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Beaded Chandelier

Robin Howard makes beads from polymer clay and attaches to a chandelier.

Materials and Tools:

chandelier
fine-grit sandpaper
black spray paint
variety of polymer clay
baking sheet
shrink plastic sheets
colored markers
brown grocery bag
acrylic paint - optional
small paintbrush
24-gauge wire
wire cutters
needle nose pliers
drill
small drill bit
kitchen knife
band saw
old postage stamps
white glue
cigar box lid
safety glasses

Steps:

1. Sand any rust or varnish from the chandelier with fine-grit sandpaper.

2. Spray paint the chandelier with black paint. Let dry.

3. Condition the polymer clay by kneading it with your hands. Roll each color of the polymer clay into snakes and cut the snakes into 1-inch sections with a kitchen knife.

4. Shape the clay into circles, discs, spirals and oblong beads.

5. Run a drill bit through each bead to form a hole for beading.

6. Place the beads on a baking sheet and bake according to the clay manufacturer's directions.

7. Paint beads with acrylic paint and a small paintbrush as desired.

8. Draw stars on shrink plastic sheets. Draw the stars freehand and color with a permanent marker.

9. Cut each design out of the shrink plastic and place it on a square cut out of a brown grocery bag on a baking sheet.

10. Bake at 325 degrees for three minutes. Let the shrink plastic stars cool. Drill a hole in each of the stars.

11. Glue old postage stamps to a cigar box lid. Apply glue to the back of the postage stamp, glue it to the lid and coat the top with glue using a paintbrush. Let dry.

12. Wearing safety glasses cut out the stamps using a band saw. Drill holes in the top of each stamp piece.

13. Cut 24-gauge wire into five sections each about one yard long.

14. String beads and plastic ornaments on the wire sections, leaving about 3 inches on each end to wrap around the chandelier.

15. Wrap one beaded wire around each chandelier arm until all sections are covered.

16. Cut short pieces of wire and string with shrink plastic ornaments or the postage stamp pieces along with clay beads. Hang them from parts of the chandelier.

Beaded Chandelier Project by Robin Howard from Westfield, Ind.

As a young child, Robin Howard’s parents took her to visit many exciting locations, which inspired her to major in anthropology. She loves to learn about different cultures and traditions so much that she now travels to exotic locations, like Kenya, at least four or five times a year. When she’s not making her art, she can be found practicing the traditional Chinese Dragon Dance with her Chinese dance troupe.

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