Beading Resources > EncycloBEADia > Make Your Own Beads and Components

Make Your Own Beads and Components
by Lisa Coen, Exclusively for Fire Mountain Gems and Beads®

Every jewelry artist knows the rewarding feeling of taking jewelry designs from imagination to creation. When you make your own beads and components for those designs, the experience is even more amazing. Consider these different mediums and find a whole new world of jewelry-making to fall in love with!

Polymer Clay

Design Idea B7HX Necklace
Mold, shape and create your own beads with Kato Polyclay™. Available in 17 different colors, this versatile sculpting material allows you to make any size, shape and color combination imaginable. Design with clay cutters, molds, plates and rollers, and pop your creations into a clay craft-oven to finish.

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Apoxie® Sculpt and Findings

Design Idea C523 Bracelet
With both the sculpting benefits of clay and the adhesive power of epoxy, Apoxie Sculpt can be sculpted into beads and is ideal for creating pavé-style jewelry designs. This epoxy works well with clay tools and is great for setting Swarovski crystal flat backs and chatons into mounts and findings with channels.

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Vitrium® Clay

Design Idea B701 Necklace
Create one-of-a-kind, lightweight beads and focals with Vitrium Clay. This resin clay can be rolled very thin without cracking and easily air dries. Mix it with pigments, markers or ink pens for customized colors or use as is to design miniature works of art.

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Paper Beads

Design Idea B43G Necklace and Earrings
A fun way to recycle, paper beads can be created from newspaper, ribbon, wrapping paper remnants--even pages from old Fire Mountain Gems catalogs. Or use craft, origami and scrapbook papers in appealing colors and styles.

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Design Idea A73E Pendant
Design customized metal beads, focals and more through metalsmithing. You'll find tools and supplies to stamp, punch, texture, antique, engrave and embellish metal--and the metal blanks, sheets and wire to create with. Serious metalsmithing tools like torches, hammers, anvils and saws will get you going.

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Metal Clays

Design Idea B38S Bracelet
Customization is hot in the jewelry industry--with metal clays you can create personalized beads, focals and findings in fine silver, 22Kt gold, bronze and copper. Shape, roll, sculpt, stamp and texture your own metal beads, fire them in a kiln (or with a torch), and finish with the metalsmithing tools and techniques mentioned above.

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Design Idea C518 Necklace
Fuse your own glass creations using glass pieces, cutting tools, molds and a high-quality kiln made especially for use inside your microwave. Become a bonafide glass artisan in your own kitchen! Experiment by "painting" your own designs with enamel multipens and soldering foil rims to the edges of glass pieces.

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Glass Cabochons and Settings

Design Idea B87W Necklace
Highlight photos, miniature art work, fashionable fabrics and more behind clear glass cabochons. Designs are magnified when placed under the cabochons, which work great with bezels and flat pad findings.

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Cool Embellishments

Experiment with these fun jewelry-making products to set your handcrafted beads and components apart from the rest.

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Customer Comments

We would like to share some of the customer comments we received in response to the article "Make Your Own Beads and Components," as featured in an email newsletter. Please keep in mind that the comments expressed below are those of our customers and do not reflect the views of Fire Mountain Gems and Beads.

"This appears to be exciting new information, tantalizing, outstanding and challenging. Thanks for bringing it to us."
- Peggy

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Products sold by Fire Mountain Gems and Beads® are intended for experienced jewelry-makers and designer-artists;
children 14 years of age or younger should use these products with adult direction.

Fire Mountain Gems and Beads, Inc. - One Fire Mountain Way, Grants Pass, OR USA 97526-2373
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