Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Silver Medal Prize
Fire Mountain Gems Contest


I just received the results of the Jewelry-Making contest sponsored by Fire Mountain Gems. 

My two-sided butterfly necklace took the second place in the Holiday Category, in Pearls, Organic Beads, and Kato Polyclay section this year.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Many New Items in My Shop


I've been busy today adding some new necklaces and earrings to  my Etsy shop

Among the new additions, I have a few examples of my new faux stained glass collection.  These pendants and earrings are made by filling up the cells of filigree with custom-colored resin.  The resulting pieces look amazing when the light shines through them - like real stained glass, with sparkling colors and delicate frames provided by the filigree.

The only problem is that they are really difficult to photograph...

Friday, October 22, 2010

Introducing: Student's Work Gallery


I added a new page to my PolymerTutorials.com web site for the people who use my tutorials to upload their pictures.  I am inviting all my students tosow off their creations made following my tutorials.  The pictures will get you discount points, and here is how it is going to work:

    - The first picture of your creation made following one of my tutorials will get 10 points.
    - The second picture related to the same tutorial will get 5 points.

    - The third, fourth, and fifth pictures will get 2 points each.

    - Any additional pictures of your creations based on the same tutorial are welcome, but they will not be given more points.

    - Multiple photos showing the same item count as one picture.

    - Multiple items shown in the same photo will be counted as multiple pictures. For example, a photo with three items made following the same tutorial will get 10+5+2=17 discount points. A photo with three items made following three different tutorials will get 10+10+10=30 discount points.

    - Every discount point will allow you to save 10 cents at your next tutorial purchase. 10 points=$1.00 off.

    - To redeem your discount points when you buy your next tutorial, simply pay in full and let me know that you would like to use your discount. You can either leave me a note while paying through PayPal or send me a separate e-mail. Your discount will be reimbursed to you through PayPal right away.

    - Important: to make this system easier to work for all of us, when you upload your pictures to my gallery, please specify the same e-mail address as the one you are using to log into your PayPal. Your e-mail address will not be shown on my web site (it will be kept private and used only to verify your discount points).
 

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Finally on Facebook


Just finished making my business page on facebook.  Come and take a look.  There is a link on the right side of this blog or you can just follow this link:
http://www.facebook.com/pages/Polymer-Clay-Tutorials-Jewelry-and-Beads-by-Eugena-Topina/166188150060268

I am still trying to figure out how it all works.  My son says it is a never-ending process since the site is constantly changing.  Sounds encouraging!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

EnviroTex Lite Resin
Now at PolymerTutorials.com

The resin needed for the projects described in my tutorials is now available from site, PolymerTutorials.com.

It is a two-part epoxy resin, the kind that needs to be mixed immediately before use. I explain how to mix and apply it in every tutorial for polymer clay and resin.

I offer a trial-size kit, 2 fl. oz. total, for those who want to try one (or a few) of my techniques, but does not want to buy too much of this material. This kit will allow you to make a few items following any of my tutorials that call for this resin:


Faux Cloisonné;
Faux Art Glass;
Faux Lampwork 1;
Faux Lampwork 3;
Easy Faux Enamel;
Steampunk Butterfly;
Steampunk Hearts;
Perfect Metal Leaf.

Friday, October 01, 2010

Ready: Tutorial
Perfect Crackled Metal Leaf
on Polymer Clay



This new tutorial for polymer clay and resin is ready and available both through my Etsy shop and through my web site.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Web Site Updates

Checking the sources of the traffic to my sites a couple of days ago, I came across a post about my polymer clay work at some forum. The post had a link to the gallery at my Eugena's Creations web site with a short comment, something like this: “Polymer clay imitations of cloisonne beads, but very beautiful.”

While I am flattered by the “very beautiful” part of this statement, I felt quite uneasy about the rest of it.

The choice of preposition (“but”, not “and”), probably, says something about the author's taste. I feel, she does not really like cloisonne in general, or she is not a fan of the polymer clay versions of this style. Whatever it is, there is nothing I can do about it.

The first part of this comment, however, made me spend a few hours updating my site. I realized that in fact, the gallery did not represent my work in its variety. I had mostly my faux cloisonne work there (plus a few sculpted flowers), but none of my other works – in steampunk or rustic style, for example. So, I added 25 new gallery pages. Take a look when you have a few minutes.


It was a timely update, indeed. I am shifting priorities in my polymer clay work, concentrating on my tutorials now. I never liked “production” type of work, and with closing of my 1000Markets shop, I decided not to list my jewelry for sale anywhere else at the moment. So, Eugena's Creations web site is now becoming a showcase of my works rather than a tool to lead to my on-line jewelry shop. It is also becoming a portal to my Polymer Tutorials web site, which will be the center of my attention now. In either case, my gallery definitely benefits from showing a wider variety of my works.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Coming Soon:
Tutorial
Perfect Crackled Metal Leaf
on Polymer Clay


I am finishing a new tutorial.  It will be ready by October 1.

Right now, I offer it for an introductory price through my Etsy shop.  If you purchase this tutorial between now and October 1, the tutorial will be e-mailed to you no later than October 1.

In this tutorial, I will share my tips and tricks for obtaining the perfect crackled metal leaf effect on polymer clay. I will explain, step-by-step, how to make the necklace shown here, but the technique may be used in many of your future projects. I show a few examples in my listing at Etsy.com.

So, what do I mean when I say “ the perfect crackled metal leaf effect on polymer clay”?

That is simple. I mean: “pretty and durable”. In other words, the colors shall be as vivid as possible and they shall stay that way for a very long time.

As you can see, the colors in my metal leaf creations are really bright, the surface is clear and has a nice domed shape, and the entire piece is smooth like glass. I am using clear epoxy resin to add shine to my pieces and to protect their surface. But that is not all! The tutorial will explain how to do every step – from choosing the materials to adding the finishing touches – to assure the best results.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Closing My Shop at 1000Markets.com

I just learned that 1000Markets.com was acquired by Bonanza.com. Although the sellers are promised an easy transition to the new place, I decided to close my shop rather than moving it.

In fact, I am planning to concentrate on my tutorials only.  They will still be available through my PolymerTutorials.com web site and through my Etsy shop.

My 1000Markets shop will remain open for a few more days.  If you wanted to buy any of my jewelry listed there, this is your chance to buy it.  Since this site requires Amazon payments account (while many people prefer PayPal), I am willing to take your order off-site and accept your payment through PayPal.com.  Please contact me by e-mail to arrange this transaction if you are interested.

Friday, September 03, 2010

LABOR DAY SALE

I decided to do my fist sale ever and offer all my tutorials for 20% off this Labor Day weekend. This offer expires at 11:55 PM CST on September 6, 2010.  The tutorials are on sale in my Etsy shop, Eugena777.Etsy.com

Thursday, August 05, 2010

The New Faux Lampwork Technique:
More Examples

Here are a few more beads and bead sets created using the same technique as that described in my newest faux lampwork tutorial for polymer clay and resin:






Wednesday, August 04, 2010

New Tutorial!
Faux Lampwork for Polymer Clay and Resin

I just finished writing the new tutorial in my Faux Lampwork Series. 

This one explains how to use polymer clay, resin, and one more material to make focal beads that look amazingly like glass lampwork with swirl and floral design.   This third material is revealed in the tutorial.  I bet you will be surprised by what I am using for these designs!   This material is actually very inexpensive and redily available literally everywhere!






Now that I have three tutorials in this series (two of them call for polymer clay and resin and one uses only polymer clay), I decided to offer all three tutorials in a bundle - for a reduced price. 

Both the new individual tutorial and the three-tutorial bundle are availble through my web site and also through my Etsy shop.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Student Work:
Faux Lampwork

I received a few pictures from Nadezhda Dyachenko, who bought my  Faux Lampwork Tutorial about a month ago.


I keep repeating how much I enjoy seeing what other people are doing with my technique.

Nadezhda is experimenting a lot - with colors, shapes, and overall designs.



I especially like her green tablet beads in this picture:

Saturday, July 10, 2010

New Butterfly Necklace
Fly Away

I almost finished my two-sided butterfly necklace.

Here is side one:


And this is the other side of the same necklace:


The necklace can be worn on either side - all in black or in black and fire colors. Both sides have the same wire design, and both covered with protective layer of resin. the body of the butterfly is the same on both sides, with clear Swarovski crystals. The wings are symmetrical and attached to the body and to each other with sterling silver wire.  The whole  butterfly is about 5.5" wide.

The wire hinges are not glued in yet- I am still thinking how to make them better.  I am pleased with the last two pares of wire hinges at the bottom wings, but all other groups seem too crowded...  I am considering removing some of the loops so that the wire parts are more in agreement with the rest of the design.

Meanwhile, I sent pictures of this necklace to Fire Mountain Gems polymer clay and pearls contest.  Wish me luck!  If my necklace takes any place, the necklace will have to be sent to FMG, so I have to decide what to do with the wire connections by that time.  Any thoughts?

See my previous posts for work-in-progress pictures of this necklace.

Monday, July 05, 2010

Available Now: Tutorial
Polymer Clay Pandora Beads
Faux Lampwork Style



The new step-by-step tutorial is ready and can  be found at my web site, PolymerTutorials.com, and at my Etsy shop.

The tutorial explains how to make polymer clay Pandora beads.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Work In Progress
Butterfly Necklace



My butterfly necklace is starting to take shape. 

See the sketch for this necklace in one of my older posts.

I decided to make this focal piece two-sided, which quite a challenge, I have to admit. 

The picture above shows the faux cloisonne black side of the butterfly, and there will be a red and orange side created with foil and inks like in these pendants.

I still need to shape all the connections and put the wings and the body of the butterfly together.  It all looks good so far, but there are too many points at which things can go wrong.  I think, this is the most challenging piece I ever made. 

Sunday, June 20, 2010

PolymerTutorials.com



I decided to separate my jewelry form my polymer clay and resin tutorials. I created a new web site, PolymerTutorials.com, specifically for the tutorials and information about my classes. My jewelry and links to my on-line shops will remain on my old site, EugenasCreations.com.

The new site is less fancy and more user-friendly. The navigation is simpler, and the text is easier to read. I moved all my free tutorials here, including the information about conditioning and baking polymer clay, as well as tips for beginners and links to sites I recommend for buying polymer clay and tools. Every project tutorial has its own page on the new site (just as it was on EugenasCreations.com), but I also added pictures demonstrating possibilities of each technique and variations of each project as well as links to a few example pages from each tutorial.

I am quite pleased with the results. It feels like after a good cleaning – everything is in its place and in proper order.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

New Pendants and Earrings


I just finished a few more pieces combining polymer clay, metal leaf, resin, and metal frames.

I really like the results, although they are even more difficult to photograph than my Faux Cloisonne pendants. The light reflects in such a way that it is really difficult to see that the surface is absolutely smooth and clear. I tried photographing them from a sharp angle to show the surface finish, but than the pattern and colors get lost, and that is not good either...

While I am experimenting with my camera and lighting to get better pictures, just trust me that these pieces are truly amazing in person – the colors are extremely bright (and I will be ready to share my tricks in a new tutorial soon), while the surface is smooth as glass (that is what I like the resin for!).

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Great Presentation about Motivation

Just wanted to share....

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Lariat Necklace with White Sculpted Orchids,
Wedding Edition


I finished a white version of my polymer clay orchid lariat necklace originally made for the Fire Mountain Gems contest in 2008.  This is something I wanted to do for a long time, and I am very pleased with the result.

This particular necklace is sold, but I can make a new one like this for anybody interested.  Find all the details at my Etsy shop.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Work in Progress
Butterfly Necklace


Here is the sketch for the necklace I am working on right now. 

This is the focal part.  It will be 5.5" at the widest point, made of polymer clay and resin.  There will be lots of wire details, both on the surface and outside of the wings.  I have not decided about the rest of the necklace yet.  It has to be bold to match the size of the focal part, yet kind of discrete, because the butterfly has to be the center of attention.  I think, I will have to make the butterfly first, and then figure out about the rest of the necklace.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

New Pendant
Polymer Clay, Resin, Metal Leaf, and Silver


Yes, this pendant really is this vibrant in color. It is also smooth like glass, which is really difficult to capture in a photo.

This new pendant combines polymer clay, wire, metal leaf, inks, and resin – all framed in sterling silver. I am planning a big necklace I want to make for a competition, and the pendant is a result of my trial of the technique I want to use on that necklace. I will show my work in progress on the necklace during the next week.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

My New Necklace
with Hollow Polymer Clay Rose Bead

I made this bead a while ago, as you may remember.

This is one of those beads that has a character on its own, you know? I could not envision a necklace with it right away, but I felt a great potential in it.

Anyway, after sitting in my studio for a few weeks, the bead is finally on a necklace. I decided to keep the design simple and a bit moody to showcase the bead.

The necklace is black organza and cotton cords, and the bead is attached with an ornate silver bail. I also used a round agate bead and a Bali silver spacer to finish the top of the polymer clay bead.

What do you think?

Friday, May 07, 2010

New Pendant, Iris


Polymer clay pendant, with image created using my hand-made stamp. The lines of the image were back-filled with contrasting polymer clay. The pendant is framed in oxidized sterling silver frame and covered with clear resin to add depth and shine.

This is a variation of a few of my earlier techniques.

Sunday, April 11, 2010


Polymer Clay Chameleon:
Intricate




During my vacation trip, I visited a few gift shops, and in two of them I saw some amazing polymer clay works.

In both cases, they were these intricately-decorated animals by Jon Anderson of FimoCreations.com.

Amazing, aren't they?



Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Updates to My Tutorial Delivery System


While I am out of town at the beginning of April, my polymer clay tutorials will be available from my web site only.

I am also setting up a new system. Instead of sending my customers a file in pdf format, this system will generate a temporary web page and send a link to that page. The purchased tutorial file will be placed on the corresponding temporary web page. The customers will be instructed to download the file before it expires (in five days).

I hope this system will work better than the current one. With the current system (when tutorial files are e-mailed directly to customers), some of the e-mails get lost or somehow do not reach my customers. This happens rather seldom, but it is still very irritating. Problem is, when this happens, I do not get any mail failure messages, so I have no idea that the tutorial was not received. I only learn about the problem when my customer contacts me. When that happens, I re-send the tutorial manually, and always feel terrible for causing my customers this inconvenience. It seems that some people have protective settings in their e-mails preventing them from receiving big files (and my tutorials, with all those pictures, are usually 2 to 4 MB files). So, the new system, when only a short message is sent, shall overcome this problem.

I finished setting up and testing this system yesterday. I will continue monitoring its performance while I am still here.

After April 2, I will have no computer access until April 10. I hope there will not be any problems during this time.

Monday, March 29, 2010

New Polymer Clay Book
Polymer Artists Showcase


I've got an e-mail from Tejae Floyde this weekend with an announcement that her self-published book, Polymer Artists Showcase, is finished and available for purchase.

I am very happy to see a few pictures of my works included in such a great collection.

Tejae did an amazing job. She contacted many artists, whose works she likes, and asked to submit pictures of their best works. Originally, the project was intended as a black and white calendar, with one polymer clay creation per day for inspiration. Over time, it morphed into something totally different – a beautiful book with colorful pictures.

This is what Tejae says about it: ”I had a vision of a beautiful book filled with inspiring polymer photo's... It's a wonderful keepsake, studio book and resource for connecting with other polymer artists.  I do hope you love it as much as I do. It's a fun, full color 10"x8" photo book, 40 pages. I'm extremely proud of it. It took a long time to put together but I learned a lot and appreciate your patience.”

Tejae published this book through blurb.com – a site that allows to make bookstore-quality books with the help of their software and publishing resources. The book may be purchased here: http://www.blurb.com/bookstore/detail/1248012

I also want to tell that Tejae put a lot of work into this project, yet she marked up the book only a few bucks above the publishing price ($25 to buy the finished book versus $20 for publishing). The participating artists do not receive any financial rewards from this project.




Sunday, March 28, 2010


Polymer Clay Chameleon:
Mythical




How do you like these tiny dragons by Becca Golins? Aren't they cute?
Becca just opened her shop at Etsy.com earlier this month. Visit it to see a few more of her works.



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