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Saturday, 9 June 2012

Polymer Clay Swirl Beads


 Creating Polymer Clay Swirl Beads


I have a wedding to attend tomorrow and I have been playing with the idea of creating a necklace/pendant to go with a new dress I am keen wear.  Below is a close up shot showing the print and colour my dress.

Print of my party dress with colours on red/orange, black, mauve and hints of white and green
Print of my party dress with colours on red/orange, black, mauve and hints of white and green

The print of the dress is very bold as you an see and is almost animal like, but rather than replicate the print and colours I have decided to take some of the elements of colour in the dress and create some polymer clay swirl beads.



Polymer clay with gold metal leafing applied
Polymer clay with gold metal leafing applied




To create my beads I have decided to use alcohol inks for my colour which will be applied over gold metal leafing on two sheets of black clay.



 


Polymer clay applied with metal leafing and alcohol inks
Polymer clay applied with metal leafing and alcohol inks

 
Here I have applied alcohol inks over each sheet of clay.

My first sheet has been applied with alcohol inks in  Wild Plum with hints of Stream and Pearl.

The second sheet has been applied with Stream and Buttercream.






My polymer clay sheets are covered with a thin translucent clay sheet
My polymer clay sheets are covered with a thin translucent clay sheet



The clay sheets are allowed to dry and once ready I apply a thin sheet of translucent clay over each cover.  I do this as I have often found that it protects the colour and leafing from rubbing off when applied to beads.










Polymer clay lentil swirl beads prior to cooking
Polymer clay lentil swirl beads prior to cooking

Here are my swirled lentil beads prior to cooking, these are two test beads to test two types of application styles for swirling but also to test the colour once cooked. 









Polymer clay lentil swirl beads after cooking
Polymer clay lentil swirl beads after cooking



Now the beads have been cooked, some of the translucent still remains and unfortunately the Wild Plum colour has become more pink after cooking,







So after some more experimentation with swirling here are my final swirled lentil beads... as you can see I have included a red and gold bullseye cane into the swirl to give the bead more depth in colour as the wild plum colour was not strong enough. 



My Polymer clay lentil swirled beads, my final design
My Polymer clay lentil swirled beads, my final design


They now need a good sanding, buffing and polishing before I decide on my final necklace design.

Updated sometime later that evening ....


Here it is my finished necklace and I'm delighted with how its turned out, initially I was worried that the beads would look slightly dull but after a good polishing, buffing and varnishing they are perfect and the Fire Opal Swarovski Crystals I have teamed them with give the necklace that extra sparkle, I can't wait to wear the necklace tomorow.

Polymer Clay Swirled Lentil Necklace
Polymer Clay Swirled Lentil Necklace

Polymer Clay Swirled Lentil Necklace combined with fire opal swarovski crystals
Polymer Clay Swirled Lentil Necklace combined with fire opal swarovski crystals

Polymer Clay Swirled Lentil Bead (largest bead)
Polymer Clay Swirled Lentil Bead (largest bead)

Polymer Clay Swirled Lentil Necklace wire wrapped in gold with swarovski crystals
Polymer Clay Swirled Lentil Necklace wire wrapped in gold with swarovski crystals