Welcome To Our World!

It's been a long time in the making.  Even long before it was known that there was a need.

In the beginning, there were talented people who made beautiful objects - but no one knew these wonders existed.  Then the Powers That Be created Etsy, and lo... a wonderful new marketplace was born. And the people came. And the jewelry makers opened shops to welcome the people. And the people saw that it was good.

Then the makers created Teams to draw the people into their shops. And many teams were born and thrived.  All except for the makers who used metal clay. The metal clayers wandered and toiled and tried to invite many shoppers to enjoy their individual sites, and the shoppers began to come - but they were distracted by the promotions and glitz of the mighty Teams.

And so a need appeared. And lo, the need was met when the Etsy MetalClay Team arose from within the midst of the makers. And the people saw that it was good.

And when the Powers That Be saw the mighty Etsy MetalClay Team, they decided to inform the masses that this was a great and worthy team. And so they asked their scribe to write to all the world that Etsy MetalClay would be featured on the Storque on Wednesday October 1st. And it was good.

And the Etsy MetalClay Teams' blog and Website and Flickr group thrived and grew and all of the intelligentsia and glitteratti came and supported and bought and loved - And it was very good!  

Huzzah, and welcome to our new blog.  There are many wonderful and amazing postings planned, and many educational and interesting tips and tricks to share. And if you join us, scribes will send you many messages heralding the newest of the news. And it will be most wonderous good!


Sue said...

Fabulous job Lora and everyone else that made this happen! Yay!

Anonymous said...

The Lora hath spoketh!!!Huzzah! Huzzah!

Sarasota Sarah

Ruth said...

Woo-hoo!! Great to have a blog up and going! Great job.

Anonymous said...

Lora, my hat goes off to you for spearheading this amazing success for us!!! And, everyone else who has worked so hard! So proud to be a part of this group!!

Angela Crispin said...

Excellent ! Love it ! What a great initiative ! Congratulations !!!

Anonymous said...

The blog is looking great, kudos!

TZTUDIO (T's Studio) said...

Very exciting things are happening with our team!
: )

Dan said...

I'm starting doing bits and things on metal clay. basically I want to do round beads (4mm-6mm) to complement some of my pieces. I am taking a class and the instructor said that you use cork clay to make beads (which she didn't liked much). I have this roller thingamajig I use with polymer clay to make rounds and bicones and I was wondering if I can use that on metal clay (PMC3)? Also I have not much space at home nor $$$ to buy a kiln. I've done research about it and so far my possible alternatives are Speedfire Mini burner, Hot Pot, Speedfire Cone with a propane tank and a Beehive Cone Kiln (I think that's the name is electric saw it onRio Grande Jewelry) that has a tempeture controller. I don't plan to do much pieces, just small stuff like pendants, earrings and charms to complement my beaded jewelry.
what you recommend?

Catherine Witherell said...

Hi Dan,

Thanks for your comment and interest in metal clay. You didn't say which form of metal clay you are planning to use for your beads but I'm going to assume you mean to use silver because the kilns you mentioned are all made especially for firing silver.

If you make solid silver beads with no core, you have to make sure that you dry your beads adequately so that there are no surprises when you fire them. Metal clay when it's still wet inside could distort and/or explode so dry them over a few days in a dry environment. If you're going to make 4-6mm beads, the beads you make by hand will have to be bigger than that to account for the shrinkage of about 12-14% that will occur during drying and firing.

The Ultralite Beehive kiln is my choice for all the kinds of things you want to make. I have a few and use them for one day classes and they do the job of firing a few pieces very well and they only use the amount of electricity that a lightbulb uses .

You cannot use cork clay in the Ultralite for a couple of reasons, the burnout is smokey and probably toxic on that account and also the cork burns really hot and the Ultralite will not be able to disburse this heat like the inside of a 7x7 inch kiln can and your silver beads will possibly melt partially where the very hot spots are. Cork clay is best used inside beads that are fired in a bigger closed kiln on the kinds of shelves that don't get hot the same way that the ceramic disc in the Ultralite does.

Here is an interesting alternative for hollow beads. Make some smooth round shapes and sizes out of polymer clay. Roll out your clay to about a 2mm thickness (3 playing cards thick) and then form this small sheet around your polymer forms. When they are good and dry, cut the beads off with an exacto knife around the widest point and lift off each half. Make a paste with some of your metal clay and water or some of Sherri Haab's "Paste Maker" solution and metal clay. You can apply some of that paste around the slightly dampened edge of one half of the cut bead. Dampen the edge of the other half too with the tip of a tiny paintbrush and then press them together. Let them dry thoroughly and then clean up the excess clay with sandpaper. With this method, you'll use less metal clay and save yourself a lot of money and be able to make more beads with each package.

Thanks for asking and I wish you success.

Catherine WItherell

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