Polymer Clay Tutorial | Faux Agate, Domed Coin Beads [Video]

Polymer Clay Faux Agate BeadsVid #160: “How
stunning your agates
are, Cindy. I’d l-e-r-v-e
to learn how to make
them.” ~Mary-U

Faux stones are so much fun to make with polymer clay because there is just no end to the possibilities! So many different types and colors you can copy, including Faux Agates.

So on Friday, June 18th at the Polymer Clay Library (Vol-025-3), the member video tutorial will teach you how to make Faux Agate Coin Beads. They were discussed recently over at this Gallery post: Faux Agate Polymer Clay Jewelry

Very beautiful Cindy! Love it! Would also like to see you do a tutorial on how to make the agate stones. ~Maureen-G

I’d welcome a tute on the Faux Agate. I think the domed coin-shape of the beads is great, too. It would be awesome to learn some tips on how to make these easier. Thanks for everything you do, Cindy. You’re such an inspiration! ~Phaedrakat

Cindy, your agate is beautiful, the colors are so well coordinated. The colors remind me of the ocean, even though I am a North Dakota land dweller. Being an aquarius I am drawn to the ocean. This would make a great tute. Love to have you teach this one. ~Carolyn-K

I’m definitely up for a faux agate tute – I’ve tried it before but couldn’t get the striations thin enough to look realistic. That said, it was a while ago, and I think I could probably make a better fist of it to now I’m more experienced. But I’m always on the lookout for more tips! ~Silverleaf

These faux-agate beads are so pretty! :) I’d love a tutorial! ~Cindy-G

Love love the agate bracelet. Would be awesome to learn how to make the beads. ~Samone

Cindy – that bracelet is simply beautiful – I love the color tones. I would love a tut on faux agate. ~Cheryl-H

Hi Cindy, these agates are awesome! Beautiful job!!! Please do a tutorial on them. I would love to learn how to make these faux stones. You are such a great polymer clay artist! When I grow up, I want to be Cindy!!!! ~Hobokenmary

How stunning your agates are, Cindy. Thank you yes, I’d l-e-r-v-e to learn how to make them. ~Mary-U

Please Note: A general prerequisite for all of my weekly tutorials is that you have a good understanding of the polymer clay basics, including: conditioning clay, using a pasta machine, clay blade and other simple tools, making Skinner Blends or Teardrop Blends, baking clay, as well as sanding and finishing. If you need help in these areas, my Polymer Clay Beginners Course will get you up to speed quickly. There is also plenty of free information on this blog. Use the search box at the top of the page to find articles on specific topics.

Supplies & Tools: Video-025-3 Faux Agate Beads:

  • Translucent clay.  I used Premo Sculpey Frost but you can use the regular translucent in Premo or another brand if you wish.
  • Small amount of White clay. I used Premo.
  • Old polymer clay cane or old scrap clay. If you are brand new to polymer clay and you have no old clay, place a few pieces of clay in the colors you would like your Agates to be, between two sheets of white office paper to leach out the excess plasticizers. This will make it behave like old clay. There is a video on a super quick way of leaching polymer clay in my Beginner’s Course that you may find helpful: How To Firm Up Soft Clay
  • Mica powder or glitter. I used Pearl-Ex Sparkling Copper.
  • Clay Blade.
  • Needle Tool or piercing pins.
  • Sanding kit.

The full version of the Vid-025-3 Faux Agate Beads video will be posted in the Polymer Clay Members Library on Friday June 18th, 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 “Faux Agate” preview video shown above, is now available for purchase at the Polymer Clay Library in the Vol-025 Back Issue Package.

Customer Feedback About Membership Value:

Hi all you that may be “Surfing” here, come on in. The Claying is to die for. The cost is the least of your worries – 12 videos per quarter for $9.95 US (a little more Internationally), and so much varied  and colourful information, not a worry. You would never be lonely or feel inferior to anyone else here as everyone can work from these videos at their own level in their own time and then come in to see what some others have been doing, and the camaraderie and the pleasant comments are such a joy, like one big family. I have had so much pleasure just being here. Cindy is so generous with her time and her man Doug is a Hero among men, in helping Cindy do what she needs to do, to make this a pleasant experience  for us all. I love it. I have been in awe at some of the techniques I have learnt in the time I have been here. If I thought I knew about Polymer Clay before I came here I now have learnt so much more. Every time I rewatch a video I find more in it to enhance my knowledge. I hope a whole lot of new clayers will join Cindy here and really put Polymer Clay on the Artists Map as a true medium of art that it should be. ~Elizabeth-K

The following topics are included in this week’s Faux Agate Beads video tutorial:

  • See examples of several different versions of Faux Agate Beads as well as examples of the jewelry that can be made with them.
  • Discussion of the clay needed to do this faux stone technique.
  • Learn how to layer the colors so that you get realistic striations in your stones every time.
  • Tips on how to form the domed coin shaped bead and the proper placement of the hole.
  • Learn how the importance of proper finishing when making faux stones that look like faux stones. It’s not just a case of slopping on some Future Floor Finish!

The full version of the “Faux Agate” preview video shown above, is now available for purchase at the Polymer Clay Library in the Vol-025 Back Issue Package.


Comments

  1. Beautiful! I can’t wait for the video tutorial for these beautiful Faux Agates! I love the polymer clay rings, too, they look gorgeous! I can’t decide which one I liked best! I think it’s the one that wire-wraps the entire “stone”, although the other ring’s daintier, which would probably look better on my own fingers. Hmmm, if you’ll make us a ring tutorial for these, then I could make both kinds and make an informed decision…(I’m just sayin’!) ;D

    Thanks, Cindy! Can’t wait for Friday!

  2. Agates are so beautiful, it will be great to make some. I just happen to have some Premo “frost translucent and sparkling copper PearlEx laying around. “Is it Friday yet?”

    Am really excited today: finally got the spare room unpacked and can set up my photography stuff and take pictures again.

  3. You think the bar has to quit rising, until you get to know Cindy and Doug. What a pleasure that is. They give us nothing but the best and ask for so very little back. I don’t think Cindy or Doug will ever quit rising. You can tell they enjoy what they do for us everyday. Now I have another Friday I will be on pins and needles waiting for. It is going to be great learning another fantastic technique. WOOOOOOOOO HOOOOOOOOOO!!
    Thank you Cindy and Thank you Doug.
    many Uuuuuuuugggggggs to all, Peggy

    PS. – How about a tute on showing us how to make one of those beautiful agates into a ring. This is something I have never done and would love to learn from you. Just a suggestion. Anyone else like to learn how besides me?

  4. I just saw the “Teaser” on the Faux Agate beads. Counting the days for the Tute. Once again -a winner. Thanks ………Pattw

  5. A yes from me too for the ring tutorial. I did make a wire wrapped ring with an aqumarine stone but I’d never say no to a tutorial from Cindy. It’s always simpler and special . Can’t wait for Friday .

  6. another winner Cindy ,this has to be a wonderful addition to our growing
    arsenal of techniques it just keeps getting better and better once again cant wait for FRIDAY.

  7. Cool! Looks good Cindy! By coincidence I’ve just learned to make rings like that, but I’m not very good at it yet and haven’t made anything I’d be happy selling so more tips would definitely be appreciated.

  8. Glad I picked up some Perfect Pearls the other day. Getting more clay this week (Michaels is having a sale) so I will be ready for Friday.

  9. I just love techniques that use translucent clay (magic stuff, in my opinion) and mica powder. Hooray for Friday!

  10. Can’t wait for this one!….I’d be really interested in the wire ring technique too. The copper looks lovely with the faux agate, I think creating rings this way would be unique as well – all kinds of possibilities here. Thanks again Cindy for all your (and Doug’s) hard work!!

  11. Love the agate coin beads! And I would love to learn how to make the rings!!!! Looking forward to these tutes!!! (at least I hope we get a ring tute!)

    ~Lisa :)

  12. OK,OK, OK, I’m gettin’ close or maybe I am there. Who knows? I was able to establish a link back to the site but not specifically the faux jade tut? Is that supposed to happen or does the reader have to search the blog for the specific tut intro?
    ———————————————————————
    ADDED NOTE: This question was supposed to go here: Bead Giveaway Discussion

  13. Great tutorial!!! Cindy is it possible to have a ring tutorial? I have watched other people do it – but you seem to have the knack to make things easier and these wire wrapped rings suit polymer so well.

  14. Faux agates…Another cracker Cindy, and it uses old canes too! I can’t wait to get started. Don’t you just love the magic moments when sanding and buffing this type of bead when it goes silky, then all the colours suddenly appear? Very satisfying.

    This may seem obvious, but I keep a sealed, half-filled plastic container of water in my freezer – so, when I need iced water for translucent beads, all I have to do is top it up, and hey-presto, instant iced water – remembering, of course to put it straight back once the beads have cooled ready for next time.

    Judy

  15. Cindy, this tut is fabulous. Not sure what I want to try first, the agates or imitating those excellent copper wire rings shown with the cabs.

    Please provide us with a tut for the copper wire rings!

    Tons of old clay, so I can see me having an agate based Fall. Cannot wait to see what a cab looks like when spiraled lentil style. A BIG lentil. LOL!

    Thank you so much for sharing your expertise once again.

    • @Koolbraider: Yes, I did. Cindy’s video tutes always give me ah-ha moments. Now if my puppies would just stay asleep long enough (recovering from surgery, and not with the best behavior), I might actually get to try this sometime.

  16. Oh, Cindy, these agates are wonderful! Guess I don’t have to go out into the wild to find agates any more … I can just stay at home and make them! I will have to ‘age’ some clay, though, since I really don’t have ‘scrap’ clay. Somehow I tend to use it all. I didn’t bring any clay with me to Philly. Now all I have to do is get home again so I can tackle this tutorial. I have a feeling that Ken H is going to be a master at these, like he is with the jade.

  17. Neat! :D

    I couldn’t resist giving it a quick try, and the results look pretty good even though I haven’t had time to sand and buff them yet.

    I made rounds because I rarely use the coin shape, but I’m going to deliberately distort the clay slightly before rolling them for my next go because the nicest beads from my first batch came from the end pieces.

    I am soooo glad I have time to clay tomorrow! :)

  18. I love this tut! It looks very easy to do. And YES we want a tut on how to do the wire rings!! I have to try this technique with my CATALINA Turquoise. I still have yet to work out a red one. But, I haven’t been feeling to good to play with my clay. Can’t wait to see everyones attempt at this.

  19. Wire wrap rings, wire wrap rings, wire wrap rings!!! Try saying that 3 times fast. Teach us soon Please Cindy & Doug!

  20. What a fun tute! Simple, yet it will yield gorgeous results! This technique is cool because you don’t have to have any tools. Just clay & a little sparkle powder, and you’ve got lots of hands-on-clay fun! I think this is an awesome tute for a beginner, although it also teaches more experienced clayers how to make a beautiful bead, in a simple way!

    I’m with everyone else about loving the rings – I’d totally love a tute on them…

    It’s quite a long video (maybe the longest I’ve seen so far) — you sure are working hard, Cindy & Doug! The only reason I noticed the length is my nephew came in to tell me he was “bored” just as I began to watch the video. He’s usually quite absorbed with my clay & beading work, but he was too tired today and dozed off on my bed. I fussed over him and made sure he was comfy, then looked up and the video was still going strong! Anyway, I started it over and watch without interruption. Love, Love, LOVE this tute!

    @Koolbraider: Definitely had the Aha! moment

    @Judy: I know what you mean about how satisfying sanding & buffing can be. Getting to that silky feel, and then the “magic” of the colors. It lets you know your hard work’s paid off! Good idea about keeping your ice water bowl in the freezer! Ready to go & no worries about finding a “clay designated” bowl last minute.

    @Sue F.: Good tip about distorting it a bit. I’m glad you test drove the tut so quickly!

    @Catalina: Once your feeling better, this seems like it would work nicely with your Catalina Turquoise. You’ll create the Red kind eventually. Don’t be hard on yourself. You’ve got a few going on, ya know? BTW, did the auditor show up?

    • @Phaedrakat: Well, the stinkin’ auditor didn’t show up and now everyone is up tight about next week. Big boss will be on vacation and I might be gone as well. Still didn’t hear from the doc about the test results. But, I’m feelin’ a little bit better. I wish I could play with my clay but my niece has her graduation party tomorrow and Father’s Day is Sunday and we pick up the new puppy! Maybe Monday! :)

        • @Judy: Another dog lover? Cool! I have a rescued Maltese but my husband is getting a Chihuahua puppy for Father’s Day. I hope he will let me play with my clay in peace like my Art Director, Princess Daisy. she can sit for hours on my desk! But a Chihuahua? I’m not too sure he could do the same.
          No tests results yet!! I’ll have to wait till Monday – boo!

          • @Catalina: Oooh, that’s right — a patient Chihuahua? Hmmm, a mythical figure, not sure one exists! Hopefully, Princess Daisy will be able to “teach a new dog an old trick!” LOL

            Sorry they’re making you wait so long to hear from about the test results! “Booo” from me, too!

          • @Phaedrakat: Hi, sister Kat! I wish Daisy could teach Bubby some new tricks but I actually agreed to get Bubby so HE can TEACH her some new tricks! She is a puppy mill rescue and needs a stable dog to “show” her how to be a dog. She is not too socialable and needs to learn the good doggie manners.

          • @Catalina: Are you planning to tell us all about Bubby’s arrival and Princess Daisy’s reaction? I hope the Princess gives him a gracious royal welcome. :)

            We would love to get a second dog, but our little girl doesn’t like dogs…she doesn’t know she’s one.

          • @Linda K.: Well, Princess Daisy was not very hospitable. She snubbed him! He wanted to cuddle up with her and got out of her bed and left him alone! He wanted to play with her but she wanted that “gnat” to go away! LOL! I’m sure she will be more open with him as they get used to each other. At least, there is no growling or fighting! We took him to OH to visit my parents for Father’s Day (50 mile trip one way) and he was exhausted! He was able to meet my brother’s beagle. His dog wanted to play soooo bad but but she scared Bubby and he growled at her!!! He even tried to nip her! I got my work cut out! But, he is using the puppy pads!!! I showed him once and he got it!

          • @Catalina: Well, that didn’t sound too bad. Poor little Bubby probably missed his Mom and just wanted a cuddle.

            When I talked to my vet about getting another dog, he told me that getting a female would be a bad idea because there was a possiblity that Daffney would never accept her. On the other hand, he said she might not be happy about a male pup at first, but eventually would accept him.

            So it’s only a matter of time before Princess Daisy allows Bubby to join her “pack” and learns to love him.

            Carolyn, I agree with Catalina. You would be surprised at how many rescue groups have purebred dogs. If there is a certain kind of dog you like, you can search for rescue groups online. If there is a specific breed that you love, do research on that breed’s temperment and the kind of health issues that breed is prone to. You might be happier with a mix because they don’t tend to have as many health problems.

            Because of all the health problems we’ve been through with our Yorkie, I’m leaning toward a Terrier mix for our next dog.

          • @Linda K.: I had initially thought of getting a Yorkie because a good friend has one and I really like her dog. Now I’m thinking a mix breed would probably be better. I’m not going to jump into this, but will take my time. I’m sure when I come across the ‘right’ pup I’ll know it!

          • @carolyn: Carolyn, we adopted our Yorkie when she was 4 years old. Because of her health issues, I think she probably came from a pet shop (puppy mill dog). We’ve repaired both of her ACLs and she has lots of problems with her front legs, too. In addition, she has “laryingial paralysis” that causes her to have difficulty breathing, especially in the heat, and she came close to needing throat surgery last summer.

            Purebred dogs have a higher incidence of health issues if they are bred too closely. Puppy mill dogs have the most health issues because the breeders don’t care if the parents have health problems that will be passed down to the pups.

            I’m not telling you that you shouldn’t get a Yorkie. They are delightful pets. You just need to be smart about getting one from a reputable breeder.

            Funny thing, after I wrote the message above, I happened onto a website that had a link to Petfinder.com…If you go to that site, you can specify that you’d like a Yorkie and enter your zip code. You’ll see a list of Yorkie rescue dogs in your area. Some are purebred and some are mixes.

          • @Linda K.: I just noticed this thread…Linda great points to keep in mind when considering rescue adoptions. I’m a huge fan (we have 2 dogs and a cat). The kitty was from the SPCA and Charlie is a shelter puppy… well he’s fifteen now. He was adopted about two and a half years ago (he had the saddest little cocker spaniel face, scars and rarely wagged his tail). Now he’s always smiling – it still gives me a thrill to see his little stump of a tail go back and forth. Carolyn, I think whatever breed you choose will likely adapt happily to “motorhome adventures”, sounds like dog heaven to be out on the road like that!!

          • @carolyn:That is a good attitude to have! Sometimes the dog adopts you! Bubby, is very mild manner considering he is a Chihuahua. He has yet to use his bark. He has cried a bit, but he just wants to be picked up. Plus, dogs are good for your health!

  21. All, I live for pics. Could you folks please share some of your results? You are all so talented, and being the disabled chimp I am, LOL, I need some visual stimulous to get those endophins moving and get out the clay.

    Force me people. In advance, I apologize to Doug for the extra work needed to publish pics within a thread, but, for me, seeing is believing. And this place makes me believe, for a very reasonable cost.

    • @Jocelyn: Your post was surprising, I hadn’t thought about the pictures that way. It makes sense, though. I completely sympathize with you & your predicament. I know exactly what you mean. I have a HUGE problem with motivating myself, my clay is out of my hands right now, too. I’ve got family standing in my way, too — it’s not only pain (although that’s enough, isn’t it?) Please don’t call yourself a disabled chimp! It sounds too much like me! *wince* I really want you to be inspired, and to have those endorphins pumping.

      I guess Cindy will post the occasional picture within the thread, but I think they’re really slowing that down. She said she’ll post a weekly group of photos (or maybe links to photos?) but it sounds like it’s up to us to go and look at others’ photos if we want to see all of them. The whole idea is that it’s becoming too much work (and takes up so much space) for them, I guess.

      Have you clicked around to some of the member’s blogs? Lots of photos being posted. Also, you might want to join Facebook if you haven’t already. Photos are readily accessible (that’s the first place some people put their photos.) Do you need help finding the other blogs and stuff? I’ll be happy to help. I know it’s so difficult to push through and complete things when you’re in pain all the time. Please let me know, and I’ll be more than glad to help you. I would take a look at Brenda’s blog first. She’s done just about every tute lately. I don’t think the girl is even sleeping! Just click on her name, and it will take you to her blog. (Lots of members are redoing their blogs, so it’s really easy to go directly to them now.) Let me know how it goes. Also, let me know if I’ve got the wrong idea. I want to help if I can! ~Kat

  22. So glad to hear everyone loved this Faux Agate Tute. Just as some of you have said in the comments above, I also had some “Aha” moments in the process of creating this video tutorial for you guys. As most of you should be seeing by now, what I always try to do is make things simple. So often I see techniques being taught in a way that is just too darn complex, when it really does not have to be that way.

    Now in regards to me continuing to post pictures here at the blog…

    Even though the gears are shifting a bit with how photos and the bead giveaway contest is working (see link by my name for more info), I will also continue to post pictures here at the blog. One of the big benefits of having you guys post “off-site” pictures as well, is that it allows you to present more shots of your creations (different angles, multiple projects, larger images, etc.)… than what I am able to do for you here at my site.

  23. What a super tute!! Lot of steps but you make it all doable. I love that so much about your tutes. Any technique you have that special way of making it a doable technique for all your students new or advanced. I do hope you will try to find the time when you have, if you have it to show us how to do the ring. I love the agates with the copper wire. I’m sure some of those colors would pop with the colored wire.
    Hope the two of you have another super weekend with your kids.
    Uuuuuuuuggggs for all, Peggy

    • @pattw: Dentist – ouch! …Peggy knows…

      @Peggy Barnes: Hey Peggy, how are you? Are you feeling better after the root canals, and are they ready to finish the crown? You deserve a crown, since you’re a clay queen! (Oh, dear, did I just write that? *groan*) I hope you’re all done with your dental work now. FYI, I’ve been extra careful to swish more water through my teeth during the day — & that’s besides the gallons of water I drink! I’ve taken your advice to heed…

  24. Cindy -boy do I love this tute. I have scraps leaching out as we speak ! The colors are so pretty. Add me to the list of “How to wrap the agates” ring……..Also Mother Nature and Maple Leaf color recipes are just waiting to be used. Went to the dentist yesterday, so didn’t post ……. But I was thinking about you all……..pattw

  25. I’m a little late getting to this tutorial, but I had to pipe in. I love it! (I knew I would.) Hubby is on vacation this week and grandchildren coming to visit, so I probably won’t be able to try it out for another week. :(

  26. I am thinking about getting a dog. My kids all think it would be a great idea. I’ll probably get some kind of mutt, but I want a little dog that will fit in the motorhome with me.

    • @carolyn: You should get a dog! But, get a rescue! You can find so many pure breeds at shelters and home rescues. Princess Daisy is a pure breed Maltese from a puppy mill. All she did for six years was have one litter after another in a tiny box! My mother-in-law breeds Chihuahuas so that is how we got Bubby! But, check rescues first and then make sure you have them fixed! Let us know if you decide to get a dog. We can exchange doggie stories!! LOL!!

    • @Antonia: I’m not that familiar with Granitex, is it polymer clay? If so, you would be able to mix them together, but be careful with baking (use the lower recommended pkg. temp, but bake longer to account for the difference.) Granitex might have inclusions that are hard on your pasta machine, blade, cutters, and other tools. Avoid scratching them by using older tools, hand rollers, etc.

      There are probably other things to beware of, but I wanted to throw this out there! One other thing, you probably wouldn’t want to use this in a cane, since all clays in a cane should be the same consistency for proper reduction. Good luck, and write back if you need more info from Cindy or someone who’s actually used this clay! :D

    • @Antonia: Sure you can mix Granitex with other clays. It is basically just a regular polymer clay made by Sculpey that has little granular bits in it. The bits aren’t hard like sand though so they are fine for your machine and blades. Because of the softness of the clay and the fibrous nature of the granular bits in the clay, it is not a good clay for cane work. I used the Granitex for one of my more rustic looking Mushroom bead samples in the Mushroom Bead Tutorial a couple of weeks back (see link by my name).

      If you were thinking of using it as one of the veins in a faux agate, that would be a great idea! Would work just fine with the other clays!

        • @carolyn: That humidity is rough! I spent a lot of time in Philly quite a few years back. Great place, but the humidity could get pretty bad.

          @Cindy: Thanks for the Granitex info. Sounds perfect for faux stone app’s like Faux Agates! I’ll have to try some…

    • @Antonia: If you visit my blog you can see a leaf cane that I made, I accually used Granitex in it. Look like little tiny bits of grain. I mixed it in with the green. I love how it turned out.

    • @GinaT: Welcome, Gina! So happy to have you here! Please let me know if you have any questions — I’ll be happy to help with anything I can! Actually, you can ask just about anyone; they’re all are quite friendly and helpful! Enjoy yourself! ~Kat
      BTW, I’m from Riverside, CA US — where are you from?

    • @GinaT: Yes, the videos are super … best in the world! This is also a group of very caring individuals. We all love polymer clay but are not in the least bit selfish with out tips and ideas. Everyone seems willing to share for the good of all. Cindy has fostered this wonderful attitude and keeps us going. It is truly a great place to be.

  27. Hi all, well for once I have succeeded in doing a Tutorial within the right week.( Just needed to have my eyes fixed didnt I !!)
    If you would like to go to my blog. my efforts are there.
    I loved doing this tutorial, love the thought of faux agate and will try more.
    Didnt quite get the reference to”s right, but will go back when I have more time.
    Thanks again Cindy for a fun time
    Bye for now.
    Love Elizabeth XXX

    • @Elizabeth K.: WOW! Your faux agates are fabulous! I especially like the more jagged lines of the ones with the red crystals … so very much like the real banded agate that I love so much and go into the fields searching for!

  28. Great video and lesson. I am new to clay beads but I can’t wait to get started. So much fun in store.

    • @Sue C: You certainly have come to the right place, Sue! I’d highly recommend that you get Cindy’s Beginner Series. It covers all the basics as well as having some fun canes to really get you started. Especially since you say you are new to polymer clay, you will need these basics in order to actually complete some of the more recent videos. Cindy’s doesn’t repeat the basics on each video. Many of the videos build on previous knowledge: conditioning clay, baking properly, sanding and buffing (my weak area) and also making Skinner and Lietz Teardrop Blends. Anyway, this group of clayers is very special. They love to learn new things and are always willing to share their knowledge of PC [polymer clay] as well as being very supportive regarding what we share about our personal lives. No need to share personally, but it is great when you do. I was recently hospitalized and this group of Cindy’s was right there, supporting me with cards, thoughts and, yes, prayers. I am now well again (miraculously … but that’s another story for another time) and am visiting my family in Philadelphia. I live at Lake Tahoe, NV. In some ways I’m anxious to get back home so that I can get my hands back on my clay! Welcome to the Group, Sue!

    • hi Sue
      i too live near Tacoma
      and have been trying forever to find a mentor/group to get started creating with polymer clay
      Can you tell me where you go for classes/assistance?
      Thank you!
      Gerri

      • @gerri:

        Hi Gerri,

        I would love to speak with you about the polymer clay projects and if you don’t live too far from Tacoma maybe we could meet at a Starbucks. The only place I ever received help is on the Internet. I joined Cindy’s website and she consistently presents very nice project and a video that is wonderful to watch. You can email me if you would like…take care

        Sue C

  29. I loved this video and I am looking forward to making some of these beads. I do have a question. How I save the video to my computer? As a example will all the videos build up as I view them without doing a save? Thanks for any help.

  30. Welcome Gina T and Sue C — It’s great to have you here as part of the community. I know you both are going to love it here :-)

    @Sue C: To answer your question about viewing the videos…. they are shown in a web “streaming” format that you don’t actually save to your computer. But they are available to you 24/7, for as long as you keep your subscription current. Your PayPal receipt will tell you the Volume Number that your subscription officially starts with. If you have more questions about your specific account, please feel free to email directly and I will look up the details for you.

  31. I agree, this lesson was fabulous!! Welcome Sue and Gina, hope you enjoy it here as much as I do. There’s so much info and sharing to catch up on….the time spent here is well worth it – LOTS of inspiration, ideas and information gathering.

  32. Hello,

    Would someone be so kind to give me a list of the products I will need to start working with clay? What is the most “forgiving” clay to use since I am new to this medium? Where is the best source for clay products and the necessary tools? Thanks for help.

    • @Sue C: Bare bones would include: blocks (2 ounce each) of clay [red, yellow, blue, black, white and transluscent is a good start] (Cindy usually uses Premo! by Sculpey which is available at most Michael’s Craft Stores, but is also available from several sources on line.) Acrylic rod for rolling the clay; oven thermometer; oven (it is good to have a craft or toaster oven dedicated to clay … or else you need to clean your household oven after each clay baking. It is good to have an extruder … a good choice for this would be a Makin’s extruder. Again, that is what Cindy uses. If possible it would be good to have pasta machine – here it really is important that it be used ONLY for clay. You can get decent hand crank pasta machines at craft stores in the clay aisle for not too much money. You should have a solid work service … like a large glass cutting board … do not work on wood. The clay could damage the wood and the wood would leave unwanted markings on your clay. You should use Glad products for storage of your clay. Cindy has tried quite a few products and Glad, since it has no polymers, she has found to be the best for maintaining the stability of the clay.

      Like I said, this is the bare bones. There are lots of tools, cutters, molds, etc. that you can splurge on once you determine that polymer clay is really for you. And clay comes is lots of different types and colors. Watch for sales on the clay and stock up when you can.

      I’m sure others will weigh in with their ideas of what is essential … there are probably some obvious things that I’ve overlooked.

    • @Sue C: Welcome, Sue! Happy to have you here! Carolyn’s given you a good list of materials you need to start. The only other “essentials” I though of were a blade to cut the clay, wet/dry sandpaper to smooth your baked beads, and a needle tool to pierce holes in your beads (and pop air bubbles, etc.) You can make your own needle tool or use things like knitting needles, skewers, etc. It’s a good idea to have alcohol on hand for clean up and/or baby wipes (I use both.) You’ll probably want some cornstarch, which can be used for a variety of reasons. Cindy has videos about this great product. One last “essential”, plain, glossy, smooth floor tiles from a hardware/home improvement store. These are great to bake on, clay on, and leave in the bottom of your oven to help keep the temperature even. You can get a variety of sizes — most cost less than $1 at Home Depot.

      There are other items you’ll need, but now that you have Cindy’s course, that will all be covered! You’ll find there are items you WANT to add, like tools that make things easier. And you’ll definitely want some decorative supplies to add bling to your clay, like mica powders, metal leaf, alcohol inks, and glaze or resin. Cindy has articles on all of these things, which give you advice, followed by comments and tips from other members. You can find them easily using the search box. After you watch the videos and start to play with your clay, you’ll probably have specific questions. If you can’t find the info you need by doing a search, someone in this friendly & helpful group will be happy to answer!

      I feel confident you’re going to love it here. Welcome again, and have fun!
      ~Kat, Riverside, CA, USA (Where are you from?)

  33. OK, I’ll admit it. I am a little slow on finding things on the internet so where do I find the beginner’s series created by Cindy?

  34. Hi Carolyn,

    Once again thanks for your help. I paid for the beginning course and read where Cindy had to (change her password) and when I tried to enter to view the videos, it would not accept my password. I think I missed a step someplace. Can you help again?

    • @Sue C: Welcome to the course! I’m so glad you decided to go that route. The beginners course videos will help you tremendously, as they already have for many others (see link by my name).

      I just emailed you with info about how to get your password for the course. If you need further help with password stuff, please email me directly. Thanks.

  35. Welcome Gina and Sue. You will find that Cindy’s site is the best ever. The people are so caring and giving. You will get so much knowledge.

    Gina – I live in Kansas City so maybe we could plan a meet and greet in Topeka sometime.

    Carolyn mentioned Michael’s. You can also get clay from Joann’s and Hobby Lobby. Go on-line and sign up to get their coupons. Also, watch the ads. Usually, at least once a month somewhere you can get clay at 1/2 price or 4 for $5. I started out with nothing and now I could open up my own store. Clay is so addictive. I like Premo the best. Pardo is a close second.

    A good “need-to-know” is when buying your clay, make sure you squeeze it to see if it is a little soft. As hot as it is now, the clay can get hard from being in the trucks. That happened to me several weeks ago. I didn’t squeeze and wnen I got home, there was no saving it. I even ran it through the food processor and couldn’t get it to get soft. I had to take the other four blocks back. Michael’s was so nice. They even went back and pulled other blocks that were hard.

    I’m so glad you found Cindy. You will have so much fun claying.

  36. @Linda B.: Great advice! Not many beginner’s would think to check their clay to see if it had been accidentally cured en route to the shop. That’s great to let them know about the clay sales & coupons, too. That’s cool that you live near Gina — how fantastic if you two had the opportunity to meet up!

    Once Sue views her course, starts to play, and becomes thoroughly hooked (Muuaaah-ha-ha- *evil laugh*,) she’ll be jonesin’ for a meet with someone who shares her new addiction, too. Hopefully she’ll share where she’s from. That would be amazing if she has a neighbor from Cindy’s, too!

    Have fun! ~Kat

  37. Kat says “Let me know how it goes. Also, let me know if I’ve got the wrong idea. I want to help if I can! ~Kat”

    You are the sweetest, and such a valuable addition to this site!. Just following you around and soaking up your commentary and links provides me tons of enjoyment!

    MS is tricky, and I have the type that though not seriously progressive yet, phases based on temps. Cold is bad, hot is badder, lol. I need to find the spot in the world that’s 65 degrees 365.

    Thank you for caring, Kat. Very appreciated.

    Jocelyn

    • @Jocelyn: Thank you, Jocelyn, you are so sweet to say that. You are so sweet period! I wish that you could have that perfect 65° every day of the year. (If you find it, I wanna come, too! I’m a big sissy about the heat!) I pray that you come close, at least—I hate for you to have your MS worsened by the temperature. Of course we can’t control the weather, but it seems terribly unfair for it to have such an affect your health & the way you feel!

      I just want you to know that you are appreciated, too. Especially when I’m creeping around the blog late at night. It used to be a bit scary with no one around. Now that I know it’s you “following me”, it feels like you’ve got my back—no more fear! ;D

      Hugs to you! ~Kat

  38. I loved making the faux agates – will probably use more colour from old canes next time, although the beads are pretty, but a little too toffee-like (Werthers Originals anyone?).
    But… I made ‘coin’ beads – flat on the back, and have so far not strung them because I realise that they have a tendency to flip, showing the reverse. I’m working on a solution (I’ll come back when I do, and might even revive my blog) but has anyone else come across this, and sorted it?
    Hope all here are coping best you can. XXX
    Judy
    PS Black Labradors!

    • @Judy: I like black labs, but I want to get a small dog that will be able to travel with me in my rather small motorhome. I had thought of a Yorkie or a Yorkie/Maltese, but I might be better off getting a ‘mutt’ – if I can find a small one and we can bond with each other. I understand that they have less health issues than purebred dogs. I don’t know. I’ll just have to start looking once I get back home and see if a dog picks me … or I fall in love with one.

      • @carolyn: Carolyn, a Yorkie-Maltese might be a “designer dog,” but it won’t be prone to as many health issues as a pure Yorkie or pure Maltese. My sister just got two Maltese-Poodles and they are absolutely precious. If you go to PetFinder.com for rescue dogs you should see some tiny dog mixes.

        I absolutely agree with you that a small dog will work out better in the motor home.

      • @carolyn: The advantage to getting a named breed or hybrid is that you have a good idea what sort of character, exercise requirements and potential future health problems your new dog is likely to have. Mutts are great and can be wonderful dogs but you don’t always know what’s in their ancestry so it can be a bit of a gamble.

        I’d definitely do some research first – there are loads of dog breed selector tools where you can fill in your requirements like size, coat type, how much exercise you’re willing to give, how “trainable” you want the dog to be, etc, and it tells you which breeds you should consider. Try some of the pet food websites like Eukanuba, Purina and Iams, they all have these.

        I love gundogs myself – intelligent, easy to train, don’t chase and kill things and are generally very easy-going – if I was going to get a small dog I’d consider something like a Cavalier King Charles spaniel as I’m not into the yappy toy dog type. They do have associated health problems though like most pure breeds. My friend kept Cavs for years and recently got a Cavachon (Cav x bichon frise) who is an awesome little dog. Poodles are nice dogs too if they’re not spoilt!

        I can’t remember if it was in this post or not, but I think you asked about litter training? Most dogs prefer to go outside, because they are essentially clean animals that don’t like making a mess in the area where they eat and sleep – even with your motor home it would be easy to find a grass verge or gutter or something for your dog to use, especially if you trained it to eliminate on command. My parents often take my dog on holiday in their touring caravan (trailer) and she spends her time in the awning (my mum doesn’t want Summer sleeping in the caravan with them) on a long leash on a spike in the ground – when she needs to go she moves as far away as the leash will allow before she does her business.

        • @Silverleaf: Thanks for all the dog info. All of you have been so helpful with you comments and sharing of experiences. I’ll sure enough let you know if/when I get a dog … then you’ll probably get tired of hearing about all the training, etc. But before that, I must spend some quality time with my PC!

    • @Judy: I had a problem with some roses I made and couldn’t keep them from spinning. I ended up gluing them in place and to the beads next to each other. Also, placing the hole off center can help too. It doesn’t have to be off too much to work. So, your design won’t be compromised. Let us know if that works for you.

    • @Judy: LOL on the Werther’s Originals comment! I haven’t tried these yet, but I’m very curious about your “flipping” problem! I’m wondering, did your beads “flip” in a bracelet or a necklace? I can see it happening easily in a necklace—they tend to flip beads quite easily if everything isn’t perfectly balanced.

      I’m also curious how your beads are pierced—low, towards the flat side? I think the beads have to be pretty well balanced for this. They need to be pierced low AND the coin shape has to be done just right. The bead has to be shaped so that the flat part has “more clay” in it than the domed part. Then when you pierce them low, it’s actually the center of the bead’s mass. (That probably doesn’t make sense, I barely understood it myself, lol!)

      Feel free to skip right over this! Hope you find a solution!

      you have to gauge where the

      Or maybe the flat side. can see it happening in a necklace

    • @Judy: I love my black Lab too! She’s lovely. :)

      As for bead flipping, you could try piercing TWO parallel holes – then when you string them they’ll be much more likely to lie the right way round.

  39. Carolyn, we loved our lab but she had lots of room to run. Curious myself, so searched mini labs and found the following link:

    labrador-retriever-guide.com/miniaturelabrador.html

    There a breed difficulties, as with all purebreds, but, it might just be the ticket for you and add joy to your day.

  40. Cindy or others, do you think it would be possible to make coin bead molds to use for this clay? How would you do it?

    My hands can only go so far, and wet, tiny crimping and repitition seem to be the kill factors. Do you think softer clay is needed for the agate if it must be molded?

    Love the coin look, and they shine up easily in the Lortone or by hand. Folks who buy them love the substantial chunky feel and weight of the piece. One antied up that she inserted weights in her beads internally so that they mimicked or surpassed the weight of similar stone. She said they automatically sold for more, heavier substance. Hmmmm.

    If you set these using strong glue to magnets, you could keep a scarf accented and arranged, or a pocketbook adornment.

    • @Jocelyn:
      I created molds to use for this coin shape using some little wooden pegs I found near the wood molding at Home Depot. They come in a bag of 4-6 depending on the size. I pressed them into scrap clay and baked the mold. Then I rolled the “agate” into balls and set them on my work surface and brought the mold to the clay, which left them flat on the back. I used Premo and since they were molded, they finished very nicely just in the tumbler.

      • @Carlee N: Just what do you use in your tumbler? I’ve heard all sorts of suggestions but since this works for you I’d like to know what you use. I’m thinking of using the grits that I use on rocks. I’m just chicken to try.

        • @carolyn: Use just about anything in the tumbler, depending on what stage you are at and how experimental you want to be.

          I started using screened beach sand, others, glass nuggets, others, the rocks you pick out of the small pea aquarium stones. Try what you have and see if it works. Maybe you’ll discover something new!

          The best seems to be rounded aquarium stones, preselected to omit the dark ones (which stain or mark), the broken or rough (leave scratches). They work the longest the fastest and the best…getting your finish to the point where you don’t mind hauling out the Dremel for the final sand and buff. You need about 2/3 rds a container.

          Search under “Lortone” and the Google here will pull up a ton of info on what folks have tried successfully.

        • @carolyn: I use river rock in my tumbler. I think one of the reasons I am so addicted to the faux agates technique right now, is using the moulds, they come out so smooth initially that it is very easy to get a nice finish. Plus is is another use for scraps which I love!

      • @Carlee N: Hi Carlee, I couldn’t figure out what kind of pegs you were talking about, but then I did an image search and found mug pegs. Is that what you used? They look like the right shape to make awesome coin bead molds… Well, I guess even if I’m wrong, they should still work the same way! Thanks so much for the cool tip! :D

  41. Cindy or others, do you think it would be possible to make coin bead molds to use for this clay? How would you do it?

    My hands can only go so far, and wet, tiny crimping and repitition seem to be the kill factors. Do you think softer clay is needed for the agate if it must be molded?

    Love the coin look, and they shine up easily in the Lortone or by hand. Folks who buy them love the substantial chunky feel and weight of the piece. One antied up that she inserted weights in her beads internally so that they mimicked or surpassed the weight of similar stone. She said they automatically sold for more, heavier substance. Hmmmm.

    If you set these using strong glue to magnets, you could keep a scarf accented and arranged, or a pocketbook adornment.

    This video was worth the couple week wait. Wow.

  42. Hi Cindy,

    I just watched a preview of your agate beads, so so cool. Would it be possible to do a video of the ring you made with it. I think it’s really neat.

    Thanks in advance.
    Deborah E.

  43. Carolyn, Silverleaf is our scientist, so what she said about dogs not liking litter boxes is probably completely accurate. However, I do have a friend with a Chihuahua and he has used a litter box since he was a pup. She’s always had little dogs and says that her other dogs used the litter box as well.

    • @Linda K.: Thanks, Linda, it is good to hear all sides. I would imagine that to litter box or not to litter box depends on what the pup is raised with.

      Right now I’m having enough trouble handling me without thinking more about getting a puppy. My health is kicking me around quite a bit. Today has been one for the worst pain in a long while … low pressure system over Lake Tahoe … and bad news from osteoporosis doc had me in tears. This too shall pass. I know the Lord is with me, but His trials and tests are sometimes hard to handle. I’m sure He is working on strengthening me for a reason … for a season.

      • @carolyn: So very sorry to hear you got bad news. You are a strong woman of faith, and I’m sure there is a reason for whatever is going on. I’m praying for you still—poor thing you’ve been through so much already this year! Hang in there, and be strong. We promise not to unload any dogs or puppies on you just yet! Might I suggest a cat, though? (Just kidding! –not funny) Take care, Carolyn, and please do not do too much. Take it slow. You were in the hospital for so long, and then went off on vacation. I know you want to keep busy and remain active, but please don’t overdo it. We care about you, and want you to stay healthy! You’re in my prayers, ~Kat

        • @Tanya L: Thank you so much, Tanya. I am in need of a great deal of prayer. I’m going through a rather rough period in my life and feel so helpless and so overwhelmed by life and its problems. How I miss my dear husband. I guess I never realized how many problems he just quietly solved without my knowing there even was a problem. He was very talented … there never was anything that he couldn’t fix … at least not that I know of. To those of you who have spouses, enjoy and appreciate each moment that you have together. I did, but our time was just too short … we only had 43 years together. Now my health, my house, and my motorhome all have problems … some fixable and others will just take time and creativity and lots of prayer. My goodness, I did get kind of carried away, didn’t I. I do want to thank all of you who have and continue to prayer for me. Please don’t stop.

          • @carolyn: There IS no getting carried away here Carolyn, is there? You’ve got friends here who care as much about how you feel mentally as how you feel physically, and what you’re dealing with in life as well as in mind. I saw that as soon as I found this site and starting reading posts. That’s one of the reasons I love it here!

            Jocelyn’s right- just hang in there! My “mantra” when I’m in severe pain is to take it a day at a time. When that’s too long I change it to an hour at a time. Or even a minute at a time.. And lean on your friends~ that’s what they’re for! You definitely give back at least as much as you get, if not more!

          • @carolyn: I feel for you sweetie. Tanya’s right, there is no reason to feel like you’re getting carried away, when you’re reaching out to us for support. It will take time and readjusting to figure out your new life. It has only been a year. Take a moment at a time. A project at a time and a task at a time. Maybe sit down and make a plan for yourself. What you want from your life. What you don’t want and how things fit into it. It will all come together once you decide what you want and what you need. We are all here for you. You are going to be OK.

          • @carolyn: Carolyn, I’m praying that you find relief from your health issues, and problems with your house and motor home. I know that you will always miss your husband, but I pray that you can experience a feeling of peace rather than loss when you think of him.

  44. Carolyn, you just hang in there and everything will work out for the best. Felt like you twice in my life, the first time after divorcing a cheating spouse, and the second, when give the permanent and total pain disability diagnosis.

    Felt like I was walking around in a fog both times. Faith helps, pulled back in some of the devote Roman Catholic training. Grace, dignity, kindness, all that stuff.

    Eventually, the issues fall from you like concrete blocks, and you are free and reborn. Getting to that point tests you.

    You will though. Putting my money on you as a winner. And a soon to be great polymer clay artist…..

  45. JUST POSTED… Member project photos that relate to the theme of this page… Faux Agates.

    Polymer Clay Projects

    You can view the larger images by clicking on the link by my name.

    BTW: Thanks to everyone above, who took the time to comment in this thread. Your feedback, support and engaging conversations are always such a wonderful part of my day. Although I don’t get a chance to address everyone individually, please know that I do read everything. ~Cindy

  46. Hi Gerri – I noticed that you are not subscribed at my Polymer Clay Tutor Video Library to receive the weekly video classes/assistance each Friday. If you are interested in more info about this option, follow the link by my name. It will take you to a comment that outlines both the free resources available here, as well as the (very reasonably priced :-) paid content. Hope this helps, ~Cindy

  47. Hi Cindy

    Just looking for a little advice as a new polymer clay artist. I love these beads and you do such an amazing job with the tutt’s.

    I made my first batch but noticed that the translucent darkened quickly when i was curing it. Not burning but color darkening. Is this usual with translucent clay or did i not put enough translucent in the cane?

    Thank you for your time and advice in advance.

    Justine :o)

    • You probably did it right Justine. All Translucent clays can darken a bit. Regular Premo Translucent tends to go a little yellow and Sculpey Translucent can go a slight brownish color, especially if it gets too hot. Premo White Translucent formally known as Frost and Fimo Classic Translucent, tend not to darken as much and stay whiter. Tenting with cardstock can also help. (Type ‘tenting’ into the search box at the top of the page to learn more about that.) Even if the clay darkens a bit, it is still pretty for faux stones like these, so don’t worry. Glad you are having fun. Love hearing from you!

Leave a Reply