by Rebecca, a.k.a., Artybecca
I made my first necklace in 1971 with “love beads” and have made jewelry ever since. Fast forward to 2007, on a car trip through West Virginia. We stopped at Tamarack, a West Virginia art center, and I saw a book featuring pretty beads and jewelry on the cover. I was shocked to learn they were made of polymer clay. I had no idea it could make such beautiful things!
Somewhere around 2004 I couldn’t find beads in magenta and hot pink so I thought of making them out of polymer clay. I bought clay at Michael’s but didn’t know anything about working with clay (and didn’t even know there were things I needed to know). As a result, my beads were sad and misshapen and I concluded that polymer clay was not the answer.
I bought the book – Polymer Clay Creative Traditions by West Virginian Judy Belcher -- and read every word. I got a pasta machine, bought clay, and started experimenting.
I just recently looked though the book again and discovered that works by several members of the Pittsburgh Polymer Clay Guild – people who are now my friends! -- are in it. If I hadn’t found that book, I might not know a bunch of great ladies and might not be happily obsessed with polymer clay beads today!