Adding Beadwork to a Polymer Clay Bracelet

Adding Beadwork to a Polymer Clay Bracelet

so recently on Facebook I posted a
couple of bracelets that I just finished and they have a bead woven
section in them. It’s peyote stitch, this one is a Cellini spiral ( flat ) but I think
if you’re into bead weaving like loom work, would work, square stitch would ,work
peyote stitch ,whether it’s even count or odd count, would work. so anyways I had a
lot of fun doing it and I wanted to do a few more of them so I thought I’d film
the process. so what I’ve done here is I have a couple of bead woven sections. I
weave, it’s peyote, and I’ve used fireline – six-pound fireline ,and it does
seem to survive the oven temperatures but even if it didn’t it’s held in place
with translucent liquid sculpey and so maybe just really quickly this is the
very first one I made and I’ve been trying to take it apart and in case you
think that it’s not going to stay on there very good I have been using a heavy duty knife, and pulling and pulling and it’s stuck really really good .so it doesn’t
seem to be any problem with that so that I’ll take apart later on. so anyways I’m
gonna go ahead and make one, and I thought I’d film it. so I’m gonna work on
on this one and I’ve decided to use this mix of green which was just all kinds of
scraps that I had – so it’s a quite a pretty blueish green color, and the first
thing I’m gonna do is just kind of give it a light texture for the underside. I
mean you could get fancier and put a pattern and stuff like that but, for
these I think all the attention is on the the front’s of them and that’s good
enough for me so this is a strip done on the very
thickest setting on my pasta machine which on the Atlas is a zero, and I’m
going to use Teresa’s Salgado’s (Tiny bracelet kit. so I’m using the
the third largest and I’ll go ahead and cut a strip here and I’m going to try a
few different things on this one. I’m not going to do this same edging. the
edging that I did on here was pretty fiddly ,but it’s based on Ludmila Baculina”s
videos. she does a beautiful edging and it’s done with a threaded rod
mine’s not quite long enough but anyways and you roll it on the clay and then cut
it. so what I’ve done that’s a little differently though, is I’ve cut myself a
thin strip and I mean I could use an extruded string, that would probably work
even better, and then with a very thin layer of the threaded clay I put it over
top of the the rolled strip and smoothed it out and basically made a rope, which I
applied to the bracelet. so you know, go ahead and try that if you want. it’s not
really all my technique to show so I’m not going to show it. so I’m just gonna
cut a section here. I already know that this is going to be too long for or what
I need but and as far as how long this goes you’re
gonna have to just test it out and see. on my wrist it comes it comes within
an inch of the circumference of my wrist it could be a little shorter, this one
might end up being just a touch long but I’ll deal with that. okay so move this
out of the way, so I’m gonna try a different kind of edging this time
something I haven’t tried before so it should be interesting
and one end – I like to do my curve on one end already, can’t do the other end
because I have to cut it to fit. so I debated about doing – you know the bead
weaving part of it, but it’s it would just take too long, and I understand that
not everyone is actually going to do this, but the whole idea of it is just a
further step from my last video which was the Pebeol bracelet where I applied
a strip of pebeo paint to the bracelet so this is just kind of a logical
conclusion to to that. so I’m going to start that here and just wrap it around so the bead weaving itself almost acts
like a second layer of clay, it makes makes the bracelets really quite rigid
quite strong and I didn’t put – like this has no finish on it at all. I did buff
the edges but there’s no finish on the beadwork itself
so because the one I’m taking apart I had tried different things that I didn’t
like. I had tried resin and a few other things and it’s just not not working
very well, but yeah that works good so I’ll just take this here and trim it up
a bit and smooth that out a bit but I’ll have
time to work on those edges after. okay let’s see what that beadwork is going to
look like on it I’m just going to dry fit it for now, and see how far -oh
that’ll be fine, so I like to have it away from the base here because I’m
going to double this area up and it’s going to come up and actually catch the
beadwork itself and then it’ll be thick enough to put my hole for for a clasp on
it so once you’re fairly happy with that
then put some liquid clay on it and this is the thing that’s really going to hold
it in place, and then, like I say I actually I put a piece of of clay to
catch those edges and it hides the the uneven beads. you know you could probably
fill that area with smaller beads if you didn’t want to, you know, cover it and
everything but I I want to make sure if they stayed on good. so I covered them a
little bit but now that I’m trying to take that other one apart I see that
they really do stay on good so really it’s not that critical. so if I cover
that edge it’s only going to be just, you know, a couple beads worth. okay then get a
cloth to wipe your hands and I’ll put my strip on my hands are still sticky so this is slippery so you’re going to
have a chance to adjust it however you like – pull that end up and you want to
make sure it’s it’s nice and even and fits just kind of you don’t want it sort
of baggy looking because that will show okay so that looks pretty good. so the
other thing I did then is I ran a little tiny bead and probably a brush would
help me with this but a little bead right on the edges of the liquid clay ( beads ) and I don’t really want it on the front
of the beads okay so I tried a couple things on
here that didn’t work I’m not going to show them to you, so let’s try something
a little simpler so I’ve got some colors here and I’m
just going to cut some strips and I want them fairly narrow. so I’m going to lay a
ruler over top of my clay and this is stuck pretty good to my glass cutting
mat and that’s important because it’ll move too much if if it’s not stuck
really well. so I’ve got a piece there and another piece that should be plenty of pieces okay so I was fiddling around with
different colors and trying to find something I thought would work, so the
first thing I’m going to do is fill in this area here. so I’ve got a piece
that’s rolled on – I’m going to roll it on a four, so I’ll just do that. so that’s a
medium thin – that’s kind of the middle of my machine and just cut some straight
bits and I want this just to catch that edge
of the the beadwork but I’m going to cut it flush with beadwork and I’ll put piece on the other side and just catching the beads okay
so now I’m gonna cut a straight edge helps you use the right side of the
blade, on one of these strips and lay it down butting it up against the beadwork and the same on the other side so the pieces that I had tried
before that didn’t work out, was kind of a rough crackled edge, and while it was
interesting, it was a little too rough okay so I’m gonna make sure that’s well
pushed in against the beadwork and I just want to kind of round that
edge up, just with my thumb and then blend that and if I don’t get a good edge, which
this isn’t looking really great, I may put a strip of the original color in
there to fill that, I’ll see what it looks like after I round it up And the same on the other side – push it
in firmly as you’re rounding it make sure those beads are all pushed in
place too. Cause once it’s baked, it won’t move. so you won’t be adjusting it
afterwards so you can use a rubber tool to sort of
blend those edges, but I think the best thing would be to put an extra strip on
but I’ll do that in a bit. okay so I just want to kind of add a little detailing
to the end, so I’ll put a little bit of a blue stripe in there just to sort of help with that
transition of it rising up over top of the beads okay I’m gonna spend a bit of time
smoothing this out because if I can avoid putting an extra strip in there, I
will so I will be back when that’s all smooth. so I’m back, and I would say I
spent a good 15 minutes if not more smoothing this out – first with my fingers
and then with this triangular spatula type metal tool. you can find these at
Hobby type stores or Harbor Freight or in Canada, we have Princess Auto. they
sell a smaller version of that, so I’m just going to double check and make sure
that my beadwork is nice and flat and put a hole in there for a jump ring and clean that out that’s a little crooked so, now’s the time
is straighten it. okay then take a look at it really carefully make sure it’s
just the way you want it to be, and I bake it for an hour for sure, actually
I’m baking it a little bit longer than that now, and cover it with
metal – like a baking tin type of thing and make sure that your oven is reaching
the proper temperature ( 275F ) and that’s pretty much it. you can varnish it – the parts
of the clay if you want to, you can sand it and polish it, just stay away from the
beadwork and it should be fine so I’ll be back with just a photo or maybe I’ll
put the photo at the beginning when this is all finished and I hope you enjoyed
that – it’s kind of a different kind of an idea, anyways I’ll see you again next
time bye – just one thing real quick, from handling it your bracelet can get
pretty dirty, so the last thing I’m gonna do is – I just sprayed a little bit of
alcohol on there, that’s 99% alcohol and on a baby wipe and I’m just gonna wipe
off all my edges and that will also smooth the clay a little bit and make it
look a lot nicer, so I’ll just do that before I bake it and you’ll see that makes a big
difference so most bead finishes you don’t really
have to worry about if you touch it with the alcohol
I wouldn’t go rubbing it hard, but it should be alright. so that’s much better. so
that’s it – see you next time, -bye


  1. Chapeau!! That is só courageous! I would never have been so brave to bake my precious beadwork with my clay..! I guess now I háve to try this for myself..! This opens a lot of possibilities.. thank you só much for sharing!

  2. How do you get the clay off of the metal bracelet frame after it comes out of the oven? I'm new at clay work and I baked some clay with a metal pin like stick in it and the metal pin was permanently stuck to the clay. Please help. Thank-you you.

  3. Love these..I was making beaded jewelry for along working on Polymer clay..and I see I can mix them together..Thanks for the tutorial!

  4. Thank you so much I enjoy working with Clay bead work and wire as well and if I do choose to make any items I will most definitely share your information for my inspiration

  5. Great technique and beautiful bracelet! I love it! You are very creative and I love your videos and your projects!! ^_^

  6. The mixed color went great with the bead work, I love that one! What size of jump ring did you use? Have to order some for bracelet I made just not sure on the size. What’s the name of the bead design? Would love to make one, would be my first.

  7. This is such a brilliant idea. The combination of beadwork with polymer clay is a great marriage! Thank you for sharing. Love it!

  8. Patricia, this such a wonder bracelet!! Combining the two mediums together is so cleaver. Thank you for the inspiration and wonderful techniques you share with us.

  9. What brand of clay is best for bracelets, you talked about it being flexible. I found the Pat's WearableArt FB page and was looking at all the artwork you have done, you even do bead work. Since you don't sell on etsy, do you have a store? Still in awe of your talent, such awesome artwork.

  10. Brilliant! I've steered clear of bead working so far as I find all the finishing off finicky. What a great way of getting round it.

  11. I love this! I have a QUESTION: What is the tiny tool you used for making the holes in the clay? Thanks!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.