Cutting and folding polymer is becoming her specialty and she offers several variations on this theme on her YouTube channel. A few straight cuts and careful shaping turn a stack of clay into summery earrings in a hurry. Your head will reel with ideas for variations. Read more about Monica on Facebook.
Page McNall added a free 2-page photo tutorial on Flickr for her segmented polymer bead necklaces last month. Now that the holiday hubbub is over, let’s give her instructions a whirl. She shows how on page 1 and page 2.
She blends color gradients into short thick plugs which she threads onto on a knitting needle. She nurses and shapes the plug, removes it from the needle and cuts it into five segments. She gently refines the shape of the cut pieces and places them back on the needle to bake.
After they’re baked Page distresses the beads and adds color accents with shoe polish. Mounted onto short lengths of wire, the segmented beads are then arranged into necklaces. Her pictures make it all quite clear. Follow Page on Facebook and see her influences on Pinterest. (PCD follower Patrice Pfeiffer thought you’d want to see this and I agreed.)
Sometimes it’s good to get nervous about trades among friends and, guess what, we all do it. That mixture of fear and competition can motivate us to try harder.
Even longtime artist and Sculpey brand ambassador Syndee Holt admits that this was her second attempt at making little 2 1/2″ diameter polymer bowls for an upcoming swap. She wanted to get her new design just right so she scrapped the first batch and kept going until she felt comfortable. Let the guessing begin about how she achieved this multi-color stone-like effect.
Kim Arden’s tell-all
In the September/October issue of Polymer Cafe magazine, Kim Arden reveals how she creates her summer flower pendants. Along with a profile written by Trina Williams, Kim includes a complete tutorial.
She shows how to stack bright and translucent cane slices over a scrap background to build pendants that have color, depth and attitude. Here’s PCD’s first look at Kim’s design from last year.
Tanya Mayorova brings her own mokume gane colors and patterns to Helen Breil’s smart bead design. Ovals of polymer patterns fold over to become graceful beads. Helen offers a free tutorial that gets you started.
Tanya’s results blend into a five-strand boho gypsy necklace that’s assembled to reflect her own aesthetic. Here’s her work in a different color way and single strand design.
Graffiti is all the rage and Petra Nemravova gives us some terrific tips on how she makes these trendy scribbled earrings in a free tutorial. The translation’s a bit wonky but it’s easy enough to figure out from the photos.
Her background rubber stamp (from IOS stamps she says) is very cool and it wouldn’t be too hard to carve one of your own. Need more? Here’s another of her freebies. Check Petra’s Facebook page and website.
And if you’re on Facebook, take a look at what Petra and the Ubersee gang were up to at their June retreat.
Angela Barenholtz brings us another scrap trick in her newest woven fabric tutorial. If you’re a textile lover who has some patience with geometry and a pile of clay that needs rejuvenating, you may have found your answer.
The strips of pattern can be joined to make flat veneers as on the Hamsa below (it’s a symbol of protection). Or the thinner individual strips can be joined end to end and wrapped around base beads as shown at the left.
This technique may reduce your guilt about that abandoned project or those long ignored canes. Angela is a whiz at replicating the look of fabric and her tweed tutorial is still one of my very favorites.
Her series of cuts and stacks can be confusing. I know because I don’t follow instructions particularly well myself. But if you follow the pictures you’ll soon catch the logic and start cutting and stacking every scrap in sight. (That’s what I’ve been doing for days.)