Texture Texture Texture | Polymer Clay Tutorial

Textured Beads - Polymer Clay TutorVideo #266: “Brilliant! You can never have too many textures!” ~Genevieve-C

For polymer clay beads to look great, they don’t have to be complicated to make. Sometimes all it takes is the right texture and color treatment.

Mixing and matching textured polymer beads with other materials like ceramics, gemstones, metals, glass and fibers, is a simple way to create Eclectic and Bohemian inspired jewelry. These earthy organic designs are very popular in today’s marketplace.

I love creating textures on the surface of polymer clay — so this is perfect! Thank you. ~Susan-B

I agree about the earthy and organic look… I usually have to touch beads because I love the texture and the colors so these are fantastic! Keep it coming! ~Lupe-M

Cindy, I have been working with polymer for 1-1/2 years only. There is so much to learn, I am continually amazed at how much more there is for me to learn. It will never be dull and I will never be bored. I enjoy making beads because anything goes . . . the ideas, textures, color combinations, and the use of leftover scrap clay is unlimited. And, after 20 plus years of making jewelry and having to pay for beads, it is wonderful to create my own beads, and to be able to make them custom to fit exactly my needs. I no longer have to settle. “Ya-hodie.” ~Debbie-M

So… coming up tomorrow (Friday, July 20, 2012) in the Vol-050-3 members video at the Polymer Clay Tutor Library, I will show you a variety of different textured bead shapes with a bunch of different finishes that you can add to your bag of polymer clay tricks. They’ll have you making your own Bohemian styled jewelry in no time!

Here’s a sneak peak of this week’s tutorial…

The full version of the “Texture Texture Texture” preview video shown above, is now available for purchase at the Polymer Clay Library in the Vol-050 Back Issue Package.



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.

Other Supplies & Tools:

  • Cornstarch
  • String
  • Mesh Vegetable Bags
  • Paper Towel
  • Paint Brushes
  • Coarse Pickling Salt
  • Water
  • Stiff Brush (Toothbrush)

By the way, many of the “shopping” links I provide for the various tools and supplies used in my tutorials, are “affiliate” resources. That means companies like Amazon and the other suppliers I refer, pay me a small commission if you click on the links and end up making a purchase at their site. It’s not a lot, but every little bit helps in keeping the cost of my tutorials so low… at only $3.32 per month. And, the prices for products that you may purchase through my links, are exactly the same as what you would normally pay. So please do feel free to click whenever you need to pick up a few things for your studio. Thanks so much for supporting this site :-)

Customer Feedback About Membership Value:

Love your tutorials! Just made my first brain cane and peacock cane. First two successful! When I have friends asking me how to get started in Polymer Clay, I tell them to go to your site. It has been SO helpful! ~Shilo-T

Hello from Bay Saint Louis, Mississippi! Home of hurricane Katrina! My clay book is the thing I took with me when we left for the storm. I knew nothing about claying, but found your site somehow and thankful I did. Saved my sanity… maybe down the road we will see a Cindy section at michael’s with all your products and books on tips. I have bought many clay books and if you put one out I am sure it will be a best seller as your tips are much easier … do make visuals for your RV to promote you and your sponsors. I get excited when I see a RV of a favorite product when we are on the road. Come see us here in Mississippi, it is hot, hot, hot, but we are a friendly state! ~Theresa-N

Oh, I’m feeling like Lucy in the chocolate factory – how’s that for an old TV reference! I want to do everything Cindy teaches us and the ideas of all the things I want to make are jumping around in my head. I can’t keep up!!! I have never been so creative before in my life and I thank Cindy for all that inspiration. I have three grandnieces under the age of 6 and I think it would be very cute to make buttons to decorate matching Tshirts for them. I wish I had known how to make clay buttons when I used to sew my own clothes. @Cindy–I was asked to do a presentation for my local Arts Guild next week. They thought I would do another painting presentation, but I decided to do my presentation on polymer clay basics instead. You’ve given me confidence to take this on. ~Linda-K

The following topics are included in this week’s Polymer Clay Tutor Library, Texture, Texture, Texture video tutorial:

  • See examples of Textured Beads done in a variety of unique and different finishes and textures, as well as used in an interchangeable watch design and a pair of asymmetrical earrings.
  • Learn the reasons why you may want to choose your vegetables and fruits by the type of packaging they come in.
  • Find a cool way to make your jewelry designs stand out from the crowd, with your own fiber materials, textures and color combinations.
  • Plus, with some creativity and ingenuity, there are many ways to come up with other unique designs of your own.

The full version of the “Texture Texture Texture” preview video shown above, is now available for purchase at the Polymer Clay Library in the Vol-050 Back Issue Package.

Cindy Lietz SignaturePolymer Clay Tutor

  1. pollyanna, 19 July, 2012

    Another fun tute coming up!

  2. Elizabeth S., 19 July, 2012

    Looks like another winner! ( as if there would ever be anything less than a super tut from Cindy and family. Right?) Love that watch!!

  3. pattw35, 19 July, 2012

    Running around the house gathering string,onion bag,anything with texture -yipee -this is going to be fun!! Love your ideas Cindy!..Away to use up pretty scrap clay and a necklace on leather………hm………..wonder what else??? Thanks for giving us a reason to meet you here on Friday ! fun-fun-fun

  4. Elaine Faulks, 19 July, 2012

    I love the feel of a surface texture. The Boho beads look like they could have been dug up as ancient treasure from thousands of years ago. Cannot wait for Cindy,s take on Lava beads so roll on Friday………………………….cheers xx………………………..

  5. Freda K, 19 July, 2012

    I use texture a lot on pendants but beads get messed up when I try to use texture. Looking forward to this.

  6. Monique U, 19 July, 2012

    Freda K, your link to your Etsy shop seems to be broken??

  7. Stephanie B, 19 July, 2012

    LOVE texture!!

  8. Monique U, 19 July, 2012

    I love the look I get from embedding different chains in clay but never thought to use strings… duuhh! Love your book recommendations: I’ve had the ones by Heather, and Erin and Lorelei, on my wishlist for quite a while, though I try to limit myself to downloads these days. Looking forward to tomorrow as always, Cindy!

  9. Jocelyn, 19 July, 2012


    Love the string idea! Great nooks for colors, contrast, glitter, anything.

    A thanks too for the new menu design added to the tutes list of supplies. It’s so easy to find products online and in the stores when we have a preview of product packaging. It’s also great to see so many different products being used, I tend to stick to what works for me, brand wise and tool wise. Presenting supplies this way makes me expand my horizons.

  10. Deby P, 19 July, 2012

    Cindy, your projects always make me smile and get my ideas flowing, I am so happy to be part of your very special group on clayers!

  11. Dixie Ann, 19 July, 2012

    Looking forward to this tute. I never seem to have luck putting textures on beads. They always seem to lose there shape and then when I get them back in shape, the texture is gone. I love the look of the Lava beads! This is going to be a fun tute!

  12. Lavedia E, 19 July, 2012

    I can’t wait for tomorrow, its gonna be fun…… so excited……

  13. Peggy Barnes, 20 July, 2012

    Love the tute it was everything and more than I expected. Texture can make the bead as much as color and put the two together and you have it all. Lietz family ALL is what we got in this tute. What we get with every tute from Cindy. Weeks to come just keep getting more exciting by the moment. Thank you for giving your most and making this another fun filled year that just keeps getting better and better!

    Hope you all have a funfilled wonderful summer weekend, many Uuuuuggggs

  14. pollyanna, 20 July, 2012

    I have to find another word for WOW!!!! This is a great lesson. So many techniques and ideas. Thanks!

  15. tantesherry, 20 July, 2012

    love your texture beads Cindy!

    what makes your lessons stand out
    is that little something extra you figure out & gift us with

    — this time (for me) it was the way you used the white clay
    Loved It !

  16. Marlene C, 20 July, 2012

    This tute couldn’t have come at a better time. I am teaching a class in polymer clay at a bead store in my hometown next month, and although I knew what I wanted to say to the “newbies”, alot of your hints reminded me of what I was missing. I won’t be usings anything specific of yours, but OH SO appreciate the “reminders.” BTW will be telling them about this site, if they want to learn so much more, as I have. Hugs!

  17. Jocelyn, 20 July, 2012

    Cindy, love the variations with the lava beads, I actually thought you had embedded glitter into one of them, but cracked up laughing when you spoke of “jamming the salt crystals into the clay.” The multi color layers exposed then tinted with inks are gorgeous. The watch is beautiful, hope you add a future class on how to construct one of the changeable bracelets. Amazing how a simple clay bead can be embellished…..

  18. Cindy Lietz, 20 July, 2012

    Thank you everyone for your heartfelt comments! I am really glad that you have found my tips and twists on the ideas to be helpful and creative.

    I hesitated slightly on teaching you such simple beads, but found them to be so valuable to my own jewelry designs that I realized that it would be a mistake not to share them with you. Looking through some of the magazines lately, I have become more and more attracted to the Earthy, organic looking beads, with great colors and textures. They are the backbones to support and give interested to the more dramatic focal elements in a piece. They are fun and freeing to make too. I think you will find you will make tons of these textured beads!!

  19. Linda Kropp, 28 July, 2012

    Cindy, Thanks for lots of ideas–no such thing as “such simple beads.”

  20. Dixie Ann, 20 July, 2012

    Cindy, you should never hesitate on showing us easy beads. There are a lot of us that have not seen the technique(s) and you always seem to put your own spin on things. I was very excited after watching the Texture, Texture, Texture tutorial and ran out right away to get some coarse salt. Unfortunately both stores I tryed did not have a coarse pickling salt. It was more like granulated sugar. I did find a great substitute though and that is coarse sea salt and it was in a large spice jar and not a big 3 lb. bag. It is very inexpensive and also comes in a very coarse granuler but the regular coarse granules are perfect for the tutorial. So there you are, I never would have gotten a fire under me about these beads without your tute!
    Now while traversing the store and passing the kids craft aisle I spotted a package that said Stone Letters. My curiousity got the best of me and I discovered this was a complete set of alphabet letters and numbers perfect for imprinting polymer clay. This set is 5/8″ high and would make really nice Monogrammed Pendants or whatever else a creative mind could come up with. The maximum depth for imprinting is 1/4″ which is fairly deep. So there you are, not only did I get a great tute, but also got another
    great tool to play with all because of salt!

  21. Elizabeth S., 20 July, 2012

    Love it!

  22. Peggy Barnes, 25 July, 2012

    I have that in my panty and in my salt grinder. I use the course sea salt for table salt. So no hunting for me Dixie.

    Dixie if you don’t mind my asking who are the makers of the letters and numbers you found at the store. The ones I have are either too small or too large. Sure would like to see the ones you have. I hope you have a lot of fun with them.

    Thanks for sharing Dixie

  23. Dixie Ann, 25 July, 2012

    Peggy why would you have sea salt in your panty? LOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOL!
    I know you mean PANTRY but that really struck me funny,,,,,,sorry……
    anyway the plastic numbers were at Walmart in the Childrens Craft Section.
    I don’t know the brand as I have already thrown out the packaging. I will look the next time I’m there and get it for you.

  24. Jocelyn, 30 July, 2012

    Well if you swim in the ocean, you get plenty of salt in your panty….LOL! Thanks for a great laugh you guys, I fell asleep chuckling over these posts…..

  25. JoAnna G, 18 April, 2013

    Jocelyn, if you are lucky, you only get a bathing suit full of salt- I’ve had a crab show up , and the ocean crab- not the other. Lol

  26. JoAnna G, 18 April, 2013

    Peggy, thanks for this typo! I realize this is an old post, but it made me laugh so hard I just had to thank you for not editing it. What else do you keep in your panty? Mine used to be too small to hide anything, but now a bit older- I’ve moved to more substantial non Victoria secret panties, and I could keep a boat load of polymer clay tools in them.If I ever wanted to, that is.

  27. Elizabeth S., 20 July, 2012

    I Loved this tutorial! I guarantee you that on out way home from our Friday night dinner date, Manny (husband) is going to have the delightful experience of taking me salt shopping. (I hope he can contain his enthusiasm.) Funny thing is he no longer even asks why I buy some of the “out there” things for my projects.

  28. Elaine Faulks, 22 July, 2012

    Oh Elizabeth,
    you made me LOL when I imagined your Manny enthusiastically prancing down the aisles of the supermart crying out “I;ve found some Elizabeth”.

    I was lucky that I didn’t have to shop for any as here in Essex we have two local producers of Sea salt that is stocked in our local Health Shop and I have a large carton of the course flakes that will be ideal to make CINDY’S take on Lava beads

    I also found that if you tie a series of knots in a piece of string it makes a great impression. I so agree with Cindy that sometimes these simple ethnic type beads can look stunning combined with beads from your stash……………………..cheers xx………………………………………….

  29. Dixie Ann, 22 July, 2012

    Michaels had a great sale here today on premo clay. Only from 3:00 pm to 7:00 pm we could get premo on sale for 50% off and plus another 20% on our total purchases. What a buy! They only cost $1.11 per 2 oz. block.! I hope some of you were able to take advantage of this sale. I also got a great tip on making very large PC beads using the air dry modeling clay. by Amaco. Make your core bead from this and let it dry. Then cover the bead with thin slices of your polymer clay or cane or whatever and bake it at your regular temp for an hour as Cindy suggests. Your beads will be very light and lovely.

  30. Jocelyn, 30 July, 2012

    Great tip, Dixie. Amazingly cost effective, too. Appreciate the share.

  31. tantesherry, 02 August, 2012

    hi Dixie
    ty very much for the tip re. air dry clay!
    seems so logical AFTER ;) somebody else says/does it! :) lol
    now off to finish up some more AZ Beads – they are too much FUN

  32. Dixie Ann, 02 August, 2012

    I thought the air dry clay was a great idea! Amazing the people you run into at Michaels and strike up a conversation with. I always mention
    Cindys Tutorials to them and am a bit surprised when I get several questions in regards to polymer clay.

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