Showing posts with label brooch. Show all posts
Showing posts with label brooch. Show all posts

Thursday, June 11, 2015

New Polymer Clay Jewelry Designs


I love creating with polymer clay, as I mentioned in my last post.  I have completed several brooches, which I have just posted to Etsy and EBay.  Without any further ado, here they are:

Our Lady of Sorrows Figural Brooch

Brooch embellished with several AB crystals

St. Therese of Lisieux (as a child) - with a rose border

Virgin Mary and Baby Jesus - stamped and painted clay

Our Lady of the Wayside figural brooch


Our Lady of Fatima figural brooch

Our Lady of the Wayside - twisted border design

Our Lady of Guadalupe - stamped and painted border

Several figural Virgin Mary brooches

I am still in the process of making several polymer clay statement necklaces and will share them here when I have some completed.  Be sure to check back!

P.S.  By the way, have I mentioned that I am now on Instagram?  Be sure to visit me there, too! 

Friday, May 29, 2015

Polymer Clay Jewelry in Process


Although I have been creating things for as long as I can remember, I really only started creating jewelry designs in the late 1980's.  In the early 1990's, I discovered polymer clay and became immediately hooked on this wonderful medium.  At one point, I can recall other artists transferring images onto polymer clay, but I wanted to do something different than what others were doing.  Frankly, I wanted to impose images into my work in a manner that was more foolproof with less trial and error.  I developed the technique for incorporating images from real paper into my jewelry designs.  At first, I utilized postage stamps into little framed pieces of polymer clay jewelry, and gradually started using other images, as well.  I sold my designs on EBay and couldn't keep them in stock. Then, when I shared my technique for my framed postage stamp/polymer clay jewelry designs in Belle Armoire Jewelry II about 10 years ago, I noticed that all of a sudden, I had competition from people who were using my technique to create and sell their versions of framed polymer clay jewelry designs on EBay.  To this date, I can't recall anyone giving me credit as the person who discovered this technique. And yes, it is still a sticking point with me.  It is what it is, I guess.  Live and let learn, right?  OK, enough about that.  I am getting off of my soap box now.  LOL

Some of my earliest postage stamp jewelry designs (circa 1999-2000):







 Even though I still created with polymer clay at home, the pieces I made to sell on EBay and Etsy were primarily made of other mediums.  I focused on creating mixed media Catholic and pop art jewelry designs.   These days, I am known more for my Catholic jewelry designs than anything else.

Lately, I have decided to return to my polymer clay making roots while still focusing on the Catholic aspect of things so as not to alienate my customer base.  Earlier this week, I spent an entire 12 hour day working on just polymer clay.  I wanted to share some pictures of what I am working on right now.  Please keep in mind that all of the pictures show the designs in process.

This design utilizes the Klimt cane as a base.  It will be fashioned into a necklace and possibly matching earrings:




 Another pendant in process.  I'm still toying with the idea of adding more clay into this piece and then covering the top with resin:


A Virgin Mary pendant with handmade rose beads.  I am thinking about adding some rhinestones to this piece:


Polymer clay focal jewelry pieces in process- pendants and brooches:


Polymer clay crosses which will be made into earrings, necklaces and a bracelet:


An image of the polymer clay designs I made in 12 hours.  The hearts have been textured and will be highlighted with other colors so they pop:


Stay tuned for more pics of these projects as I complete them. :)

Monday, May 26, 2014

Polymer Clay Tutorial - How to Make Decorative and Functional Brooch Backs

It's been a while since I've shared any tutorials here. I get quite a few requests pertaining to polymer clay and resin techniques - so, I thought I'd share one for making decorative and functional backing pieces for brooches.

Many years ago, I shared a technique I developed for making polymer clay brooches utilizing postage stamps in Stampington Publications' Belle Armoire Jewelry II.  I did not specifically address how to design the back of the brooches at that time and would like to do so today.  Brooches have never totally gone out of style, but they seem to be re-emerging as decorative pieces for accessories such as scarves and handbags.



That being said - onto the tutorial!

Tools/supplies:

Pre-baked polymer clay brooch
Pasta machine dedicated for clay use (optional)
Rolling pin dedicated for clay use
Texture sheet
Mini cookie cutter
Pin back finding
Polymer clay - 1/4 of a block
Translucent Liquid Sculpey (TLS)


Instructions:

Prepare polymer clay for use by kneading it between your fingers until it is workable.  Insert it through a pasta machine at the thickest setting; fold it in half upon removal from machine.  (If you don't have a pasta machine, roll out the clay with a rolling pin to approximately a 1/8" thickness.  Omit folding the clay in half.)







Place the clay on top of a texture sheet that has been spritzed with water or lightly dusted with baby powder to prevent the clay from sticking.  Use the rolling pin to press the clay into the texture sheet, pressing firmly.




Gently remove the clay from the texture sheet.  It should look something like this:




Lay the clay with embossed side laying face up on a protected work surface.  Make sure the cookie cutter is large enough to just cover the center of the pin backing without interfering with the pin mechanism.





Place the cookie cutter on top of the clay, and press it down firmly, just like you are using it to make real cookies.




Carefully remove the clay from the cookie cutter.



 Place the pre-baked brooch face down on the work surface.  Squeeze the TLS down the center length of the pin back finding.






Place the pin back finding on the back of the brooch, the TLS side facing down.  The pin may want to slide around, so work carefully.





Pick up the piece of clay that was cut with the cookie cutter.  Apply a squeeze of TLS on the wrong side of the clay...




...and set it down on top of the pin backing.  Press gently into place.



Put the brooch in a pre-heated oven and bake according to the manufacturer's instructions as directed based on the thickness of your piece.

OPTIONAL:  If desired, prior to baking in the oven, brush some Pearl-Ex powder onto the pin back for extra effect, as I did in the brooch used in the example.

And there you have it - a functional and decorative pin backing for your handmade brooch.

If there are any specific techniques you would like for me to share with you, please feel free to leave me a comment for me here on this blog, or email me at craftymule@yahoo.com.






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