Clay Jewelry Making, Step by Step.
Each bead begins as fresh clay that is shaped by hand. Green is clay at its rawest form: unfired, unglazed, and damp to the touch.
Bone-dry clay is absent of moisture and takes at least 12 hours to reach this stage, depending on the warmth and humidity of the environment. The clay is now at its most fragile state and is carefully sanded to further shape and smooth.
Glazing bisqued pieces adds a layer of color and sheen, depending on the type of glaze used. There are several pieces in Little Clay Studio's collection that are unglazed, which adds a matte and textural quality to the jewelry.
A color study is applied to evoke a striking combination. Each necklace is hand-wrapped to achieving smooth and even binding.
Clay at this stage has dried considerably, and has the feel of cool leather. Because there is still moisture in leather-hard clay, its surface is easily buffed with water.
The first kiln fire produces bisqueware, which is sturdy and absorbent, and has reduced in size. Another sanding is applied to each piece before it is glazed.
A second kiln fire vitrifies the clay, making it water impermeable when it reaches its cone temperature. Vitrified clay is further strengthened and reduced in size. It is during this fire when the applied glaze develops. The beauty of glaze firing is there is an element of surprise each time the kiln is unloaded. Read more about clay jewelry care and durability.
Find a piece that speaks to your artistic side.