Mirror Image Scrap Cane Natasha Beads

Scrap Cane Natasha BeadsVideo #357: You never know what might appear before your very eyes. Do you see the angel?

Topics Covered In This Video:

  • Answering the age old question of, what to do with the waste end pieces from your polymer clay canes. Making a Scrap Cane Natasha Bead is the perfect solution!
  • Samples of Scrap Cane Natasha Beads all made from canes I made while developing the Easter Lily Cane Tutorial.
  • The magical discovery I found when making a cabochon where the picture of a beautiful angel was revealed inside.
  • Explanation of the Natasha Bead Technique and the other names it is called, like, Mirror Image, Ink Blot and Rorschach Techniques.
  • Quick run through of how to make Scrap Cane Natasha Beads and Pendants… not a full-out tutorial… but you will learn the basics of how this technique is done.
  • My unique method (I think) for making pyramid shaped Natasha Beads.

Question of the Day:

Have you ever made a Natasha Bead before? If so, have you ever tried using a cane to make one?

I look forward to hearing from you.

By the way, if you have a polymer clay question or challenge you’d like me to address in an upcoming video vlog, do post it in the comments below. I’d love to help you find quicker and easier ways to bring up the professionalism in your polymer clay art.

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Looking forward to hearing from you!

Cindy Lietz SignaturePolymer Clay Tutor
  1. pollyanna, 04 March, 2013

    I have made these but with scrap and not a cane. Like the cane better. will have to try it this way. thanks for the ideas.

  2. Kimberly G, 04 March, 2013

    I made these a few months ago but didn’t know they had a name! Cool! I had a ton of fun doing clay…

  3. Freda K, 04 March, 2013

    I’ve made a lot of Natasha beads and love them. I don’t make many canes especially the involved ones, but yours surely do make gorgeous beads. I have trouble cutting right down the middle, but with a little work they are pretty too.

  4. Patricia R, 04 March, 2013

    I have never heard of Natasha beads, but was a great idea. Thanks!

  5. Melodie F, 04 March, 2013

    Just beautiful Cindy! Thanks.

  6. Tonya S, 04 March, 2013

    What a great idea! I am going to try this today! Thanks so much! Love It!

  7. Karonkay C, 04 March, 2013

    Love making Natasha Beads, funny that you just did this… I cleaned out my drawer of scraps a week or so ago and made 36 hearts using this technique. Beautiful.. Never thought about cane ends. Will try it.

  8. Barbara C, 04 March, 2013

    I have made Natasha beads before but I haven’t made them out of leftover canes. This is such a great idea. Thanks so much.

  9. Jinny H, 04 March, 2013

    Thanks for sharing this, have never seen this before but will certainly give this a try.

  10. Diane V, 04 March, 2013

    Those look so beautiful! I can’t believe how straightforward the technique is. Totally do-able.

  11. Pam S, 04 March, 2013

    I’ve not tried doing this with a cane before, they are gorgeous examples. I’ve used flattened canes to make mokume gane with interesting results.

  12. Debs A, 04 March, 2013

    No I haven`t made a Natasha bead before, I’ve never even heard of them before now but I will be having a go now lol

  13. Hope M, 04 March, 2013

    Very beautiful! I’ve made Natasha beads before but never with cane ends. Can’t wait to try it. Thank you!

  14. Sandra J, 04 March, 2013

    Yep I have done this before. I’ll post a pic of how it turned out. See if you can see the picture in the middle. I Love the one with the Woman in it, looks soo cool. Any chance of a demo on how to make the barrette Cindy?

  15. Tantesherry, 05 March, 2013

    hey Sandra I see your dragonfly- too cute :)

    I 2nd your request on a How To of the barrette – with the rivets in stead of glue – a Super way to avoid the heart break and embaresment of a customer returning it … in 2 pieces!!!!

  16. Kel R, 04 March, 2013

    I’ve made natasha beads but not out of cane ends. But I.m going right now to try. Thanks

  17. Catalina L, 04 March, 2013

    This is a reason to make the Easter Lily Cane!! This looks super cool. I, too, haven’t made these before, but I shall try today!!!

  18. Kimberly I, 04 March, 2013

    I love it. Always wanted to try. I’m going to make some this weekend. Will be a nice unique gift for my retreat mates in April. Thank you soo much.

  19. Marcela S, 04 March, 2013

    Loved it! never done with ends of canes!!! thank you.

  20. Pam D, 04 March, 2013

    I love to make Natasha beads, they are always so unique.

  21. Darla D, 04 March, 2013

    I have made them before using the “chop & toss” method with the cane ends. Really liked the idea of the “twist & squish” with the ends to make them! This will be a have to try on my project list! Thanks for sharing!

  22. Tantesherry, 05 March, 2013

    LOL Darla !! —-Twist and Squish —— about spit my coffee out! Thanks for the laugh hon!!

  23. Elaine Faulks, 04 March, 2013

    My granddaughter Natasha and I discovered Natasha beads when I first visited their home in the US about ten years ago.I got her a polymer clay bead making kit. She had never played with PC before and we spent a happy afternoon together. I showed her how to fashion the Natasha beads from the scraps left over. She made a set of earrings and a necklace and when her Dad came home he couldn’t believe that she made them, they were really lovely.

    I call my happy accidents “randoms” and am amazed at some of the images that appear. I have one that looks like a colourful parrot sitting on a branch from an Amazon rain forest. Another one in pink and white has the head of my little dog wearing a hoody! How cool is that?

    Love the Angel CINDY, you must have been thinking very pure thoughts when making this one. It is so good to know that beautiful images appear as if by magic. I will now have to sort through my old canes and make a few ” randoms” especially my failed peacock cane that has been sitting forgotten since I made it. The second attempt turned out brilliant and I made Natasha a pendant and earrings and it was the first attempt at using my UV resin from Terry Morris. All stuff I would NEVER have learnt on my own so a BIG thank you CINDY and keep those pure thoughts going teehee (you can have some naughty ones too) …………cheers xx………….

  24. Tantesherry, 05 March, 2013

    what a sweet story Elaine :) how old was Natasha when you got her the polymer kit? Jason (my nephew) just turned 6

    I’ve probley made over 1000 mirror beads and sold quite a few of them too ;) for .75 cents each — this type of bead holds a lot of fond memories – I still have a ‘tiger’ bead (somewhere) and I remember a ‘darth vader’ and a ‘ballarina’ mirror too — but being able to get out of the house once a week and set up my little card table of beads and such, just down the road from our home with other artist was a Lift to my Spirit—- much like this site is now:)

  25. Elaine Faulks, 06 March, 2013

    Hi Tantesherry,
    Natasha was eight when we played with clay for the first time. She is now 18 and starting at Uni in a few months time. She loves the stuff I make for her as you cannot buy in shop so all her friends ask her where she gets them from. I miss doing my craft shows but hope to start again in the late summer as it is s nice to be with like minded people. I am the only artist doing polymer clay and most people think I paint the beads so I have to go through the story of how they are made! When I start again I will write it all down and enclose a leaflet with every sale……………….cheers……………xx

  26. Andrea C, 04 March, 2013

    Arrrgggh! I guess this means that I will have to make some canes just so that I have cane ends to do this with! Looks wonderful Cindy. Thanks so much for sharing.

  27. Elizabeth K, 04 March, 2013

    Hi Cindy, thanks for this lovely video. Yes I have done some Natasha beads, (but not with cane ends.) they always come out amazing, but yours? are such a twist (pardon the pun) on the original, and so vibrant. will be trying this way. Love seeing you in person.

  28. Ella M, 04 March, 2013

    great lesson, have to try it

  29. Sue F, 05 March, 2013

    Regarding the question of the day… I’ve made Natasha beads once from scrap clay and once from cane pieces, but it’s not the kind of look I appreciate so I haven’t bothered since.

    I do like other techniques that use scrap clay, however… to the extent that I often use up all my scrap clay making the decorative layers of beads and have to use good/new clay for the cores!

  30. Connie T, 05 March, 2013

    Thank you so much Cindy. I’ve made lots of these beads with scrap clay but never with a scrap cane. Going to try some today.

  31. Patt W, 05 March, 2013

    Oh boy! What a wonderful idea! I’m, gonna make some OAK beads- how fun.TY for the tute Cindy- you’re the BEST!!

  32. Dixie Ann, 05 March, 2013

    Great video Cindy, couldn’t come at a better time with all my failed canes (from my former life) this is going to be a bead fest for me. Now that I have crossed the threshold of cane making am so excited to make Natasha beads and “twist and squish”.

  33. Byrd T, 05 March, 2013

    I use canes and cane ends and scraps of clay. Love, love love Natasha beads!

  34. Peggy, 05 March, 2013

    What better way to be inspired but by the angel who appeared in this beautiful creation. You are the best Cindy. Easter Lily and Angel because of you have touched my heart. Thank you.

  35. Jill V., 06 March, 2013

    This may be my favorite thing to do with clay. Love your angel!

  36. Charlene T, 06 March, 2013

    CINDY!!! Thank you for showing Us that!!!! I Love to make them when I have gotten the cuts and folds the right way!!!!I am one of those people that I Learn so much faster if I can see something done verses read or look at book. I Strangely was trying to figure out other then basic beads , or lentil beads with the pounds (yes that’s about 3 pounds at least of scrap clay left over from my stash of craft shows last year:) This opens up some Really cool beads and pendants for my shows this year!!! I will post today or tomorrow what I did with some of my Scrap Thanks to you!!! Hugs Cindy!!

  37. Mags B, 06 March, 2013

    I love Natasha Beads. It’s always a surprise when you slice on open. Thanks for reminding us how great they can be.

  38. Andrea M, 07 March, 2013

    Great idea! I’ve tried it with some scraps and got them in the oven right now =)

  39. Paula C, 07 March, 2013

    Yes, I have made Natasha beads before, but this video helped me take it to a new level. thank you.

  40. Chibi C, 07 March, 2013

    I’ve made Natasha beads before but never with a cane. Thanks for giving me some inspiration! :)

  41. Michelle L, 07 March, 2013

    I’ve never made these before, but now I know what I’ll be doing this weekend . . . Thanks, Cindy!

  42. Shirley R, 08 March, 2013

    I have used pieces of canes but wadded them up with solid left over clay. So this exact technique would be new to me and WILL try it for sure! Thanks Cindy for sharing.

  43. Kay B, 08 March, 2013

    Hi Cindy,
    Never heard of Natasha beads ,I am new to polymer clay but totally addicted and learning sooo much from your wonderful tutorials, will have to try these when I master my canes

  44. Graciela L, 08 March, 2013

    It is really an eye opener what you did with the natasha bead. I am going to try it as soon as possible. Thank you so much for all your tips and lessons.

  45. Dorothy H, 08 March, 2013

    What fun to see this Natasha tutorial. How exciting to see an angel made from an Easter lily. Looks like I pictured the angel on the first Easter morning saying, “He is not here, He is risen”!

  46. Dorothy H, 08 March, 2013

    Forgot to say that I have made Natasha beads before, but only from scraps. Now I will have to make some canes, just so I can make Natasha beads. :)

  47. Laurel S, 08 March, 2013

    Natasha beads are so cool. You can also make a Stroppel cane with the ends.

  48. Jamie Hibbs, 08 March, 2013

    I love love love Natasha beads!!! As I have probably said before I have so much more fun with my scraps than I do on the projects they come from. And Natasha beads are one of my favorites to do. I never made one with a cane but have made lots using cane ends. I always hold my breath when I cut one open and then see the amazing pretty when I open them. I really like the pyramid shape you made in your demo Cindy! It will make a nice change from the usual square or rectangle ones. Thanks for always keeping us thinking new thoughts about older techniques. And of course for showing us lots of new ways to use our clay as well. <3

  49. Cindy Peterson, 08 March, 2013

    I have neverr made this kind of bead, but something I think I can do, love how it is a surprise and that they match. Thanks again. The other Cindy

  50. Jennifer S, 08 March, 2013

    Thank you for sharing. I have never seen this process. Enjoyed it.

  51. Linda K, 08 March, 2013

    I’ve never made a Natasha bead. They just seemed like too many steps for a result that didn’t excite me. But making a Natasha bead from a cane leftover is perfect. Not only don’t you have to do a lot of work, but it’s a much more intricate and beautiful result!

  52. Linda K, 08 March, 2013

    Hi Cindy, It’s Linda K again. The bead that ended up with the winged woman is amazing and beautiful! Did you notice that the lower part of your demonstration bead at about 6:15 on the video looks a bit like Edvard Munch’s “The Scream?” I’ve never? been moved to WANT to make a Natasha bead before. Now I’m feeling the inspiration!

  53. Cindy Lietz, 11 March, 2013

    That’s cool Linda! I hadn’t noticed that Scream Face until I looked back in the video. Of course when I cut it again, it was gone. It is very intriguing what will show up. Glad you feel inspired! :)

  54. Alena B, 09 March, 2013

    I saw the video last night, tried my first bead last night, and I am thrilled. Now I just keep rolling old canes and cutting the miracles open :)

  55. Tina A, 11 March, 2013

    Cindy, thank you. I have not been able to do any clay or craft work since I fell Jan 8th and broke my right elbow and had to have a replacement put in. I was becoming so depressed that I even quit watching your videos because they always make me want to rush to the table, but this one caught my eye and I think I going to give it a slow try ! I was finally able to condition some clay last weekend but this will give me those immediately results I can not get at this point.

    Bonus hubby is going to buy me an electric motor for my pasta machine so I will no have so much stress on my still recovering arm ( doctor said could be 4 months before I can even go back to work)

    Thank you again and blessings,

  56. Tantesherry, 11 March, 2013

    Oh Tina that’s awful
    Speedy Speedy recovery
    thoughts sent your way:)
    Awesome Bonus though !

  57. Dixie Ann, 11 March, 2013

    Tina am so sorry to hear about your elbow being broken. That must have been terribly painful girl. Here’s hoping it mends okay and you can get back to claying. What a great husband to get you a motor for your machine. You are just gonna get things pumped out so fast when you get healed up you won’t know what to tackle next. So you go girl and God bless.

  58. Natalie H, 12 March, 2013

    Hi Cindy I have been using my scrap canes and pieces to make what I called raw shock. Designs … Never new they had a different name …. One of mine looked like a princess’s and one looked like a wolf ….. When I do a vender show, I ask people what do they see in the pendant … You should hear the responses I get . The best one? was a pendant that looked like Moses.

  59. Amanda M, 13 March, 2013

    Outstanding — thank you so much! I have made similar beads — never from scrap cane — your tutorial was the magical refrsher I needed — I just found you today — I will be back!

  60. Jeanne S, 13 March, 2013

    I was inspired by your Natasha bead video and took an 8 yr old cane and beat the hell out of it and made some beautiful beads! :) thanks

  61. Kathleen F, 14 March, 2013

    I have never made a Natasha bead. I have cane? ends that I have been unsure what to do with other than scrap them. I am so excited to see what will become of the cane ends I have been holding onto. Thank you so much for sharing, love your videos.

  62. Jan Womack, 17 March, 2013

    No, I have never made one of these beads before. You can bet I will be doing this. I thank you so much for your great tutorials. You do a wonderful job. The only one I can find online like this. Keep it up.

    Thanks again Jan

  63. Rachelle W, 05 February, 2014

    Cindy & all… First off I adore your cane Natasha beads, looking forward to trying it out. I have a delimma, though. I guest teach an “Art Ability” class for developmentally & physically handicapped adults once a year. Last year we made “Natasha hearts” using various bright colors & the project was amazing. It was so tactile & easy & we all know how excited WE get when we cut into the bead and fit it together…just imagine how it was for them to see the amazing patterns they had created. We’ll, it’s that time again & I honestly don’t know how to top last year. Any ideas out there? I’ll teach 3 classes of 15-20 participants per class. Typically I take their creations home to bake and return the following month. Can’t wait to see what awesome ideas you come up with! Many thanks!

  64. Cindy Lietz, 10 February, 2014

    Hi Rachelle, have you tried doing anything with molds and or cutters? There is some neat ones you could try. Or you could try having them find items to press into the clay to see what kind of textures they can make. It is always interesting to see what different kinds of patterns you can make from items found around the house. Rubbing caulks or mica powders on the surface can bring out the design and make each piece colorful and unique.

    Remember, when you’re teaching people a craft, it is not always about topping the last thing you did… but more about showing people something new and getting them to think differently about the possibilities of a medium. The more simple the idea, the more creative the student can be with the idea. Have fun! Let us know how it goes!

  65. Freda K, 09 February, 2014

    I tried the Stropple cane #2 as a Natasha bead and I love it! It’s even easier than the usual Natasha bead.

  66. Cindy Lietz, 10 February, 2014

    I bet it is Freda! Thanks for sharing!

  67. Linda D, 09 March, 2014

    I’ve never seen anything like this, but it is truely awesome, almost heavenly. I could see so many project from this that my head is just spinning.

  68. Monica C., 23 March, 2014

    Just loved your tutorial on the Natasha Bead. The canes were amazing when it were done, definitely unique. Loved your Angel’s wings as well.
    thank you for your tutorials. Monica

  69. Barbara L, 04 October, 2015

    I just stumbled across your video on making mirror image cane pendants..OMG !
    Amazing !! Just wanted to say thank you, I am now interested in using clay again..
    I have never, ever, been so engrossed in watching anything as I was just now..
    So, thank you !! Your work is gorgeous !
    Have a blessed day ,

  70. Cindy Lietz, 04 October, 2015

    So glad to hear that video was helpful. Thanks for letting me know! I love hearing feedback like this :-)

  71. Dawn Hutto Butts, 07 August, 2016

    I just love this technique!

  72. Louise Traylor, 10 August, 2016

    Thank you Cindy…such a wonderful tutorial. I can’t wait to try this with some of the canes I made that I didn’t like…maybe this is a way to salvage them!
    Again, many thanks.

  73. Cindy Lietz, 12 August, 2016

    You are more than welcome Louise! Have fun with the technique!

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