Monday, March 21, 2011

African Trade beads-part 3

This is a series of African trade bead primary patterns, this is part 3,
you can see part 1 here,

you can see part 2 here,

I am so sorry I didn't get this up sooner, I have been flat on my back for a week. I guess I needed a break, because my back went out. I am starting to feel better now. YAY!!
I hope you all had a great weekend.
Please have a wonderful week and remember, if things get overwhelming, to stop for a minute and breathe deeply. Make something or hug a tree.

Here is part 3.

This has the cane we are going to make here
 and the last one made together in part 1,
both on this bead.
You will need:

double pointed knitting needle- I do not have the size but it is 1 1/2mm in diameter

Links for products will lead to my Hubby's store
Thank you for shopping at the Clay Factory, not just a clay store anymore.;-D

I mix all of the colors (red and yellow) with equal amount of porcelain white and a 3/8" ball of opaque white.
I mix the Black and the Opaque white separately with equal parts of the porcelain white.

Here we go.

Roll out a coil that is 2" long and 3/4" in diameter.

Use the half circle disk that comes with your extruder set.
Place the disk in the end of the cap and screw out the handle and load the barrel of nice and newly conditioned poppy red. The softer it is the better it comes out of the end.
Load the barrel with red.
Extrude a tube of half circles.

This is shown with the cane coil you made above.

Cut sections 2" long or the size of the main coil you made before.

Place them on to the center coil. Press them gently in to place. Set the next one right next to the last one. You do not have to smash them on.

Cover the center coil completely. I have 8 on here. If you stand the coil on its end. It is less likely to flatten the half circles.

Roll out a sheet of conditioned white on the 4th thickest setting in the Clay Machine.
It must be at least 2 1/2" wide by at least 5 1/2" long.
Place the center red coil on top of the sheet of white and trim the sheet on the sides to fit the center.
Cut the end where you lay the coil for a straight edge.
I lean the top of the blade towards the center red coil and cut the edge at an angle.

Roll the sheet of white up with the center coil inside and roll the leading edge over the far end of the sheet and back again towards yourself to make a mark on the sheet so you know where to cut.
Lean the top of the blade back towards you and the coil to bevel that edge and cut just inside the line or mark made on the sheet. The blade will be on the right side or before the mark you made.

Gently with your little finger run the side of your finger down the coil making a slight indentation in the outside of the coil to mark the dip between each petal.

Now, using the knitting needle point and define that line by "drawing" the line down the side of the cane with the point gently.
Hold the whole cane section with it cradled lightly in your palm and fingers.

Condition the black clay right before you load the barrel of the clay gun up and extrude a full barrel of the black clay.

Cut the extruded triangles to the same length as the flower you have built so far, 2".

Place the points in the dips all the way around the flower.
Roll lightly on your work surface.

Roll out the conditioned black clay on the thickest setting in your clay machine and trim the edges to match the flower coil center of the cane and wrap a sheet of black around it and bevel the ends like you did above with the white sheet.

Roll the first leading edge of the sheet over the opposite end of the sheet and make a mark and cut just inside of the line closest to the center.
You can really see that mark here.

Match the edges and close them up together. They should be very close if you do it right.


Cover it again with the another sheet of the same thickness.

Condition and roll out a sheet of the yellow on the thickest setting in your clay machine and cover the coil with a sheet of yellow.

Bevel the edge like before and match the edges and close them together.

Grab the cane like this and choke it. Turn it a little bit and then squeeze again. Keep rotating and squeezing, moving down the cane a little at a time. Towards the center of it.

Flip the cane over from end to end and squeeze and rotate, work up to the other end.

Turn it a little and squeeze and rotate. You are forcing the whole thing together a little at a time and it will help with compacting everything together so there is little distortion in your work.

Once you have reduced like this to half the diameter. Roll on your work surface to smooth out all of the lumps.
Roll down to about 3/4" in diameter and cut in the center by rolling the blade and the cane forward or away from you.

Part 4


  1. Marie, you´re the best. Amazing work - and thank you for sharing. I´m glad you´re better!!!!!!

  2. Fantastic Marie ;o) I hope your back is better ;o) Have a great day!

  3. Very awesome. I love this. I think I might be able to do this. LOL

  4. So so sooooooo cool. Dear Marie, I think your back gave out carrying the weight of your awesomeness. Please do take care of yourself!


  5. I'm so touched by your generosity. I'm new to polymer and ready to try everything, making mistakes and learning all the way. You are a teacher extraordinaire!!


I am so glad you stopped by. Please leave your words of wisdom. I look forward to them and I so enjoy reading them all.
Live to love, Love to create, and create to connect.