Thursday, January 31, 2008

Making a Business Card Holder (Continued)

The business card holder is almost finished. I put all pictures together in a slide show below. The sculpting part is complited. Now I will have to do some boring technical stuff (like baking, pouring in the resin, and applying the glaze). I think I shall have the final picture in a few days.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Making a Business Card Holder

I decided that cards as special as my new ones cannot be simply scattered over the table. They need a nice business card holder, and I am going to make it myself!

After some consideration, I decided to make a special plate for my cards. The plate will combine my two main styles, faux cloisonne and sculpted flowers. I want to have the smooth cloisonne part in the middle, and the leaves and flowers (in all colors of the rainbow!) to go around it.

Edited: See the slide show in this post:
Making a Business Card Holder (Continued)

Eugena, 01/31/08

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

New Business Cards

My new business cards arrived today.

This time I made them two-sided to show my two main styles - faux cloisonne and hand-sculpted flowers. I also used the back side to add some information about my polymer clay tutorials and classes. I need these cards for Synergy, a three-day polymer clay conference that will take place in Baltimore this February. I am hoping to learn a lot at the conference and to make new contacts. I will have a table at the teacher fair, and the new cards will be a part of my display.
For more information about Synergy, please check web site of the National Polymer Clay Guild:

Monday, January 28, 2008

Custom Order - Hand-Sculpted Polymer Clay Beads with Blue Irises

I made these beads over weekend and shipped them out today. The bases of these beads are 1" in diameter and 1/4" thick. I really like how the irises turned out - they have lots of color with smooth transition from lilac to sky-blue and to dark blue with some purple hues. Just beautiful, if I may say so myself. My customer is going to make hair sticks adorned with these beads. Great idea, isn't it? Beads like that would also make interesting earrings or focal beads for a necklace.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

The Oven Is Working

Following my baking fiasco, today I was extra careful with the oven in its new location. I confirmed the oven temperature with a separate thermometer and checked on my beads every few minutes. The oven is working! Here is the result of my last experiment. Not only these sculpted orchids are white (which is always a challenge to bake without darkening), but they also have tiny delicate parts that are difficult to bake properly as well. I am very happy to report that they baked beautifully and have the purest white color after a full-time baking session.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

New Idea!

Funny how an artist's mind works... This morning I woke up, remembered yesterday's burned pendants and decided to see if at least the wire work could be saved. So when my kids got up, they found me digging through the trash. This is not the point, though. The point is that when I removed the wire from my pendants and saw the imprints it left on their surfaces, I immediately thought of filling those imprints with some contrasting clay (not on these pendants, however; I will have to re-create those imprints, with adjusted baking temperature). Now, this is an interesting idea! I am not sure how new it is – I have definitely seen back-filled designs, and may be even some created with wire, not sure. But not in combination with the resin! I cannot wait to try this idea and see how it will turn out. Too bad I did not have time for it today...

Tonight I am crying.

I was in a hurry to bake some pendants, and I burned them all. Yeh, I know, it happens to the best of us and we all have to make a sacrifice to our polymer clay gods every so often, but I feel so bad! Why did not I burn some experimental pendants I have been playing with recently? No, it had to be the faux cloisonne ones, including the ones with faces, which take forever to make. There were hours of work in that tray!

I could not force myself to throw this stuff away, even though it is good for nothing now – my husband had to do it for me. He also helped me to set up the oven in our spare bathroom now. I had been baking outside (polymer clay smells a little during baking, especially Kato – the brand I prefer). I hope the oven did not work properly simply because it was too cold outside and not because something happened to it permanently.

Well, lesson learned: use the oven thermometer EVERY TIME.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Eugena's First Squidoo Lens

So, I wrote my first Lens on – both for altruistic and materialistic purposes. I am glad I found another opportunity to spread the word about polymer clay, which is of course my great passion. I am also hoping that the people who came up with the Squidoo idea (including Seth Godin, whom I respect very much) are right, and this exercise will indeed bring all the good things they promise – such as increased traffic, more Internet exposure, incoming links to my web site, etc.

If you have any experience with this stuff, please come and take a look at my Lens. I will appreciate any constructive criticism.

If you do not what the heck I am talking about – well, come anyway and figure out for yourself. This concept seems pretty interesting, so take a look.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

New Tutorial!

I just finished my second tutorial - this time for a set of focal beads made of polymer clay and resin. The beads made this way look really great. They have shiny surfaces and cool three-dimensional designs embedded into the clear resin. The beads are also very lightweight, which is a welcome bonus for anything to be used for making earrings, right?

This tutorial is extremely detailed. It has 37 full-color pictures to illustrate all the basic and optional steps. I also included explanations of possible errors and how to avoid or correct them.

The tutorial is currently available both from my Etsy shop and my web site.

Friday, January 11, 2008

New Earrings

I just finished two pairs of faux cloisonné earrings.

The first pair, Elegia, has a beautiful gradation of color from lilac to purple. This is my first experiment with color gradation as a base for my polymer clay cloisonné focal beads, and I am very pleased with the results. Now I want to try other colors.

The second pair, Mria, is an experiment with different thickness (gauge) of wire. I wanted to try it for a long time. I think this experiment went right as well, and there will be more designs with these elements in the near future. By the way, “Mria” means “A Dream” in Ukranian.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Happy New Year!

I am starting the new year with an updated and cleaned-up website. Here is the page I am the most proud of:

It is a sort of a portfolio – a page that shows my most favorite sold pieces. I enjoy designing each of my pendant, necklace, or a set of earrings as much as the process of actually making them. That is why each of my creations is unique and obviously different from the others. When a piece is sold, it is sold together with my thoughts and ideas that led to its creation. Parting with some of my things is particularly difficult, and these are the designs shown on that page.
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