Saturday, January 19, 2013

Polymer Soutache

As I was spending some time with pinterest (much better than house work!) I discovered the art of soutache jewelry.  Soutache is braiding that can be used on clothing.  Some artist have taken this into jewelry and I really like some of the pieces.   It was obvious that this was something that would translate into polymer clay.  I did a search and really couldn't find much in the polymer community.  I decided to give it a try.

 My first attempt was like so many things in my life -- it got too big.   I liked where it was going though so I pressed on.  I used some of the cane I created from my "5 from 1 Craftartedu class" as the focal beads for the next piece. Many of the soutache jewelry that I saw online also had bead work.  When I taught my class in Kansas City I spent some times with two friends there who were big into beading.  Let me tell you their studios were like walking into a beads store.  Now I have a few beads at home but I don't do a lot of beading (that's one of the reasons I am so terrible at finishing things) but I have a drop in in the bucket compared to them.  Didn't quite get it until I decided I wanted to add some bead work to my latest creation.  I get it never have the right bead when you need it.  My local bead store was having a huge end of the year sale so I got my big butt (told you... like so many things in my life...) over there and bought some beads.  Don't let the picture fool you - it is not finished.   There is no clasp.

It was very difficult to work the beads in with the polymer clay.  My next attempts were scaled down and with no beads.  I like the way they look.  It was a nice diversion from my complicated cane work.  I hope you enjoyed seeing them.


  1. I've noticed that soutache would translate into polymer well also. I think its new enough in jewelry trends that it hasn't been pick up on much. I like what you've done with it!

  2. again, just amazing, such beautiful work

  3. You need to secure each bead with wire, then embed each bead BEFORE wrapping the clay around... Hope this helps...