Sunday, 28 March 2010

Silver Beads

If like me you end up with little bits of spare silver clay, I've found that there's only so much paste you can use. I prefer to turn these little odds and ends into silver beads and the process is really simple.
Roll the pieces into a ball and push them onto either a cocktail stick or a ballpoint pen refill. The latter makes the hole a little bigger and give you more options for using the bead afterwards.

You can decorate the bead at this point by adding a texture or using a cocktail stick to add little dimples to it, then leave to dry out. When dry, remove the bead from the cocktail stick or pen refill then sand and smooth any rough areas. Fire the bead and then either leave it with a brushed surface or polish it to a high shine. If you're using a tumbler to polish your bead, thread a piece of cord or ribbon through the hole first, otherwise the shot will compact itself in there nicely and you will struggle to get it out!

These beads are great for bookmarks or as embellishments for necklaces. What's nicest of all is knowing you made them yourself and you used every last bit of clay wisely.

Here's some I made earlier!

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