Making Beads With Polymer Clay – An Introduction

Polymer clay is a wonderful medium for making beads. Although it has many other uses it’s a fun, easy material to work with and making beads with polymer clay is only limited to your creative input! Polymer clay is not actually a natural clay, but a synthetic polyvinyl chloride composition that is malleable, can be colored and mixed, and once cured can be sanded, varnished, painted, and even cured again and again. It doesn’t dry out so you can work with it as long as you want (although there are now various air curing polymers available that will harden over time once exposed to oxygen and can be oven cured in an oven to make them permanent).

Polymer clay is extremely versatile, and can be used to hand roll beads by simply mixing colors, adding a variety of materials such as glitter, or creating various shapes where the only limit is your imagination. You can make beads with polymer clay using molds, or even use it over frameworks to create charms with unique shapes that would normally be very difficult to form completely by hand. Mixing various polymer clay colors will yield an infinite variety of color patterns and marble looking textures. You can mix layers of it, then roll them into a cylinder, and cut slices off sushi-roll style to easily create the same variety beads for a single necklace. How about creating two or three of these rolls of various sizes and colors, making several type of unique beads, and then alternating them on your necklaces and bracelets? Brilliant!

Although it’s a fairly lightweight material when cured, you want to avoid making beads with polymer clay that are large because in excess they will begin to get heavy. Now you don’t have to make an entire necklace this way. After making beads with polymer clay you can string these into a piece of jewelery along with acrylic beads, glass beads, wood beads, or anything else you feel adds to or complements your custom jewelery. When it comes down to it the coolest thing about polymer clay is that you can make beads that nobody has ever seen before, and they are truly your own unique creation.

So for now I’m just going over the benefits of using this great crafting medium, in another article I will get into the more technical aspects of actually working with Polymer clay nz  preparation, tools necessary, and some more advanced techniques you can use to really make your pieces shine! If you’re just itching to get started go to your local crafts store or look online for polymer clay and you’ll see that it’s very easy to find and is relatively inexpensive. For a few bucks you can get started. You don’t have to buy a mass bulk of it to wet your whistle. Get a couple of colors and start mixing. For making beads with polymer clay in it’s most basic form you only need polymer clay, your hands, and an oven. The basic instructions will come with any polymer clay you get. Once you’ve rolled your beads (or you can do each one at a time), you simply need a skewer, toothpick, paperclip, or anything similar to poke the holes in your beads. You can use various types of threads and string to string them on. You can either purchase clasps inexpensively or simply tie the necklace if it’s large enough to slip around your neck.

If you have kids or grandchildren it’s a super fun project to do with them (and a great way to keep them busy for hours, trust me!). Besides getting their creative juices flowing, it teaches them how to mix colors, and come up with new shapes and ideas. Not to mention, making various shapes or even just rolling beads involves their finer motor skills and improves their dexterity. Have them pierce the holes in the beads and once you’ve cured them show them how to thread their new creations to finalize their own projects in to a full blown piece of jewelery. They will love it, I guarantee! So to make a long story short, making beads with polymer clay is fun, easy, inexpensive, and can yield some very professional results with a minimal amount of effort.



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