Toops bead video

Seattle’s Cynthia Toops takes you through the process of making polymer clay beads in this quick and wonderful video. It’s sure to give you breathtaking inspiration and overwhelming studio envy to start your week.

Toops’ jewelry is featured in the installation, A Bead Quiz, on view now at the Seattle Art Museum. Her husband, Dan Adams, has a companion video here.

You might want to look at Cynthia and Dan’s self-published book and her Facere Gallery listings too.

I’m scouting out polymer clay in Chapel Hill, NC today and send my thanks to Carol Simmons for sending me today’s link.

Blackburn’s polymer clay Möebius Strips

Carol Blackburn’s “Möebius Strips” polymer clay necklace fools the eye. You’ll have to look closely to see how Carol cleverly combines strips of Skinner-blended clay to look like undulating, interconnected beads. My science guy husband was impressed with the engineering of the piece.

Read more about Carol in this article in the March/April Craftsman magazine.

I first came upon the Möebius necklace on the British guild’s site. The necklace made its debut at last year’s EuroClay Carnival. This year’s event sold out quickly as polymer clay expertise and enthusiasm grow in Europe.

Davis’ faux fossils

Lynn Davis makes polymer clay faux ceramic beads like no one else. In her recent post she lets us peer over her shoulder as she finishes a batch.

Repeated painting and buffings give her beads a patina and hints of past lives. These faux fossils are particularly alluring and the use of links instead of holes in the beads makes them even more unusual. Her Etsy shop shows a great selection.

If, like me, you want to know how to get started, take a look at this polymerclayweb tutorial. Here’s an earlier post about Lynn.

Moseley’s transfer treats

Lynda Moseley (DesignDiva1) gives a delicate, Victorian feel to her polymer clay beads by transferring her vintage bird illustrations to a taupe base that has been mixed with embossing powders. The results are reminiscent of speckled bird eggs.

Lynda has a way with transfers and you’ll see the same graceful, careful touch reflected in many of her beads and pendants. Here’s her blog plus Flickr and Etsy.

Jackson’s polymer ancients

At the local guild meeting Debbie Jackson brought this great polymer clay necklace she’d made. The mottled beads are done with a sprayed alcohol ink technique that she teaches (she calls them quail eggs). The other faux turquoise and scarab beads are so convincingly done that the entire effect is ancient and artful.

She has a knack for the imitative and the cultural artifact. Her book, Polymer Clay Jewelry, contains many of her best recipes.

I wish I’d taken a picture of Debbie who is growing a new crop of silky hair that looks quite trendy. Thanks to Jeanette Kandray who loaned me her camera at the meeting.

Note: I’m on the road (San Diego). Saw some lovely rocks on our long beach walk today. Great ideas for my polymer versions.

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  • I'm Cynthia Tinapple, an artist, curator, and leader in the polymer clay community for over 20 years.

    On this blog I showcase the best polymer clay art online to inspire and encourage you. I also send out weekend extras in the premium newsletter, StudioMojo.

    You can find my book, Polymer Clay Global Perspectives, on Amazon.


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