Faux Opal Metal Bezel… Mounted on Guitar String [Gallery]

Polymer Clay Faux Opal Bezel“Opals are my
favourite of the
delicate precious stones
and I can’t believe how
realistic your clay opals
look!” ~Katrina-S

As you may have noticed from today’s featured Gallery post, as well as from previous ones (see Hot Pink Zebra Earrings 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 / techniques you would like to see and learn more about.

Polymer Clay Faux Opal Bezel Play It Again, Faux Opal Necklace:So different than my usually large and chunky jewelry, this dainty Faux Opal bezel pendant, encased in UV Resin, sways gently to its own tune… on an up-cycled silk covered guitar string.

You have seen me use unusual materials for making jewelry before, but this guitar string is a first for me. Here’s the story…

My best friend Diane’s teenage son plays Acoustic Guitar and is getting pretty darn good. His instructor suggested he move up to a high quality, silk covered string that produces a richer tone. After replacing a couple strings, Diane noticed the beauty of the wire, and started saving them for me.

When I saw the wire’s lovely shine and its wonderful silky feel, I knew it was perfect for using as a neck wire. There is even a small brass ring which is wired right into one end, which as you can see was the perfect solution for making the clasp.

To keep the look clean and seamless, the other end of the guitar string was formed into a wrapped hook, which fits nicely into the ring on the other end. The total length of the neck wire is 19″ (48 cm), the ideal length for a relaxed fitting choker style necklace.

The brass oval bezel setting is approximately 3/4″ (2 cm) in length and is filled with a polymer clay faux opal technique and encased in a UV Resin. Terry Morris at UltraDome is now carrying these brass bezels as well as the UltraDome Jewelry Glaze Resin.

This necklace is one of a kind and would make a lovely gift for a friend, or for yourself.

Price: $25 (US)If you are interested in purchasing the Play It Again Faux Opal Necklace shown in today’s gallery post, then 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

  1. Anna Sabina, 05 July, 2010

    That’s a beauty. My husband plays the guitar as a hobby and with local musicians. Now that he is retired we are hoping he can spend more time playing. He changes strings about every 3-4 weeks and I have been saving them for a while now. That sounds like a short time for string use but they get to sounding “dead” and if it makes him happy, I get more string wire.
    Anna-Des Moines iowa

  2. carolyn, 05 July, 2010

    Cindy – Did you make the faux opal right in the bezel? BTW: This is a beauty!

  3. Peggy Barnes, 05 July, 2010

    I am having so much trouble with my computer today. I was sure the comment I made very early this morning was posted. Guess it is not just the computer I am having a problem with. As close as I can remember my comment was on the deep luscious color just set this pendant off. Did you use colored buffalo snow or did you still use the alcohol inks like before. I am going to have to check those bezels out. I just purchased the cabezel texture sheet and I can’t wait to try it. I just can’t get over the colors and how beautiful they are. I bet you put some overtime in on the sanding for this one. Great job Cindy and wonderful picture Doug. The dream team does it again and shares it with all of us. Thank you so much.
    Love and Uuuuuuggggs, Peggy
    ps – where are all the bloggers today. You are missing this beautiful opal.

  4. Jocelyn, 05 July, 2010

    You are right, Peggie. Luscious describes that baby perfectly!

  5. pollyanna, 05 July, 2010

    I love the colors on this one,too. Wow as usual !!!!

  6. Terry Morris, 05 July, 2010

    Just wanted to mention that the bezels are available at epoxyjewelry.com and not on UltraDome.com


  7. Jocelyn, 05 July, 2010

    @Terry Morris: Thanks Terry, great link. Bottle tops, the crimped metal ones as the perfect funky bezel. I love it.

    See the gallery at Terry’s link.

  8. Elizabeth S., 05 July, 2010

    So beautiful!! Our guru does it again.

  9. DJ, 05 July, 2010

    This is so pretty, I love the colors and the resin really compliments the faux opal. What a great idea to use the guitar string…kind of romantic to think beautiful music once came from the materials used!

  10. Cindy Lietz, 05 July, 2010

    Hi guys, thanks for the compliments!

    @Anna Sabina: You are so lucky to have such a great resource for strings. I hope my friends boy goes through them that fast! ;-)

    @carolyn: Yes I did. I made it flat and baked it right in there. Then covered it in UV Resin.

    @Peggy Barnes: Thanks! I made is using the alcohol ink color buffalo flakes and there was actually no sanding involved since I used the resin. Even got a nice dome on it.

    @Jocelyn and pollyanna: Thank you girlss!

    @Terry Morris: You are so right! That link actually goes to the article I wrote about the UltraDome so that people could learn more about it. I see that your name goes right to epoxyjewelry.com so anyone interested in getting the bezels and resin can click your name and go right there. The faux opal turned out pretty good in your bezels, didn’t they? The resin really makes the technique look awesome. So glad I found you!

    @Elizabeth S.: It’s in the mail… enjoy! (I was hoping to get to wear this one at least once before it sold, but you were too quick!)

    @DJ: You are so right! It is a romantic notion that the guitar string played lovely melodies before become this pretty neck cord. Hadn’t thought of that, but it is so true!

    @Cheryl Hodges: Thanks. Doug will appreciate the comment on the photography.

  11. Elizabeth S., 06 July, 2010

    @Cindy Lietz from Butterfly Wing Cane Video: I can’t wait to receive this beauty but I do wish you had kept it long enough to enjoy it, too, for a little while. I should have added that there was absolutely no hurry as looking forward to it is half the fun.


  12. Peggy Barnes, 08 July, 2010

    @Cindy Lietz from Butterfly Wing Cane Video: I purchased some of Terry’s bezels, such a good price. Now I just need to feel like using them when they get here. I would like to know if with this new faux opal I assume no sanding no B&B so how did you get your top layer of snow to stay on the clay without the B&B or do you need a top layer with the resin? Am I asking too many questions or do I need to ask for another tute? I would really like to try the no sanding method because sanding is so hard on my hands and wrists even elbow like to join in the pain sometimes. Nobody likes being left out.
    Can you let me know or do we need to take a vote? I vote yes if this is the way we need to go. Thanks again CIndy for another fantastic technique I am eager to learn. Great picture Doug! The two of you go hand in hand just like a dream team should!!
    Uuuuuuggggs, Peggy

  13. Cindy Lietz, 08 July, 2010

    @Peggy Barnes: Those are great questions! I will try and explain but I will have to do a tute in the future because there are a few tricks to getting it right. First clean the bezel with rubbing alcohol so the resin sets properly. Half fill the bezel with some of the mixed up opal clay and still use the B&B to get some extra flakes to stick. You won’t put the thick layer on this time. Make sure there are no gaps between clay and metal or the resin will seep in there and won’t cure. Bake the piece like normal. Then fill with resin and cure. It is definitely faster and just as pretty. Hope that helps!

    *For those of you who haven’t done the faux opal tutorial before, these instructions I just gave Peggy will have ‘too many holes’ in it for you to have much success in making them. I will most likely do a full tutorial on it in the future so stay tuned!

  14. Peggy Barnes, 08 July, 2010

    @Cindy Lietz from Faux Opal Bake and Bond Technique: THANK YOU AND YES THIS HELPS I am going to give this a try but as I said before I am very interested in a tute. I can’t imagine ever saying NO to anything you suggest Cindy. Again THANK YOU. When I get my bezels I will let you know how it goes. Wish me much luck.
    Many Thankful Uuuuuuggggs, Peggy

  15. Tanya L, 09 July, 2010

    @Cindy Lietz from Faux Opal Bake and Bond Technique: Cindy, I’d love a tut on this new way of doing opals too please!

  16. Cheryl Hodges, 05 July, 2010

    Music and jewelry – i love them both! Your opal is beautiful – luscious as Jocelyn says describes it perfectly. The photography is stunning too.

  17. Terry Morris, 05 July, 2010

    Yes they look great that way. Love the iridescence. That is something that probably looks even better in person with the light flashing off it.

  18. carolyn, 05 July, 2010

    @Terry Morris: Is your ‘jewelry resin’ different than your UltraDome UV resin? Is a 36 watt lamp required?

  19. Terry Morris, 06 July, 2010

    Hello Carolyn,

    Both UV resins are the same. I run both sites. The UltraDome site is more an industrial site geared at shops doming larger quantities every day.

    The EpoxyJewelry.com site is aimed at jewelry makers and craft people.

    I recommend at least an 18watt lamp but a 36 is much better.

  20. carolyn, 06 July, 2010

    @Terry Morris: Is your new light open on the bottom also so you just set it over your work?

  21. Terry Morris, 06 July, 2010

    Yes the oven now has an open bottom so you can place it over your work.

    The link was bad due to my poor spelling ;-)

    This one should work.

  22. carolyn, 06 July, 2010

    @Terry Morris: Yes … the link works now.

  23. Phaedrakat, 08 July, 2010

    @Elizabeth S.: Hi there! I missed this comment the first time; that’s so cool your son is a pro. guitarist! No wonder this piece meant so much to you. I hope you enjoy this necklace as much as you said you liked your choker (I’m guessing you will!) It sure looks beautiful…

    @Terry Morris: Funny about your misspell—I had the same trouble with one of your “name links” on an Ultradome post. I emailed Cindy/Doug to fix it, but I wasn’t thinking straight! Of course, this is information we input ourselves! They wrote back saying they fixed that link—but I realize now there must be others (“autofilled” with the misspelled URL.) Did you check your other comments for them? Or I guess they can be dealt with on a case-by-case basis, as people come across the “bad links” little by little… ;~)

  24. Terry Morris, 10 July, 2010

    @Phaedrakat: Yea sorry about the link problems, I am a bit dyslexic

  25. Phaedrakat, 11 July, 2010

    @Terry Morris: No problem! ;D

  26. carolyn, 06 July, 2010

    @Terry Morris: Terry – The link by your name here doesn’t work any more. Did you change something?

  27. Phaedrakat, 06 July, 2010

    Gorgeous piece, Cindy! Did Elizabeth buy it up fast again? If so, I can certainly see why. The guitar strings sound like a fabulous stringing material. Looks beautiful, feels nice & silky, and has a “musical” history. Love it!

    I’m still having severe pain in my neck (I always have severe pain in my back, but my neck usually settles down after a couple days.) I’m going to the doc tomorrow, see what he says…

  28. Peggy Barnes, 06 July, 2010

    @Phaedrakat: I am glad you are going to the Dr. I pray he will have some answers for you. I will also put your name on the prayer chain at church. It was a relief to hear from Silverleaf also. I was sorry to hear she had been ill but at least she is now getting better.

  29. Elizabeth S., 06 July, 2010

    @Phaedrakat: Kat,
    I sure hope the Dr. can identify something to relieve your pain. My prayers go with you. Keep us posted, please.

    Yes, I did buy the opal. It resonated with me for a lot of reasons, primarily its beauty, of course. Also, as I wrote to Cindy, my son is a professional classical/flamenco guitarist and perhaps seeing his instrument represented made it more irresistable.

  30. Peggy Barnes, 06 July, 2010

    oh no I forgot my
    Love and Uuuuuggggs, Peggy

  31. Elizabeth S., 06 July, 2010

    I forgot to add how wonderful it was to hear from Silverleaf. I, too am delighted that she is back with us and on the mend. If you haven’t read her bio, I recommend doing so-such a fascinating multi-talented person.

  32. Tanya L, 07 July, 2010

    Wow, is this piece beautiful! I LOVE opals.. Wanted that tut in my first batch and somehow missed it (after knocking my list way down from ALL of them! LOL.) Can’t wait til pay day next week- it’s at the top of my list. As long as I don’t lose the list in the meantime! Now if only I knew someone who plays quitar..

    @Phaedrakat: I’m praying too that the dr. can do something for you to relieve your pain. Keep hangin’ in there & keep us posted!

    @Silverleaf: Sorry to hear you were in a flair, but glad to hear you’re feeling better.

  33. Phaedrakat, 07 July, 2010

    Thanks everyone for your prayers and thoughts. My doctor wants to see a new MRI, since it’s been awhile. He offered some of the pain relieving things I’ve tried before (epidurals, facet injections, etc.) but they do not relieve the pain long enough for me to make it worthwhile financially. I am still trying to get insurance, and I’ve found that after I recover from those actual procedures, I only get a week or two of relief. So it’s not worth it. I might change my tune if it goes on much longer, but for now I’m going to put my faith in the relaxing possibilities of the new pool and jacuzzi. Besides, I know deep down that I need to have surgery anyway—that’s what my surgeon said was “next” the last time I went to see him. I’m scared to death of that, especially after my last thoracic spine surgery. Still, I know that my neck will settle down to “tolerable” if I’m not so stressed out. So, I’m praying, fighting hard for insurance, and hoping my newly available “water therapy” will get me some relief. Thanks again for thinking of me, and for your prayers! ~Kat

    PS: Does anyone want a my teenage niece to move in with them? THAT would be a stress-reducer!

  34. carolyn, 08 July, 2010

    @Phaedrakat: Have you ever had radio frequency neurolysis? A spine and pain specialist did that on my back after I had the kyphoplasty following the crushing of the L2 vertebra. It gave quite a bit of relief, though I still have some nerve pain that I just try to live with … some days are better than others. Weather has quite an effect and today’s low pressure system has really laid me low.

  35. Tanya L, 08 July, 2010

    @Phaedrakat: Don’t look at me (taking your teenage neice) – I’ve got a 16 yr old son who, I swear, is moodier than my daughter EVER was during her teenage years! Yeesh!

    I did want to tell you that I found a new rub that I used last night before bed. It’s called “blue goo” pain relief gel. Found it at WalMart & figured I’d try it because it has Emu Oil in (along with M.S.M, whatever that is, and Glucosamine). I picked it up because Emu oil is supposed to be excellent at healing muscle & tendon problems. Says it’s good for arthritis, too. I used it on my forearms last night because my arms are actually swollen from the muscles/tendons being inflamed (I’m in a flare again). I can’t believe how much relief I got over night! Course, I haven’t done anything today yet, other than get my coffee & hop on here, so we’ll see. It was only $5, and when in pain you know we’ll try almost anything for some relief! It didn’t relieve the tightness in my shoulders & neck yet but those areas are always a problem. I’ll keep slathering it on & see what happens. Maybe I found a new BFF! :) I’m hoping, ’cause I can’t clay until my arms settle down & I’ve got tons of stuff I wanna try!

    Water therapy is supposed to be awesome! We’ll keep praying & you keep us posted! ~ Tanya

  36. Jocelyn, 08 July, 2010

    Silverleaf! All of your adorable little knitted hedgehogs, from necklace centerpiece, earrings, and stand alones, all send their greetings and wish that you feel better soon! These little guys get more comments from folks than anything else displayed in here these days, so fun! If you folks have time, hit Silverleaf’s links to etsy, etc. She is multi-talented and a sharer. Knits adorable hedgehogs.

    Occasionally, we all have to bite the bullet and go thru a complete medical workup every couple of years. The field changes daily, so it’s important to make sure your Doc’s are on the ball. The neurologist, the endocrinologist, the daily care person, your gynecologist, your mental health support folks, all need to sit around a table together and discuss YOU, primarily how to make you feel better. Biochemically.

    Drug trials are a pain in the butt, but, it’s the only way you’ll know if certain meds work or not. For blocking pain, the main players are Savella, Cymbalta, Libria, Prozac, etc., as those families of chemicals actually pass the blood brain barrier and work on your whole system to relieve pain. Side effects are common, but, you need to try, to know if they work. Sometimes you need high dosages, but, the docs will take you up slowly. Never just stop these meds. Always trickle down.

    Know you are in a different health system over there, but, check out webmd.com. Love how that place works for medical information.

  37. Jocelyn, 08 July, 2010

    Kat, try calling your local state political representatives (congressmen), these folks are vital with solving problems in disability, veterans, etc., and they might know of sponsored programs or grants that would make you eligible for health insurance immediately.

  38. Phaedrakat, 08 July, 2010

    @Jocelyn: You’re right, this is some great advice. It’s hard sometimes to make myself do this sort of thing—I’m so depressed, I start to feel like it’s too much trouble, or I’m not worth it. But having my neck worsen has made me realize I have to press harder for insurance. I can’t wait any longer. I’m in too vulnerable a position with all these medical problems. And paying cash for doctor visits and medications is killing me! Thanks again!

  39. Phaedrakat, 08 July, 2010

    @carolyn: Oh my goodness, I forgot about that one! :( I had it done once for my neck—the first time I had an “outpatient treatment” done for my C-spine. All the other many treatments I had pre-surgery were for my thoracic spine (where my pain was the most severe.) They made me pick just one area at a time to treat (there was a limit as to how often & how much they could do at a time, and I had pain all down my entire spine.) Anyway, I don’t know how I forgot that—it was excruciating! I felt the whole thing while it was going on (you have to be able to feel it so you can tell them when they get to the right spot,) but I kept feeling the pain–even after they did their thing. I did get some relief afterwards, but only for about a month. Not long enough to make it worth going through all that again. In fact, I committed to surgery soon after that, for my thoracic spine. It was either that or get an implanted morphine pump. I’d heard horror stories about both, but eventually chose the surgery.

    I’m sorry to hear about your own pain, Carolyn. Nerve pain is the worst! I have Trigeminal Neuralgia, too–discovered after a root canal. They sent me to an endodontist to redo it (which he did twice,) but the pain kept getting worse. Then he did surgery, peeling back my gums and cutting off the roots—fun stuff like that. But the pain was out-of-this-world, and just kept getting worse (meds didn’t touch it.) Then my endodontist said it might be nerve-related, and to check with a neurologist. Thank goodness! I couldn’t have taken much more of his problem-solving experiments! The Neuro. diagnosed TN, and after about two weeks, the meds he gave me started to work. He worked me up to a dose that finally took away my tooth (and face) pain. Over the years, I’ve tried to go off the meds a couple times, to see if I can do without them. But the pain starts coming back in just a few days. Just the slightest thing touching my face (like my hair!) will cause an electrical shock of pain. So I have the greatest respect for anyone who can live with nerve pain! I’m so sorry that it’s you, though; I hate hearing that you have that type of pain! I sure hope the weather changes, so you can feel better very soon. I’ll say extra prayers for you, Carolyn. You deserve to feel good!
    Thanks so much for your help! ~Kat

    @Tanya L: So you know “what I mean about the teen!” I went through this a little with my step kids, but nowhere near this bad. My precious little niece is gone, and replaced by an evil—I don’t know what! I just keep my distance from her now. I’ve tried everything else, so I guess I have to wait it out. And pray! Thanks for the tip about the new creme. I’ve tried the Blue Emu gel—it’s a little pricey, but feels pretty darn good. I’m definitely going to pick up some of this “Bloo Goo” and give it a try. (Nice price, too!) Thanks again, Tanya! I sure hope your flare up settles down so you can get on with the fun list of things you want to try! :D

    I finally made it into the jacuzzi this morning, and it felt soooo good. It was really sunny out though, so I couldn’t stay in long—I’m sooo white! I didn’t want to add a bad sunburn to my list of boo-boos. Still, the kids were begging me to jump in the pool, so I applied more sunscreen, and tried to give the pool a test lap. It was a little bit cold—I could feel my muscles tightening up again. So I jacuzzi’d some more, then called it quits and went back to bed for a nap. My neck felt a little less “stiff” when I woke up, so maybe this water therapy thing will work. Could be wishful thinking, but I’m going back in the jacuzzi later this evening to try, try again…

    Thanks everyone, for your interest, thoughts, tips, insights, and prayers. You guys are the best! What a wonderful community!

  40. Tanya L, 09 July, 2010

    @Phaedrakat: Yeah, Kat, my baby boy used to be so happy all the time, cracking jokes, goofing around.. Now he’s so miserable it’s like he’s not even the same kid! And when I ask him if he’s grouchy he gets REALLY grouchy, and that’s MY fault for saying something about it! Sometimes I swear I can’t even look at him without him getting an attitude. He doesn’t get away with it, so you think he’d learn. I take his computer, tv, video game and/or cell phone priveleges away. Figure if I don’t get a handle on it now what’s he gonna be like later? I think they eventually become human again one day, so hang in there!

    You’re very welcome for the tip about the Goo.. I hope it works for both of us! :) Hope the jacuzzi helps, too. I know soaking in a hot tub would help when I’m pretty bad, but I can’t get in and out of the tub! LOL!

  41. Phaedrakat, 12 July, 2010

    @Tanya L: I’m so sorry to hear someone has stolen your sweet son! It’s really tough with all the attitude. But you’re right, they will become human again one day. My niece is pretty much rotten to everyone, but she’s got a little extra nastiness just for me. I guess she’s angry about the fact I had “the audacity” to have back problems. I used to be the “fun aunt”, who rolled around on the floor with the kids, took them wherever they wanted to go, spent lots of money on them, etc. I can’t do any of these things anymore, but I still try my best to be “fun”. Even that’s hard when you feel so bad. My nephews are sweet, though, and they still seem to enjoy being around me. They haven’t hit their teens yet, though!

    It’s good that you keep a good handle on your son. I wish my sister was better with my neice (she’s not very consistent.) I sure hope they both make it safely through these turbulent times (and the same goes for us!) Take care, Kat

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