5.31.2011

Carved polymer beads tutorial...

As promised, I put together a tutorial for carving polymer clay. Be very careful with the exacto blade and let me know if you have any questions! This tutorial is for personal use only, peeps: make it for youself, make it for your mom...please don't make it to sell.

Materials
    1 small package of Fimo Clay (will make 8 medium-sized beads)
    exacto knife with a sharp blade
    wooden skewer
bead tutorialInstructions
    1. Break off a small piece of the clay and knead until it’s pliable. The size depends on the bead size you’d like to make, but plan for a little bit bigger than the final bead you'd like, as you'll be shaving off some of the clay.
    2. Roll the clay into a ball (I flattened mine slightly).

bead tutorial
    3. Carefully twist the wooden skewer into the clay from one side until you can see it poking through. Remove the skewer and poke into the hole from the opposite side. This will make your holes cleaner and help prevent rough edges.

bead tutorial
    4. If the holes do have rough edges, just use your finger to smooth them out.

bead tutorial
    5. Repeat steps as necessary for any additional beads.
    6. Place a sheet of parchment on a cookie sheet and carefully set your beads on the parchment.
    7. Following the directions on the package, bake your beads.
    8. Allow your beads to cool.
    9. Once cooled, use your exacto knife to carve into the clay, shaving away small sections at a time. You may want to use a self-healing mat underneath your work area. With the black clay, the knife will create striations going in the same direction as your blade. Change the direction of your cuts in order to change the striations. I didn't experience this with any of the other clay colors.

bead tutorial
bead tutorial
    10. Thread your beads onto a necklace or piece of string. I used a sterling silver ball chain, but you can use whatever you’d like.
    11. Rock that necklace, baby!

handmade necklace
handmade necklace

13 comments:

Kristin said...

Thanks for the tutorial. I'm looking forward to trying this. I haven't used Fimo since I was a kid.

Je suis une monstre said...

YES! This is so beautiful and great! I think I shall make some for all my wonderful friends! Have had fimo on me mind for a few days now, so this post comes at perfect timing for me to try it out! Thank you! I love your blog, it is brilliant and fun and exciting and looks beautiful. Katie xxx

Karen@oldbeginnings said...

Thanks - I wouldn't have thought to bake first, then carve. Thank you for sharing this.

btw - went to Sundae School on Sun night, then stood at the edge of the world for awhile on Nauset Beach. Lovely.

congrats & good luck with your amazing farmhouse!

Meaghan said...

Super sweet! Thank you for publishing this. I'm going to go carve a rainbow now. :-)

agnes szucs said...

great tut! i like anything faceted!

agnes / iiiinspired
:)

La Alicia said...

excellent technique! thanks for sharing it!

Ren- Lady Of The Arts said...

I used to love making beads in high school- called it fimo- love working with this stuff-

kate said...

I've been having a great time making carved polymer clay pendants! I made mine out of Sculpy (I love how it doesn't dry out!) and then painted each side with acrylic paint. Take a peek at it here:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/scientificculture/5635446092/in/photostream

I totally want to make some that look like your necklaces now! Thanks so much for sharing!

Amy said...

Supah, supah cool. Love it so much, and I need me a cheap and awesome necklace. Should have known to look no further than AO.

Thanks, Abbey! :)

xoxo.

Je suis une monstre said...

Hi again Abbey, loved your blog and tutorial so much that it inpsired me to start a 30-day challenge to learn/ make/ do/ create something new every day! Your tutorial for carved polymer clay beads was my first project! You can have a peek here if you wish.

http://jesuisunemonstre.blogspot.com/2011/06/new-thing-1-carved-polymer-clay-beads.html

I've pointed everyone to your blog, and too your shop and made it clear that this is your art and your job. :)

Love, Katie. xxx

sosser said...

i confess i have never touched a chunk of fimo. but now i really want to! thanx :)

fraufertig said...

That is very cool. I`ll try this out. Thanks for sharing.

fraufertig

Amelia Stewart said...

Oh wow, those look great! Thanks for sharing! -Amelia http://thebeadgoeson.com/

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