Hopeless Romantic Polymer Clay Mixed Media Earrings [Gallery]

Polymer Clay Mixed Media Earrings “Made using an
original mixed media
technique based on what
I am calling Polymer Clay
Art Sheets.” ~Cindy-L

As you may have noticed from today’s featured Gallery post, as well as from previous ones (see Seeds of Change Bracelet for another example of a recent Gallery feature), these photo spreads are included here at the blog to provide you guys with creative jewelry making ideas and inspiration.

Please use the comment section at the bottom of the page, to discuss the items presented… or to let me know what other projects you would like to see and learn more about.


Hopeless Romantic, Polymer Clay Mixed Media Earrings:


Polymer Clay Mixed Media Earrings

Hopeless Romantic, Polymer Clay Mixed Media Earrings:


Deep inside most every woman, is a hopeless romantic. These beautiful Polymer Clay and Sterling Silver Earrings, celebrate the love of romance with their soothing colors and lace-like textures.

The petal or teardrop shaped dangles hang and flutter gracefully from hand made ear wires and jump rings.

These art jewelry earrings were made using an original mixed media technique based on what I am calling Polymer Clay Art Sheets. The process incorporates ink, paint, textures, mica powders and metal leaf. Each teardrop dangle is cut from a larger art sheet, so every shape is coordinated in style and color, but also individually unique.

Almost paper thin, these delicate petals are given strength and sheen with a coating of UV Resin on both sides.

These lovely art earrings hang at approximately 2 1/2″ long (6.5 cm), sitting nicely around the jaw line.

Price: $30 (US)If you are interested in purchasing the Hopeless Romantic Earrings shown in today’s gallery post, then please send me an email. Be sure to include your full mailing address so I can work out the shipping cost for you.


** Did You Know… Members with current subscriptions to the weekly tutorial videos are always entitled to a 10% discount when purchasing 6 or more back issue packages in a single transaction. If you are interested, let me know which back issues you would like and I will send further instructions on how to complete your order.
Cindy Lietz SignaturePolymer Clay Tutor


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Comments

  1. I’m “up a creek without a paddle”, would love to learn to make these amazing earings. I have been experimenting with uv resin and loving the results but have been wondering how it would work to put in on both sides of a project. This would be fun to try. Please consider teaching all of us your technique.

  2. Your “ink, paint, textures, mica-powder and gold leaf” technique looks fascinating and I am very impressed with your sterling silver hand-made ear wires. Very beautiful Cindy.

  3. Cindy – I’d love to learn this mixed media technique. How very clever of you to make the sheets thin like this so you could dangle three pieces and still have them light enough for the ears!

    • @carolyn: I thought I read a note from Catalina that she was going to get to have both of her surgeries today. Either way she needs our prayers and to be in our thoughts today. She is so very sweet and such a special caring person. May God be with her today and always. GB Many Uuuuuuggggs, Peggy

  4. Totally off the wall question for you experienced jewelry masters–when you measure a necklace does the length include the clasp part? Inquiring minds would like to know (or at least mine would). Thanks.

  5. Peggy brought this up on another post … and I hadn’t heard it mentioned yet … this is a 5 Friday month … and this Friday is the 5th. No tutorial, right, Cindy?

  6. Pretty – they look a bit like the effects I get from Tina Holden’s Batik and Shimmer technique (I know, I’m obsessed with that one!), but also completely different.

    I’d love a tute Cindy, I can see it being a very versatile and customisable technique to have in my arsenal.

    • Thank you everyone for the comments! I love this technique and I figured you would too! The tute will be coming soon :-)

      My heart is with you Catalina, during your surgeries today. I know you will be better off after this is all over and I pray you heal quickly. Take care of yourself. We hope to see you back here soon!

      In regards to this being a 5th Friday, that is correct. Because there are five Friday’s this month, and we only do 4 videos, there will not be a tutorial this week. As far as doing something else instead, to tell you the truth, I’m not sure what is going to happen yet. It has been an insanely busy week and frankly we are dealing with stuff on a minute to minute basis.

      And yes, I have been popping in on the weekends, because there are many things that still need to be taken care of. One day we will achieve more balance, I promise.

      @Cheryl Hodges: As far as doing the resin on both sides… just do the back first and cure. Then do the front and cure. (Doing the front last will keep it more perfect should a little resin try to sneak to the other side.)

      • @Cindy Lietz from Polymer Clay Contest Facebook Photos:Hey, I have an idea for Friday. How about if you do nothing! Now, it will take a leap of faith on your part to turn the blog over to us for the extra day but just think of the adventure involved. What might really be fun would be if we came up with one or two (or more) past tuts from which we could choose (except cleaning the pasta machine). We could select one, make the piece then post our pictures on the facebook page to see everyone’s interpretation— or maybe this isn’t such a great idea and we could just start the week-end on Friday and talk for an extra day. You know, now that I am thinking about it why don’t we just pretend that Friday is Saturday (huh?). I think that’s what I mean-you get my drift. I just think that among all of us we can keep ourselves entertained for an extra day without Cindy having to do anything. I’m game for anything so let the ideas for NCOF (No Cindy on Friday) fly.

        • @Joyce M: Thanks for keeping us in the loop with your husband and his tests. As you can see there is lots of support here for you. Keep the faith.

          @Elizabeth S.: I love your ideas! Now if everyone could hold that thought until tomorrow. I am just in the process of writing up the post for Tuesday. It will allow for some discussion on the upcoming upcoming 5th Friday topic. Thx :-)

  7. Would be an honor to learn how to do these earrings. The style reminds me of some my daughter use to wear to high school rodeo’s. Oh those were such fun filled busy busy days. Thank the Dear Lord I was not ill back then. He has definately watched over me. No time is fun to be sick but I thank him every day for allowing me to be there for my children when they were growing up and going through school. My youngest finished college got a good job and married a wonderful man then had 2 fantastic kids. Then I got sick. I am sure I will get better again some day he just needs to decide when and I just have to be patient.

    Carolyn this is a 5th Friday so no bomb dropped yet. Cindy needs her time off. Now she is back to blogging on the weekends. I’m not sure what happened there. I hope she didn’t start getting more emails at home? Her and Doug give us so much I wish there was a way we could give them something special for all they do. We need to make her take some time off even when we don’t want her to…
    Uuuuuggggs, Peggy

    • @Peggy Barnes: I’m sorry that you are sick and have pain, and I hope that you are free of it soon! It probably IS best that it didn’t happen when your kids were young, and it worked out—sounds like your kids did really well for themselves! (With your help as a great mother!)

      I agree it would be great to do something for Cindy and Doug. One thing we can always do is spread the word about this great website. If more people sign up as members and buy videos, they might turn a (better?) profit and be able to hire assistants to help them! (Who knows if they turn much of a profit with the low, low membership rates they charge!)

      You’re an absolute sweetie, Peggy. My thoughts are with you often, and I pray for the day you have no pain and feel GREAT! I wanna add an “H” to those Uuugggs!

  8. This is another wonderful technique, Cindy. A tute here would be just super. My list of “To DO” is getting longer, and longer.

    Update on Wayne: The equipment was down on Friday so he had the tests (CT/PET scan) this morning. It really took all his energy. The chemo he has been getting is rugged and hopefully this test will give us good news and he can start to build himself back up. A GREAT BIG THANK YOU to all of you for your thoughts and prayers. Even if they were early, nothing wrong with that. We now wait for the follow-up doctor’s visit on Wednesday. Your support is so wonderful, love you all.

    • @Joyce M: Joyce, the prayers don’t stop just because the procedure is done. I know how hard it is to watch your dear husband going through all this. I’ve been there. All I can say is no matter how hard and how frustrating it all is, cherish each moment!

    • @Joyce M:We will be with you on Wednesday. I am so glad that the scan is over for Wayne and hope beyond hope that the results will point toward the end of the debilitating chemo he has endured.

      Hugs,
      Elizabeth

  9. Thanks for those who have reminded us to keep Catalina in our prayers today.

    Joyce, thank you for letting us know how things are going with Wayne’s tests. He is also in my prayers.

    Cindy, these are great earrings! I love how that shape cascades from the jump rings and I’m so glad that you’re going to teach us how to do your Polymer Clay Art Sheets. Oh, I can’t wait until I my budget can handle a resin and lamp purchase!

  10. I agree with everyone. Those earrings are fantastic!! I love the look!!!
    Catalina and Wayne are in my prayers and thoughts today. And prayers and thoughts are out to all you in PC-lover land.

  11. Catalina’s husband just posted on her Facebook page: “She’s not recovering well from anesthesia and has too much pain so she will be staying overnite for observation.” Earlier he said that the surgery itself went well.

    • Wow, stunning earrings! The polymer clay art sheets are beautiful, and a technique that I’d be thrilled to learn! Any time you want to throw that tute at me, Cindy, I’ll be ready to catch it! Thanks so much for your creativity, and for your willingness to share these awesome techniques without attaching a huge pricetag! Can’t wait to learn to make these beauties… I’d actually buy these earrings, but I’m paying for my car to be fixed (can’t even afford my micromesh yet!)

      @Linda K.: Thanks for letting us know about Catalina’s surgery. I hope that the extra night in the hospital will help her recover better and faster, and that her pain level has dropped considerably. I hope she knows we are praying for her. We love you, hurry back!

      @Joyce M: I’m happy that his test/scan’s done and that he can rest a bit for his results appt on Wednesday. I have been praying for him, and will continue to throughout. I hope that you both get some fantastic news on Wed.

      @Tiffany: I wish you the speediest recovery, Tiffany! And Congrat’s on the 15 lb loss! I wish it had been under better circumstances, but hey! I’m still praying for you; I’m hoping your leg has minimal nerve damage and that you are able to walk without a limp, or at least a noticeable one. Best of luck!

      There are so many wonderful, sweet, kind and generous people here at the blog. I care about you guys a great deal, and I pray for you often. And when things like the above are happening, I pray all the more. My heart goes out to Lisa W. as well, I know she is still heartbroken over the loss of her dog, (like family!) Lots of love and hugs to you all, ~Kat

  12. I absolutely love your polymer clay art sheet earrings. I would really appreciate a tutorial on how to make them. You constantly amaze me with your creativity, Cindy. Thanks so much for all your hard work and your willingness to share.

  13. Cindy, I LOVE the earring you made from the art sheet of the original mixed media technique. I would LOVE a tutorial as well. Another tutorial I would love is the tiger cane. I have looked all over the net and all I find are tuts to buy. This is driving to crazy!!!!

  14. Cindy, This technique is so beautiful! Can’t wait for this one. I got good news from my surgeon. At the end of this week I can get off total bed rest (it has been a looong 6 weeks) and start trying to walk on my left leg again. Yippee no more total bed rest! I look forward to being able to play clay again.It will be fun trying all of the fun tutorials from the last month and a half. I still have to be very careful, and can’t walk on the stairs yet, but all in good time I guess. The bad news is that since my left sciatic nerve has some permanent damage, Imay likely have a limp on that side and also the numbness and tingling that runs the length of the nerve and down to my toes. I just want to walk again, my right S I joint is starting to hurt fromm all thr pressure of holding all my weight on it. One good thing has come from all this down time, I have quit drinking soda, and my appetite has decreased and I have lost 15 pounds!
    Cindy, I hope you enjoy your weekend off, you certainly deserve it!

    • @Tiffany: Tiffany, hang in there and take it slow. I’m sorry to hear about the nerve damage. Congrats on the weight loss, though how you lose 15 pounds when you’re bed ridden is beyond me! :)

      @Linda K.: Linda, Thanks for keeping us posted on Catalina’s condition. She’s in my prayers as well.

      @Joyce M: Joyce, you and Wayne are in my thoughts and prayers.

      @Peggy Barnes: You’re right, it is a blessing you didn’t get sick til after your kids were grown. My youngest was only 5 when I got nailed. I’m sorry to say he really doesn’t remember when I had energy and could move normally and played with the 3 of them like I was a kid myself. It hurts me that I haven’t been able to do the things with him that I was able to do with his sister, who is 12 years older than he is, and with his brother, who is 5 years older. You have an amazingly positive outlook on things that’s an inspiration to us all.

      I have a suggestion on how to handle the “Cindy problem” – I think we should all head to Canada so we can gang up on her and make her take her weekend off! (How awesome would that be to hang out with her for a weekend? LOL! Bet she’d take her weekends after that!)

  15. Cindy, these are beatiful! I’d also love a tut on them. The drops are stunning, I love, love, love the colors, and the earwires are amazing! I so need a torch.. :) Umm, did you happen to read my brain storm on how to keep you away from here on the weekends?? I have a ton of ideas inspired by you and others here that will keep me busy for many Fridays.. Not that I’d be too awfully upset if you happened to throw something out there, but if you didn’t I do have ideas that would keep me occupied. :)

  16. I’m very happy to find that so many people are commenting here at the blog. It’s a bit crazy trying to catch up on all the comments after over a week of no web, though. What I’m noticing is that some people are asking questions about things that have already been answered. Before you ask a question, and make Cindy spend extra time answering, make sure you’re caught up on your reading.

    Everyone knows about the search box at the top of the page by now. It’s also important to know how to FIND what you’re looking for when you get to the page you want. It’s especially important if you’re on a page with a lot of comments, or if you’re in a hurry (or just don’t want to bother reading the entire page.) You’re operating system or browser might make the process a bit different, but they all have a “FIND” method.

    For my PC running Vista, I can just type CTRL key plus “F” and then type in the word I want to find. For example, if I want to go back and see where Cindy mentioned how to do the resin on both sides of the earrings, I just type CTRL – F. When the Find box opens up I type in “resin.” If I do the find right now, I get 9 matches, and I can scroll through them quickly to find the comment where Cindy gives the directions. Most people know how to do this, but I wanted to mention it just in case…

    For the most part, though, everyone seems to be helping out and trying to become more self-sufficient so Cindy can direct her efforts to making this site better and better (and keeping the awesome tutorials coming!) I think it’s wonderful that everyone’s trying so hard, because I know we all get confused sometimes. Just remember, if you can’t figure something out, try to search first. Make sending Cindy an email a last resort (except for buying videos, financial issues, etc.) If a search doesn’t work for you, leave a comment here so someone can try to help. That way Cindy can keep doing all of the fantastic things she does for us!

    • Thank you all, for the ongoing comments in this thread. I’m glad you like the earrings and that you are looking forward to learning about my Art Sheet technique. I’m really anxious to show it to you. When feedback happens like this, it really does help to push the idea higher in the “need-to-film-it-now” pile.

      @Phaedrakat: EXCELLENT advice on the search and find stuff. Thank you so much for taking the time to write that out. It is very important and valuable information for everyone to have, and understand, and use.

    • @Phaedrakat: Kat, the tip about using the CTRL key and then typing F is amazing. I have Windows 7 and it works for me. I’d never heard of doing this before so THANK YOU!!!

  17. My prayers to everyone who needs them-always. Prayers are so important to helping people ! They work. So keep up the GOOD work. Sermon over..

    The earring are really beautiful. I would love to have a tute.

    Have a great weekend off Cindy and Doug -just kidding. BUT you Should.

    Hugs to all the gang

  18. I really have to read these blogs everyday. or else I get lost. So sorry about all the bad news….Catalina, Wayne and Peggy Barnes…..You are all in my prayers…….Tanya, I never replied to you either..Please, get better EVERYONE…..because there are so many of us. Tanya why don’t you ask your primary care dr about cytomel. I really need a rheumatologist too but thats a co payment. I owe physical therapy a bundle because they didn’t remind me of the co payment. I take levothyroxin 112mcg. Is that the same thing you’re taking? Feel better, partner…..Kat, how are you doing?……Cindy I love your art sheet earrings, Just beautiful. Do you ever have problems with your links opening. That’s how the necklace I gave away broke. Is there another way to make these earrings stronger other than epoxy resin?…..Is there a way to make polymer clay bead caps? If so, would anyone be interested in a tute besides me???? My computer is so slow from saving tutes and recipes. I had to delete my recipies…..BooHoo. I love my recipies. Sometimes it just freezes and I get so disgusted that I shut everything off. Well, I still have the copies of the recipies. Well.everyone feel better….Love ya all, Honey

    • @Honey Sperring: Honey, I’ve been putting off going to the rheumatologist, too, because of the co-pay. Our insurance is so rediculous – we have a $6,000 family deductable! So between my hubby’s heart issues this year and my on-going medical stuff we owe a nice chunk of change. I better start selling stuff soon! :) I’ll say something to my primary about the cytomel when I go back to see what he says. He’s just really young and doesn’t have a lot of experience so I guess I’m kind of leary yet. Plus my arthritis is getting really bad, which throws me into the fibro flares, and on and on. I take 125 mcg of levoxyl. It’s the brand name, but even going on the brand name hasn’t stabalized my levels. I keep going WAY underactive and gaining weight when I’m not even eating. Gotta have my levels checked at least every 6 months.

      I’m really sorry you had to get rid of your recipes. I collect them too, but mine are all in paper form. I learned a long time ago they take up too much room on my computer. Now I have it overloaded with pictures, so maybe I really haven’t learned anything, huh? LOL!

      You know, I wanted to post something the other day, asking Cindy if she’d consider doing a tut on bead caps and bead cones! Thanks for reminding me, and for suggesting it. Hang in there Honey. Love ya!

  19. Argggggggggggggggh. So many threads inside one thread, it’s getting more like knitting!
    Just a suggestion… set up a FB/google/separate group for chat – I love reading about my friends from all over the world, so it is most important to keep in touch, because moral support counts for so much, but the clay bits are getting lost…
    Pretty much what Kat said, I guess.
    WellingtonsMum

    • @Judy: Judy, I feel for you, with MS affecting my vision, it can be a challenge to keep up. Fortunately, I have seemed to grow along with the number of posts, posters, and friendships, so skimming is easier.

      I love the randomness of the threads. To me, each blog post is like unwrapping a Christmas gift, LOL! Using the search and the find facility (yay, Kat!!) gets me to the information I need.

      Maybe if we used a different color for the texts of “keep up” and “friendship” responses, it might help those focused on clay to ignore certain parts of the thread?

    • @Judy: I’m inclined to agree with you, Judy. I’ve made contact with some folks through email … obtaining email addresses through websites since we can’t put email address on this blog. When it comes to more ‘personal’ on going comments between a couple of folks it seems that might be a better way of communicating things.

  20. Cindy, the silver workings on those earrings are remarkable. Head’s been spinning with possibilities for the paddles. Cannot wait to see this tut!

  21. Judy-M said… “Argggggggggggggggh. So many threads inside one thread…”

    Of all the issues that can potentially come up in a growing community like this, at least this one falls under that category of “good problems” to have.

    This community site is currently set up as a blog. The big advantage of blogs is simplicity. But they certainly don’t have the “dimension” that other types of sites can offer with being able to “friend” or “follow” specific people so that you can fine tune your “reading” list.

    There are other services we could be taking a look at… that would provide everyone with a higher level of functionality. Ning is the most common example that some of you may already have heard of. They allow you to set up “social networking sites” focused on specific topics.

    Doug and I have definitely thought about going that route. But it doesn’t take long to find examples of other communities that have failed to make the “mini-social-networking-site” concept work for them. I think one of the reasons is because Facebook is doing a pretty good job of allowing anyone and everyone to set up their own little individualized “friend” communities.

    I’m definitely open to hearing your ideas here. More discussion on this topic would be great!

    • @Cindy Lietz from Polymer Clay Color Recipes Monkshood Flower: We don’t want to lose the caring nature that is so evident on this blog, but I’m not sure that every comment needs a reply comment. This gets to be a bit much. Short and sweet is fine, but sometimes the personal threads go on and on … and have nothing to do with PC, or with the rest of the folks on this blog.

      Of course, PC questions should be answered. And I think everyone enjoyed the lengthy fun we had over asking for help in Home Depot. But it was something that we could all relate to.

      Now I’m liable to upset a few people by taking this stance, but I find that I am not as thrilled with the blog lately. There is too much that has nothing to do with PC or claying and clayers. It has lost something along the way. I know many of us have ailments, but that should not be the main topic of this blog. Yes, if there is something special … Like Joyce’s Wayne’s test or Catalina’s surgery or Jackie’s first show after her dear husband died (one time events) is is good for us all to know about them. And there may be several related comments from various people, but it doesn’t have to go on and on.

      You asked for it, Cindy!

  22. Thank you Carolyn for your comments concerning personal issues. I to would like this blog to have contents about using PC. To me this is a learning blog and anything I can do to continue my progress as a clayer is accomplished here. All of your suggestions are so helpful and fun to read. It’s so funny, I now consider myself as a PC artist. This art form really is theraputic and is giving me a sense accomplishment.

  23. I’m the administrator of a membership website, and Off-topic is the norm in our community. The questions do get answered, then the questions and answers trigger other thoughts, and it goes on and on until it’s like that whispering game where the first person whispers, “So-and-so likes so-and-so” and the last person hears, “My turtle has fleas.”

    After much debate among the powers that be, it was decided to leave things alone and let the river run. We’re a family and that’s what happens in a family.

    Since we actually do have a forum setting and not a blog, we can relegate off-topics to other forum posting categories that fit the topic better, and that does help, but the only place we put our foot down is in the nature of the comments. We’re a helpful and caring group, and we insist on helpful and caring answers… no sniping. There are other similar forums with a no-holds-barred attitude, and it’s painful to go there.

    I do like that about this blog and comments, so if the topic veers to the personal, then so be it, IMHO.

    Cindy

  24. Hi Cindy,

    I’m glad someone has brought this subject up. I have found that the blog has become a very “social” blog which isn’t a bad thing, but I think it takes away from what the blog was originally setup for and that was to share info, problems and solutions on polymer clay. I love hearing what everyone is up to but would find it more appropriate if personal issues were shared on a separate blog and not taking so much space here.

    I really don’t want to upset anyone with my opinions, and there is nothing wrong with our fun or silly statements, but it takes forever to read through everything to see if it’s clay related and lately it hasn’t been.

    • @Jeanne C.:
      Ditto to Jeanne C. and others on the same lines.
      It does take ages to read everything and then reply, but I still think it is nice to hear about others lives and it does help I’m sure to talk about it, so maybe a blog only for the Poly and somewhere else like a forum for the life experiences.
      love to all
      E. xxxx

  25. I think there is room for argument on both sides of this topic. I agree with Carolyn(s) that at times lately the blog has gone too far astray from its intended purpose, to serve as a resource for pcers who want to enhance their skills.

    That being said, Cindy R. makes some valid points as well. I like the decision made for the site she administers to “let the river run”. We have become a family much like the one she describes and I think it would be a great loss to eliminate the caring and concern expressed for others. I think everyone would agree, including Cindy and Doug, whose generosity and caring is at the forefront of the work they do for us.

    Maybe there is a middle ground-I got to thinking about this while taking my own inventory of times I have, with my nonsense, taken things astray. Please know that I speak only for myself and don’t wish to impose my thinking or my solution on anyone else. In taking my inventory however, I got to thinking about what might have happened if a visitor had happened upon the site-one who was looking for a polymer clay resource. What if, during the few moments the person spent scrolling through the comments he or she saw only my non-pc nonsense and upon seeing that as the first impression, immediately decided to move on, missing entirely the fact that this is the best pc resource on the planet. It dawned on me that in that instance I may have cost Doug and Cindy a subscription to the site, and I certainly cost the visitor an amazing opportunity to join us in learning. I have to own the fact that I was disrespectful to all involved, including those who come here to learn. Bottom line: I’m a putz (you didn’t think I was going to get through this without one crazy word, did you?) I don’t know exactly what it means. I think putzes live in DUHville. Ok-sorry-sorry-sorry.

    Anyway, here is my (I repeat, my) plan:

    —-I’m gonna continue to inquire about and offer support to members of my pc family. As Carolyn said it’s important and for me, necessary, and frankly I don’t think anyone will dispute that.

    —-I’m gonna really try to think before I post about whether what I say will be respectful of or detract from Cindy and Doug’s objective to offer this site as the best pc resource in the world. That probably means that what I have to say needs to flow from and be about whatever they are trying to teach us about becoming better polymer clay artists. I can do that.

  26. I think Cindy had already started trying to get the comments to fit that day’s topic when she set Friday’s as ‘Open Mic’ days. She opened up Fridays for discussions and comments on anything (within reason). Perhaps this is where we can spend more time socializing and commiserating as well as asking questions that have not been covered on a previous blog. I think the other days we should stick closer to the topic, unless there is something that we need (want) to know that is time critical.

  27. The vast array of knowledge on this site is what attracted me first. The kindness, helpfulness and caring shown for each other and the humor is what has kept me coming back. Yeah, people do have personal conversations. That’s how I learn who has financial problems that I need to pray about. Who has what health problems I need to pray about. Who’s down. Who has car problems. Etc., etc. If I reply to someone, I use the “reply” link in blue on the right. Then their name is highlighted and everyone has a choice whether or not to read it. If I make a general reply, I do what I’m doing now: use the “Leave a Comment window at the bottom. I just skim all replies before actually reading them so I’m not “wasting my time”, but I don’t consider anything anyone has to say here a waste of my time, because everyone here is important to me. So if I’m short on time I read the important things and come back to read the rest when I have more time. I’ve made some very good friends here and I wouldn’t want to lose that personal touch with any of them.

  28. I joined Cindy’s blog over a year ago. The reason I choose her blog is I found it to a wonderful place to get inspired, her wonderful tutorials and the fact that I could inner act with other people in the PC world. We could share our joys and frustrations and help each other figure out what we were doing wrong and help one another to grow in the polymer clay world. For me this was my common ground with other polymer clay artist to chat about pc related issues and learning about new products, sales and upcoming events.

    We do still share pc information but feel over the months the blog is not being used for what Cindy and Doug intended it to be and that’s a resource for anyone interested in polymer clay. I feel there is just to much personal information being posted everyday and it takes forever to sort through it all. I care for all of you and keep many of you in my prayers, but truth be told I find this blog is not always very cheerful to read and I find that to be very disappointing.

    Elizabeth makes a very valid point, if a person logs on to this blog intent on finding a resource for pc information and reads so much personal information they may just view this and decide this isn’t what they are looking for and not come back. What a loss this would be for them and Cindy.

    I would love to see the blog go back to its original intend and be the cheerful, upbeat and resourceful blog it once was. I think it would be more appropriate to share personal information on a separate blog. Let’s try and stick to more pc issues.

  29. A lot of good points made here. I think we all feel closer than just artists and polymer clay fans looking for info. We feel like family and we “forget” where we are at. Maybe if we use FB or blogs for more “personal” topics we can keep this blog on polymer clay issues and questions. But, we are all busy and to check email, blogs, FB, text mgs is very time consuming. Technology is great and can save time but can be confusing and difficult too.

    So, maybe we can keep our posts short and sweet and personal tidbits referred to other sources. It is a good thing we are growing so big to have to deal with this type of issue. :)

  30. Right now, I’m OK with the balance here at the blog. Information gathering and structure is what so many of us find rewarding on this site. But the connection and people returning each day is important too…the warmth and interest taken in each person probably contributes to this. That’s a much more difficult thing to control though. My worry is that if things are too tightly reigned in, that special something could be lost. Although some days there are many of our own personal stories that come up, the information sharing doesn’t seem to be overshadowed. Somehow questions are raised, with suggestions and discussions that follow. Like Tanya, if I’m short on time, I glance over the long bits. I guess I’m alright compromising somewhat on the efficiency if it means the “heart” remains here. There could be good things lost on both sides if things become either too technical or too off topic.
    It does seem to be the same handful of folks who (thankfully) participate often – keeping the blog lively. That would also explain the closeness and personal details shared. Maybe if more of us actively participated we could help to broaden things a bit further as well? Good discussion and points raised… :0)

  31. Cindy, thanks very much for asking for our thoughts…

    For me, the increasing level of non-clay discussion in the threads has become very annoying, to the point that I don’t read them much any more: the on-topic comments are totally swamped by the off-topic comments.

    I have no problem with a bit of off-topic chat, and I expect the “padding” of basic social interaction and the occasional heads-up on off-topic matters, but I really do not want to wade through volumes and volumes of commentary on people’s health problems, pets, prayers, and so on. (I’m not picking on anyone here and definitely don’t want anybody to take that comment personally, but I’ve become totally allergic to those topics.)

    Elizabeth S raised a point about newcomers to the site potentially disregarding it as a useful resource if their first impression is based on the off-topic discussions. I’d like to raise another related problem that I’ve seen on other sites, which is where newcomers are reluctant to “break in” to such discussions between members of the apparent “in” crowd, i.e. outsiders perceive a clique where there in fact is none and therefore hesitate to put their own questions or comments forward.

    It would be good if there was a forum (in the general sense of the word) specifically for off-topic discussions and general socialisation. That would enable the main blog to remain fairly focused, while online socialisation would still be possible (and probably improved) for those members who enjoy that kind of interaction.

  32. Sue’s valid observation that newcomers reading all the social comments might be reluctant to “break-in” to discussions, is a point I had not considered. It makes sense that if we use the blog for mainly on topic issues this is a problem that would probably self-correct.

    I don’t know about y’all but I have been delighted to see some amazingly beautiful work on the Facebook page from members who do not regularly post on the blog. How I would love to chat with these folks on the blog about their Cindy inspired pieces.

  33. Reading all these comments about this blog content, I’d say it is time that we take care of this matter ourselves. There is nothing that Cindy needs to do. WE NEED TO WATCH OURSELVES AND MONITOR WHAT WE WRITE. I recommend that we stay topic focused on this blog. When there are PC questions that we have input on, yes, enter our answers. That said, I think we can have occasional important or one time social information postings. We also want to make sure that we continue to be open with our pros and cons for Cindy regarding her proposed video tutorials.

    Secondly, Phaedrakat, you seem extremely knowledgeable and very capable. My second recommendation is that YOU set up a blog for our socializing and all the extra little acknowledgment comments. You could probably even do it in such a way that it would link to and from this blog for those who want to continue a particular social discussion.

    I think all of us agree that we have some very special relationships thanks to Cindy and this blog. I’m not proposing that we abandon each other, but rather that we continue our relationships on a secondary blog.

    • @carolyn: Personally, I don’t think that a blog would be the best idea for continued discussion, mostly because it’s very difficult to bring up a new topic in an organised way unless you’re the admin or author of the blog.

      I think a forum would be better – that way any member could start a thread about anything they like, and everything can be kept very neat and tidy. I for example find it difficult to remember where I saw a particular piece of information on this blog (and others) because the comments aren’t necessarily on topic – I understand that mostly people ask questions on the latest blog posts because the earlier more-relevant-to-their-actual-question post is less “visible” so they are less likely to get an answer, but my brain can’t process the fact that the useful comment about Future is on the post about mokume gane, to invent an example.

      I’ve set up both blogs and a forum in the past so I know how to do it, and I’d be happy to help with the creation of a resource like that, as long as there are other people (who are more active than me perhaps) to act as moderators or admins.

      • @Silverleaf: Silverleaf, I barely know anything about blogs and Facebook … am learning as I go … and I know virtually nothing about forums. From what you describe this just might be the way to go. We’ll see what Cindy has up her sleeve next week and then we might just go with a forum thing. I think I’d be willing to act as a moderator or admin … maybe.

  34. EXCELLENT feedback everyone. Thank for chiming in on this important issue. I have an idea on how to solve the problem, which I’ll write about next week… probably on Thursday since Mon/Tues/Wed spots are already “spoken” for. So until then, please do keep you thoughts coming. This is a great exchange of ideas that is happening.

  35. I’m feeling a bit like we’re spending too much time off-topic too, to be honest. I love how everyone’s friendly and supportive and willing to share stuff, but I do agree that this blog should be primarily about clay, with a few personal touches here and there.

    I’m totally guilty of this too, so I apologise to anyone I may have annoyed.

    But yeah, it can be disappointing to see that there are 60 comments on a blog post, click through, and then find out that 50 of them are “Sorry to hear that, I’ll pray for you.”

    I do like the idea of a separate forum or similar (maybe a Facebook group), with a dedicated section for prayer requests. I have no problem with people praying, but as an atheist I have no interest in hearing about it!

    I guess there’s a balancing act to do here, to make this a useful resource which is friendly and supportive and welcoming of new members. Maybe keep the personal stuff for the Friday posts?

  36. Oo-er. I seemed to have opened up something of a can of worms…
    sorreeeeeee.
    We could always have a ‘circle of friends’ on Facebook.
    Or just general chat there. Anyone else up for it?
    WellingtonsMum

    • @Judy: Judy

      I think this was a can that needed to be opened and judging from everyone’s meaningful input I see a solution in the very near future.

    • @Judy: Yes, Judy, this is obviously something that has been on people’s minds for awhile. It’s good you brought it up. This blog needs to meet the needs of all kinds of people, so if something is bothering you, it’s best to say it (in the nicest, most respectable way.) Then it can be addressed, if necessary. I agree with Elizabeth that a solution is coming soon, and I look forward to hearing about Cindy’s recommendation/solution.

      I want to apologize to those of you who’ve been annoyed by my comments for so long! I’m very sorry for wasting so much of your time. I have been quite wordy (to say the least,) since I found this blog. Now that I know I’ve been annoying people and making them depressed with my “tales of woe,” I feel embarrassed and humiliated. (There I go again, talking about personal feelings, lol.) There are so many nice, caring people here, that I got too comfortable and talked about my sad little life too much.

      I had something really nice happen a couple weeks ago (I mentioned it in a post that no doubt made several people groan and think, “oh, brother, not more of this crap”.) Anyway, I can no longer spend as much time online, so I can’t create a blog for “personal talk.” Thanks for the nomination, Carolyn, but I can’t do it. Facebook is already set up wonderfully for this type of thing, though, and I’d be happy to participate there. You can pick who your friends are, and let them know as much info as you like, whenever you want. Someone could set up a group on Facebook or something, where Cindy’s members who want to continue feeling the wonderful support from the other members can join it and so they don’t have to feel like they’ve lost their PC friends.

      I am terribly sorry for those of you, who like me, have talked about your pain and frustrations here at the blog, only to hear that people find it really “annoying,” or that they’ve become “allergic” to our topics of discussion. I hope it’s just me—I can be too sensitive about personal things—and I hope others have a thicker skin and do not feel as embarrassed as I do! I know, I know—I just get a bit touchy when someone pours their heart out about their health problems and someone else says it’s a waste of their time!

      There really are some good ideas on both sides of the subject here and some good points made. Regardless of the solution, though, I will no longer feel comfortable sharing here. (I know this gives many a sigh of relief!) I’ll watch what I say from here on out, so other members won’t have to be bothered hearing about my personal life. I will still reply to other’s requests for prayers or help with off-topic matters, though, because I do care about this group of people who feel like family. Someone else will have to tell people that their comments are annoying to others. (Although I’m guessing most have received the message from reading this thread!)

      • @Phaedrakat: I want to jump in here real quick and say that you (Phaedrakat) have been, hands down, one of the BEST things that has happened to this blog and to this community. The level of dedicated support you have offered, both to brand new visitors who come for answers to their polymer clay challenges, as well as to long time members who sometimes need a shoulder to cry on, has been nothing short of AMAZING. You have absolutely nothing to apologize for! Please know that you are loved by many, and I am at the top of that list :-) Everything will work out.

    • @Judy: Judy, I agree with Elizabeth S. I think Silverleaf has a great idea, but like like Carolyn said, we’ll see what Cindy comes up with.

  37. Wow.

    I haven’t had time to get here for a few days so I responded to Cindy above without having read the rest of the responses. I guess I won’t use up space explaining what’s been going on in my life that kept me away.

    Kat, don’t you dare apologize for being annoying…because you’re not…or for wasting anyone’s time because you haven’t. You are the one who jumps in all the time and helps everyone with their questions. If people don’t want to read the posts where you and others tell us what’s happening in your lives, then they should skip by them.

    I’ve been coming here for less than a year. I never felt that there was a clique or that I was butting in or that anyone else thought I was butting in when I posted. I love learning about the other members. That’s why we feel like we have a family here.

    I really dislike Facebook because I have to muddle through nonsense comments, made by people I’ve never heard of, just because they know people that I know. I definitely don’t want to have to go to another site to read messages from the same people who post here.

    I agree with some of the comments above, such as the one that Jocelyn made that reading each message is like unwrapping a gift. She suggested that we put non-clay messages in a different color. I don’t know if that’s possible, but it would be really simple to start of a post with the words OFF TOPIC in caps.

    I really think it would be a mistake to make big changes and add new rules to follow…or to send us to another site so we can “chat.”

    However, I do think it’s important for each of us to protect ourselves by not posting information such as when our homes will be unoccupied, that we live alone, or other information that could put us in jeopardy if someone was able to figure out who we are and where we live. Many of us share our full names and home towns here and some of us have blogs or websites that might allow someone to track us down. My father was a police officer and taught me to be cautious.

    • @Linda K.: Linda great tips to remember (safety-wise), thanks too for mentioning the gift comment…missed that one earlier somehow.

      Kat you have nothing to feel badly about…you are (IMHO) one of those who provides the heart here. In all fairness you always consistently contribute to the blog in a thoughtful, positive way. I admire that you choose to offer so much of your help here, instead of complaining…and you’ve graciously welcomed many newcomers too. Besides, we’re all guilty of the “long post”, I honestly don’t see what all the fuss is about.

    • @Linda K.: I think the reminder to be cautious is excellent. I feel this personally since I am hitting the road in my motorhome … but my daughter and son-in-law are managing the house so no worries.

  38. I guess I need to apologize to everyone too. To those I’ve offended, I’m deeply sorry. I’ll continue to add people and situations to my prayer list, but won’t mention it. Anyone who wants to can ask Cindy for my email address and contact me directly. Just put your name and “from beadsandbeading.com” in the subject line.

  39. OFF TOPIC: Thank you Linda, DJ, and Cindy! That means a lot! I’m just really embarrassed when I think back to the things I’ve said. I know that while I was discussing my problems, certain people were probably rolling their eyes in disgust — annoyed by it. I DO know there are really caring people here, and I really appreciate that. I just forgot about the others who don’t want to bother hearing about other people’s troubles. I do understand their side, too—they ARE here to learn about Polymer Clay, after all. Thanks again you guys, for saying such sweet things!

    Tanya, I just want you to know I appreciate(d?) all of your posts. You always have nice things to say, and your comments help us to get to know you better. I hope that we can continue talking on Facebook, another blog or forum, or designated posts/threads here at the blog—whatever Cindy recommends… I’ll try to contact you by getting you email from Cindy, too…

    ~Kat

    • You are an asset to this Blog and Never, Never apologize for being the carikng person you are! You have complimented me and shared your very positive feedback to many a blog that one of my pieces was spotlighted in. You are one of the ingredients to what makes this blog what it is@Phaedrakat:

      • @Hobokenmary: Thanks, Mary! Thanks to Jocelyn and Judy, as well. You’ve said some really nice things, and it means a lot right now especially with what’s going on. The special ingredients at this blog are all the people, with lots of fun and inspiring things to say. I hope we are able to keep it fun here, while keeping the discussions more clay-related. We are all woMAN — hear us roar! ;D

  40. I just want to say that I don’t really mind the personal stuff so much and am certainly not annoyed by it or whatever – I actually think it’s very sweet that we’ve become such a close-knit community, and I can cope with skimming through lots of “irrelevant” comments as I have a lot of time on my hands. And I’ve made a lot of that type of comment myself!

    But in the end this is a polymer clay resource and Cindy’s livelihood as well as a place for us to connect with each other, so we need to think about how it all looks to new potential members, or to existing members who may be struggling to keep up or find the info they need. We should all be working to help to make this blog as good and useful as possible so Cindy gets more members so she and Doug can afford to take on an assistant and relax a little!

    The comments have just got a bit unbalanced recently (in my opinion) and it’s not anyone’s fault (and no-one needs to feel ashamed and humiliated because up til now no-one has expressed dissatisfaction so how were we to know how other people feel about it?) It’s easy for this kind of thing to snowball so I’m glad we’re discussing it. I love the supportive nature of this blog and feeling that personal connection with you guys, it’s just that we need to make sure that polymer clay is still the focus.

  41. NOT CLAY… but I love hearing about people’s lives and face it, being both artist and people is what makes us what ewe are. I like the idea of just putting an OFF-TOPIC heading, using the @ XXXX to reply, or just genrally starting each posting with a HEADING. That way we know where to look for the answers to our oh-so-important claying queries… and the speed at which some of these are answered is phonomenal – thanks especially to Kat. You’re great. In the UK, there used to be a tv ad which went something like ‘I can’t, but I know a man who can’. You Kat are that person. Many hugs to all,
    WellingtonsMum

    • @Judy: Yep, I like the idea of using a heading before the post, too. It will let people know how to find things they want to read more quickly, and avoid things they don’t want to read or are “allergic to.” I just wanted you to know, however, that I take great offense to being called a MAN. —just kidding! I’m a woMAN! Whooo! LOL ;D Thanks for such a nice compliment… ~Kat

  42. I’m standing next to Cindy, Kat. Other than Doug, you are the best thing that’s happened here. Thank you for all you do so well.

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