Most my beads start out as a sketch, doodled in one of my many sketchbooks. I keep them all over the house - one by my computer, a few in the living room, one in my bedroom, you never know when inspiration will strike! It also helps to sketch down an idea when you are busy so that you can revisit it later. After I have a page of sketches I pick the ones I think are working and hand carve polymer clay molds.
Here I snapped photos with my Ipod as I worked on these. The first step is painting. Yes, I recycle scrap paper and use them when making beads!
I bake my paint into the clay and go through the process several times with various colors and coats.
When the beads are finished baking I antique each one with acrylic paint and sand them. They are then coated with a wax finish to protect the paint.
Here are my two favorites. Do you see them in the sketch? I'm in love with navy blue at the moment. Can not get enough of it.