Saturday, May 11, 2013

Color Making

It's a chore… in my studio anyway. I'm not sure why, but I really dislike mixing up new polymer colors. It's so monotonous. It's a necessity for beadmaking though and it's what I've been doing for the last couple days.

I started off with this:
A heap of open blocks of polymer and already mixed colors——some I've kept careful records of and the rest are colors that I have no idea what I did to make them. It always makes me sad when I come up with an awesome color but can't remake it.

I finally got all the baggies organized and labeled: unmixed colors, cane bits, mixed colors with recipes, and the who-knows-how-I-made-it colors (I'll use those in bead cores and one-of-a-kind beads).

Did I ever tell you that I'm actually a really organized person? I like everything in its place at all times… sometimes though I just don't have enough time to make it happen. I know you don't believe me now!

Next I moved on to the new polymer and started leeching, conditioning and mixing.
I realized right away that I'd forgotten to order two of my most used colors and took a break to place a second order. Oops!

And finally right before quitting time, I have something to show for the last couple days of work!
Recipes for ALL the new colors this time! I always start off mixing small amounts in case one turns into mud. If you work with polymer, you'll know what I mean… it's that horrid ugly color that occasionally turns up even when you have the best intentions——only fit for bead cores or stamp and mold making.

I'm pretty happy with these results! And I have to say that in person these colors look much better! Indoor lighting and my hurried photography didn't do a very good job capturing the real shades. Most of these will be made in larger batches and I still have quite a few more colors to mix. I'm not going with any particular palette——I'm just going with what I like and what suits my work best.

I can hardly wait until I'm finished… new beads will follow!

What one "chore" do you have in your studio that totally bores you? Maybe you don't work in polymer, but I'm sure you use colors. ;-) What colors do you prefer to work with? Are you working off a particular palette… maybe the Pantone colors of the year? We'd love to hear more about it!


  1. I am bored by sanding my pieces... and I hate to tidy everything up again ^^

  2. Putting away my beads and findings is a real chore for me. I usually work with piles of beads on my table. I wish I could just have out what I am currently using. I am getting a little better at that but have a long way to go. I have at least organized my beads by color so there is a specific place that the beads need to be returned.

  3. Thanks for sharing your process Rebekah. My really boring process is tidying up my studio, I am a lamp work jewellery artist, who likes to be neat and tidy (honest). My studio's consists of one outdoor studio, one utility room and one beading room....that constantly need a clear out!
    The colours you have made up are totally yummy, I like the appliances in the background too, so interesting to see how other artists work. As for colour use in my work, I am mainly influenced by what surrounds me, and am often found snapping photos of pretty coloured objects that catch my gaze. Off to browse your studio now....

  4. I am fascinated by what you are doing. I only use polymer as a palette for my paints so I really need to learn more about this! I get bored with prepping the bezels, pushing clay in them and conditioning them to prepare for the molds and textures and paintings. I also hate cleaning things up and as such I have terrible towers of materials and tools ready to bury me alive! But that all needs to change very soon! As for color, it is dictated by the beads around me or what my clients request. I don't get too much into the fads, but I do like to sprinkle these colors in here and there but it is likely unintentional if it is on trend! Thanks for the informative post! Enjoy the day! Erin P.S. I linked to AJE today on ABS mentioning my participation in last months' COM. Thanks again for letting me participate!

  5. I have a pile of mixed colors that look very similar to these, so pretty. It's fun to mix. Hope to get back to creating soon. I always love your posts Rebekah!

  6. What a lovely kaleidoscope of vibrant colors - beautiful and will eventually be made into awesome beads. The one chore I hate is sorting through the wire scrapes that accumulate on my work table. I know if I did it as I cut and trimmed the wire it would not be so daunting but when I'm creating I hate to be distracted.

  7. Wow - love those colors you came up with! I really don't like the filing and sanding of our copper pieces. What I love is playing with colors when I am making beads (flamework) or enameling our pieces. I love just throwing enamels together and seeing what happens. I have come up with some wonderful colors that way but of course didn't write down the color combinations :) I love playing with transparents - those seem a lot more fun than opaques.

  8. Love those colors! Thanks for sharing them!

    My 'chore' is making ear wires and jump rings. I tend to save that chore till the verrrrry last minute.


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