Make Your Own Beads and Components

Design Idea B701 Necklace
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.

Design with ... Resources ...
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 Crystal Passions® flat backs and chatons into mounts and findings with channels.

Design with ... Resources ...
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.

Design with ... Resources ...

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.

Design with ... Resources ...


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.

Design with ... Resources ...

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.

Design with ... Resources ...


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.

Design with ... Resources ...
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.

Design with ... Resources ...

Cool Embellishments

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

Design with ...
  • Gilders Paste® - Accent polymer clay, wood, porcelain and metal with these colorful pastes.
  • glueFOIL™ adhesive foil - Easily add foil accents with this heat-activated adhesive.
  • Friendly Plastic® - Design with these vibrant sticks to create faux glass jewelry and accents.
  • Metal leaf - Add metallic effects to polymer clay.
  • Omni-Gel™ for photo transfer - Transfer photos to glass, metal, fabric, leather and canvas with this innovative liquid.
  • Resin - Create clear domes in bezels, and mix this resin with tiny beads and more.

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