Friday, July 20, 2012

BFB - Not your Best Friends Boyfriend

Recently I started making these BFB -big fat beads for fun. They are a great way of making big light beads that can be laced on to a chain, scarf, or what ever you will.

1. Start with Sculpy-Ultralight and some grommets. ( I prefer the ones that have only one part or using on the longer half of the grommet.)

2. After I condition the clay make a the big bead core. If your pierce the centre and roll it back and forth your can make the hole the right size for the grommet.

3. I insert a grommet at each end of the bead core and bake the bead cores for the full time advised on the package. I can sit the bead cores on end and not worry about one side getting flat.

4. After the bead cores are cooked I pry out the grommets. I use a pointed tool to get started and then switch to the side of the tool to get it completely out. (Yes that is the table clearing veneer from July10th.)

5. Now coat the bead cores with LPC (liquid polymer clay - I am using the Kato Clay brand here but other brands will work too). I find a candle holder is a good vessel to hold a small amount of LPC to dip my brush in.

6.  I cut a strip of veneer slightly wider than the length of the bead core. I wrap the bead core with the veneer and join the edges together. (If you gently wrap the bead core and then unwrap a little you with see a line where the edges meet. If your cut just short of the line your will get a good fit - a gap is easier to smooth than a lump is to flatten.)

7.I pull the clay around the ends of the bead core and reinsert the grommet. When I have done this on both ends of the bead I cook it again). When it is cooked take out the grommet and in #4 and then glue it back into place. I use two part epoxy for this.

That’s it. BFBs that are really light.


Jane Perala said...

Are you are going to have some of these at Filberg - sure hope so!

Monique U. said...

Your beads are just gorgeous, Joan... I've never worked with the Ultralight but it certainly would be appropriate for larger focals. Thanks for sharing your design.

Lawrence said...

Thanks for the great tute Joan. I have to get some of those large grommets.

joan tayler said...

Hi Jane
I do plan on having some of these beads at Filberg. Only two week!!! Must work like crazy.

Monique - You are welcome. If you make some BFBs I would love to see the results.

Lawerence - DressSew is the place to get grommets in Vancouver.

Back to work or sleep, but I have a market tomorrow.

kim Idalski said...

I do this too. I love it. they work great when you need to give them a cool wash the float :)