Nice Knobs

Here’s a fun site from Mary Walsh of Rhode Island. You’ll want to check out her clever "brag bead" bracelets.

I was most taken with her drawer knobs and custom pieces which show nice handling of color (from muted to punchy) and lots of experimenting with design (from quilts to Japanese inspirations).

I’d be nowhere without tips from viewers. Thanks to Susan Rose for this one.

Transfers

Seattle’s Sarah Wilbanks uses her collection of small paintings and drawings to provide inspiration for her sterling and polymer transfer pieces. “I’ve got bits of wallpaper, a print from my grandmother’s dress, old photos of a French language book for kids…there are so many different historical things I find.”

She crafts the bezels and then cuts precise circles and ovals from the baked polymer. Sarah’s jewelry is available through Facèré Jewelry Art Gallery in Seattle. You can read about her process here.

Textures

Helen Breil has posted photos of some great new work. Her technique will be featured in the fall issue of Step-by-Step Beads.

Textures are her latest focus and she’s designed some new pattern sheets that will be available later this year through Shades of Clay.

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Smithsonian

Prepare to spend some time on this link to the Smithsonian Craft Show. While the show contains only two polymer artists that I could find (Bishoff/Syron and FordForlano), the works shown throughout are those jaw-dropping inspirations that you shouldn’t miss.

Bonnie Bishoff and JM Syron combine polymer and wood in furniture, vessels, lamps and more. If you’ve been stuck thinking small, this site will force you out of your rut.

Thanks to Lindly Haunani for sending the link to the Smithsonian site. Turning the pages of the book is nearly as much fun as the work itself.

London Jewels


Kotomi Yamamura fashions her jewelery from natural and semi-precious stones set in polymer clay mountings. Born in Osaka, Japan, Kotomi Yamamura obtained a degree in lacquer at Kyoto City University of Art. Following a decade as contract designer she moved in 1998 to London.

Her main source of inspiration has been the decorative arts of the European mediaeval world…Gothic, Byzantine and Russian. Kotomi says she has found a ready and enthusiastic market at galleries, shops and craft fairs in London. Read about her here and see her catalog here.

Ashcroft Update

It’s such a treat to locate artists who started "way back when" in the early days of the NPCG and see what they’re doing now. Check out Pierrette Ashcroft’s site (thanks to super-googler Ronna Weltman). While Pierrette’s signature colors and canes are still very recognizable, she’s integrated them into fresh designs and concepts.

Be sure to check her links and her story about the flying trapeze.

Glowing work

These pieces, gleaned from Flickr, are from a mysterious artist (no name, Portugese perhaps) and show a young, painterly, childlike approach to polymer clay. You’ll find polymer embellished postcards and pins. She’s experimenting with bright colors and glow-in-the-dark flourescents.

Whatever this artist may lack in familiarity with the clay (no caning here) she makes up for in creativity. Fric_de_mentol is no copycat, she’s an original. A breath of fresh air.

Teapots

Canadian artist Wanda Shum has a delightful collection of wares on both her blog and her web site. She has a thing for teapots and I particularly like this "I Dream Of Jeannie" version.

Wanda’s delicate earrings and necklaces filled with extruded patterns show a nice twist on that theme as well.

Many thanks to Barbara Forbes-Lyons for the tip.

St. Paul ACC Show

Susan Dyer and Margaret Regan had new work in the St. Paul ACC show. It’s instructional and inspirational to leaf through all the artists in the show.

I don’t have much info on Wisconsin’s Susan Dyer. She doesn’t google very well. Any clues out there?

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