Nutter button

So my brother and my husband made a really cool game called Nut Factory for iphone and ipad. They spent a year of late nights and weekends working on it and I'm still surprised at how great it turned out considering it was just the two of them.

I wanted to help promote the game because the hard part with these things is getting people to realize such a game even exists. Being jewelry inclined, I decided to made a funny button to help take the message to the streets.
I made the button in dark blue polymer clay and stamped the message on it before painting it with white acrylic paint and wiping away the excess to highlight the letters and give it a textured look. For something so simple I think it turned out pretty cool.
I textured the back using a netting mesh and used a thin square to attach the pin.

And here's how it looks on a real person:
I you want to know what the Nut Factory game is all about, you can visit the blog or the Facebook page.

Keep cutting!


New Locket Pendants

The photo locket pendant seems to have been a popular idea so I'm posting two other examples.
The first is actually just a small photo frame and not a pendant. It was made for a couple's 60th wedding anniversary.

The base color is silver and the texture was highlighted with gold and burnt umber paint. The gold gives it a very ornate and old-fashioned look but I thought it was appropriate for an older couple.
This time I used ribbon to join the two parts and an amethyst on the cover. I think it looked better with just the silver but it's still an interesting color detail.
The back has a heart with the number 60 stamped on it, as a reference to the wedding anniversary.
The inside has pictures of the couple taken on their wedding day. The picture of the groom gave me some trouble because his skin was so dark and I couldn't get a good contrast to make the features pop. After three tries I finally got it but the bride still looks better. Her hat, however, was another problem because it was white, against a white background so it looked like there was a bit of her head missing. I opted to paint it in with acrylic paint to define it better.

The second example is a pendant but it was done in black and white.
I won't show the inside pictures because i didn't ask permission from the client but it looks the same as the others apart from color.
The base was black and the texture highlighted with white acrylic paint. I used ribbon again for the hinge.
Actually, the hinge is made from three ribbons for stability. The center ribbon crosses the entire pendant so you can tie a bow on the other end to keep it closed.
The stone on the front is a hematite cabochon to go with the black and white theme.
I was very pleased with this last one. Even though it still has the antique looking texture, the black and white gives it a more modern feel.


Picture Locket

I've been playing around with polymer clay again and I liked the idea of transferring black and white images onto the clay. It's a simple process, though you have to practice a little bit because it's easy to rub the ink off along with the paper if you're not careful, and the result is an antique-looking image.

You can make just a pendant out of if and I thought about using pictures of my children to try it out, but since I have two I didn't want to have to choose just one and getting a picture of the both of them is not an easy feat.

All this thinking got me to the conclusion that the best option for what I had in mind would be to make an old-fashioned locket since I could place both pictures inside. I was inspired by a picture of an icon box (you can check out my inspiration board on Pinterest) and made my locket out of copper-colored polymer clay.

I textured and aged it with acrylic paint and applied a gloss varnish. The pictures were transfered onto light flesh-tone clay. I used a natural stone cabochon on the cover, thread to bind both pictures and a lobster clasp to close it and also on top to attach it to a necklace, key-chain or anything else I want.

It turned out a bit larger than I had planned at first - 4 cm - because I didn't anticipate the inside frame when I started making it, but since it's polymer clay, it's still quite lightweight. I plan to make a simpler version next and maybe a round one instead of square.

I think these lockets are a great idea for moms, especially if they like antique-looking objects, since they can have an original piece of jewelry and also pictures of their kids all in one.


Silicone mold tutorial video

I made a video on how to make silicone molds out of small objects to use with polymer clay.
I use Siligum, a two part silicone compound that dries quickly and makes a flexible mold. This material makes a clear impression and captures every detail of the object being molded. You can use the mold to make duplicates of the objects in polymer clay, metal clay or resin. I focus on the difference between molding a thin or a thicker object and how to fix a hole in your mold.
I hope it's helpful.


Dangle drop earrings

Of all bead shapes, my favorite are the drops. They're great for earrings and look wonderful with a crown of tiny beads.

Since I've recently bought a few now drop in my favorite gemstones - aquamarine, amethyst and citrine - I started making dangle earrings to show them off.

I made the citrine pair yesterday and I think they look really cute. They're not as long as the sky blue quartz earrings I'd made previously so they're also a lot lighter, which can be a concern for some people.

I used to make the ball headpins (with a torch) but I found that it wasted too much wire because you have to cut the pins to a certain length before balling the end. Now I've just been bending the end in a U shape or a small spiral, thus allowing me to work from the wire coil and using only the amount of wire I really need and I don't dislike the end result, though I admit the ball does add a more perfect finish to the look.


Opening of my Etsy store

I created an Etsy account a while back but never got around to adding any items for sale until now. There's lots to read about how the site works, dos and don'ts and tons of fields to fill out before you even begin to think about adding products. Not that it's hard to do but it can be time consuming, especially if you want to get it right. Today I finally decided it was time to list my first few items. I picked some of my favorites, updated my profile picture and there it is. The Etsy store is great for international clients and anyone who prefers to pay through credit card or PayPal, especially since I never managed to get that module working on my zencart store. Let me know what you all think and if you find something that could be improved.


Embelishing plain beads

Plain round glass beads can be pretty boring by themselves but we do tend to stock up on them because they add color while allowing more elaborate beads to pop. Unfortunately, sometimes you find yourself looking at a large quantity of those plain beads with little more to go on.

At such a time, I decided to consider it a challenge rather than a problem and made it a project to finding ways to embellish  plain beads with wire and bring them out into the spotlight. I used bead cages, coils and other wire frames and mixed wire colors to add interest to the finished pieces.

In the first image you have a bracelet made from oval beads wrapped in coiled green wire (a shade lighter than the beads to make it stand out) and then wrapped again in copper wire with some seed beads thrown in. It's really simple to make but visually it's very effective. 

The second picture shows a pair of earrings made from lampwork square beads. They're beautiful by themselves but become more captivating through the use of a large coil at the end of the wrapped loop - a variation in the tiny coils used to finish off the wire. The coils add interest to a plain square or coin shaped bead and they also prevent the beads from turning so it's a useful method to use in necklaces and bracelets as well.

Bead cages and weaving with colored wire turn plain blue beads into something special.