Polymer Clay Challenge 2017 Week 4

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So, I’m late with this post, I know. This past week was busy and I didn’t get much claying done, so I used one of the tube beads I turned into a necklace as my Week 4 Polymer Clay Challenge 2017 piece. I was working in my studio yesterday and the day before, but the pieces I made didn’t turn out. A few of them even got scorched in the oven. (Phooie!) But I was able to go to the craft store last night and pick up some more clay in the same color so I’m going to try making the same thing again (hopefully). I was playing with some torpedo shaped beads, I made a pendant and a couple of smaller ones for a pair of earrings, but all three of them got scorched in the oven. I made some round beads to go with them and they were just fine. They all baked together, so I’m not sure why the torpedo beads burned, but the round ones didn’t. Oh well, live and learn.

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Keep coming back every week to see my new pieces and keep an eye out at my shop for new pieces to be listed soon!

PS-Don’t forget to enter the giveaway over on my Facebook page! It runs until Valentine’s Day!

Polymer Clay Challenge Week 3

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So, here it is, week 3 of the Polymer Clay Challenge 2017. This time I’m sharing a necklace made with beads and a pendant I had made quite some time ago. Usually, when I make beads and things I try to make something with them as soon as I can so they’re not sitting around going to waste. Well, the beads and pendant I made eluded me, I couldn’t figure out what I wanted to do with them, until now.

There I was, trying to sleep, but couldn’t. It was about 1 am one night this past week and I was lying in bed wide awake for God knows what reason. I decided since I wasn’t able to sleep I’d have a look at some of my jewelry supplies and some of the random polymer clay bits I’d been working on. If you head over to my Facebook page, you’ll see 3 necklaces total, but this is the one I’m using for this week’s challenge.

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I can’t say for sure how long these beads have been hanging around, but I know I had fun making them. I had seen this really simple process for making the beads so I figured I’d give it a shot. It’s a simple as forming the beads (or whatever else you want to make, like a pendant) and embedding salt into the clay before baking. The kind I used was Grey Celtic salt because it was chunky and I wanted that look.

So, after putting the salt onto the clay and of course putting holes in the beads I baked them. When they came out of the oven I dunked them in ice water and not only did that cool them off, but the salt dissolved and that left the beads with those nice divots you see. After drying them off I painted some black acrylic paint over the surface of the bead and wiped off most of it, but left the paint in the divots. I think it’s a lava rock sort of look. Very easy technique to do and I didn’t feel the need to seal it either.

*BONUS ALERT*

Starting tomorrow I’m going to have a giveaway on my Facebook page running until Valentine’s Day. I’ll draw the name of one lucky winner that morning and they will receive a wonderful piece of jewelry created by yours truly. I don’t know which peace yet, but when I decide I’ll post that to my Facebook page. In order to enter just visit my page and find the Giveaway tab where you can enter to win. And please, share, share, share! So all of your friends can have a chance to enter too!!

Polymer Clay Challenge 2017 Weeks 1 & 2

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I’m late with this week’s blog post, blame life, lol. It won’t be all that long, but I wanted to post a quick update so you can keep up to date with my 2017 Polymer Clay Challenge weekly progress. Granted, not everything I’ll be posting is made the week I post them, but I’m still going to post a new project each week. And at some point I’ll start photographing some of them and listing them in my StorEnvy shop. Make sure to check out what I have listed.

Week one’s project was the purple filigree cross earrings. I posted them on my Facebook page, but didn’t write a blog post dedicated to them. Oh well. They’re nothing fancy, but I wanted to start small so I didn’t overwhelm myself. There are SO MANY tutorials and techniques that I’ve picked up/discovered recently and I can’t make up my mind what I want to work on when I get into my studio! LOL Because I usually only get about 2 hours at most in my studio I really need to be focused on what I’m doing.

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So, week two’s project were some pendants I made. I took some pearl clay that I had treated with water color paint and put it into a few round bezels then baked them. I initially made three, but my niece and her husband came to visit the other night for dinner and I gave her one before I’d taken a picture for this post. So, I only have two to show you, but they look pretty similar, so it’s ok, right?

I’m not sure if I’m going to leave them on the black cords or put them on a chain. Either way, when they get posted in my shop you’ll have the option to have a chain or a cord. I like to give people options. I hope you enjoy seeing my posts each week and seeing what I’m getting up to in my studio. I’m hoping to get in some more studio time today because yesterday I started a few new pieces and I need to check on them and see what I can do with them.

As always, I love feedback and comments! Thanks for visiting!

I’m Back!!

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I’m Baaaaaaaaack!! LOL

So, in case you missed the post to my Facebook page yesterday, I was FINALLY able to get back into my clay studio after TWO YEARS away! I spent some time going through supplies and materials I had ordered recently and then I just grabbed some clay and started playing. I wasn’t sure how much time I’d have, so I didn’t plan to do anything very elaborate or time consuming. I was thrilled to be back in my studio and I’m going to make it a priority in the future. Y’all have NO IDEA how much I’ve missed working in my studio!

Most days it’s just my son and I at home together so the only time I can work in my studio is while he’s napping. However the past few weeks we’ve taken turns being sick and so of course he wasn’t sleeping very well at night or at nap time so we’ve both been exhausted and grumpy. Things are better now and he’s back to napping like he should, so I’m taking advantage of it! There’s going to come a day (too soon!) when my son won’t want/need to nap anymore (he turned 2 this past November). When that happens I don’t know how I’ll find time to work in my studio unless my mom is home and can watch him for me. I don’t want him playing in my studio because of my oven and other things that could prove dangerous to him.

I’m challenging myself this year to be more creative so I’ve joined the 2017 Polymer Clay Challenge on Facebook! The goal is to create one new piece every week for the year. There’s a page here: http://katersacres.com/polyclay/pcchallenge/2017pcchallenge/ that gives you lots of info about the challenge as well as a link to the Facebook group for this year’s challenge! Technically, I have 3 items in progress in my studio, so if I finish them all this week I’ll be ahead a bit, but that’s awesome for me because there may be days that I don’t feel well or need to do other things, like adulting, and won’t have time to get into my studio.

Week one (this week), I played around with watercolor paints (the pink) and pressed some clay into the filigree crosses just to see how it would look. I also played around with some Mokume Gane, but I still need to figure out what I’m going to do with it.

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The 2 on the left are what I did yesterday and they’re raw. The one in the middle is what I did today and it’s raw too. I need to figure out what to do with them. The one on the right is what I did with what I made yesterday and they’re baked.

I know it’s been a while since I’ve written a blog post, but with this challenge I’ll have a post for a week all year long (maybe) hopefully! Here’s a sneak peek at what I’ve been working on this week. Now, if you’ll excuse me, my studio is calling my name! If you’d be interested in taking a photo tour of my studio at some point make sure to leave a comment for me down below and I’ll work on making that happen! My studio is a mess, but what sort of creative would I be if things stayed neat and organized all the time!? I hope you’ve all enjoyed your holidays! Despite sickness going around here, we did!

June’s Shop Challenge Purchase

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This week’s post probably isn’t going to be very long. We did a yard sale this weekend and I totally exhausted myself. BUT, I bought something from Lu & Ed since I’m participating in the StorEnvy Once a Month Challenge.

I started out by visiting the StorEnvy shops that decided to participate in this monthly challenge so I could see what they had to offer. The more I looked the more I thought my first purchase should be for my son.

Plus, since Cody was the one that wrote about the idea to do this and I got the inspiration to participate from her, I figured I’d buy from her first, lol. Some of the stuffies are ones that I wouldn’t mind getting for myself! Did I mention I can be a big kid sometimes? 😀

So, I chose one of the library totes and my son loved it when I gave it to him. Granted he’s only 19 months, so he’s not really going to the library or anything yet, but he was having fun putting a couple of his toys inside and taking them out again. I think when he gets older he’ll love toting it around when we go out.

I haven’t yet decided what next month’s purchase will be, but I’m thinking it’ll be a piece of handmade jewelry for myself. Next month is my birthday! And even though I make jewelry, I love supporting others that make jewelry because I find pieces I love that I’d never be able to make myself.

Thanks for reading my blog and please feel free to comment on my posts or even send me a comment personally. I love feedback! Don’t forget to use the code “shopchallenge” at checkout to save 10% on your order at my shop!!

Joining the Once a Month StorEnvy Challenge

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I saw this post in one of my blog groups on Facebook and I decided to jump on board. Hopefully it will help a lot of small business owners, myself included. It’s all about supporting small business owners, specifically those who have a StorEnvy Marketplace. We’re going to purchase one item a month from shop owners, even if it’s a small purchase, it helps with exposure so consumers can find our shops and purchase from us.

The person that told me about it has her shop here. I love the monsters she makes and I plan on buying one for my son this month. I really think he’ll get a kick out of it. Oh, and this link will take you to the blog post she wrote for this challenge.

I had hoped this post would be longer, but my brain doesn’t want to let me write today! I hope other shop owners will help the cause and join the challenge along with us! AND if you shop with me, you can save 10% by using the code “shopchallenge” at checkout! So head on over and do some shopping to help us small business owners!
Thanks for reading my blog and please feel free to comment on my posts or even send me a comment personally. I love feedback!

Out Of My Comfort Zone

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My scattered work table, kinda like the inside of my brain

If you’ve known me for a while, you know I make jewelry, obviously. I dabble in a few different kinds of jewelry, but wire wrapping isn’t something I do much of. It’s hard for me to do because I don’t have a lot of strength in my hands and they go numb sometimes too. But, I came across some sand stone beads that a friend had given me a while ago. I wanted to do something with them, but I wasn’t sure what to do with them.

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Sand stone beads, soon to be pendants

They looked like they could be pendants, but they had a hole at the top and bottom, drilled front to back. So I was looking on the internet for some inspiration and ideas. I gave some serious thought to wrapping them in wire, so I sat down at my work table and started fiddling around with some 20g silver wire. Sadly, I don’t have much of it, because I usually only use it for simple wrapped loops and other things that don’t use a lot of wire, so I didn’t have the ability to experiment a lot.

After a couple of tries I came up with four simple, but beautiful wire wrapped pendants. Rather than trying to figure out beaded necklaces for them, I just strung them onto leather cords because I didn’t want to detract from the pendants.

I also decided to try making a pair of earrings to go with one of the pendants. I started out with memory wire because I had been trying to make memory wire earrings before, but that’s a topic for another post. However, one of the beads I was using wouldn’t go over the memory wire, so I decided to try using more 20g wire to make hoops, but the same bead that wouldn’t go over the memory wire also wouldn’t go over the 20g wire very easily.

Out of aggravation, I decided to take a break so I wouldn’t lose my mind. I went back to them a few hours later and at first I just sat at my work table and thought. Then, I pulled out my beading wire and decided to try making the earrings out of that. Turns out, it worked out perfectly. They’re a bit more dangly than I normally wear, but they turned out great and they have a beachy feel.

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The finished pendants and earrings

I still need to get better pictures of each necklace and the earrings so I can list them in my shop on StorEnvy. But, keep an eye out for when they’re listed!
Thanks for reading my blog and please feel free to comment on my posts or even send me a comment personally. I love feedback!

Mistakes Can Turn Out Beautifully

A lot of my ideas for jewelry designs come from books/tutorials, especially when I’m creating with polymer clay. A few years ago I was thumbing through one of my many books/tutorial. Of course, now I can’t remember exactly where I found the project I’m talking about.

Anyway, I came across a project that caught my attention. I had all the supplies and materials available, so I gathered them up as fast as I could and got to work. As I neared the end of the project I realized something…I hadn’t followed the steps 100%.

At first I thought it was going to be a disaster and all I’d have to show for it was a lump of sparkly useless clay. But, I decided I’d finish the project anyway and see how it came out. To my excitement and surprise, it came out more beautifully than the photos in the project! It’s a faux opal look that I fell in love with.

Here it is…

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I don’t know that I could ever produce the same results unless I went through some trial and error to figure out how I could get consistent results every time. So, it’s truly one of my one of a kind pieces and part of me doesn’t want to part with it, but I don’t have anything to wear it with. And, after all, I  AM making this jewelry to sell and make money, right? Right! So, it’s listed!!