Clay buttons

Button 1

Polymer clay button For this button, I started off by making a partially-done swirly lentil bead. I then rolled a thin strand of dark green clay, cut it into 6 equal pieces, and arranged them on the bead by gently pressing them onto it. I then continued to swirl the bead until the green strands, in the center, merged a bit with the green of the main bead. I then poked holes before I baked it.

I like how the strands are very distinct at the edges of the button, and grow less distinct as they near the center.

Button 2

Polymer clay button For this button, I used a cane that I made. I started off by making a marbled medallion from cream and brown colors. (And realized how easy marbling is! ;) ) I then cut two slices from the cane, and arranged them on the medallion for a more or less organic look. I rolled and pressed the medallion enough to make the cane surfaces lie at the same level as the medallion. I then poked holes before I baked it.

As for this button, the look is what wins me over!

These buttons are so much fun to make — and so many possibilities, too — that at this rate, I think we’re gonna end up with too many buttons and too few items to use them in. What can I say, one can never have too many buttons, right? 😉


Swirly lentil bead… button

So I made a decent cane.

I didn’t own decent claying tools though, and found that slicing across the cane with a razor blade makes the cross-section pretty distorted and untidy. And that means I went and ordered a flexible blade, a roller (again, I was finding my makeshift roller inadequate), cutters and silicone molds. That’s right, I’m beginning to get serious about polymer clay. 😉

Well, I wasn’t going to sit around waiting for the tools to arrive. I decided to practice making a swirly lentil bead since that doesn’t require many tools. So I rolled a ball of green clay, and got to work practicing the swirling hand movements.

When I became comfortable with the hand movements, I decided to add some actual swirl to the bead. I cut slices from the cane that I’d made — and yes, they got distorted and untidy — and placed them on the lower half of the bead, and continued swirling it. After a while, it turned into this.

Swirly lentil bead button

Swirly lentil bead button

I’d made it slightly big, thinking I’ll make it into a pendant. I thought of some ideas for the pendant, which included a macramé addition, and I pierced three holes near the top for that. I baked it, and set about adding the macramé section. Sadly, it didn’t work out, and I undid all the knots.

After a lot of thinking and looking around for a different jewelry use for the pendant, and not finding any, I thought it could be a button instead — a decorative button though, due to the weird positioning of the holes on it.

In fact, I don’t think any of the clays in my sample clay pack will become jewelry, mostly because the limited number of colors in it don’t work for my clothes or those of my sis. I’m thinking that all my practicing with this sample pack might result in buttons — ones with normal placement of holes, of course. No worries though, sis and I have lots of uses for buttons in our tote bags, purses and cushion covers. One can never have enough buttons! 😉

Paper button

Wow, it’s been a month since my last post! I’ve not been making much jewelry these days, so the pause in my jewelry blogging is inevitable. 🙂 I’ve mostly been working on one or two personal programming projects, and on my knitting.

One piece of jewelry I did make recently was a paper button for a short jacket that I knit for my sis. The jacket is light-and-dark gray, and I wanted to make a button that matches those tones. I decided to make a spiral disc bead, and add some wirework in the end, both as embellishment and as the loop through which I can thread the ‘button’ onto the jacket.

Paper button

I made the bead by winding many thin, long, slowly-tapering strips of newspaper one after another. This way, the bead ends up wider than it is long. Of course, plenty of glue is needed from time to time to prevent unwinding of this ‘super-long strip.’ After the glue dried, I painted the bead with a rough ombré effect of black and silver acrylic colors in the front, and fully black at the back. I waited for the paint to dry fully before applying multiple coatings of mod podge, letting the piece air-dry between coatings.

The finished bead is pretty sturdy, and is about 0.5cm thick and 2cm wide.

We eventually found a different button for my sister’s jacket, and I didn’t get a chance to add the wire embellishments to this button. I’ve to find some other use for it now! 🙂

Brown beaded macramé bracelet. With a button!

Macrame Bracelet

Macrame Bracelet

It’s been a long, long time since I used Macramé to make things, so I thought I’d make a beaded bracelet. I had some strong cotton yarn lying around from an old knitting project that I could use for my cords. As for beads to add, my stash had these round, brown wooden beads with splashes of green and blue, and they were perfect for this project.

The bracelet would be about 7″ long, so I cut a 16″ cord for the filler cord, and about 25″ for the working cord. Folding the filler cord, I strung 10 beads in it and knotted the ends of the cord together to prevent the beads from falling off. Securing the top part of the folded cord (where the ‘loop’ appears), I made simple alternating square knots using the working cord. I started knotting about 3/4″ from the filler cord’s top, made 4 square knots, pulled up one bead along the filler cord, and made the next square knot by wrapping the working cords along the side of the bead. Then 4 knots again and pull up another bead, and then again…

The bracelet was almost 7″ by the time the last bead was used, and I made 4 more square knots. I then borrowed a translucent violet button from my sister’s stash. I fastened this button by stringing both working cords through it and tying up the working cords and filler cords below the button. Finally, I snipped off the extra yarn from the cords.

Here’s how the bracelet looks on my hand (ta-da!) —

Macrame Bracelet