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Clay beads are always challenging if you do them in an intricate manner.
Check out different cultural aspects of carving, inlaying, and forming the
beads. You don't have to glaze them, they can be made with different
colored clays, or oxides can be added to them (but only while using rubber
gloves)...they are cheaper than FIMO or any other polymer clay, and look
very 'ancient' when done. There are a variety of "how to" books on beading,
and I know there are beading artists around who give workshops. I took a
couple in my area, and ended up buying a bead kiln and doing work for awhile
in beads.....I always go back to it...and of course the beads can be
'buttons' as well.
> I'm getting ready to finish my second year teaching 3-d art at the high
> school level. I'm already rewriting and revamping for next year. I teach a
> jewelry unit which consists of etched cuff bracelets based on culturally
> specific designs, forming and soldering rings design of their choice, and
> stone set pendants also their designs. Anyone out there have any jewelry
> projects or design ideas? I want to try something new! I have a couple
> students with great potential and I'd like to challenge them. I am going
> try to start casting next year, but may not have all the equipment.
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