Polymer Clay Tutorial | Affordable Hammered Metal Bezels [Video]

Hammered Metal BezelVid #152: “If I had
a million guesses I
would have never come up
with roofing material as the
source of this awesome
bezel.” ~Elizabeth-S

Coming up with unique, low-cost and cool looking ways to showcase your polymer clay jewelry projects, isn’t always that easy to do… until now that is!

When I asked about adding a tutorial video to the members library about making hammered metal bezels, the response was very positive, as you can see by the feedback listed below. These comments were originally posted here: Ridiculously Awesome Hammered Metal Bezels for Polymer Jewelry

Yes, Yes, Yes.  Does that count as three votes?  Am always looking for ways to make my pieces more unique and you never fail to give me both inspiration and techniques to do just that!  And it doesn’t hurt in the least that they are always economical. ~Deb-N

I vote yes.  I’ve always liked the look of hammered metal. ~Jill-V

Yes, yes, yes to the Hammered Metal Bezel tut. If April brings those showers we’ll find sunshine and flowers – with you, Cindy! ~Joyce-M

Add another Yes to the list, I am SO glad you’ve added in making the other necessary parts to making jewelry. Thank you so much. ~Ken-H

An absolute yes for the hammered metal bezel!  I’m anxiously waiting! ~Kerri-C

LOL Cindy. You are sooo cute!  These bezels are fabulous and of course we want to learn how to do them.  You and your creativity are so awesome.  We are waiting with baited breath.  (what the heck does that really mean anyway?). LOL ~Laurel-B

Cindy, I’m for anything you want to teach us. Although I wouldn’t normally be likely to use galvanized steel in my jewelry, the hammering makes it look as if it could be sterling. Even if I decide not to use this technique, as Mary said, one thing sets off a creativity spark for something else. ~Linda-K

You know, if I had a million guesses I would have never come up with roofing material as the source of this awesome bezel. Bring it on!!! Can’t wait! ~Elizabeth-S

I vote yes…I can’t believe that is galvanized steel flashing from Home Depot… what a fantastic idea! ~Lupe-M

A “Yes” for me – I’d love to see your method for creating these beauties! I’ll just add flashing to my ever-growing hardware-store list. I really love the rustic look of these bezels. You sure are inventive! ~Phaedrakat

Spectacular! And I think this stuff won’t rust either, so I vote yes! ~Lisa-W

Yes please, Cindy. I love the look of hammered metal – always have since I did a silversmithing course at Teachers’ College 40 years ago. ~Liz-D

How very cool… yes indeed, I’m investigating steampunk right now and I think that may indeed fit very nicely into my studies! ~Melinda-H

Yes Cindy! How did you know that I am venturing into incorporating metals into my jewelry? I just took a private lesson from a jeweler and learned how to use a saw and files and am planning to get this equipment into my workspace as soon as financially possible. I made dangling copper and brass, riveted with silver wire, earrings. My head is bursting with ideas! ~Maria-C

Cindy, like everyone else here, I find your innovation and originality astounding. You keep coming up with these fantastic ideas! It’s a gift. So ‘yes’ from me too, please, to the hammered metal (copper or galvanized steel) bezel for April. Thanks, ~Mary-U

Yes for me too, it looks good! Might be a good excuse for me to order a chasing hammer, since I’ve been wanting one for a while… ;) ~Silverleaf

Absolutely OK with me – I have yet to see a tutorial that doesn’t interest and inform me in some way or another! Thank you so much for being you. ~Susan-B

Yes from me too always look forward to your tuts whatever the subject. ~Carole-H

I vote YES! You are such a talented artist, and the fact that you are so giving in your teaching makes you even more special. So keep it comin’ Girl, I know I always learn something new from every lesson!!! ~Tiffany-M

With such a clear Yes vote, I am happy to say that the Hammered Bezel tutorial has now been filmed and will be posted on Friday April 16, 2010 at the Polymer Clay Library (Vol-023-3).

Supplies & Tools: Video-023-3: Hammered Metal Bezels:

  • Sheet Metal. I like to use galvanized steel flashing, which is a common building supply material you can find at any hardware store. Super cheap… but it ends up looking a lot like Oxidized Silver when hammered. You can also use vent ducting, aluminum flashing, aluminum flashing and even tin cans depending on what your final use will be.
  • Tin snips, aka aviator snips. I will show three examples in the video.
  • Ball Peen Hammer or chasing hammer with ball head on one side.
  • Steel block for hammering on.
  • Regular household hammer and nail.
  • Block of wood that is at least 3/4″ thick.
  • Metal file.
  • Steel wool (optional).
  • Acrylic paint (optional).

The full version of the Vid-023-3 Hammered Metal Bezel video will be posted in the Polymer Clay Members Library on Friday April 16, 2010. But if you would like to see a sneak peek intro clip right now, scroll down the page a bit to the video player below.

Cindy Lietz SignaturePolymer Clay Tutor

Click Video Play Button

Here’s That “Link Below” Referred To at End of the Video
>> Polymer Clay Tutorials <<

The full version of the “Hammered Bezel” preview video shown above, is now available for purchase at the Polymer Clay Library in the Vol-023 Back Issue Package.

Customer Feedback About Membership Value:

Cindy, I’ve been watching your tutorial videos I had ordered just last night, and I had to stop midway to say THANK YOU! I’ve been beading for a few years now, but started with polymer clay only a few days ago. As you can imagine, I’ve been feeling like a babe lost in the woods! But your very detailed explanations and clear, close-up video instructions have taken away my fear of getting started. It’s like I’ve hit a gold mine!!! Thank you so much!!! Your eternal fan. ~Melek-J

The following topics are included in this week’s Hammered Metal Bezel video tutorial:

  • See examples of several different shapes and sizes of metal bezels and examples of how they are used in polymer clay jewelry.
  • Discussion of the supplies and tools needed to create these unique bezels.
  • Learn how to cut the metal into the design of your choice.
  • Tips on how to make the perfect curve or domed shape in your hammered bezels.
  • Find out how to make a hole in your bezel using regular household tools.

The full version of the “Hammered Bezel” preview video shown above, is now available for purchase at the Polymer Clay Library in the Vol-023 Back Issue Package.

  1. Sue F, 13 April, 2010

    Looking forward to the bracelet blanks part… :)

  2. Silverleaf, 13 April, 2010

    I’m catering for my choir formal meal on Friday so I’ll be way to busy to look at the video, but I’m looking forward to seeing it at the weekend maybe. Looks fun!

  3. Katie, 13 April, 2010

    I’m looking forward to watching it. Might have to take a trip to the hardware store while I’m home this weekend.

  4. Ken H, 13 April, 2010

    I’ll watch it Saturday while I’m sanding, and sanding, oh and did I say sanding my attempt at the opals. :)

  5. Elizabeth S., 13 April, 2010

    Here comes one of those interesting conversations at Home Depot—“Good morning, Maam, how may I help you?” “Yes, can you please direct me to the galvanized steel flashing department?” “Of course, right this way. Tell me about your project–are you installing a new roof?” “No, it’s for jewelry, and if you don’t have that please see if you do have aluminum flashing and/or vent ducting, and if those aren’t available I’m sure you have a large variety of suitable tin cans from which I can choose. Right? You do sell tin cans here, right?” (Silence)–“Jewelry,– ok,– follow me, please.” “Oh, and I need about a yard and want the kind that I can hammer the heck out of”. “Uh, ok”—And in the break room later–“Man, I had this crazy lady today———–(sigh)

    Can’t wait!! I’m gonna try to make another opal today (first one didn’t turn out so well) to try and use as the focal for the piece.

  6. Silverleaf, 13 April, 2010

    @Elizabeth S.: That’s so funny! I had the same kind of response when I went into a kitchenware shop recently asking for an escargot tray (to use a forms for hollow lentil beads). I had to explain that I didn’t want to eat snails off it… just cover it in clay and bake it!

  7. Elizabeth S., 13 April, 2010

    @Silverleaf: I’ll bet there was a conversation in that shop after you left about needing to put you in a rubber room. Hilarious!! Ah, what we will do for our art–although just for the record, I never had this type of experience BCL (before Cindy Lietz)! By the way, what are you cooking for your choir dinner?

  8. Silverleaf, 13 April, 2010

    @Elizabeth S.: Yes, I tend to get that reaction wherever I go!! ;)

    The choir dinner has a James Bond 007 theme, and I’m cooking in my favourite Mediterranean style.
    We start with canapés – mini souvlaki with tzatziki, chicken with walnut sauce, smoked mackerel paté on toast, cucumber slices with cream cheese and smoked salmon, cherry tomato and mini mozzarella lollipops, potato cakes with feta and dill, and garlic mushroom crostades.
    Then a choice of my famous chicken with lavender and bacon and cheese (my recipe is at allrecipes.com/Recipe/Lavender-Chicken/Detail.aspx), a fish stew with prawns and fennel and tomatoes, or roasted vegetables with baked eggs and cheese.
    Dessert is chocolate and vanilla terrine, or pear poached in mulled wine.

    We have 43 people coming, but I have 4 kitchen helpers so it won’t be too hectic I hope! I’ve done the cooking for the last 2 years and helped out in the kitchen the year before that as well. I love to cook! :)

  9. Cindy Lietz, 13 April, 2010

    @Silverleaf: mmmmm Sounds yummy Silverleaf. How long is the flight to England from Canada? I like to sing… (though Simon Cowell would say I was pitchy!) What time is the party? LOL

  10. Ken H, 13 April, 2010

    @Cindy Lietz from Ivy Leaf Charm: It’s about 5 hrs transAtlantic from the east coast to europe, so more like 9 or 10 from the west coast

  11. Elizabeth S., 13 April, 2010

    @Silverleaf: My Dear, what a multi-faceted artist you are!! Cindy beat me to it but I was going to say that if I can get a cheap fare across the pond, can I come? I won’t volunteer to sing but I’ll help do the dishes for a sample of the food.

  12. Phaedrakat, 13 April, 2010

    @Silverleaf: You had me drooling! :-)~ Your menu sounds exquisite! You’ve got skilz, girl! I actually CAN sing, so I’d love to hop on a plane. But with my back, I’d have to fly 1st Class to be comfortable enough on a flight that long. Can’t afford that (not to mention, I wasn’t invited!) I imagine 43 guests is plenty, anyway. Best of luck with your dinner! I hope everything goes smoothly. YUM! :~P

  13. carolyn, 13 April, 2010

    @Elizabeth S.: Love your humor!

  14. Carole Holt, 13 April, 2010

    All I’m getting here at B& Q our equivalent to your home depot is a mucky looking lead strip and the answer i got for aluminum was(are you kidding how long do you think that would last before someone nicked it?)So no luck so far for my supplies

  15. Elizabeth S., 13 April, 2010

    @Carole Holt: I’m loving these stories. So funny. We really should think about a way to compile them into a collection.

  16. Cindy Lietz, 13 April, 2010

    Hehehe I love the BCL comment Elizabeth! That’s so funny!!

    I’ve gotten the same type of looks from the employees at Home Depot when looking for wire. I go to the HUGE spools of wire in the electrical department and ask for one or two feet of the bare wire cable. (You know the kind with 4 or 5 wires twisted together.) They look at me strange and ask me what I’m using it for. Only once did one of the older guys say, “I should take some home for my wife. She makes jewelry. Tell me exactly what you do with it.” And of course I go though all the steps of making a hammered bookmark, etc. LOL

    Keep those funny hardware and kitchenware stories coming. I LOVE to see this sort of creative writing here at the blog!!!! It is SO entertaining!

    As a quick side note, I also want to mention to Sue F and others, that because of time constraints, I did not show how to make the bracelet blanks in this video. I just shared them because they are another example of what can be made with this hammered metal technique and materials. Though if you guys are interested, it could become a future tutorial. Let me know…

  17. Maria, 13 April, 2010

    Can’t wait for Friday as always! Question : those heart shaped bezels look a little sharp to me. I’m concerned that they can scratch skin or clothing. I see that a metal file is on the supply list – I still am confused what kind to get – can someone give me the exact name of one I could get at Home Depot? (BTW – the guys at my local Ace Hardware think I’m nuts too :)

  18. Elizabeth S., 13 April, 2010

    @Maria: That does it-we need some kind of support group to help us survive the hardware store experiences. LOL

  19. Cindy Lietz, 13 April, 2010

    @Maria: Actually Maria they are not sharp at all if they are hammered and filed like I show in the video. If you go to homedepot.ca and type in ‘needle files’ in the search box you will see a set of six small metal files for $4. Print the picture and take that with you to any hardware store and they should be able to find an equivalent that will work nicely for you.

  20. Ken H, 13 April, 2010

    We should find a way to videotape one of theses encounters, we could probably win the top prize on Funniest Home Video.

  21. Elizabeth S., 13 April, 2010

    @Ken H: As I read your post I was trying to imagine how the lead-in to the video would go:-“This evening’s entry for the Funniest Home Video is about this very creative (I’ll refraing from calling her eccentric) artist in Canada, and her merry band of followers who will endure any humiliation to learn from her……………

    Somebody got the next sentence??

  22. Phaedrakat, 13 April, 2010

    Who knew Elizabeth S. was such a kook? So funny! I’m no match, but I’ll try to add to your story~

    …..to learn from her. Watch tonight as Phaedrakat, one of the artist’s followers, rolls into the roofing department on the store-provided motorized shopping cart. Check out the look on the clerk’s face as this disabled woman asks for galvanized steel flashing. His eyes travel over the cart’s contents: a can of Varathane, some ceramic tiles in various sizes, drill bits, some little packettes of eyelets, grommets, & O-rings. He looks confused. Why all these “odd” things? The woman has a list in her hand, but when he looks closer, he sees little bits of green, black, and a slightly translucent material under her fingernails — yuk! Is that food? Wait, there’s cat litter, too! Uh-huh. Cat lady!

    When the woman tells him that aluminum will work also, he tries to hide his unease. There’s no way this woman is going to be doing any roofing! The situation overwhelms him, he tries to stifle a chuckle. What’s with the supplies, & the guck under her nails? Building a kitty home, maybe? When the woman asks for files, hammers, and electrical wire, he excuses himself to “go get help”.

    Our cameras follow him into the break room, where he shares the story with his co-workers. They all burst into laughter. Finally, he calms down, and helps the woman find the other items. The woman has seen “the look” before. So she tries to explain about Cindy Lietz, and the quest for inexpensive jewelry-making supplies. He shakes his head in disbelief. He saw the cat litter. She’s nuts!

    Back in the break room, one of the other employees shares another story, from another store. We were able to obtain footage, from the place where another “Lietz incident” occurred. Here’s how it started…..

  23. Elizabeth S., 13 April, 2010

    @Phaedrakat:OMG, I’m dying!! I’ve literally laughed myself into an an asthma fit, but this story is worth not breathing for a few minutes (just kidding-I’m fine–cough cough). Phaedrakat, you rule!!

  24. Phaedrakat, 13 April, 2010

    @Elizabeth S.: You started it! Very funny, Elizabeth! Grab your inhaler — hopefully someone will tell “the rest of the story”… :-D

  25. Phaedrakat, 13 April, 2010

    Cindy, I love this tute — looks so promising, and full of potential! The examples you’ve shown are so cool. Metal adds a little something “extra” to polymer clay. And the idea to take it further, to make bracelet blanks is an awesome idea, as well. I think these bezels are great, since they can be made any size. I can see making little PC charms with them, as well. Can’t wait to try it! I just hope I’m able to find the flashing easily at the home improv. store. (I’ll make sure my hands are clean…) I have everything else I need, luckily. Thanks for your creativity, Cindy!

  26. DJ, 13 April, 2010

    …as he questioned, “What kind of jewelry do you work with – gold, silver?” The woman from another location replied, “Nope, it’s for copper, brass and black anodized steel wire.” The Canadian gentleman tried his best to remain polite, but he quietly found himself checking for a bag of cat litter.

  27. Phaedrakat, 13 April, 2010

    @DJ: ROTFLOL — really! And I’ve got a bad back! ROTF is not good for me…

  28. Elizabeth S., 13 April, 2010

    @DJ: Ok, the inhaler stays on my computer desk. DJ, I’m dying again, but if I reaaly do, I will die laughing. Love it!!!

  29. DJ, 13 April, 2010

    Cindy, this will be so great to learn… I really like the surprise bracelets at the end of the video clip. Definite yes from me to include those metal blanks in a future tutorial.

    @Silverleaf My mouth was watering when I read your menu, wow can you cook!

    @Elizabeth S. and Phaedrakat LOL You are both hilarious! Thanks for the laugh today!!

  30. Claycass, 13 April, 2010

    So I need to run to Home Depot for the galvanized steel sheets? That’s great! Cindy thanks for thinking outside the box.

  31. Carolyn F, 13 April, 2010

    This blog is getting tooooooo funny! Take another look at Cindy’s photo at the top … can you see that gleam in her eye and the snicker around her mouth?! Way to go, all of you. I don’t laugh much, but this blog string has really had me going.

    Cindy, seriously, a yes for me on you teaching us how to make our own bracelet blanks!

  32. Phaedrakat, 13 April, 2010

    @carolyn: You’re right! She does have a little gleam in her eye. It’s almost as if she put out a bulletin to the hardware stores — around the world! She told them, “Watch this! I can make these people ask you for anything…” No wonder they look at us like that… ;-0

    Wait ’til next week, when she tells us we need specialty garden center items for our Johnny Jump Up cane…

    Or better yet, she’ll have us ask for something that doesn’t even exist! We’ll be saying, “You know, it’s a Whatzigornial! A common tool used for mixing small quantities of cement. We’re going to use it for mixing clay colors, though. Cindy Lietz told us…” at which point we notice the clerk has burst into laughter!

    and glances at our cart, checking for cat litter…

  33. Elizabeth S., 13 April, 2010


    I will never look at that photo again the same way. You do realize however, that with your post, in addition to my needing another puff from my inhaler in reading it, you are contributing to the PMMLUICB (Phaedrakat Makes Me Laugh Until I Can’t Breathe) syndrome. (Hopefully you read the follow up from her to your post). For those of you who breathe normally I’m sure this is no big deal, but personally, I’m not sure I want to encourage her.

    Thanks everyone for a wonderful day of laughter, and to think I started the day just wanting to tell Cindy how much I am looking forward to another amazing tut.

    Hugs to all,
    Elizabeth S.

  34. Cindy Lietz, 13 April, 2010


    Polymer Clay Projects

  35. Joyce M, 13 April, 2010

    A day of laughter, thanks to all of you, the starter and those who added on, great imaginations all. A tut on the bracelets would be great so I vote yes.

  36. Kat, 13 April, 2010

    Elizabeth, your mood was infective, and made me have a happy day! Thanks everyone who participated, too. This was fun! :) And thanks, Cindy, for the fabulous projects and ideas. “Meeeowww!”

    I promise, I’m not really a cat lady. Even though our last unfixed female just had 2 kittens. That brings us up to 5 cats in the house right now, but the kittens will be going to new homes after the 8 weeks are up. Their mom will have her spay appointment reinstated (the one scheduled early March. Except the day before, I felt her belly and said “uh-oh, too late!”) Actually, the mom is the peach-colored kitty in my gravatar picture (that’s an old pic; she’s 2+ yrs old now.) I’ll post kitten pictures as soon as I get my camera working right. I’ll post a link when it’s done. And just because I want to show pictures of the kittens, doesn’t mean I’m a cat lady… ;~D

  37. Melinda Herron, 14 April, 2010

    Wow, yesterday was a eventful day, sorry I missed it! You guys are fabulous! The tut looks great. Can’t wait!

  38. Peggy Barnes, 14 April, 2010

    Elizabeth you put a smile on my face and I haven’t been feeling well at all today so thank you for that cute story. You are so right I can hear everyone talking about the silly jewelry people. Who let them out of the locked room. But it won’t keep me from asking. I love to see their faces when you ask for washers or flashing, wire it is all so funny to see their face. Makes going to the hardware store so much fun. I am looking forward to yet another great tute. So many possibilities.
    Thanks again Cindy, Sending Uuuuggs to all, Peggy

  39. Cindy Lietz, 14 April, 2010

    LMAO!!! Which was good cuz I could use a smaller A! Just wait till I send you all to the Fishing Department… for fishing line, spoons, swivels and heat cured lure paint! ;-) *mischievous grin from ear to ear*

    @Peggy: Please get better soon. You don’t deserve to be feeling under the weather all the time. I’m at least glad to hear these cute stories here at the blog are at least putting a smile on your face.

  40. Elizabeth S., 14 April, 2010

    @Cindy Lietz from Turquoise Polymer Clay Jewelry, Catalina:
    You just have to crank our humiliation up a notch, don’t you? The FISHING DEPARTMENT??? They don’t have a sports department at Home Depot, Cindy Dear, at least not at mine. That means we have to do this all over again SOMEWHERE ELSE! I swear-the first time you decide we need to add fresh-from-the-cow fertilizer to clay for some reason, I’m outa here. *look of fear wondering about out future assignments*

  41. carolyn, 14 April, 2010

    @Elizabeth S.: Well – buffalo chips were used for heating. If our ovens go out … Nooooooooooooo!

  42. Elizabeth S., 14 April, 2010

    You may be onto something there-buffalo chips for baking or you know how big Cindy is on faux projects. SHHH! Let’s not give her any ideas.

  43. Susan B, 14 April, 2010

    @Cindy…had to look up LMAO and I started laughing when I saw what the “A” refers to!

    @All: Recently I have been too busy to keep up with this fabulous blog but have just caught up and was laughing out loud and now have a smile on my face — very enjoyable and so true. If you lot think you have a difficult time you should hear me trying to translate these things into Italian to the guys in my local hardware shop. I have noticed just recently that when they see me coming the staff behind the counter all appear to be incredibly busy….I wonder why!

  44. carolyn, 14 April, 2010

    @Susan B: Wear a fancy dress and high heels when you go to the fishing store next! Oh, and be sure to wear some of your jewelry. When they don’t believe the things you want you just show them what you can do with their fishing tackle!

    Oh, how I love Italy. I went as a 21 year old and again as a 60+. At that rate I guess I’ll be a hundred before I get to return! No, I take that back. My son and I drove over the Stilfsejach Pass when I was 50+. Now, maybe there is a chance that I will return!

  45. carolyn, 14 April, 2010

    @Susan B: That 60+ trip was a 7 weeks motorhome trip that my dear departed husband and I took just before he became terminally ill. I am so thankful that I have those memories!

  46. Elizabeth S., 14 April, 2010

    @Susan B:
    You poor folks who have to translate these requests and reasons for them into another language get double points in my book. It has to be so difficult especially when you get the “we’re too busy to help you because we think you’re a bit nuts” look. Like I said to Silverleaf yesterday, what we will do for our art.

  47. pollyanna, 14 April, 2010

    You guys are too much!!!!! I hope we can be selective about which projecst she gets us into……lol.

  48. Lawrence, 14 April, 2010

    Oh sure, make it difficult for me and probably get me barred from Home Depot as I am sure Cindy and I go to the same local store ;-)
    My sporting goods store has already labeled me a nut when I tried to explain that duck decoy cord is a great replacement for buna cord in making jewelry.

  49. Ken H, 15 April, 2010

    @Lawrence: Don’t worry I’ve got you back man, if I’m correct, the cord Lawrence is referring to is used to retreive the duck lures after they’ve been floated on whatever body of water the hunter has been at, it doesn’t attract the ducks itself. It makes sense though, a rubberized cord instead of rope for something that’s supposed to be used in and around water.

  50. Peggy Barnes, 16 April, 2010

    @Lawrence: Lawrence Thank you for the idea of the duck decoy cord idea. I use a lot of buna cord even with other types of beads besides polymer. Shhhhhhhhhhhh yes I do make other kinds of jewelry but polymer is my favorite by far. Thank you again I will be checking a store we have by us soon.
    Many Uuuuuuuuuugggs, Peggy

  51. Peggy Barnes, 22 August, 2010

    @Lawrence: Thank you for the suggestion on the duck decoy cord. It is a much higher quality than the buna and a better savings. Got it on Ebay from a gentleman who has sold over I think it was 24 thousand and has a 100% rating, pretty sure trust worthy
    Thanks again.

  52. carolyn, 22 August, 2010

    @Peggy Barnes: Is this what’s called Quick Fix or is it the braided polyester or quick rig or hunters cord?

  53. Brenda, 22 August, 2010

    @carolyn: It is called PC Decoy Duck Cord. The only place I could find it in 500ft roll was Bass Pro Shop. If you look at some of my necklaces you will see what it looks like. I hope that helps :)

  54. carolyn, 22 August, 2010

    @Brenda: Like your Green Magnolia? What do you use for cord ends?

  55. carolyn, 22 August, 2010

    @Brenda: Red Head? They have it 200′ or 500′ now.

  56. Elizabeth S., 14 April, 2010

    Oh Lawrence, Lawrence,

    How sorry I am for you. To actually share a Home Depot with Cindy is surely more than the average human should have to bear. My deepest sympathy and I send my most fervent hope for your creative survival given your circumstances.

    As for the duck decoy cord vs. buna cord dilemna, Dude, you are on your own. My sympathy does have limits (although in this case it could go further if I knew what the heck you were talking about). Ah, but I digress. Please, please, those of you who share his passion for duck decoy cord, rally around your brother, Lawrence. I’m certain that there are not multitudes of you who find joy in stringing beads on stuff that is supposed to attract ducks, but even if there is one more on the planet, Lawrence needs you now. Come forward and be counted.

  57. Lawrence, 15 April, 2010

    @Elizabeth S.: Any serious clayer who has taken the time to read any of Donna Kato’s brilliant books should be aware that “buna” is a rubberized cord available in various sizes and colours used for wearable vessels or pendants. Kathleen Dustin also uses the cord for her exquisite polymer purses. In the lightness of the moment I am deeply sorry I did not take the time to explain this in detail as I assumed, incorrectly, that most of you would know this.
    Thanks Ken as you were right on the mark about the duck decoy cord. Some ingenious polymer artists discovered that the decoy cord is almost the same thing but stronger,resistant to UV rays and much less expensive to use but only comes in black and a couple of sizes.

  58. Cindy Lietz, 15 April, 2010

    Wow this thread has gone all over the place hasn’t it? Glad to see things are all good in the house! :-)

    @Susan B: I would love to come to Italy and visit you some day! Doug has been there and he says it is very beautiful. Make sure to visit me if you’re ever in Vancouver!

    @Lawrence: Have you found a local place where you can get that Duck Decoy Cording at? I’d love to get some.

  59. Linda K., 10 May, 2010

    @Elizabeth S.: I’m just reading this blog again, and it’s even funnier when you read it from start to finish.

    Lawrence, I’m here to tell them that you’re right about the duck decoy cord!! I was online last night trying to find sources for buna cord and I was getting more and more confused about the kind of buna cord I should buy. Who knew that there were two kinds and that the Buna-N cord (cheaper) can dry up and disintegrate from sunlight and heat, but that Buna-V (more expensive) lasts much longer.

    Somehow I ended up at Glass Attic (love that site) and read what they have to say about Buna. There was a lot of information there about using duck decoy cord because it is MUCH less expensive. You can buy RedHead PVC Decoy Cord in a roll of 200 feet for $6.99 online at Bass Pro Shops…”This non-braided PVC solid cord is very flexible, durable, and stretchable. Resists brittling, rotting, and cracking.” The only downside that I can see is that it only comes in one size, about 3/16 inch diameter.

  60. Phaedrakat, 15 April, 2010

    Wow, everyone’s hilarious! It appears we’ve all got stories about how far we’ll go for our craft. I’ll just say this up front. I’m not touchin’ the cow patties.

    When I lived in the Middle East, I hadn’t discovered jewelry making or polymer clay yet. Just sewing and general crafts. I did get strange looks in stores just for being a Westerner, and looking for certain toiletry or cooking items. The storekeepers didn’t hide from me, luckily! I can only imagine if I’d been a clayer at the time, though. Poor Susan B! Well, Italy isn’t Kuwait, but the language difference is an obstacle for sure! Speaking of Italy, I had an evening in Naples once. I wish it had been longer! I got to travel to much of Europe, but I regret that I never got to see Italy-proper…

    Elizabeth, I fear you’ve been traumatized by the home stores. Let Lawrence look for his duck decoy cord in peace. (Well, maybe, let’s address that later.) Sweetie, I’m worried for you…

    ….Actually, I’m worried you’re making me LMAO (and that’s quite a feat!) You’re so funny. And here I thought you were just a sweet, mild-mannered clayer. Now here you are bustin’ out with the comedy routines! My Polymer Clay Tutor blog may never feel the same! Of course, it’s always been fun around here. But now I may never know when to be serious, and when it’s time to PLAY! Whoooppie! I like it!

  61. Susan B, 15 April, 2010

    @All: I would just like to say that if any one of you manage to get to Florence (Italy) I would be only too delighted to meet up…I could even introduce you to the guys at my local hardware shop!

  62. Elizabeth S., 15 April, 2010

    Whoops. Should have stopped while I was ahead. In the spirit of trying to come up with a humerous reply to your post, I obviously insulted you and for this I apologize. I, too assumed that just about everone (including me by the way) knows what buna cord is—I was just trying to be funny, nothing more. Again, my apologies.

  63. Phaedrakat, 15 April, 2010

    @Elizabeth S.: Oh, Elizabeth! I feel bad — I was going along with it, too. I even looked up the duck decoy cord before I responded, and thought it really does look cool, and would make a good sub. for buna cord. But I was too tired to make a detailed response for Lawrence, so I thought I’d wait and do later today, after I had some sleep (it was 2:30 in the AM.) That’s why I only left a comment for you. I knew you were just being funny. I’m sooooo sorry that this happened!

    Lawrence, forgive me for mentioning you and the duck cord. My apologies if you were insulted by my comment. And please don’t be mad at Elizabeth. She was “high” in her new role as Comedienne Extraordinaire. 8~) She’s a real sweetie, and meant no harm. [I still love you, Elizabeth! ;-) ] Thanks for the duck decoy cord tip, BTW. It looks promising…

  64. Elizabeth S., 15 April, 2010

    @Phaedrakat: You are one of the most hysterically funny, kind and caring people I have ever encountered. I am blessed to have you as a “Cindy friend”. Thanks for your recognition that I meant no harm.


  65. Phaedrakat, 15 April, 2010

    @Elizabeth S.: Thank you! I’m so happy that you’re MY Cindy-friend! I just wanted you to know I felt for you. Of course I understood you meant no harm — it seemed pretty clear after reading the thread. The home store “theme” and the looks we get when we ask for ludicrous items, it all begged for comedy. I had no doubt you were joking around. Anyway, I sure hope this hasn’t put a damper on your future comedy routines! LOL

  66. DJ, 15 April, 2010

    From cats, to fish, then ducks!! There must be something really wrong with me, I found myself actually looking forward to the fishing department assignment. ;0)

  67. Phaedrakat, 15 April, 2010

    @DJ: A glutton for punishment! Loving those “she’s nuts” stares…

  68. DJ, 15 April, 2010

    Oh, I forgot – cows too!!

  69. Squiddy, 16 April, 2010

    You bashful embarrassable folks should all come Down Under to me – I work at the race course, so if Cindy wants us to use cow patties, I will be happy to deviate from her instructions slightly – as we all do -, and bring out huge barrels of horse patties to share. Further more, the Duck Shooting Season starts 2nd May and I live very close to many lakes, so plenty of opportunity to hitch your skirts slightly as the guys head out, to acquire a bit of their decoy cord. I am sooo fortunate I don’t have to brave the “bloke” stores if I don’t want to – I just wander in to our garage and raid my partner’s supplies (heat gun, gas welders, air gun, compressor, sheet-metals, electric grinder, hammers, safety glasses etc etc etc). I retrieved my Dremel from out there, and my soldering iron recently, lent him my binoculars in exchange… Oh, and Cindy, if you want us to start using fishing tackle, he has all that too, including a motorised Kontiki, so if he hasn’t got enough, we can send that out to sea to tangle with and bring back other people’s lines to chop bits off. (Never mind keeping the fish – unless you have some ideas about their skeletons as framework for PC mobiles, their scales instead of buffalo snow?) Actually, I wonder if the fins coated in TLS would come up well…. anyone already done that? I’ve been watching MasterChef lately, and each advert break says the chefs get their stuff from a supermarket. and if Silverleaf can’t get here to help out, we have 2 KFCs, 3 MacDonalds in town and many many fish & chip shops, so no-one would starve while you crafted here. Plenty of motels means plenty of ovens too – for cooking PC, not food :-)

  70. Phaedrakat, 16 April, 2010

    @Squiddy: Lucky you, having the use of so many cool gadgets right there in the garage. I love your attitude, just distract this guy, snag another’s decoy cord, and retrieve fishing tackle from the water! LOL Great ideas, but I don’t know about the TLS covered fins. Or using scales vs. Buffalo snow in Faux Opals. There’s just something fishy about it… (get it – fishy?)

    Yeah, I know. Pretty bad, eh? Anyway, funny stuff coming from you though, Squiddy! I would love to visit your place “Down Under”– I never made it there during my travels. Sounds like a perfectly wonderful place to meet up, clay, & practice our supply discovery and retrieving skills! If Silverleaf would come & cook, it would be heaven!

    I’m not sure if you’re kidding or not, but the time stamp always shows “Cindy time” — her local time in Canada (“Pacific” time in the US.) The thread did start 3 days prior. It’s the original “teaser” post Cindy wrote days ago, showing the preview video for this tute. Cindy links to this post from the actual tutorial, instead of starting a new one, leaving the thread about it intact. Sorry for the explanation if you already knew! I explained this to Elizabeth K. a couple weeks ago (re the Silver Spoon tute post/preview video.)

    BTW, I’ve been doing lots of laughing, but the A is still there. I guess I need to ROTF more!

  71. Squiddy, 16 April, 2010

    Nearly forgot – if you’re all LMAOROFLOLling, you won’t need kitty litter ‘cos you won’t have any A left to litter from. Now to heat up the oven, roll out the pasta machine and get some greebies under my fingernails before bedtime. Just noticed this thread thinks it’s 1.57 am today – it’s 9.21pm (Friday) here and your newsletters turn up around 8 pm every Friday night ie an hour ago, whereas these threads started 3 days ago!

  72. Elizabeth S., 16 April, 2010

    @Squiddy:Your post has me LMAO again! Thanks for adding to this crazy frivolity!

  73. Susan B, 16 April, 2010

    @Cindy: Great tut which has my mind buzzing with ideas! Plus you make it look so simple. I would just like to add a vote for the bracelet blanks which look exciting and although I have successfully made bangles using only polymer clay and think the possibility of actually building a design on a flat base which become part of the bracelet looks full of possibilities.

  74. carolyn, 16 April, 2010

    @Susan B: Do you reinforce your bangles in some way? Are they a total circle or the cuff type that Cindy showed?

  75. Catalina, 16 April, 2010

    Holy Cow! You guys are too much! I missed this thread and just reviewed it and I’m LMAO, ROFL!! Maybe it is a good thing we live all over the globe. If we all got together we could be put away for a long, long time! LOL!! It might not be too bad either, as long as we had polymer clay to play with!! And having Silverleaf cooking for us!! I guess you can expect this to happen when the creative juices are flowing. :)

  76. Elizabeth S., 16 April, 2010

    @Catalina: You’re probably right about being together in one place. The laughter would probably set off some seismic event that would change the nature of the universe. LOL. Ah, but it would be fun even for just a little while–sigh.

  77. Susan B, 16 April, 2010

    @Carolyn: I don’t reinforce my bangles and they are a complete circle because I use a drinks can as a base and slide the bangle off once it has been cured. I like the idea of the cuff type because I think it would be easier to control the shape and design by using a base which becomes part of the finished item. I love making them because they can be worn as soon as the sanding and buffing has been done!

  78. carolyn, 16 April, 2010

    @Susan B: What do you do where the two ends of the clay join to form the circle.

  79. Elizabeth S., 16 April, 2010

    Wow Cindy,

    I loved this tut! So many possibilities! thank you so much!!!

  80. Susan B, 16 April, 2010

    @Carolyn: I start with a snake of clay, wrap this around the drinks can, cut both ends at a 45° angle and merge them together. Some I have left as round snakes, some I have flattened and others I have shaped into multi-faceted bangles. On some I have used cane slices but I found quite a good effect can be obtained by rolling my scrap clay into a log and twisting it. This gives great-looking diagonal stripes on the bangles! I find they are almost as contagious as making lentil beads.

  81. carolyn, 16 April, 2010

    @Susan B: Thanks for the info. I thought maybe the angle cut was the way to go. That seems stronger somehow.

  82. carolyn, 16 April, 2010

    @Susan B: Why does it seem that everyone has so much ‘scrap’ clay. My scrap container has about 1/4 tsp. of clay in it!

  83. pollyanna, 16 April, 2010

    Love this idea. Looks like even I can do it.
    Thanks for the ideas, Cindy.

  84. Brenda, 16 April, 2010

    Ya know a while back I purchased a kit to make Metal Bezels, But the metal was too soft. My attempt turned out cheap looking. The G-kids go home this weekend and I will get to play again.. Love the tut Cindy :)

  85. Susan B, 16 April, 2010

    @Carolyn: my “scrap” comes from canes that I am not happy with, cane ends that I play with for a bit and then “scrap” and what is left from fabric sheets once I have cut out my shapes for disc beads. The amount I have increases and decreases very quickly but I do always seem to have some hanging around! I admire the good use you must make of almost all of your clay to have such a small amount of “scrap” in your container.

  86. Peggy Barnes, 16 April, 2010

    WOW finally got a chance to watch the video and I loved it. Also look forward to learning more about the bracelets. Always looking for more ways to make a new bracelet. I have purchased the bracelet blanks you can get at ebay and covered them with clay. You have to round the edges and sand them down but much fun to work with. Thank you again Cindy and Doug for another great tute. Things just keep getting better and better every Friday.
    Uuuuuuuuuuuuuuugggs, Peggy

  87. Elizabeth K, 18 April, 2010

    Hi well at last I have come to the end of the comments on this thread. you gals are so funny, I was laughing from start to finish so many commeidenes around here.so glad I came in and didnt miss it all.
    Yes I’ve had that experience when in the hardware store.
    Lady, what did you want those O rings for really, surely you dont mean that.ah. but they dont know us do they. I had to pull out my Makins Extruder before they were convinced, and after a step back thinking I might have a fancy weapon there, well it must be her age poor thing, carting around that weird gadget, LOL
    We have started a whole new trade for the hardware store, and all those other places Cindy wants to send us, I just love going there and a friend and I spent over 2hrs once there and didnt know where the time went.
    These men don’t have the priority to it do they. I havent started on the flashing stuff yet, but when I go, well ! Love the idea of the (faux buna cord) the duck cord. Well ,well, now I have to find the nearest fishing tackle shop, as it will be a lot cheaper than the buna cord I’m sure, so thanks for that tip. dont think I will try Squiddy’s way ,might get duck shot pellets in the you know where while bending over trying to retreive. or carted off to the police station as a theiving duck cord stealer, what would they put on the charge sheet??? Wow the possiblites, no, where is the nearest tackle shop. Ah, may even meet some nice gentleman instead of having to use” Match.Com”
    No, just kidding, dont want one, unless he”s a mad polyclayer like me wouldnt have time for anything else, having too great a time here with you” Mad” lot.
    Phaedratcat, love the sound of all that food, fabulous, wish I was nearer, I’d come invited or not. you could start a cooking website on the side for us all.Nice recipes.
    Talking of that I’m with Squiddy, plenty of places Down Under to have a Poly Retreat, Come to Aus Cindy please !!! ( I went to one in 05 in Canberra, in Aus) there is even a Mc Donalds, that would do for a work shop, he he. Squiddy where are you? have I met you? I am in Mackay and feel isolated as far as polyclay, so Cindy’s Tutorials and the newsletters are a treat to me.
    So in signing off, I am imaging if we were all in the same room at a reatreat, what a hilarious place it would be, so thanks for the laughs
    “YOU’VE MADE MY DAY ” as we say.
    Elizabeth K. XXXXXXXXXXX

  88. Cheryl H, 10 May, 2010

    I bought myself a pair of aviation snips from Home depot but returned it because it did not feel comfortable in my hands. My wrists trouble me a lot. I was watching your video again and the little red one you use seems smaller than the one I have and seems to fit in your hand. I don’t think I’ve seen it. What make is it? Maybe if I knew the name it would be easier finding it

  89. Cindy Lietz, 10 May, 2010

    @Cheryl H: I am sorry Cheryl but my red handled snips have no markings on them whatsoever and we got them so long ago we no longer have the packaging. I found some metal shears online at contenti.com and at beaducation.com that may work for you. Maybe if you take a piece of metal around with you to the stores and ask if you can try the shears out, you will be able to find a pair that works for you? Sorry to not be of more help.

  90. brenda, 02 June, 2010

    @Cindy: You mention weld bond or some other type glue for glueing the pieces on the bezels. Can you specify what kind? I am having a hard time keeping the polymer clay on the metal without wiring it on. Thanks

  91. brenda, 02 June, 2010

    Nevermind.. I figured it out… Hubby is picking me up some today :)

  92. Brenda, 10 May, 2010

    @Cheryl H: Hi Cheryl, I use a pair of regular scissors. They are sharp and cut right through the Aluminum. Like the plastic orange handled kind you find in the fabric store. Mine are blue handled. I find the tin snips hard to use as well. I bought them though. Three in a pack, one pair cuts to the left, one to the right and the other straight. My brother owns his own siding company. I told him that I needed some sheet metal. He said that he would send me a whole roll. LOL I told him NO thats like $79. a roll and way too much to work with. Try the scissors.

  93. edie, 22 May, 2010

    If anyone finds a brand name of the snips similar to the smaller red snips that Cindy uses,*please* post. The aviation snips are too heavy for my hands and wrists.I tried my Tim Holtz Tonic scissors and they cut my craft weight metal sheets (like I get from Ten Seconds Studios) but won’t easily cut flashing weight aluminum.

    Also, I wish someone would start a list of what tools they use for their jewelry quality work and what they use for their coarser pre-work – like a basic hardware hammar for prelim work before using my good chasing hammar, and hardware pliers for the work that’s likely to damage my “good” jewelry pliers. Things like that. I hope that makes sense!


  94. Brenda, 22 May, 2010

    @edie: They hurt my hands too. I Purchased a really good pair of regular scissors. I found that they cut through the Galvanised Aluminium. I am taking the others back too.

  95. carolyn, 24 May, 2010

    @edie: Sounds like you’ve covered the garage tools vs. jewelry. I can’t think of anything else where I use garage prior to jewelry tools.

  96. Brenda, 22 August, 2010

    I use Cindies technique with the wire ends. I think I post a picture with the link on Cindy’s FB page. Yes it is RedHead :)

  97. Phaedrakat, 22 August, 2010

    I really do need to head into a fishing shop (whatever their called, I know my stuff! — ?) Besides getting some of this amazing duck cord, I also want to try some of those cool crimps/fishing sleeves Cindy uses. They look really nice on both the beautiful Faux Agate bracelet and the Faux Raku New Orbits Necklace.

    I’m so happy to see comments here, bringing me back to this “famous” thread — Elizabeth S.’s hardware-store comedy routine and Silverleaf’s yummy recipes…

  98. Cindy Lietz, 22 August, 2010

    @Phaedrakat: BTW, they’re called Sporting Goods Stores or Tackle Shops. I know cuz I spent plenty of time sitting in them as a kid while Dad told his fishing stories! This thread brings back happy memories for me too! :-)

  99. Loretta Carstensen, 31 December, 2010

    What a way to be entertained. Thanks everyone for the laughs! Happy New Year!

  100. Carol T, 01 April, 2011

    Cindy, I scanned comments, etc. on the website for an answer before bothering you… where is a good link to purchase bezels? I’ve done searches, checked local craft stores and have not had any success. Any suggestions? I found one and made a beautiful pendant with your shaded rose cane for a friend’s birthday.. Thank you!!

  101. Lawrence, 01 April, 2011

    @Carol T: Carol, the reference is made in the July 5/2010 post. Check out Terry Morris at epoxyjewelry.com for the bezels.

  102. Phaedrakat, 05 April, 2011

    @Carol T: Hi Carol, Lawrence is right…Terry Morris has a good selection, and it continues to grow! Katie Hacker recently left a comment letting us know where we can find her fabulous Katiedid’s Bezels. Remember Cindy’s fantastic video tute on
    Katiedid’s Bezels/Faux Opal technique?

    I haven’t checked recently, but there may also be some info about where to find cool bezels on the post for Cindy’s Filling Bezels Tutorial.

    Good luck, and happy claying! ~Kat

  103. Pam E, 09 January, 2012

    Just found this site and it is fantastic.

    However, using galvanized steel for jewelry is not a wise idea. Galvanized Steel is impregnated with Zinc to help stop rust – and trying to remove the outer layer of Zinc won’t get rid of it. It’s still in the metal, and therefore can “leach” into the skin and cause health issues.

    Also, if you heat the metal, to make it soft enough to bend, you can produce toxic fumes that can be harmful to one’s health.

    I didn’t read all the comments, so this might have been addressed already. Just be careful when you use non jewelry items. They can be dangerous.


  104. Cindy Lietz, 09 January, 2012

    Hi Pam, thank you for bringing this to my attention. I wasn’t aware of any health issues in regard galvanized metal being used for jewelry. In fact I did a fairly good search and could only find references to the dangers of heating galvanized metals (like you referred to) and to long term storage of water in galvanized tanks, but nothing on any sort of leaching through skin

    That being said, it is always better to be safe than sorry, so to deal with this you could either seal the metal with a varnish, paint, sealer, wax, or polymer clay to put a barrier between your skin and the metal or you could just use a different metal altogether like copper, brass or silver which are
    know to be a safe for skin. Thanks again for your comment. The more informed we are about the materials we use the better.

  105. PATTY JORGENSON, 03 April, 2012

    what are you pounding on. It looks like a brick covered in foil. But surely that is not what it is. Looks so interesting. Thanks kiddo.

  106. Cindy Lietz, 06 April, 2012

    LOL No Patty it is not a brick covered in foil… it is actually just a brick shaped piece of aluminum that my Dad found and gave to me. I did finally upgrade to a new bench block with a nylon side and a polished steel side, that sits in a rubber base to deaden the sound. You can see it in the Clover Flower Earrings Tutorial if you’re interested.

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