Apr 202018
 

When Arteza contacted me asking if I’d like to review some of their products I was excited.

When I calculated the price of the clay set they were sending me I became less so.

ff arteza clay

This set of 42 colors of polymer clay with the container, a few tools and a package of jewelry findings works out to the equivalent of around $1.40 per 2 oz. block.

The price has gone up quite a bit since I recorded the video. It was $21.99 on their website at the time, but now is $29.99. The link at the beginning of the paragraph above  is for Amazon, which has a better price for you.

I don’t use Sculpey III in my work, as I find it too soft, but if you are looking for an inexpensive set of oven bake clay I recommend this set from Amazon instead:

In my mind the clay being this inexpensive did not bode well for the quality. Interestingly, the issues that I expected to find turned out to be not a problem, but there were other unexpected issues.

Watch the video for my review and opinions on this set.

Watch the Arteza Polymer Clay 42 Colors DIY Set Review-Friday Findings video at YouTube.

 
This product was provided to me for free for review purposes; however, Arteza has no control over my content and I was not paid for the review.  The opinions shared are my own honest views.
Apr 172018
 

Think about all the different times and places you’ve seen images of bird’s wings, butterfly wings, angel wings or even fairy wings.

Whether in art, fantasy or nature, wings are very beautiful and popular things!

fairy wings cover

I have a little fairy sculpture who has been needing her wings for quite some time and finally I got around to making them. She is part of a larger sculpted piece which I will be completing soon. If you follow me on Instagram I will post it there when it’s done.

I was really pleased with the method I figured out for making the wings. You could use this technique to create all sorts of 3-D objects out of two dimensional stamped images.

I’d love to hear your thoughts for different ways you would use these ideas!

Tools and Materials:

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

Watch the How To Create 3-Dimensional Fairy Wings (or bird, butterfly or angel wings) with a Rubber Stamp-Polymer Clay Tutorial on YouTube.

Apr 132018
 

Silk ribbon embroidery is one of those creative endeavors that gives even the absolute beginner amazing results. With just a one or two simple stitches, you can make all sorts of gorgeous things.

It’s also very forgiving, the ribbon does most of the work for you!

ff silk ribbon basics

I’ve been doing hand stitching since I was a little girl and always find it very soothing and relaxing. If you haven’t done it yet, I hope you’ll give a try. 

Maybe you’ll come to love it as much as I do.

Today’s video will show the basic tools and materials (which are few) for working with silk ribbon embroidery. While there are some incredibly detailed and complex pieces out there, my main focus is on creating simple little compositions that can be made into jewelry.

In the video we’ll cover: 

  • How to handle silk ribbon
  • What types of fabric to use
  • How to choose a hoop
  • The kinds of needles you’ll need
  • 3 of the most basics stitches and examples of how much you can do with them

Supplies shown in the video:

Enjoy the video. Happy creating!

Watch the Silk Ribbon Embroidery Basic Tools, Materials & How-To’s-Friday Findings video at YouTube.

Apr 032018
 

This necklace design is different from your usual chain and pendant.

In fact, to be honest, when I finished with it, I wasn’t quite sure that I even liked it!

dragonfly fields necklace cover

But then I tried it on, and that made all the difference. Suddenly, in spite of the smallish pendant, it felt like a piece with lot of presence.

dragonfly fields necklace insta 2

It sort of makes me think of the bib style necklaces that are popular these days.

It’s also interesting that the shapes change as you change the length at which you wear it. Lots of interesting options to pursue!

If you make your own version of this necklace, please feel free to share your results.

Tools and Materials:

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

Watch the Dragonfly Fields Necklace- Shaped Beaded Multi-Strand Jewelry Design Tutorial video at YouTube.

Mar 302018
 

If you’ve ever used alcohol inks with polymer clay, carefully choosing colors and applying them just so… only to have them look completely different when coming out of the oven, then you’ve experienced the disappointment of color shift.

ff ranger alcohol inks

I’ve been using Ranger alcohol inks for years, and I have experienced that color shift issue several times.

Finally I got smart about it and created a chart showing the colors:

  • straight out of the bottle, not mixed with clay
  • mixed with translucent clay but unbaked
  • mixed with translucent clay, rolled thin and baked

Now I can clearly see why I’ve been having trouble all these years!

I really should do more testing of the sort, the time it takes would probably save a lot of time and aggravation.

In the video I’ll show you not only how I put together this chart and the results (and made a better chart for the Pinata inks!) but I’ll also show you a cool trick I figured out for labeling bottles with black caps. So simple and yet so helpful.

Supplies shown in this video:

Want to see more of the products I use, love and recommend? Check out my Amazon shop.

Don’t know what an Amazon shop is?  Click here to learn more.

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

Watch the Using Ranger Alcohol Inks With Pardo Translucent Polymer Clay-Friday Findings video at YouTube.

Mar 232018
 

An extruder is a fantastic tool to use for creating in polymer clay. With it you can make perfectly even ropes of clay with any cross section shape that you have a disc for.

ff clay core adapter

I love to use an extruder for making little tiny 1 mm snakes that I use for trim. So much faster than him trying to hand roll them all perfectly!

But what if any of your extruded shapes could have a hole running through the center?  What kinds of things could you create then?

Just a few of the uses I thought of:

  • Jewelry cord with stringing holes of any size you need
  • Tube beads
  • Bead cores
  • Washers
  • Flat beads of any disc shape, with a hole through the center

Don’t forget that you can cut your extrusions before OR after baking. Either way you’ll need to use a very sharp blade and be sure to extrude a little extra clay to account for the ends that need to be trimmed.

Tools & Materials:

The pendant pictured in the cover photo was created by polymer clay artist Seana Bettencourt

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

Watch the The Basics of Using a Clay Core Extruder Adapter with Polymer Clay-Friday Findings video at YouTube.

Mar 202018
 

Here’s a fun way to use smaller beads as focal points in your jewelry.

Not only do you get make those not-so-large beads the center of attention, you get to fiddle and play with them, too!

spinning bead pendants cover

They’re kinda like fidget spinners, only prettier. 

The key to this design is getting the the stringing wire positioned so the bead is where you want it AND the necklace hangs straight. Be sure to watch the video for my simple trick for achieving that balance.

I finished my pendants with Vintaj Patinas, but you should feel free to use any surface technique you like. This would be a great time to use sheets of designs, slices of canes or any other bits you have hanging around your studio.

Tools and Materials:

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

Watch the Make Your Beads SPIN! Glass Bead & Polymer Clay Kinetic Jewelry Tutorial at YouTube.

Mar 162018
 

Recently I made a long overdue purchase of some Piñata brand alcohol inks and Lumiere paints, and so far I’m absolutely in love.

Playing and experimenting with new supplies is so much fun!

ff pinata inks & translucent

In today’s video I’ll tell you a bit about the Piñata alcohol inks and the Jacquard line of Lumiere paints. I’ll also show you the results I got from testing all 18 of these colors with Pardo translucent clay.

Supplies shown in this video:

Want to see more of the products I use, love and recommend? Check out my Amazon shop.

Don’t know what an Amazon shop is?  Click here to learn more.

In an upcoming video I will be doing the same sort of testing with translucent clay and Ranger alcohol inks. Considering how many times I have used them over the years and been disappointed in the results this test is also long overdue.

In the meantime enjoy the video and happy creating!

Watch the Using Piñata Inks & Lumiere Paints With Pardo Translucent Polymer Clay-Friday Findings video at YouTube.

Mar 092018
 

I have to admit when I first started seeing ribbons, sari silks and other fibers in jewelry I didn’t really care for the look. But, like with so many trends, these things tend to grow on you.

Now I’ve gone completely over the bend, using a tool intended for knitting yarn cords in my jewelry!

ff wonder knitter

One thing that’s interesting about this style is the contrast between the soft fibers and the hard metal findings. It’s also unusual and unexpected, and then there’s all that texture, which I love.

Of course, if you don’t care for the fibers you can still trying knitting with wire. 

That’s really fun, and the results are SO different.

By the way, in the video I mention that I had trouble with knitting strips of sari silk. While I was putting away the materials from this video I decided to give it one more try.

I turns out that the piece I was working with was more stiff and the fabric was thicker than most of the other strips, hence my problems. Knitting with soft, supple, lightweight sari strips isn’t hard at all! And the results are beautiful. Definitely worth a try.

Tools and Materials:

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

Watch the How to Use Knitting to Make Jewelry-Wonder Knitter Tool Tutorial video at YouTube.

Mar 062018
 

Using fibers, especially silk, in jewelry making has been popular for quite some time. So when the folks at Thread Nanny asked me if I would like to try out their silk ribbons I jumped at the chance!

My first thought was to do silk ribbon embroidery, but after doing some research I realized there are lots of other things you can do is well.

knitted silk necklace cord cover

Today I am using a really cool tool to knit silk ribbons into cords for necklaces. Adding fibers with texture and weaving in beads makes them that much more unique and beautiful. Of course, you don’t have to stop at creating necklace cords! You can also make them into bracelets, handles, belts and more.

If you’d like to learn more about the Wonder Knitter and the things you can do with it be sure to watch my video this coming Friday. There are a lot more possibilities than you might expect!

Tools and Materials:

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

Watch the Make Jewelry out of SILK! Knitted Necklace Cord-Jewelry Tutorial at YouTube.