Polymer Clay Tutorial | Faux Carved Beads Tribal Jewelry [VIDEO]

Polymer Clay Faux Carved Beads

Vid #137: “So many beads so little time. I love them all. But I do have a thing for the carved and sculpted ones…” ~Imani-P

Holiday Schedule Changes: Before I get to the main point of today’s post about Faux Carved Tribal Beads, there is a bit of house keeping info to communicate regarding the upcoming holiday publishing schedule. Everyone needs to make a note of this, whether you are a paid member at the library, or just collecting the free B-Series recipe cards that get sent out each week via my Polymer Clay Guest List Newsletter.

As most of you know, Fridays are typically when I post new videos and color recipes in the members library. But since Christmas Day and New Years Day both land on Fridays this year, there will be a schedule adjustment as follows:

Friday, December 25, 2009: No Videos, A-series Color Recipes, or B-series Color Recipes will be posted in the Members Library. Instead, I would like to wish everyone around the world, my sincerest holiday wishes and blessings.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009: The Vol-019-4 Video (for paid members), Vol-019-4A-series Color Recipe (for paid members), Vol-019-4B-series Color Recipe (for everyone), and Vol-007-4B-series Color Recipe (for everyone), will be posted in the Polymer Clay Library.

Friday, January 1, 2010: No Videos, A-series Color Recipes, or B-series Color Recipes will be posted in the Members Library. Happy New Year!!!

Friday, January 8, 2010: Things get back to normal. The Vol-020-1 Video (for paid members), Vol-020-1A-series Color Recipe (for paid members), Vol-020-1B-series Color Recipe (for everyone), and Vol-008-1B-series Color Recipe (for everyone), will be posted in the Polymer Clay Library.

Cindy as much as I love your videos I hope you will be taking Christmas day off. You and your family so deserve it and I’m sure we can survive thru the withdraw just fine. Maybe instead of a lesson we could all take a few moments to tell you about our favorite lesson of the year or something funny or special that has happened to us with polymer clay. Just a moment to share and be Thankful for the Holiday Season. Just an idea. Warm thoughts for everyone. ~Peggy-B

I love your idea Peggy… about you guys telling me about a favorite lesson and or sharing a special story. It’s that type of feedback that keeps me motivated to continue teaching and building this polymer clay resource. Love and Hugs to everyone!

But now let’s get back to the main topic of today’s post… Tribal, Ethnic and Ancient looking beads are very popular right now, and faux carved beads fit right in with the style.

So coming up on Wednesday December 30th in the polymer clay library (Volume-019-4), I will show you just how simple it is to create your own polymer clay beads that look just like ancient carved bone, ivory and other natural materials. The techniques are easy, fun and quick to learn.

I love your faux carved and stamped beads. They look like beautiful artifacts or hand carved ivory. Polymer clay is such a versatile and artistic medium.~Debbie-M

Supplies & Tools: Video-019-4: Faux Carved Beads:

  • Any earth tone color of polymer clay will work for this lesson.  I used some of the faux bone cane from last weeks Vol-019-3 tutorial, as well as some muddy green clay. Both were Premo Sculpey.
  • Needle tool.
  • Straight bead piercing pins.
  • Plastic Bic Pen lid. The kind with the hole in the top.
  • Studio by Sculpey texture wheel (Optional). Rubber stamps can work too.
  • Antiquing medium. I used Studio by Sculpey Antiquing Medium in chocolate brown. Alternatively, you could use watered down brown acrylic paint, or brown shoe polish.

The full version of the Vid-019-4 Faux Carved Beads Tutorial will be posted in the Polymer Clay Members Library on Wednesday December 30th, 2009. 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 Carved Beads” preview video shown above, is now available for purchase at the Polymer Clay Library in the Vol-019 Back Issue Package.

Customer Feedback About Membership Value:

Hi Cindy. I’m new to polymer clay, but your style of teaching has made me almost an instant expert. You should have a show on HGTV. You are great! ~Jill-V

We have a great teacher in Cindy and for what we pay we get heaps of value, I’m sure everyone agrees. Bye. Love. ~Elizabeth-K

Cindy – You have good judgment on how much of any theme to share with us. You also provide us videos on things we cannot find elsewhere. ~Anna-S

The following topics are included in this week’s “Carved Beads” video tutorial:

  • See examples of several different beads made with the Faux Carved Bead Technique.
  • Discussion of the type of clay and colors best suited for this type of bead.
  • Demonstration on how to create three different bead shapes including a faux carved drum bead, melon bead and pipe bead.
  • Learn how to create many different carved bead designs using a simple Bic pen lid.
  • Techniques for finishing your carved beads so that they have that time worn look that makes them look so anciently wonderful.

The full version of the “Faux Carved Beads” preview video shown above, is now available for purchase at the Polymer Clay Library in the Vol-019 Back Issue Package.

  1. Lisa Whitham, 22 December, 2009

    Cindy, what gauge wire did you use for the earwires on your drum bead earrings? I’m guessing 20 or 21?
    Thanks and Merry Christmas to You and Yours!!!!
    ~Lisa :)

  2. Elizabeth S., 22 December, 2009

    What a wonderful idea, Peggy! I have a feeling The Christmas Day posts will be very special!!

  3. Ritzs, 22 December, 2009

    I would just like to say to you Cindy and family and all the members all the very best for Xmas and the new year. Since I joined you I have never looked back, I have learned so much and looking forward to 2010 that’s if I have room in my old brain to store all you have taught me. love to you and yours. Ritzs uk

  4. Freda, 22 December, 2009

    Just a heads up for anyone who didn’t read Cindy’s note about buying Buffalo Snow for an upcoming tutorial. Buffalo Snow is the small flakes of irridescent sprinkles used at Christmas for snow in decorations. After Christmas it will no longer be available and I know I would be devastated if I hadn’t gotten it to use in the tutorial later on. I got mine at Walmart and some people got them at dollar stores.

  5. Freda, 22 December, 2009

    OOps, all that and I forgot to say Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to everyone.

  6. Rose, 22 December, 2009

    I’m looking forward to seeing how to form the squash bead as I really like that style. I made a bone cane & my DH (who doesn’t automatically say he likes whatever I make) said it looked real. High praise. I love the videos. Thank you Cindy!

    I wish you all happy holidays & the best in the new year.

  7. Ritzs, 22 December, 2009

    Help;;;;; I just made a faux bone cane as per video ( but) my other half came into my workroom and said wow that looks just like real wood grain well that really boosted my ego, although he is right and i do love it but what did i do wrong

  8. Pam, 30 December, 2009

    @Ritzs: I think it looks just like wood too! Don’t think you did anything wrong, just reduce it alot more!

  9. Lupe Meter, 22 December, 2009

    Have a wonderful Holiday, Cindy. Thanks again for all you do! Enjoy your family time. Thanks for the heads up on the Buffalo Snow, Freda!

  10. Cindy Lietz, 22 December, 2009

    Thanks guys for the comments! Hope you all are having a great Holiday!

    @Lisa: The ear wire was made with 20g copper wire. I would switch it to 20g Niobium if the person who was going to wear them was sensitive to copper.
    @Freda: Thank you for reminding everyone to watch for the Buffalo Snow for the upcoming Faux Opal Tutorial.

    ( If any of you have no idea what Buffalo Snow is, click the link by my name to find out.)

    @Ritzs: You haven’t done anything wrong. The faux bone looks a lot like wood before it is baked. Looks more like bone after it’s baked because the translucent clay no longer will look white. Don’t worry. Keep working with what you’ve got!

  11. JoyceM, 22 December, 2009

    Cindy, So glad to see you are taking the holidays off to spend with your family. Have a wonderful time, stress free. Thank you for all you do for us and please say a huge THANK YOU to your family also. A very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and yours as well as to all who join in this wonderful blog. What did I do before I stopped by here?? It has made my 2009 beginning year very special and I’m so looking forward to what you will teach us in 2010 with the comments of our clay family. Love to all of you.

    St. Petersburg, FL, USA

  12. Peggy, 23 December, 2009

    Thanks Elizabeth, I’m hoping we can all make the blog special for Cindy Christmas day. She has made all the other Fridays very special for us.

    Freda thank you for the heads up on the Buffalo Snow. I found some at JoAnns but its not irridescent and the flakes are very fine. I got it in case I don’t find the other but I am going out tomorrow for fresh veggies and fruits for Christmas dinner. Our dollar store didn’t have it and I forgot to look at Walmart. Hope it is not too late. Wish me luck guys.

    Happy Birthday Jesus, Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays everyone.
    Keep SAFE and stay HAPPY!!!
    Uuuuuuuuuuggggggggggs to all !!!

  13. Rose, 23 December, 2009

    I’ve found that Buffalo Snow is a brand name. I finally found mine at Michaels sold as Buffalo Snow snow flakes iridescent sprinkles. Hope it the right product.

  14. Cindy Lietz, 23 December, 2009

    Thank you Joyce, Peggy and Rose for the very sweet comments. I hope you have a wonderful holiday as well! Just finishing up the last of the projects and getting some of the food ready myself. I’m looking forward to relaxing and having some fun!

    Rose, glad you found the ‘snow’. You’ve got the right stuff. Peggy, if you don’t end up finding the iridescent buffalo snow, you can also use iridescent cellophane wrapping paper cut up into tiny odd shaped bits and pieces. It is more work though.

  15. Penny, 25 December, 2009

    Happy Christmas Cindy and I hope you have a well deserved (albeit brief) rest – you are a role model to us all at many levels.

    ADDED NOTE: @PENNY: Thanks for the Christmas message. I wish for you great success in 2010 with your new polymer clay venture in the UK. Just wanted to let you know that I’ve transferred a second copy of your message over to the December 28, 2009 post, to go along with the theme of the comments for the 2009 Spotlight Summary Series.

  16. Bonnie, 25 December, 2009

    Cinday, just wanted to wish you and your family a Merry Christmas and thank you for all the wonderful work you do. It seems like every day when I’m doing clay, something I learned from you jumps up into what I’m doing to make what ever it is easier and better and naturally I have to think about you.
    Thanks again, you really make this fun.

    ADDED NOTE: @BONNIE: You are very welcome Bonnie. I absolutely love how you use the words “easier” and “better” and “Fun” to describe my teachings. Thank you so much. Your message has been transferred to the December 28, 2009 post as well… for the same reason I described above, for Penny.

  17. Catherine, 25 December, 2009

    Merry Christmas to all. Cindy thank you soooo much for your videos and all your ready help whenever needed. Made 20 dozen of tamales and would love to have contributed some to your Christmas meal to save you some time and energy in your kitchen. Please take this time to relax and renew your strength for the coming year!

    ADDED NOTE: @CATHERINE: I would have loved to have included your tamales at our Christmas dinner table. They would have been a welcome addition. It’s always been a pleasure helping you. As I mentioned above to Bonnie and Penny, I’ve also transferred a copy of your comment to the Dec 28 post.

  18. Louise Traylor, 25 December, 2009

    I hope you and your family have had a wonderful, safe Christmas and I am so happy to know you took time off for yourself and your family.


    ADDED NOTE: @LOUISE: Christmas was wonderful. Thank you very much for thinking of me. So that you know, a copy of your kind words has been transferred to the Dec 28 post. See my notes above for Catherine, Bonnie and Penny.

  19. Tiffany, 25 December, 2009

    Merry Christmas to you and yours!! I have been trying to decide what my favorite video has been, and I think it has to be th water color beads. Or maybe the faux raku. But then again it could be the gold leaf and alcohol inks one.I could also say it was the mica shift technique. No no I think it is the varigated rose. Yes thats it. I think…..

    ADDED NOTE: @TIFFANY: You are funny! If you think it was difficult to choose a favorite in 2009, just wait for 2010. It’s going to be a fun year of polymer clay tutorials. You probably alread know this after reading my added messages to the gals above that a copy of your comment has been added to today’s Dec 28’09 blog post. I can’t believe 2009 is almost over.

  20. Nancy Reddick, 22 January, 2010

    Hi Cindy,

    Faux Carved Tribal Bead Jewelry by Nancy Reddick

    Each week you amaze me with something completely new and challenging. I anxiously wait for Fridays to come, to see what new wonderful tutorials are waiting for us. I really enjoyed the video tutorial on faux bone and faux carving techniques for making tribal beads and jewelry. I just can’t say thanks enough to you Cindy for your wonderful style of teaching us this craft. Thanks again, Nancy

  21. Cindy Lietz, 22 January, 2010

    Beautiful work Nancy. Thanks so much for sending in your photo and for your kinds words. I’m glad you are enjoying the tutorials.

    If anyone wants to see more of Nancy’s work, click on the link by my name to see jewelry she made using the tribal cane from the Vol-020-1 tutorial.

  22. Cindy Lietz, 17 March, 2010


    Polymer Clay Projects

    Hello to Everyone,

    Some new Spotlight project pictures that relate to the topic of this page (Faux Carved Bone), have just been added in another post. They were submitted by Anna-S. The link by my name will take you to where you can see them, along with a bit of a write up. Hopefully they will inspire you to achieve great things with your own polymer clay projects.

  23. Teresa, 18 March, 2010

    Cindy, I am so enjoying the weekly tutorials. It seems I spend all my time playing with clay. Our winter vacationing in Florida is quickly coming to an end and will be time to return back home to Missouri. I’ve made keepsake flower petal jewelry for all my family, and can hardly wait to give it to them.
    Thank you for making my time in Florida this year so meaningful. The flower petals came from my dad’s funeral back in December. I’ve made necklaces, bracelets, and earrings. My next project will be to make tie tacks.

  24. Cindy Lietz, 18 March, 2010

    You are very welcome Teresa. Thank you for sharing your story. So sorry to hear of your father’s passing. I know everyone here would love to see photos of your polymer clay pieces. If you want to forward some pics to me, I will post them in an upcoming spotlight feature for you.

  25. Cindy Lietz, 05 April, 2010


    Polymer Clay Projects

    Hello to Everyone,

    Some new Spotlight project pictures that relate to the topic of this page (Faux Carved Bone), have just been added in another post. They were submitted by Melinda Herron. The link by my name will take you to where you can see them, along with a bit of a write up. Hopefully they will inspire you to achieve great things with your own polymer clay projects.

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