Another craft

I have been crafting my entire life. I don’t normally just start a new craft unless it is something I am interested in because I saw a video, or I saw that someone had something that I thought was cool and wanted to learn how to make it myself. I have never picked up a craft that I had no interest in, until now.

A friend was going through all of her craft supplies in her craft room and she literally drove over to our house and dropped off 3 bags of things. 1 bag full of books, 1 bag full of magazines and 1 bag with tools, all for Polymer Clay.

I did buy some polymer clay for a project many years ago that never really turned into anything because I honestly had no clue what I was doing, so I basically wasted a few bucks, which I don’t mind because it was only a few dollars. My friend who dropped all this stuff on my front door said she bought all of these before she retired thinking she would be interested in this craft, but it has been 10 years since she retired and the packages are still sealed lol. She played around with some clay and used the roller, but she didn’t really do much.

So now I have all of these supplies, what should I make? Well, I decided to go to YouTube to find out what I can make. I discovered you can make canes that you can then slice and you could make them into earrings or necklaces. There was a cool cane that was in the shape of a leaf and the person curled the leaves and put holes in the end and attached them to a chain. Another person made this really neat Dragon scale bead. Then another person showed how to make a rose. That was cool.

At first I was thinking, I can’t do this, I am not creative at all. I just find a pattern and make it, and this is basically the same idea. You find a pattern and make it happen. I really want to make roses, but rainbow roses. I also want to try that leaf pattern and I was thinking, I could make candy cane earrings, pumpkin earrings, heart earrings and many other things. I’m even thinking toilet paper earrings, you know, because of the toilet paper hoarding lol.

This is something I think I will enjoy. But… I don’t have all the tools that I need, so I bought a couple things on Amazon, like a clay conditioner. It’s like a pasta roller thing. You put the clay through and it rolls it out flat and then you fold it in half and put it back in and fold it again and again to condition the clay. I have carpal tunnel syndrome, so I can’t really do that by hand. This one was really inexpensive at just $21 plus tax. I bought the Darice Studio 71 Polymer Clay Press on Amazon and Polymer Sculpey Super Slice that has handles. Trust me, the handles are something I need. I’m clumsy and cut myself easily.

I really look forward to making things out of Polymer clay, but I want to watch a lot of videos to basically use as a study tool so I know what I’m doing what I get started, in theory lol.

Necklace for Beth

Well I finally made the jewelry for Beth. I made the bracelet last night and I tried making the necklace last night but I didn’t plan it out right so I had to take it apart. I was in an ambien haze so I had to stop and go to bed because I was messing it up more than it was. I finished it this morning.

I don’t know if it is gift worthy. It looks like something a pre-schooler would make lol. I mean the bracelet is fine but the beads in the necklace didn’t come out as I had planned. They are supposed to be psychedelic but instead they look ridiculous.  They have fingerprints all over them too lol.  I’ve never bought beads with fingerprints on them.  And the holes that I stuck through them for the hemp cord wasn’t straight so some of the beads stick out further.

I need to NOT make any more beads with Polymer clay until I know what I’m doing lol.

I don’t know if I’m too embarrassed by this necklace to even give it to her at all.  Since we didn’t have any money for Toys ‘R’ Us I thought that homemade jewelry would be nice but it’s not as nice after all.  Darrin has a Sears card which works at Kmart so we’re gonna go there to get her a toy or something.

Notice how I’m not so embarrassed that I’m blogging about it with a picture?

Polymer Clay

We went to Michael’s today so I could buy some beads with letters on them for making my hemp bracelets for the kiddies for tomorrow. While we were there I wanted to get some polymer clay. I wanted to mix the colors to make them look psychedelic but I mixed them too much so they don’t look very good but when I mixed the yellow/green ones they came out a little better because I didn’t mix them before rolling them. I just put the pieces together and started rolling.

I bought some mini metal cutters for different shape beads but only used the heart  cutter and only made what you see in the picture above. I didn’t want to go crazy and make enough beads for a lifetime. Also they are too thin so I’m not even sure I can use them for beads at all. I may have to find another use for those.

I was told to mix them, let them sit out for 10 minutes then poke large holes with a stick before baking but when 10 minutes was up they were still as soft as they were when I first made them so I’m just letting them sit in the kitchen for a while. I’m going to use toothpicks to poke the holes through them when they are hard. If I poke holes in them now they will lose their shape and I’ll have to start over.

The clay is Smart Craft which I read is a Michael’s specific brand and I wish that I knew more about clay brands before I bought this because I just read a bad review of the clay and now I feel stupid. I hope they come out ok after baking. I don’t have time now to go back to Michael’s and buy the right clay and I didn’t buy the colored beads like I wanted to. I spent way more money than I can afford on all the stuff we did buy so this is it, I’m done for rest of the month (as far as buying craft supplies).

I hope these are cool enough beads for the kids necklaces, if not TOUGH lol. No but seriously if they don’t come out right I’m just not going to bring any of the stuff for making the necklaces at all. I’m just going to make Beth her bracelet (which I made with the letters) and necklace and that’s it.

Wish me luck. Hopefully they will be finished by tomorrow and they will make cool beads.

Update: The Craft Smart (Michael’s brand) is crap. I set the oven to 275°F for 15 minutes (for 1/4″ thickness) and it didn’t even cook the beads. 1/4″ thickness, I don’t even know what that means. Does it mean if I have 1 bead that is 1/4″ thick then it bakes for 15 minutes or 15 minutes for each bead? I guess I need a better translation. At any rate, I put it back in the oven for another 15 minutes and it’s still rubbery. I put it in for another 30 minutes and even though it was hard, it’s still rubbery.

I thought that when you bake this polymer clay it comes out like glass. Shiny and hard. These beads are neither shiny or hard. I let them cool and you can still squeeze them and you can see how rubbery they are.

I suppose rubbery is as good for a necklace. Unfortunately when I put the holes in the beads the clay was still very soft so the pressure from putting the holes in them made them lose their shape so in order for me to keep their shape I had to use a toothpick but that means the holes aren’t big enough.

I can’t win, I will have to get more next month and try again but with a different brand.

Glass and Clay Beads by madebyhippies on Etsy

via View Glass and Clay Beads by madebyhippies on Etsy.

I’ve been chatting with Erik Granström from the Made by Hippies website who told me about these Rastaman beads for making the hemp bracelets and necklaces with. You know I never even thought about using these kind of beads. I had just assumed that the best beads to use were those wood beads.

This gives me a good idea on what kind of jewelry I could make as Christmas presents this year. He also told me about mixing in color hemp but it occurred to me that I have tons of embroidery floss from when I was 17 years old when I learned how to make friendship bracelets. I’ve been buying so many of them that I had to buy an organizer to store them in and I don’t even use them.

So, when I start making bracelets again I’m going to make them a bit more interesting.

They sell those beads by the way in that link at the top so if you are interested in buying cool rastaman beads for your projects go and click. They also have some cool salt and pepper shakers too. All of those things are one of a kind, you can’t find them anywhere else.