Evolution of a Design

evolution of a design

The Evolution of a Design

Or a look into the crazy inter-workings of a creative mind. I thought I would combine #TBT (Throw Back Thursday) with some thoughts on the evolution of a design. Often a design pops into your head fully formed and you take it from there. Other times, an idea evolves and changes over time as it did with the polymer clay beads in the above photo.


Let’s journey back to February 2011. You can read the original inspiration post, but short version is that it began with carved wood designs, which somehow made me think of carved jade, which led to the green beads in the upper left-hand corner of the photo. As you can see, I wasn’t totally happy with it, so I antiqued the one on the left.

Set Aside

The beads were then set aside and basically forgotten about until….

…almost a year and a half later, June 2012. I went on a shopping spree and purchased Christi Friesen’s line of Swellegant metal paints and colorants. Of course, I wanted to play with them immediately and didn’t want to take the time to make something. So, I started digging through my cured beads and and came across the green beads. The bead in the upper right-hand corner of the photo, shows the bead with silver metal paint.

The Final Design

While I liked the silver look, it still wasn’t quite right. So, I added a darkening patina, which was better as it added more definition to the flowers. Then, I decided to highlight the flowers with some color (bottom photo). I’m not sure whether that decision was because I thought it needed some color, or because it was my first experiment with Swellegant and I hadn’t tried the dyes yet. 😉

beads, beautiful beads

One of my bead friends has a bead shop (how fun is that?) and I occasionally send beads that she sells on consignment. Ok, I haven’t been very good about sending her new beads recently. Anyway, she contacted me because she’s going to be having a small bead show in her shop and was in need of beads….

Polymer clay beads and pendants

Now that the beads are on their way, I’m back to playing catch-up. I always seem to feel like I’m running behind. “Ain’t No Rest for the Wicked”, which is a song by Cage The Elephant, if you haven’t heard it. And yes, words or phrases often make me break out in song, much to my family’s dismay. 😉

summer flowers and fimo fall 2013

Yes, I’m mixing seasons here with summer flowers and announcing the FIMO Classic fall 2013 color recipe ebook. Honestly, I’m usually working with multiple seasons all at the same time. It’s spring/summer here and I’m inspired by flowers and patterns now, but I’m also working on color mixes for fall/winter 2103. Throw in the fact that I’m already looking at color trends for the spring/summer 2014 season……

Creative Play Time

It’s also easy to get caught up in the business of running a business and not having time to play and experiment. I’m determined to add some creative play time into my days, even if it’s just in short little bursts of time. The beads in the photo below show the results of my most recent play time.

floral design polymer clay beads

I usually make teeny tiny flowers, but went with larger flowers for the hibiscus bead. The other bead is a variation of doodle beads I’ve made in the past. I used alcohol inks and then used a permanent marker for the lines. I got a little heavy handed with the green in places. I was going for a watercolor look, but the inks are a little to intense. Maybe I need to try using watercolors….

FIMO Fall 2013

Last but not least, the FIMO Fall 2013 color recipe ebook is available for purchase here on my website and in my etsy shop.

FIMO Fall 2013 Color Recipe Ebook - click for a larger image

fall 2012 color recipes and a shopping spree

2012 has been crazy busy so far and my calendar just keeps filling up…

The Premo! Fall 2012 Polymer Clay Color Recipe Ebook is now available. It can be purchased here on my website or in my Etsy shop. The FIMO Classic and Kato versions will be available as soon as I can get them done.

Premo Fall 2012 Polymer Clay Color Recipe Ebook

I recently went on a little shopping spree.

It started when I read that Lisa Clarke is closing her Polka Dot Creations bookstore at the end of this month. There are still some great deals on books and magazines. Yes, I bought a few and have been trying really hard to resist going back for more.

Next on the shopping spree was a trip to Christi Friesen’s shop. I’ve been wanting to try the SWELLEGANT! metal paints and if one is good, more is better right? Yep, I bought the whole line. They arrived last week while I was away on a family camping trip, so I’m just now getting a chance to play experiment with them.

polymer clay bead coated with silver SWELLEGANT metal coatings

I wasn’t finished there. Since I’m a shiny kinda girl, I pretty much always sand and buff my beads. However, after reading Chris Pellow’s blog post on using Micro-Mesh sheets, I had to have some. I bought them from Logs To Lumber on ebay. You can purchase them from several places, this is just where I happened to purchase mine and was very pleased.

Uhmmm…then I hit Amazon.com for some light summer reading. :)

The Yellow issue of From Polymer To Art Magazine also arrived last week. It was like Christmas around here with all my goodies to open. 😉

getting older

I’ve been slacking in the blog department. However, I did manage to get my taxes filed and my studio mostly cleaned up and reorganized.

Even though my studio isn’t completely cleaned up, I decided I needed some time to play with clay. I’m starting with my old standby…floral beads. Holy Batman! Those teeny tiny flower petals seemed to have gotten smaller and harder to see. Out came the reading glasses. Of course they are colorful. :) I’m really not happy about the changes that come with getting older, but what’s a girl to do?

polymer clay bead and reading glasses

friday finds – Roberta Warshaw

Friday finds is pretty self explanatory. I’ll be sharing things that catch my eye.

This week is the work of Roberta Warshaw. Roberta’s background in graphic design is evident in her polymer clay bead and jewelry designs. Her mix of texture, geometric shapes and crisp clean colors has a modern tribal look to it.

Click on any photo to see the product listing.

Visit Roberta’s Etsy shop, see more of her work on Flicker, and check out her blog here.