Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Textured Beads

I love the way glaze pool in the little grooves of a textured ceramic bead.

 Adding texture to our ceramic beads is my favourite part of bead making and its so easy to do.

Firstly, clay is shaped by hand into a round ball.  We don't use molds to make our beads and each bead is unique.

As it is important to keep production costs down, I look to my immediate surroundings for cheap and innovative tools to texture our clay beads.  I make small clay stamps from scraps of clay which I fire to bisque temperature and use it to press into wet clay.  The designs are my own and add a touch of uniqueness to my beads.  My favourite texture tools are just outside my studio door in the garden.  Leaves, sticks, stones, rusty nails are excellent texture tools and its free!
On the left are unfired textured beads which will be poked with a skewer to make holes once they are firmer.  On the right are beads which have been fired to 1 000 degrees Celsius (1 832 Fahrenheit).
Lastly the beads are hand painted with glaze and fired in a pottery kiln.

If you have any questions or comments, please do so - I'd love to hear from you.


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