you for week 34 of 2016 Polymer Clay Challenge. I am working on other things too, but I can’t show you yet.
I used a pair of spectrum beads and matched them with the brightest bead combination I could find.
Things have been a bit hectic with the school holidays, so I’ve been a bit quiet on my blog. I haven’t had a chance to make anything in polymer clay but I have been experimenting with crochet. I found some beautifully fine yarn that changes colour along the length so I made some tiny granny squares for earrings.
I left the squares for the first earrings soft, so I’m testing them to see how floppy or distorted they get when worn.
The next crochet squares are on wire frames so I was able to tweak the shape a little and make them slightly shorter and wider.
I used a smaller granny square and added a scalloped edge to the last pair. They look quite tidy from the back too.
I have been suffering from crippling hay fever this week, so I still haven’t finished the vessel I’m working on. Sculpting and constant sneezing are not compatible. I have added another layer, but I will spare you more work in progress pictures for week 25. Instead I have a pair of black and gold earrings that I made from scrap polymer clay.
They are pretty chunky and retro. As I made them I pictured Grace Jones wearing them in the 80s. I think the long triangles reminded me of her chiseled cheek bones.
I also worked on a necklace for the Art Bead Scene monthly challenge, but I’ll save that for another post. There isn’t much month left, so I’ll try to finish that anon!