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the ne w magaz ine


Polymer To Art

This is not Blue Polymer Art Magazine 2011 | Edition 1 | â‚Ź 11,95

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Contents 7. 8. 10. 11. 12. 16. 17. 18. 22. 24. 26. 28. 29.

Welcome to our dream Interview with Laurie Mika Paperbeads by Jellina Verhoeff Groovy Kind of Love by Joyce van Loon Blue Dream by Margit Bรถhmer Blue Mediation by Sabine Backer Subscription 2011 From Polymer To Art The Silver Blues by Anja Overdijk All about Royal Delft Delfts Blue Caning by Agnes van Liere Beaded Treasure by Robin Atkins How to transfer

33. 35. 36. 38. 40. 42. 44. 48. 50. 54. 57. 59.

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Interview with Oksana Volkova Moonlight by Oksana Volkova Inspiration by Loretta Lam Peephole Pendant by Els van Haasen Confession by Ronna Sarvas Weltman Improve your Photos for Dummies Blue Sun by Cecilia Botton Pasta Blue Cheese Beyond the Sea by Natalia Garcia de Leรกniz Oriental Blue by Sophie Arzalier Abstract Blue by Joost Delsink Next Issue: GREEN



Welcome! Here it is! FROM POLYMER TO ART – the new magazine – in BLUE! Blue, blue, blue… blue was all we could think of for the last few months… Blue as one of the primary colours, blue as in feeling blue, blue as in clear blue skies, or as dark blue nights, blue as in The Blues… and so on… and so on… These BLUE brainwaves were translated into this new edition of From Polymer To Art! We hope it leads to new inspiration, new ideas, and new creations! Let your BLUE dreams come true!

M a r j o n a i k s Sa 7

Laurieika Laurie Mika


~ Where were you born? What was it like growing up over there? I was born in Southern California in the 1950’s. Being a teenager in California during the 60’s was definitely an interesting experience. There were “love-ins”, hippies, war protests, student riots and great music! It was also the time period of the Viet Nam war and the Richard Nixon presidency and a time when civil rights were being fought for. I can’t think of a more exciting time period to grow up in. ~ What kind of study did you take? After graduating from high school, I took a partial “gap year” and traveled to Europe for the first time, doing the typical Eurail pass/ hitchhiking/backpacking trek around the continent! I was hooked on travel and when it came time to apply for college, I found an international university in East Africa, in Nairobi, Kenya. My first year and a half was spent in Africa and my studies were devoted to the history and culture of the region. When I returned home, I studied literature, art and philosophy. I went on to graduate school and did the course work for a Masters in Art History. ~ Did your family have any influence on your arty way of thinking? My father was in real estate and my mom was a stay-at-home mom. I always had a love for drawing and was a compulsive “doodler” growing up. I took a few art courses in high school and then took a few more in college. While I don’t think my family life had any direct influence on my creative thinking, they certainly supported me in my decisions to pursue art.

~ What is your favorite time of day? I like the first part of the day for being creative and getting artwork done and I like the evening hours to do computer work and email.

~ What do you do for a living? I am fortunate enough to do what I love most, which is to make art, teach and travel. Combining those passions into a full time career is a dream come true.

~ What is the main inspiration for your designs? Did you take classes? The primary influences in my work are Medieval and Early Renaissance art combined with Mexican folk art. I am also inspired by the Israeli jewellery artist, Ayala Bar. I love her intricate designs and try to attain a certain jewel-like look in my own work. I never attended a workshop until 2004, so I am primarily self-taught.

~ Tell us about your family… I have a very supportive husband (who would like to retire from teaching and travel with me!!) and four wonderful children who are all in their twenties. We have three boys who have graduated from college and are all in jobs that are fairly creative from sound designers to filmmakers! Our youngest is a daughter and she is in London going to graduate school. The first of our sons is getting married in a few weeks!

~ Describe how you evolved into your current style. My style really did evolve from those early buttons. The buttons that I painted became square tiles and then I started using them in mosaic pieces like boxes and tables. In 2000, I discovered rubber-stamping and that changed the direction of my work and made it more narrative. Since that time, I have done much less in the way of functional art like the tables and have focused more on the wall pieces like the shrines and icons which are definitely influenced by medieval devotional panels.

~ How did you come to be a polymer clay artist? What was your first acquaintance with polymer clay? As I like to say, I became a polymer clay artist because of a button! My first acquaintance with polymer clay was taking a class at the Clay Factory about 20 years ago! I used white clay which I painted to make buttons to match the handpainted wearable art that I was creating back then.

~ What is your favorite colour? My favorite colour is periwinkle (a blue-purple colour) but my favorite paint colour is Quinacridone/Nickel Azo Gold!

~ Where is your studio? How many hours do you average in a day? My studio is in my home. About 10 years ago we did a remodel in our house and added a nice large room to be my studio. I love it! It has concrete floors, great natural light and I have a sink in my studio too. When I am not travelling, I would love to spend almost every waking minute in my studio but life seems to get in the way of that happening! On average I would say that I spend about five hours a day in my studio.

~ What medium do you prefer to work with? I really am more of a mixed media artist than anything else, so I love anything having to do with paint….if I am playing with paint, I am happy! If I am playing with paint on polymer clay, then I am super happy!


Laurie Mika

~ What brands of clay do you use? I prefer either Premo or Sculpey III and those are the clays I usually work with. ~ Do you have a favorite tool? A toothpick is one of my favorite tools! I use them for many purposes from beading to clay work. It seems I always have to have a toothpick nearby when creating. Do you have a Tip or Trick for our readers? I often use text, quotes and words stamped into clay. Many times they are hard to read if they are too deeply stamped. If that is the case, I have found that by lightly rolling over the words with your rolling pin, that it flattens the letters and makes it much easier to read when you apply mica powders or paint. ~ Do you have a favorite weblink to share with our readers? Teesha is the creator of Artfest, a wonderful mixed media art retreat. Her artwork and her website are very inspiring, especially if you look at the workshop samples of the instructors for the upcoming retreats. ~ What are your goals in polymer clay? My goals in polymer clay are to keep stretching the boundaries of what clay can do by working with it from a mixed media perspective. By that I mean I want to continue to embed all sorts of things into clay including paper, metal and fiber and I want to continue altering the surface of polymer clay using all kinds of paint products. ~ Do you offer workshops and jewellery classes? I am often teaching workshops around the US and around the world! This past year I was in Australia and Europe and early next year I will be teaching in Israel and Mexico. I do teach a few jewellery classes as well but they are not very traditional! ~ What has been your greatest achievement in polymer clay? I think my greatest achievement in polymer clay has been to approach the clay in a totally different way and to begin using polymer clay tiles to create mixed media mosaics. Instead of using coloured clays to create designs, I have pioneered ways to alter the surface of clay by using acrylic paint and other products on raw clay. ~ Tell us about your book, which is very inspirational! My book is a project oriented book that is stepped out so that readers can follow the instructions and create a variety of projects from the book, There are also many pieces of art that are highlighted with the stories behind the mosaics that serve as inspiration. ~ Can you tell us your weirdest, best or most beautiful dream? Still a dream, or did it come true? My dreams usually involve me running late for a workshop where everything that can go wrong, does! I have even dreamed I had no clothes on in front of my class! Ok, that is weird! Fortunately that has not come true! LOL


Jellina Verhoeff - Paper Beads

Paperbeads Verhoeff by Jellina

Material: paper (scrapbook paper/ glossy magazine paper) scissors, pencil, ruler, glue, varnish, toothpicks or filigree pen. Cut your paper into long triangular strips (1 cm at the base). Roll your paper strip around a toothpick or use a filigree pen. For best results, roll precisely. Put some glue at the end of your paper strip (approximately last 15 cm of the strip). Varnish your rolled paper beads. All lacquers work, even nail polish. Allow to dry. Varnish 2 to 3 times for durability.


Joyce van Loon - Songtekst Groovy Kind of Love • •


Margit Bรถhmer


Blue Dream

Margit Bohmer Margit discovered polymer clay nearly 4 years ago and was hooked at once. She loves colourful jewellery and ethnic beads. You can find influences from African and Tibetan jewellery in her work. She is always searching for new techniques and extraordinary colour combinations. She lives in eastern Germany. Margit can be reached at To see more of her work, please visit:


Blue Dream

Material: (Length of the necklace: approximately 53 cm with clasp) Polymer clay Fimo Classic, Premo!, Pardo Art Clay or Kato: Black 1 ½ packages (90 grams) Turquoise ½ package (30 grams) Blue ¼ package (15 grams)

Tools: Pasta Machine Roller Ruler Work surface Blade Piercing tool Extruder Extruder disk with biggest hole Circle cutter, diameter 1 cm Fiberfill for baking (optional) Oven Beading wire Clasp Crimp beads

Step 1

Step 2

If you want a longer necklace make some more elements. It is important to have different lengths to achieve the irregular voluminous look.

Step 3

It’s important that the clay is not too soft and not too firm, so I work with Fimo Classic and Premo! Condition one package of black clay until it’s soft and pliable. Roll logs which fit into your extruder. I prefer the “silver” extruder but the green one also works. Extrude strings by using the disk with the biggest hole.

Introduction to the project: My love for experimenting with unusual bead shapes led me to this necklace. It’s easy to make and fun to wear. Follow my colour suggestions or choose colours you like the best. Lying on the worktable the necklace does not show all its beauty, but believe me: worn it looks really great. The look changes with every movement, almost like a living creature.

Step 4

Condition the turquoise and blue clay. Divide the turquoise clay in half. Make a Skinner blend on the thickest setting of your pasta machine by arranging the blue clay between the turquoise clay.


Cut these strings in 46 pieces with the following lengths: 4 cm (8 pieces); 3,2 cm (14 pieces); 2,5 cm (14 pieces) and 1,8 cm (10 pieces). You can vary this; it’s not necessary to have absolutely the same pieces. Take care that the pieces are straight. Do not curve them.

Pierce holes in center. Tip: Set the pieces aside on fiberfill to avoid distortion.

Margit Bohmer

Step 5

Cut out as many disks as you can get from the sheet with the circle cutter.

Step 6

Step 7

Step 8

Step 9

Make a new sheet from the leftover clay and cut out some more disks until you have 92 disks.

If you like, make some disks in a contrasting colour. Tip: Let the disks rest for one hour or so.

Attach the disks to the extruded pieces. It is a little tricky to find the center, but with a little patience it works. Take care that the disks have good contact to the extruded elements, to ensure they are securely attached.

Bake the pieces on fiberfill (you can also use cotton), to avoid distortion, according to the manufacturer’s recommendation for 45 minutes. Let the pieces cool.


Blue Dream

Step 10

Meanwhile condition the leftover black clay and roll a sheet on the thickest setting of the pasta machine. Cut out 50 black disks and 12 disks from the leftover blue sheet. If you like a longer necklace, make some more disks. Pierce holes and bake the clay for 15 minutes. Allow to cool.

Step 11

String all your disks and elements randomly like this: 31 disks, all the extruded elements, 31 disks. Attach a matching clasp.

Have fun with your necklace! 15

Sabine Backer



When I was asked to write something for the magazine ‘From Polymer to Art’ I shouted yes, yes, yes and yes again - without really giving it much thought. Weeks, days, hours have passed, however, and I have come to realize that ‘writing something’ was easier said than done. For quite some time now my thoughts have been concentrating on the colour BLUE. First I asked my youngest daughter, Johanna, followed by my neighbours and my postman (I live at the back of beyond so everybody knows everybody hereabouts): What do you associate with the colour BLUE? Having thought about it for a moment they all of them gave me the same answer: Water and the sky are BLUE. Well, some of them also mentioned bluebottles, blue blood and blue murder, but that line of enquiry didn’t strike me as very promising. The question of BLUE obviously required further investigation. Wherever I looked, be it at the supermarket, at home or outdoors, there was BLUE staring me in the face. I hadn’t realized how very much BLUE there is all around us. However, my thoughts continued to revolve around the question of how to link the colour BLUE with polymer clay. And of course I did what one normally does nowadays: I turned to the World Wide Web, omniscient and ever-ready to share its knowledge. The search began, the Google machinery rattling like mad. You wouldn’t believe how many references to BLUE I found! Our planet is called the ‘blue planet’ – on photographs from outer space it looks as if it were shrouded in a blue haze. Things happening unexpectedly happen ‘out of the BLUE’ and things that come about very rarely happen ‘once in a BLUE moon’. There is a cat breed called ‘Russian BLUE’, flowers like cornflowers, gentian and forget-me-nots are BLUE, there used to be a group of Russian and German artists including Franz Marc who called themselves ‘The BLUE Rider’ and so on and so forth. I could have continued this list indefinitely but even that somehow wasn’t enough. I kept asking myself: What has the colour BLUE got to do with me and with our work with polymer clay? Then I remembered the primary colours. BLUE is one of them, together with yellow and red. All other colours are mixtures of two or three of these colours, BLUE, yellow and red. Yes, I know what you are thinking: There’s nothing new in that, is there? And then, all of a sudden, it was there: the link, my link between BLUE and polymer clay. At the end of October a workshop took place in Liechtenstein with Sandra McCaw, a wonderful artist, and I had the honour of organizing it. Her one-of-a-kind McCaw canes in particular are fantastic blazes of colours. Her colour combinations are so fascinating and beautiful that I kept mixing clay in my mind’s eye trying them all out. It was like a dream. We, the participants of the course, had been asked to prepare our clay beforehand, so we had to have our mixes ready. And who doesn’t know this question of all questions: Which colours should I choose? Red and blue? Or should I mix blue and green after all? Or should I rather add a bit of lilac? Well, guess what ... With the colour BLUE having been on my mind for quite some time, at the end of the workshop my flower was ...



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the new magazine all about polymer clay! February 2011, Issue 1.

From Polymer To Art is published 4 times a year by Total Pre Press, Uithoorn, The Netherlands, Email: Presidents: Graphic Design: Advertisement Sales: Subscription Sales:


Saskia Veltenaar and Marjon Donker-Verbrugge Eefje Kleijweg Saskia Veltenaar and Marjon Donker-Verbrugge Saskia Veltenaar and Marjon Donker-Verbrugge

Printed in The Netherlands. ISSN

DISCLAIMER All rights reserved. We reserve the right to edit for length and clarity. Reproduction in whole or part without the written permission of the publisher and its contributors is prohibited. All material submitted to the magazine for publication in whatever form is accepted solely on the basis the author receives no payment, but full credits by promoting the authors website/ weblog. The designs in From Polymer to Art are for your personal enjoyment. Exact reproduction for commercial purposes is contrary to the spirit of good craftsmanship.

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It is still incredible our dream has become reality! Thank you dear contributors for writing new and exciting articles, thank you dear proofreaders for all your editing and superb suggestions, thank you dear readers of RED for giving us much response (either negative and positive, we can only learn from your comments and ideas!), thank you Eefje for being enormously flexible, understandable, enthousiastic, thank you Rinus and Martin (our dear husbands, there are times when they receive less attention…;-)), thanks Gijs, Menno, Milja, and Manouk (our children) for just being there, thank you Wim and Lot for your trust, thank you dear friends for your support, thank you Oscar for all your time and work! Well, we could continue… but we just wanted to say Thank You to you all!!! And what’s there left to say after these words? We wish you all Happy Claying..!

HOW TO SUBSCRIBE? Visit the From Polymer To Art website at Magazine rates 2011: Single Issue 2011: € 9,95* Subscription 2011 : 4x € 8,50* = € 34,=* (All prices excluded postage/shipping costs.) HOW TO ADVERTISE? Write to: We are also on Facebook & Flickr! Are we friends yet?


Easy Overdijk Anja Blue Necklace


Easy Blue Silver Necklace Blues

Anja Overdijk Hi, my name is Anja and I live in the Netherlands. This is my second contribution for this outstanding magazine of Saskia and Marjon. If your are curious about my earlier polymer work, check my Flickr website: or contact me at: I’am looking forward to meet you and learn from you too!


The Silver Blues Tools -

Pasta Machine


1,5 mm bore needle




Empty can


Paint brush


Paper, pen, ruler, scissors


Tile to work on


Old cloth

Materials -

Pardo clay: Mother of Pearl (905) Sapphire (602) Blue Zircon (603) Blue Crystal (609)


Acrylic paint Silver (I used Amsterdam)


24 rings silver 6 mm


2 rings silver 8 mm


1 silver clasp


Anja Overdijk

Step 1

Step 2

Step 3

Step 4

Step 5

Step 6

Step 7

Step 8

Step 9

Start by making a Skinner blend of the 4 colours; start with blue crystal, blue zircon, sapphire, mother of pearl, sapphire, blue zircon and blue crystal. So the mother of pearl is in the middle. End up with a Skinner blend of medium thickness.

Put the five paper templates onto your 2 levels of clay. Cut your pieces.

Paint your pieces all over with silver paint. Make sure your fill all the textures you’ve made. Let it dry for a few minutes. Take your old cloth and moisten it a little. Rub the upper layer of paint off your pieces.

Make another sheet of clay in one colour (thickest setting of your pasta machine) and put this underneath the Skinner blend. I used the darkest blue (Blue Crystal).

Now you get to texture your pieces. Use whatever you can find around you and be creative! Tip: you can also texture the sides and get the silver effect on the sides too.

Mark the right places for your holes with your paper. Note: the first and last piece have a hole in the middle for the clasp.

Make 5 templates out of paper in the size: 4,5 x 2,5 cm. You can mark where you want to make your holes after your pieces are ready. Note: the total size of this bracelet is 18 cm, check the size of your wrist first before you start! Change the size of your pieces or use other ring size (instead of the 6 mm) to make the size of bracelet fits you.

When you’re done texturing, you put the pieces onto the empty drinking can. Put them in the oven and bake them for 30 minutes. After baking cool the pieces in ice water.

Make the holes with your bore machine, I used a bore needle 1,5 mm thickness. Your 6 mm rings are the connectors and the two 8 mm rings will attach your clasp.

Well, there is your own bracelet!!! I wish you a lot of polymer clay fun!! 20

The Silver Blues


Royal Delft

The Koninklijke Porceleyne Fles / Royal Delft is the only remaining factory of the 32 earthenware factories that were established in Delft in the 17th century. Although it is not exactly sure when the first factories started to operate, we do know that already in the second half of the 16th century there were factories in Amsterdam, Haarlem and Middelburg which produced multicoloured (or polychrome) earthenware. The production process of Delft earthenware starts with the composition of the clay. It is made up of ± 10 raw materials, of which kaolin, chalk, feldspar, and quartz are most essential. The raw materials are carefully mixed with water until they become a liquid mass. Most of the components are imported from England, Norway, the Czech Republic and France. The liquid clay passes a set of magnets in order to remove any iron particles. Most of the clay mass is then stored in large containers and will be used for casting. A smaller part is put in a so-called filter press where much of its water is extracted. It comes out of the machine as a pliable, plastic mass and is then used to make all kind of objects that have to be purely round, like plates, platters, etcetera. First a clay ‘pancake’ is made on a rotating disk. This ‘pancake’ is then laid on a plaster mould which is formed like the front of a plate. The reserve side of a plate is formed by pulling down the handle of a calibre formed like the back of the plate. The liquid clay mentioned before is used as casting clay for all articles that are not purely round and that have ridges. The clay is poured into plaster moulds, which are hollow inside and consist of 3 pieces. The inside of the mould has been filled up, the clay stays in it for about 20 minutes.

The Delftware painters then paint the traditional decorations on the articles entirely by hand. This is done with brushes made of the hairs of martens and squirrels, and black paint containing cobalt oxide. The cobalt brings about a chemical reaction during the firing process, changing the colour form black to blue. paint is based on water, enabling the painters to create various shades of blue by adding more or less water.

The porous plaster sucks up the water from the clay, leaving a layer of dry clay on its interior walls. When the clay has reached the right thickness, the liquid surplus is poured off.

The decorated pieces are the glazed. This is done either by dipping into the glaze or by spraying. The glaze covers the decoration with an non transparent layer of white. During the second firing process, which is done at a temperature of 1200 °C (2192 °F), the glaze melts into a translucent layer of glass and the black paint turns blue. After careful quality control, the object is now ready for sale.

After some time, the clay is hard enough to be taken out of the mould without being deformed. After the seams or irregularities have been carefully removed, the object is put into the kiln to be fired for the first time, at a temperature of 1160 °C (2120 °F). After 24 hours the body, which is now called ‘bisquit’, is taken out of the kiln.


Royal Delft

Painting workshops After following the informative guided or audio tour, you will probably be eager to have a go at creating your own piece of Delft Blue. They have four different workshops. All workshop programmes take two and a half hours. After enjoying a cup of coffee/tea with a piece of apple pie and the guided or audio tour, you can try your hand at earthenware painting with Delft Blue paint. There are professionals will help you with this, of course. They also provide the brushes, the paint and the earthenware item to be painted. Want to know more?

We took the decorative tile workshop. we were able to make our own hand-painted tile. See what we’ve made… While painting we realized how difficult it is. Now we have even more admiration for the Delfts Blue painters! Whenever you visit Holland, do visit Royal Delft!

Visit the Royal Delft Online shop at

A must have…

Lucky Bracelet Delfts Blauw

There is an old Dutch expression that says “Scherven brengen geluk”. Freely translated it means that if you break a cup or plate, it will bring you happiness. Royal Delft and A Beautiful Story started an unique cooperation with this Lucky Bracelet. The bracelet with fragments of Royal Delft blue in a setting of high quality Sterling silver (925) brings luck to you and the silversmiths in Nepal! Each bracelet is unique! Price € 219,95 incl VAT, Weight 110 gram

Rotterdamseweg 196, | 2628 AR Delft | P.O. Box 11 | 2600 AA Delft | T: 0031 15 251 2030 | F: 0031 15 251 2031 | I: | E:


iere L n a v s e n g By A

Robin Atkins

s e r u s a e r T d e d a e B

a must have book!

The technique written in this book is a very versatile technique. Depending on which beads, treasures and cord you use, you can create designs that are simple or complex, elegant or funky, modern or ethnic, sweet or sizzling and everything in between. Necklaces, bracelets, tassels, straps, belts… all possible! Ideal for your lightweight polymer clay beads. Especially good for using lots of one-of-a-kind beads, bits and pieces, wonderful treasures including buttons… don’t we have them all? We interviewed Robin Atkins, the author of this book.

Washington all the way to a bead shop in Blackfoot, Idaho, each spending about $400 on beads! What drew me to them? Who can explain “love?” At first I suppose it was a fascination with all the beautiful colours and shapes. Later, as I learned more about beads, it was the history and ubiquitous nature of beading that further delighted me, knowing that beads as adornment go back to first man, studying ethnic and historical beadwork, collecting old beads. There’s no end to it. As soon as I think I know about beads, someone shows me one I’ve never seen before!

What drew you to beads as a medium? I remember loving beads as a youngster. My tubes of “Indian beads” and my little wind-the-warp loom were precious to me. I had six opaque colours of beads (red, aqua, blue, yellow, green and white) and the loom instructions came with pages for graphing designs. Intrigued with the winding warp feature of my bead loom, I kept beading my design until I ran out of one of the colours. What began as a bookmark, turned into a 5-foot strip that hung on the door frame to our kitchen for many years. I flirted with beads on and off for the next three decades, trying macramé, metalsmithing, and weaving. In 1988 I took a class from Carol Berry, a wonderful artist with a unique style combining metalsmithing and beads. She had been collecting unusual beads for several years, and graciously shared them with the class. I went bonkers! I fell headover-heels in love with her beads! She and I, bonding over our mutual delight in tiny glass treasures, began serious bead shopping. In those days there weren’t many bead stores. One weekend, we took a trip from Seattle,

What is your favourite technique? For the past ten years, bead embroidery is my favourite method with beads, stitching beads on fabric, leather or felt! Although a sense of harmony and contentment fills me when doing other types of beadwork or other handwork like thread (or ribbon) embroidery, it is never so pervasive as when I’m beading on cloth. As I stitch bead after bead, I feel like a contemplative, whole, complete, and totally honest. Where do you find your inspiration? I work improvisationally – that is, without a plan or design. Many times I don’t know what my bead embroidery piece will become until I’ve worked on it for weeks. Yet, it’s not just random. The inspirations come from some intuitive level, maybe a “play instinct,” permission to let myself choose fabric and beads to sew them on the cloth without input from my brain. Because I work this way, I don’t generally try to understand or analyze the inspirations behind my pieces. However, if I must be more specific, I’d say I find inspiration from the colours and designs

of the fabrics I use, animals and plants, symbols, my bead stash, folk art, childhood experiences, people I love and respect, my students and teachers, life issues, and important decisions facing me. Where did you learn the weaving technique shown in this article? I first saw the technique in a necklace from Nepal and another from Tibet. Then I took a class in needle-weaving, noticing that the core weaving looked very similar to the basis for the two ethnic necklaces. From there it was a matter of experimenting with the basic weaving technique, finding new ways to attach beads and design jewellery. Getting started: Material: • Corkboard • T-pins / sturdy pins with large heads • Fray check™ (available at fabric & quilting shops) or super glue • A weight or the clamp of your pastamachine • C-lon cord For a bracelet you take measure 5x a strand of 2 mtr (for a necklace you’ll need 5 strands of 4 mtr). Bundle your strands and tie them wit a simple over-hand knot at the center point of the 2 mtr. Now you’ll have 10 ends. Stiffen your ends with Fray Check or super glue. This will allow you to bead without needles. Let them dry. When dry, snip the tips at a Sharp angle. Pin your cords to the corkboard through the knot at the very edge of your board. Half the strands are coiled and unused at your working surface. The other five ends hang off the edge of the corkboard. Use your clamp of your pastamachine to keep all in place as you work and weave. Now let’s start the basic weaving… Working with the five strands hanging off the edge of the corkboard, you will be weaving close to the edge of the board, with your hands positioned under it. Put a pin in the right hand side of the corkboard at a sharp


Beaded Treasure

angle, with the point toward you. Separate one strand from the others and wrap it over the pin, snugging it down so that it doesn’t pull free easily. For now, this strand will be your weaver. Separate the other four strands into two bundles, placing one over your right thigh, the other over your left. For now, these will be your right bundle and left bundle. If you are familiar with weaving terms or bead weaving on a loom, you will recognize that the bundles are the warp threads, and the weaver is the weft. Free the weaver from the pin, and begin weaving by wrapping it over the right bundle, then under the left bundle, you might also think of this as switching. First switch the weaver with the right bundle, so that it’s between the bundles. Then switch the weaver with the left bundle, so it’s on the left side. Next, wrap the weaver over the left bundle, and under the right bundle, returning to the original starting position and making a figure-8 around the bundles. Continue weaving in a figure-8 pattern, over and under the two bundles . When you first learn weaving, you may find yourself braiding. Remember, in weaving only the weaver moves back and forth. The two bundles always remain stationary, one on your right and the other on your left. As you weave, keep pushing the woven part toward the knot with your thumb. Keep the tension even and snug, but not so tight that the work is too stiff or your fingers cramp. At the completion of each figure-8, free the weaver so that the end of it doesn’t get tangled with the strands in the bundles. To take a break, wrap the weaver over a pin (pinned at a sharp angle in the corkboard to the right or left of your work), as you did before you began weaving. Snug the weaver

between the cork and pin to keep it in place. Now you can let go of your work. All projects begin with a loop, which will form one side of the closure for a necklace/bracelet or become a hanging loop for a tassel. Weave until the cord is long enough to fit loosely around your closure button or bead. To close your loop you’ll be joining the other five strands to the bundles you have already been weaving. Untie the knot. Include three strands into your left bundle and twoº into your right bundle, and your weaver continues as the waever. From now on you will have five strands in one bundle, four in the other Make three complete figure-8 weaves to secure your loop. And than.. the fun begins… you can add beads & treasures!!! In general, beads and treasures are added to strands that are in either the right or left bundles. Do not add beads to the weaver! Make sure the tip of each strand is cut at a sharp angle! The resulting tip is like the point of a needle and serves to make threading your beads easier. When your tip starts to fray, simply cut it again. The bracelet you see here is made only by stacks. To make a stack, select a strand from either bundle, string one or more beads on this strand, string an ending bead (a size 8 bead or Delica), then thread the strand back through the stack. Pull it tight to your woven cord. Weave the strand back into the bundle. If you weave the strand back into the same bundle it came from, your stack will stick out to the side. One complete figure-8 weave will lock the stack in place. To make the stack lay on top of the woven cord, weave the strand into the other bundle. (Strand from left, weave back into left bundle


= stack will be on the left side; Strand from left, cross and weave back on right = stack will be on top). As you weave and add elements, your weaver gets shorter and shorter. So during your weaving just change to a new weaver. Simply put the old weaver in one of the bundles. Select a new strand (simply choose the longest) from that same bundle. Designate this new strand as your new weaver by using it to continue weaving. At the photo of the Delfts Blue bracelet you see a normal metal clasp. One of the possibilities to finish your bead project. Robin Atkins describes in her book a bead bouquet closure which is gorgeous… so if you can’t get enough of this weaving… what can we say… just buy the book! (we can also recommend her other books! Very inspiring!)

How to transfer

How to transfer with your copyright free images

It’s easy, it’s fun! Copy your copyright free images with a toner printer. (New printed copies will transfer better, the ink can dry out after some time, so just make some copies you want to use right away.)

Condition your clay. Cut out the image you want to transfer (image plus some empty space around your image).

Put it onto your clay, image pointed to the clay. Rub the back of the paper smoothly, so no air is between the paper and clay. Leave it there for about 8 minutes. After that you pull away your paper and tatatataaaaaa… your image transferred onto your clay.

Be aware the ink will be wet until you bake it in the oven. So be careful lifting your clay!



free images

If you copy these images with a toner printer you could use them as a transfer. On the previous page you see how simple transferring is!



Oksana Volkova

Oksana Volkova

e v o l h t i w scow o M m o r F


Oksana Volkova for such a media to go up with my needs. My first acquaintance with polymer clay happened when I saw an article in some hobby magazine. There was a master class about how to cover a vase with a simple polymer clay millefiori cane technique. I immediately bought several packs of PC and started to experiment and burned it all because of wrong oven temperature. Where is your studio? I don’t have a studio yet, so I work at home. One corner of living room is my working place. I hope it will change soon. What time of day do you like best? I love early mornings for that special light and feeling of beginning, but prefer to work in the late evening when no one diverts me. What is the main inspiration for your designs? My inspiration comes from so many things - paintings, architecture, prints, art objects, even blankets in an Egyptian taxi! I’ve never been to any courses, but I wish I could visit some great sessions in Europe or the States. I think I’m still developing my style. I prefer more geometrical and bold designs. I think style is the reflection of our personality in anything we do. What is your favorite colour? Blue, all shades of sea colours, magenta, purple. What medium do you prefer to work with? Polymer clay and felt. Is polymer clay is known medium in Russia? What brands can you buy? What brand do you prefer to work with? Not really, but it has become more and more popular. We even have Russian brands of PC. Here in Moscow you can buy Premo (Sculpey, Studio), Fimo and Kato. I work mostly with Sculpey, Studio and Fimo.

You were born in Moscow, Russia. What was it like growing up in Moscow? Yes, Moscow is my home town. Now I think that it wasn’t easy, but when you’re a child you just don’t realize it could be another way. That was a time of great changes. The Soviet Union ended up with our economy and everything from the past and we all faced the new world, without knowing what freedom is but with a big desire to try everything, I’m so happy that it happened. I can’t imagine that so many people couldn’t travel abroad and were prohibited from doing so many things. From my early childhood and teenage years I lived in the very center of Moscow, so I remember when I saw tanks from my windows while there was a government coup in 2 stops from our house.

Do you have a Tip or Trick for our readers? Just trust yourself and enjoy colours! What are your goals in polymer clay? My goals are just to do pretty and interesting jewellery to bring people joy. Do you offer workshops and jewellery classes? Where do you exhibit your work? I haven’t taught any workshops, just several master classes for friends. You can see my work online on Flickr.

What kind of study did you take? I left primary school quite early, so I entered university when I was 15 to study philosophy and English language. Did your family have any influence on your arty way of thinking? My parents worked as hair stylists and then my mother opened her own beauty salon. She is also drawing quite good. Now I think there definitely was an influence though I can’t remember anything in particular. They were different from other people, more open-minded. They encouraged me to express myself.

What has been your greatest achievement in polymer clay? I think my greatest achievement will happen in the near future. Can you tell us your weirdest, best or most beautiful dream? Still a dream, or did it come true? It’s still a dream. I’d love to live in a house of Hundertwasser design with a studio and my own gallery near the sea, with my family, somewhere in Spain, surrounded by white and blue houses and beautiful nature. I want to see the sun rising from the water every morning with a cup of coffee!

What do you do for a living? What kind of family do you have? Children? I sell my polymer clay jewellery. Several times a month I work on TV as costume designer assistant, sometimes as stylist for photo shoots. I’m married, have a daughter - she’s six - and two fat cats.

How did you come to be a polymer clay artist? I think I’m on my way to being polymer clay artist! All my life I like doing something with my hands, especially sculpting, it’s just necessary for me to feel comfortable. For a long time I was searching



Moonlight t u b e l p m i S s g n i r r a e h s styli

You will need Ÿ of Premo Ultramarine Blue pack, round pliers, middle round cutter, 2 small metal beads, 2 middle size silver beads, 2 silver metal ending cups, many round-head pins, 2 long pins (= main pins) and 10 flexible round-headed pins, small 16 silver rings and a pair of earwires. Roll a piece of polymer clay at the thickest setting of your pasta machine. Cut out 2 equal rounds to sculpt 2 beads. Take the round head pin and cut it in half. Make a hole in the bead with your long main pin and start to press firmly several round-head pins, when you think it’s enough bake them for 30 min at 130 C. Take flexible pin and make loops with help of your round pliers, assembling all the parts together. Take the end of the main pin (with assembled beads on it) and bend it in a straight angle. Make a round loop with your round pliers and connect it to earwires.

Enjoy your new earrings!


Loretta Lam


m a L


Loretta Lam

Inspiration Where do design ideas come from? When you sit down to make a piece of jewellery, what is the spark of creativity that feeds you and gets your juices flowing? Often, it seems we are not in touch with our own inspiration. Instead we just start to play around, working on a technique or combining colours, hoping it all comes together. Our hands and eyes are engaged - but not our hearts and minds. Being inspired means that you are “moved” to create. You have something to say that’s important to you. The difference between good jewellery and the piece that takes your breath away is intention. The inspired artist conveys his or her thoughts and feelings through a conscious and intentional creative process.

Nature The natural world is probably the primary source of subject matter for artists. Start by becoming aware of what you find most beautiful or awesome and then really observe it. Whether it is the soft watercolours of sunset or a bowl of beautiful fresh fruit, really look at it. A weather-bleached, shriveled leaf, for example, might catch your eye in passing. You think it is lovely but move on. Instead, take the time to study the subtlety of colour, line and texture. It is delicate and fragile, light and graceful. Discover what it is about your inspiration that makes your heart sing. Then decide if you want to represent it realistically, symbolically or in the abstract. Sometimes in my own work, the nuts, mushrooms and berries from the woodland floor are obvious and directly represented. But if I change the scale or colours, a very different concept develops.


Use this to inform your work and choose elements which are literal or symbolic. It will take your work to a new level.

Emotions Artists are often inspired by our deepest or most intense feelings and strong personal experiences. When I think of emotional art my mind goes instantly to Edvard Munch’s “the Scream” or Kathleen Dustin’s screaming faces on a purse. These are figurative representations of intense feelings. But you don’t have to be this literal. Our emotional lives are easily translated into a visual vocabulary. We are familiar with the colours we choose to express anger, jealousy, joy or sorrow. But you can also imagine the kinds of lines, forms and textures you would use to express the same emotions. Take time to experiment with designs based on a strong personal feeling. Show it to friends and see if your intention is understood. The richness and subtlety of our feelings is very personal. By putting those strong personal feelings into your work, you will create more unique, expressive pieces.


This refers to formal composition consisting of the conscious arrangement of design elements. It means you are inspired by pure design. It could focus on the functionality of jewellery, or jewellery from other cultures or eras. Maybe you are responding to current fashion trends in colour, scale or materials. Maybe you simply enjoy the intellectual exercise of combining geometric shapes and forms. For example, look at the work of Emiko Oye. She makes jewellery with Legos, reworking a traditional, vintage or antique design in this very modern material. Decorative jewellery does not have to be traditional or stuffy. It can be very unique. Your inspirations are personal, unique to you. They establish your point of view and tell the world what you think and feel. Inspiration is the lighthouse which guides you, informs your creative choices and design decisions. It is said there is nothing new under the sun. But that’s not quite true. You are unique. There has never been another you, with your thoughts, feelings, interests and experiences. Put more of you in your work and watch it grow!

The inspiration here comes from a social source. It is a kind of personal storytelling or commentary. This includes political content. It could be a peace symbol or campaign buttons to a necklace made from gun casings or toy soldiers. It could also be vignettes about the human condition. For example, Cynthia Toops micro mosaics evoke family life. Everyone can relate to these little glimpses into a personal story. Are you strongly connected to personal memories? Do you feel strongly about societal problems?

Loretta Lam is an award winning studio jeweler whose work is found in craft galleries nationwide and at fine craft shows. She has a BFA in silversmithing from SUNY New Paltz and has been working in polymer clay since 1999. Her work has appeared in numerous books and magazines, and has participated in many national and international exhibitions. Loretta has been teaching her craft for over six years. For more information go to:


Els van Haasen

ial TutorPEEPHOLE PENDANT Els van Haasen

My name is Els van Haasen, I’m from Holland. I am 47 years and full time working as a facility manager. I am married and mother of two sons. Besides my work I am an fanatic hobbyist. More than two years now I work with polymer clay, a wonderful material that constantly offers new challenges. I make mostly hangers and earrings, using various techniques. Techniques I learn from others, from books, workshops, networking opportunities through the Internet and by experimenting. I find my inspiration in the world and nature around us and in people around me.


I named these pendants peepholes because of the little circle that looks like a peephole. This gives the pendant a surprising effect. This circle can inspire you to give the pendant your own signature in many ways.

Pasta machine Cutters circle, 3 sizes, 1 big and two smaller (the sizes you prefer) Texture sheet or tool Light bulb for baking Chop stick Hobb yknife

Materials Clay in three colours, I used Cernit Navy blue ½ package Glamour blue, 1/3 package Sky blue, 1/3 package Liquid clay

Step 1

You start with conditioning your clay, all colours, with your pasta machine. You make a three colour Skinner Blend blend the way you prefer. I made a blend by using the blend technique of Dan Cormier. Make a your Skinner blend sheet at the second thickest setting of your pasta machine.

Cornstarch (for your texture)


Step 2

Cut out a circle with the big cutter, put this circle on a light bulb. Press the edges well. (Try to leave no fingerprints…)

Step 3

Take your small cutter and cut out a little circle from the big circle on your bulb, you can cut it out any place you like. TIP: If you cut out the small circle before you put it on your bulb, your circle may stretch, and that would be a pity…

Peephole Pendant

Step 4

Step 5

Step 8

Step 9

Put your circle on the light bulb in the oven for 30 minutes. In meantime you make a textured clay sheet with a texture of your choice in a colour of your choice. I love to use a bike-reflector as a texture. And I love to use clay in one of the colours I used for the blend. Pick a texture you prefer in the colour you love!

Cut away your clay around the edges of your pendant with your X-knife. Try to make a smooth edge, check if there are no gaps. Be carefull, don’t touch the “little hole” while working on the backside of your pendant.

Step 6

Cut out a circle from this textured sheet. This circle has to be a little bit bigger as the small circle you cut out in step 5.

When your blended circle (which was in the oven) is baked and cooled down, you can fill up the hole with the little textured circle. Use liquid clay to glue. Carefully push the edges of your little circle against the edges of the little hole (backside of your baked piece!).

The last thing you do, before you put your pendant in the oven again, is making something for your necklace to go through. I usually make a little tunnel of clay by rolling up a very small sheet. I use some liquid to make sure I make a strong connection. And… Don’t forget to sign your pendant. Now you can bake your piece for the last time.



Step 7

Now you can make the backside of your pendant. I make an easy backside by putting in one sheet of clay and pressing it (with liquid clay) against the baked backside. I make a little hole with my needle pin so the air can come out.

You can make peephole pendants in many ways, using texture, using transfers, using embellishments etc. etc. Have fun making your own!!!

Ronna Sarvas Weltman


Ronna Sarvas Weltman


n a m t l e W Sarvas

I have a confession: I have an unfair advantage in marketing my jewellery. Would you like to know my little secret? I’ll tell it to you, if you promise to share it with others.I pay a professional to photograph my jewellery. That’s it. Any other success I achieve I’m not shy about saying luck has nothing to do with it. I work hard at achieving satisfaction with my finished pieces. Chances are you would be astonished at how much of my ideas either take months or even years to perfect, and that the majority of my time making art is probably struggling with making something look just right, rather than producing lots of jewellery. So I don’t have any advantages there. But in the end I still have an advantage over the vast majority of jewellery artists in marketing my jewellery. And that makes all the difference. If you want to sell your work in galleries, it’s crucial to get professional photographs. First of all, a good jewellery photographer will make your work “sing” and therefore attract the attention and interest of gallery owners. But it’s also important to put yourself in galleries owners’ shoes. They have to advertise, but advertising is expensive. If you owned a gallery and you had a choice between two artists’ work, one of whom had professional photos that you could use in your advertising, and another who had no pictures to lure in your customers, which one would you choose? Or if you were organizing a large, juried art exhibition, and you could choose between an artist who had images that would draw people to your event versus another artist who would only elicit mild interest because of his or her unimpressive photos, which one would you invite to participate in your exhibition? Polymer clay artist Elise Winters was formerly an art teacher with a specialty in photography. Yet even Elise pays a professional jewellery photographer to photograph her jewellery. That way she knows she has a greater likelihood of impressing gallery owners and juries for competitions and exhibitions. And, of course, potential customers. It’s not just lighting and shadows. When I take my pieces to Doug Yaple, my photographer, he always surprises me with the way he drapes and arranges my pieces. Doug has lots of tricks to make rings appear as if they’re floating, necklaces drape gracefully, and earrings hang the way they’re supposed to – without any putty, string or other infrastructure aids showing. I’m always impressed when he’s sharing the drafts of photos to me. To my eye, they’re finished. But he’ll point out a tiny spec of dust here or some other imperfection that I’m maybe missing, but he explains could show up on a computer screen or on a magazine page. I am usually very careful about sharing any images of my jewellery that are not professional photographed. But let’s take a look at one of the necklaces from my book, and ask yourself how you respond to the image in the inset that I’ve photographed versus the image that Doug has photographed. His photographs make the necklace look more sophisticated, more intriguing, more professional. It’s the same necklace, and I certainly was aiming to capture it in my images, but the difference is dramatic; yes? So that’s my little secret. And now that you know it, I hope you’ll share it.


Improve your photos

s e i m m u d for

Improve your Photos

Improve your Photos for Dummies…

And than there are easy online Tools!

Taking a good photo isn’t as hard as you may think. You don’t need the most expensive camera or years of experience, just simple tips. Enjoy this article! Four elements are common to all good photographs: simplicity, composition, lighting, and practice.

Picasa for example, a perfect tool, a picture organizer and editor of your digital photo’s! A free download, owned by Google.It is available for Windows, Macintosh, and Linux. The Picasa software provides a simple way to view, edit, and organize the photos on your computer. Two things good to know: Picasa does not store the photos on your computer. And your original photos are always preserved. Most of the time you like your taken picture. But you’ll *really* like it after 4 clicks in Picasa …


is actually a deceptively difficult element to capture. What you as a photographer need to do is let the camera help you simplify the things you see in front of you. You begin with everything in view and have to work to simplify by eliminating some of the contents. You can do this either by getting physically closer to your subject, or by using a telephoto lens to zoom in and crop the shot tighter. When you photograph a person, for example, photograph his or her face only, rather than the whole person.


“I’m Feeling Lucky” – this is a one-click automatic colour and contrast adjustment. Simply click on this with every picture. If you don’t like what it does, just click on Undo.


“Sharpen” – this is on the effects tab. Right now you have to hold down on Shift as you click it to see the results.

Composition is equally important. An artist’s technique,


called the “golden mean,” is to divide the picture into imaginary thirds both vertically and horizontally, like a tic-tac-toe board. Then, place the subject of the photo on or near those imaginary lines or their intersections. Study photographs that you like and you’ll see that almost every one has thirds that you can find.

“Saturation” – this is a button on the Effects tab, just one click and it applies an automatic amount of saturation – you can adjust the amount with the slider, then click Apply. Saturation means more colour. Just like adding another coat of paint. Saturation makes your picture richer and brighter. Not always something you want, but you can always Undo if you don’t like it.

Lighting is the third key ingredient. The best light is free!


Photos that win competitions almost always show a skilled use of light. Try to photograph only at dawn, in the late afternoon, and at dusk, when the low angle of the sun produces rich, warm colours and long shadows. Avoid shooting at noon, a time when light is very “flat.”

“Shadows” – this is a feature on the Tuning tab. It does exactly what it says … increases/decreases the shadows. You’ll see sometimes it will make your picture richer. So, that’s it. No more than 4 steps in 4 seconds on your photo to turn it from a nice picture to a really nice picture…


Taking photographs that you like won’t take a lot of special, expensive equipment. But it will take lots of trial and error. Even professional photographers take many photographs of the same subject to get just one that they like. Remember, only practice makes perfect! Good luck with experimenting!



Cecilia Botton

Tutorial BLUE SUN Tye and Dye Necklace

Tie and Dye necklace

Blue Sun

Photo supplies Tools:


- sharp flexible blade - pasta machine - cutter - needle tool - For the texture : bubblegum wrapping or circle cutter and a rigid credit card - acrylic roller

Sculpey clay in the following colours - Dark blue 1/2 - Turquoise blue ½ - Pearl blue 1/3 - White 1 + 1/2 - Hot red 1/2 - Orange ½

Cecilia Botton

I am 39 year old French polymer clay amateur and I discovered this wonderful media 4 years ago. I have been living in the South of Asia for the past 2 years where I discovered new sources of inspiration. This necklace is directly inspired from a holiday trip to Bali last summer, where the orange shades of the sun meets the different blue colours of the sea. The result looks like a Tie Dye sarong and will be perfect for summer season with tanned skin.


Blue Sun




Sculpey clay in the following colours Dark blue 1/2 Turquoise blue ½ Pearl blue 1/3 White 1 + 1/2 Hot red 1/2 Orange ½


sharp flexible blade pasta machine cutter needle tool For the texture : bubblegum wrapping or circle cutter and a rigid credit card acrylic roller

Step 1

Prepare your four Skinners blends by mixing colours as you see on the picture. Skinner blend 1: red + orange + white Skinner blend 2: turquoise + blue pearl + white Skinner blend 3: dark blue + white Skinner blend 4: dark blue + turquoise + white. For this one please secure half of the blend. (We will use it later on for the solid beads.)

Step 2 Assemble these colours into rough triangle shapes. This will not affect the final look of your blends. Run the rectangles prepared (like the first photo) through your pasta machine on the thickest setting until you get nice colour blends.

Roll the skinner blends tightly lengthwise to obtain a thick Skinner blend roll with light colour inside and dark colour outside.

Step 3

Step 4

Flatten your four Skinner blends with an acrylic roller and run it lengthwise through your pasta machine on the thickest setting.

Run again at the second thickest setting and cut each stripe into two parts. Arrange the halves together in alternating colours. This will allow different shades to show in the final beads.


Cecilia Botton

Step 5 Flatten each block with your roller and then run through the pasta machine, first on the thickest setting, then on the second thickest. Cut in two and flatten it at the second thickest setting. You can see in the photo the different layers you should get in the end.

Now we have to texture the clay. These are two different ways to proceed as I will describe in step 6. This is exactly same process as a mokume gane.

Step 6 On the right I have used a kids’ bubblegum wrapper. I spray some water first on the clay then press the wrapping firmly into it to obtain my “sun”. On the left I used two circle cutters on the reversed side to texture the clay (take care not to press too much. You don’t want to cut the clay), then arranged the “sun rays” by stamping with the edge of a credit card.

Step 7

Step 8

Step 9

Now the fun starts… to reveal the colourful design of your tie and dye, use your flexible blade to peel the clay. To make your work easier, apply your piece of textured clay firmly on a glass working surface or a mirror. Go slowly, no need to hurry, remove small pieces at a time. This requires a lot of patience. (Tip: practice on scrap clay to get the right move with your blade!)

Prepare the pendants backing: Use all your leftovers, and cut the scrap ball into small bits with your blade. Roll the bits together to get a thick roll. Twist the clay in the same direction. Reduce the width of the roll by pressing sides and run it through your pasta machine on the thickest setting, than at the second thickest setting. Apply your sun design on the background and use your acrylic roller to remove air bubbles. Do exactly the same with the leftovers of the Skinner blend strip number four (third photo), apply it onto the backing and flatten with your acrylic roll.

Now its time to cut your pendants. You can cut directly with your blade with a straight cut first, then another one shaped in a curve, or use the circle cutter like I did for the solid pendants. Pierce each bead with a needle tool. Slightly flatten and smoothen the edges of pendants using your fingers. Smoothing the pendant from now on will help you save a lot of time (sanding the final cured piece is no one’s hobby…). Cure for 30 minutes in your oven. When your pendants are cooled down, sand them using car wet sand paper and buff the pendant with an old piece of cloth to enhance the Tie Dye effect.

! e n i h s n u s r u o y Let 46




e s e e h c e u l B


Pasta Blue Cheese

, et k c ro , e es e h c e lu b h t i w Pasta lemon and walnuts


Natalia Garcia de Leániz

l TutoriaBEYOND THE SEA Beyond the Sea – about the design I love simple designs that allow us to play with colour, shapes and textures. Usually, these combinations are the ones that help obtain effective, even striking results. And of course, making your art in polymer clay doesn’t have to be painful but, on the contrary, it is something that we do -just for the fun of it! For this bracelet, I just used a few colours and tools. I was looking for a piece that integrated a sense of movement, an asymmetrical design, a joy for playing, and a perception of depth thanks to the colour blends. I actually got inspiration from nature (something that happens to us all so many times, don’t you think so?): the foam on the waves splashing on the seashore in the southern coast of Spain, is a something that can provide you with inspiration for a lifetime! I hope you will enjoy making and wearing this piece!as much as I did.

Tools & Materials:

- Clay: 1 block of blue, ¼ block of black, ½ block of white, a pinch of yellow clay. I am using Kato Polyclay but other brands can be used too. - Pasta machine (mine is an Atlas) - Ball stylus tools (at least 2 sizes) - Ruler - Texturing sponge (I am using a Clay Yo! Sponge -, a toothbrush or other texturing materials. - Elastic cord

Natalia Garcia de Leániz Natalia Garcia de Leániz has been working with polymer clay since 2000. She loves the versatility of the medium and the freedom it offers as she works. Her work is primarily jewellery, often combined with silver. She is deeply interested in the development of the medium, what led to the founding of A.P.E. (National Polymer Clay Association of Spain) that now numbers more than 200 active members! During the last 5 years, she has organized several seminars and taught classes in Spain, UK, France and USA. Natalia’s work can be seen in many books including ‘Adapting quilt patterns to polymer clay’ by Sarajane Helm and Judith Skinner, ‘Bisutería’ by Elvira López del Prado, ‘The Art of Polymer Clay, Millefiori Techniques: Projects and Inspiration for Creative Canework’ by Donna Kato and ‘Edle Schmuck-Unikate & Accessoires aus Polymer-Clay’ by Bettina Welker.


Beyond the Sea

Step 1

Step 2

Step 3

Step 4

Step 5

Step 6

Step 7

Step 8

Step 9

Start by conditioning your clay. Mix half a block of your blue clay with black (2 blue:1 black) to get a dark blue that you will use for the interior of the bracelet. Make 2 sheets with this dark blue, approx. 18-20 cm long, pass one through the thickest setting of your pasta machine, and the other one through a thin one (nr 6 on an Atlas).

Make a Skinner blend with half a block of blue and half a block of a lighter blue (if you want a dramatic blend, mix some blue with white to get a very pale blue) on the thickest setting of your pasta machine. You will need your blended sheet to be 18-20 cm long and approx. 6 cm wide. TIP: while making the blend, I use my finger as a barrier to keep it more or less this wide.

Make some texture with a texture sponge (I am using a Clay Yo! Sponge) or a tooth brush on the surface of the sheet.

Take the thick sheet and make an indentation on it with a ball stylus, drawing a straight line, being careful not to go all through the thickness of the clay, this will create a channel. Use a ruler to help you. This line doesn’t have to be perfectly centred, this will add interest to our piece.

Place the blended sheet on top of the thin dark blue one.

Put the blended sheet over the dark blue sheet you indented before at step 5 and trim the edges. Press again a little bit with the texturing tool to make sure both sheets are stuck together.


Set these sheets apart for later.

Mix some blue with white and a tiny bit of yellow to get a turquoise colour. Make some very thin snakes with turquoise clay and some with white and put them randomly on top of the sheet, pressing them a little bit with your fingers. Pass your roller gently over the sheet to make sure the snakes are stuck.

Divide the sheet with your blade in 14-17 pieces (depending on the size of the bracelet).

Natalia Garcia de LeĂĄniz

Step 10

Step 11

Step 12

Step 13

Step 14

Step 15

As you can see, the line you drew before on the lower layer with the ball stylus is what makes the holes in the beads; check all of them and if any are too small, use a needle tool to enlarge them.

Make smaller balls of a different blue (I am using the same dark blue I mixed before) and use them to decorate the surface.I also filled the gaps the ball stylus tool left on the bigger balls. Use a smaller ball stylus tool to press them as you did in the previous step.

Make some balls with the blue clay and place them on each of the beads.

Take each of the beads and slightly curve them pressing carefully from the top and bottom with your fingers.

Press all of them with a ball stylus tool, this will secure them in place and will add detail to your design.

Lay all of them on a tile or piece of paper; since the clay is soft, it will keep the form in the oven. Bake your pieces at the temperature recommended by the manufacturer for 30 minutes. Give your pieces time to cool off.

Step 16

String them with some elastic cord. As you can see, I am alternating the direction of the blends to get a dynamic effect, and, since the channel we made in step 2 is not completely centred, when we turn down half of the beads and alternate them with the others, the top and end of the beads don’t line up with the ones of the beads beside; this adds movement and interest to the piece.


The variable jewellery system, 925 silver. Imagine combining with polymer clay!

Ring Ding is available at:

SaSSy & Co


Sophie Arzalier


ORIENTAL Blue Necklace


How to make beads: 1 block of royal blue clay turquoise, gold and copper clay for jellyroll canes clay extruder 1.5 cm square cutter 2 cm, 3 cm, 4 cm and 5.5 cm circle cutters golden ink (or acrylic golden paint) metallic mica golden powder 7 crystal drops 7 mm size light blue colour1 AB crystal bead with flat back heat-proof glue PS To finish beads: sand, buff and polish back and sides, and then apply gloss lacquer on all beads.

By Sophie Arzalier Alias Crystalline


Author of ...

- “Tout sur les bijoux en pâte polymère” in French, Dessain et Tolra, May 2009 - “Making Jewellery from Polymer Clay” in English, Stackpole Books, October 2010 - “De allermooiste Fimosieraden” in Dutch, De Fontein, July 2010,


Finalizing your necklace 2.5 meters of waxed cotton string golden clasp and 2 split jump rings 4 x 10 mm antique gold bead caps 17 x 4 mm bronze beads 2 golden crimp beads

Oriental Blue

Step 1 Prepare a jellyroll cane using the clay extruder. Insert twisted clay snakes into the clay gun alternating the colours (see page 25 of my book Making Jewellery from Polymer Clay for detailed instructions).

Step 2 Royal blue clay: prepare a 3mm thick blue clay sheet and cut 2 squares. Mix them together and roll by hand to get a rounded bead. Make three more beads the same way and flatten them between 2 acrylics boards.

Step 3 Prepare another 3 mm thick royal blue clay sheet. Cut thin jelly roll canes slices and lay them on the blue background. Cover your work with translucent kitchen wrap use an acrylic roller to meld the slices together.

Step 5 Make 2 similar 4 cm diameter beads, to which you will later add acrylic golden crackle effect.

Step 6 Using 4 royal blue squares, make a round bead and flatten it between 2 acrylic boards.

Step 7 Using a paintbrush, apply at least 3 layers of golden acrylic paint. Be sure the layers are completely dry before going to the next step.

Step 8 Using your roller, roll the sheet as from left to right, then from top to bottom to create the crackle effect.

Cut 2 small circles and 2 medium circles. Slice one of the medium circles into two equal halves.

Step 11 Add some golden mica powder on the edges using a brush.

Step 9 Place the golden circles on the jelly roll beads.

Step 12 Step 13 Add 2 crystal drops onto the medium The main bead is constructed from size beads. stacking a medium size golden crackle bead and a royal blue one. Attach the flat back crystal bead with heatproof glue before curing.


Step 4 Lay a piece of food plastic wrap on your sheet and cut the bead with the largest circle cutter. This will help smooth the edges.

Step 10 Add a crystal drop bead and texture your bead using a needle.

Step 14 Using a flexible metal wire that is large enough to create a channel that will have room for 2 strings in the assembly stage, make a tubular bead using a 2 mm clay sheet. Trim the edges. Bend the wire to get a nice curved shape. Keeping the wire inside, place this curved tubular bead on top of the main bead.

Sophie Arzalier

Step 15 Using brass wire, roll a spiral to texture your pendant bead. Using your fingers, add some golden mica powder to enhance the design.

Step 17 Make 2 golden clay small beads and add some mica powder. Cure the beads per manufacturer instructions.

Step 16 Prepare 2 round scrap clay beads using a square cutter. Cover your scrap clay beads with jelly roll cane cut into thin slices. Roll the beads in your hands to make them smooth.

Step 18 Fold the waxed string in half and attach a jump ring and the clasp. Tie 3 knots: the first just below the clasp, then 2.5 cm and 3.5 cm further down.

Step 19 String the entire necklace in this order: knot + bronze bead + cap + clay bead.

Step 20 Just behind the knot, cross the 2 strings and insert them into the flat bead hole.

Step 21 Insert the 2 strings together into a solid blue flat bead. Add bronze beads, and then continue assembling using the same technique.

NB N= knot

Step 22 Finish your necklace by adding a jump ring. Before cutting leftover string, add a crimp bead and a small bronze bead.

Happy claying! 56

Joost Delsink

Whilst living in the North of Spain, he discovered the magic of painting. He painted landscapes, still lifes and portraits. Landscapes became a recurring theme and over time became increasingly more abstract. More recently he has intuitively focused on his abstract paintings, beginning without an initial concept or idea. He begins impulsively letting the unexpected and surprising happen. He appreciates more the inner reality that lives in the fantasy and emotion of the creator. Besides his independent work he also creates bespoke paintings on commission. He lives in Holland and you can contact him by:


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Expected May 2011



- Claude Monet

From Polymer to Art  

Polymer Clay Magazine

From Polymer to Art  

Polymer Clay Magazine