Stamped polymer

Shaw moth

Tamara Shea’s (BlockPartyPress) beautiful moth pendant was created with a hand carved stamp from her original drawing. In her signature style, Tamara stamped the 2 7/8″ x 2 1/2″ moth onto brown polymer clay, hand painted it with metallic gold, green and silver acrylic paint, then distressed and sealed it.

Simple stamping techniques combined with dynamite drawing skills can make for some stunning effects. Her Etsy shop’s having a back-to-school sale!

Have a great weekend.

Real textures

James real textures

Victoria James‘ texture sheets are a favorite of mine because most of them replicate stone, wood, plants and other real textures. It’s helpful that for most of her designs she shows polymer examples. This one caught my eye. The pattern comes from her shingle cracked growth ring texture sheet.

Victoria explains that, “PearlEx was lightly rubbed on the out-y part of a silicon texture sheet and the clay was impressed. This textures the clay and transfers the mica powder at the same time. Next PearlEx was rubbed directly onto the out-y part of the clay surface. The clay was then rolled flat.” Super easy mokume gane!

Shrines in polymer

Mika mosaic

Some of you have been asking what happened to PCDaily coverage of sculpture, dolls, miniatures and other non-jewelry art. It’s time you had a turn! Let’s start with Laurie Mika for the first entry in an entire week of 3D.

Laurie continues to raise the bar on color with her latest works. Her inks, foils, paints, and powders layered over stamped and textured polymer achieve amazingly luminous results. Look at some closeups here and here.

Laurie mixes her media, integrating recycled bling and found icons into her assemblages. A few choice words make each piece a jewel-like shrine.

Polymer chips and tubes

Last time we checked in on Elena Samsonova she was playing with salt and pepper. Now she’s into chips…as in this necklace made from 300 thin polymer chips imprinted with French postage stamp transfers.

Let’s applaud her tenacity. Her story (Moscow to Brooklyn, child psychologist to artist) and her website are full of twists and treats.

My late-night cruise through your websites also netted these story beads from Erin Prais-Hintz. She encircles a tube bead with a familiar saying, favorite lyrics, names or dates stamped into polymer.

Erin incorporates these message beads into wistful Simple Truth pendants, endearing wearable reminders. Erin is part of this month’s Storybook project over at the Vintag blog where they’ll be featuring an interview with her and offering giveaways of some of her pendants.

Innie/outie polymer

Massachusetts’ Roberta Warshaw creates her designs from a number of small stamps in a collection that she shows off here. Lately she’s inverted those assembled designs, creating an even more interesting effect as shown on the Faux Verdigris pendant here.

“I actually like the way they look better than the original impressed stampings. they have so much more depth this way. They feel much more like a small painting to me,” she says. See them all here and here.

When you don’t know which end is up, try making an “innie” an “outie.”

Northern lights polymer

Florida’s Barbara Bechtel uses her “Northern Lights” color way to wash these stamped and distressed polymer squares. These heart charms are only 1/2″ square but they’re layered with color, texture and personality.

Look through all the items she’s sold on her Floridity Etsy site to see the selection of wearable, desirable small beads she has created, lavishing them with colors and then judiciously sanding and removing details to give them an aged, mysterious appeal.

There’s much more to study on Facebook and on her SecondSurf blog. It’ll keep you busy.

Bead exchange

Three years ago I moved to a smaller community with no polymer clay guild.  I decided the next best thing was to join the local bead society.  I knew nothing about peyote stitch or making wrapped loops but hoped I would learn some new techniques that would enhance my polymer pieces.

Conversely the beaders were unfamiliar with polymer and I felt like I was an ambassador for the medium.

In the past two years I’ve conducted several beginner workshops to the growing number of beaders and metal clayers interested in trying it out.  I love how the exchange has worked both ways.

While those that know my work are aware I’ve had an interest in buttons and incorporate them in my work but now my stash of beads has grown exponentially.  These two pieces from my Flickr site show the influence of my beading friends.

guest post by Helen Breil

Piling on the polymer color

Laurie Mika has taken color to opulence and beyond! She’s piled on the layers of polymer, stamps, paints, metallics, inks and jewels to achieve a whole new level of splendor. This mosaic was inspired by the Indian sari trims Laurie found on her recent trip to Sydney.

When you examine the large version of this snippet from a piece for her Petaluma, CA, Wild About Tile class, it’s hard to know where to look first. Explosions of color detonate in medallions and fire across borders.

Laurie snapped this picture with her phone on the way to the airport and posted it to Facebook where it was met with an immediate uproar of applause. (Randee Ketzel first alerted me to the ruckus.)

Don’t you wish you were in her class? Have a splendid weekend.

Back to school polymer

Galina Grebennikova takes us back to school with the rest of the kids with a straightforward free tutorial for these beads on her Flickr page. A button, some water and a circle cutter are the only tools required.

Galina is Russian and living in Ireland. Her photographs are pristine and clear making it a smooth and pleasureable trip through her experiments, tricks and techniques.

Creating polymer heirlooms

Ioana Weber from Rotterdam quiets the week with her White Noise series of polymer brooches. This Dutch mixed media artist had been collecting vintage laces and looking for a way to use them in a project. “Some are so delicate and old, it’s almost impossible to make something with them,” she explains.

Ioana came up with the idea of making them timeless by impressing them in polymer and using the resulting texture plates to create delicate polymer brooches. With no surface enhancement and no color the lace patterns speak for themselves. Some are embroidered with matching cotton thread.

I’m trying to remember where my grandmother’s box of tatting tools and remnants is stashed. My nieces might cherish a brooch with a family history. Do you have heirlooms hiding in your attic that could be shared with future generations in polymer?