Saturday, August 29, 2015

Semi-precious Gemstone Beads - Jade and Amethyst!

   Make these beautiful faux amethyst and jade beads with clear and colored hot glue stick. I chose purple in Mod Podge Mini Mod Melts to make amethyst, and green to make the jade. Mod Podge Milk Glass Mini Melts and VERY CLEAR mini hot glue sticks are also recommended. I used purple and clear in this tutorial. You can pick any color you wish to make your beads because I'm not the boss of you.

Using old scissors, or a knife, cut the clear and colored glue sticks into short 1 inch segments.

With the hot tip of your glue gun, "weld" the ends of clear and colored glue sticks together. In other words, melt one end and stick it to the other. Only join two segment at a time. Try to keep them as straight as possible for easier an feed into your glue gun.

In your mini glue gun, push your newly made stacked sticks through the hole where you normally push the hot glue. This may be a bit tricky. Continue to push  them in a clear/color/clear/color pattern. This way the glue flow will produce an inconsistent semi translucent bead - just like real gem stones. It's possible your segments may break off, just insert them individually, segment by segment. 

Coat mandrel with vegetable oil and cornstarch mixture as described here.
Simply squeeze out a bead around your mandrel or knitting needle. Twirl around until the bead is even and firm. The bracket tool I use is not needed, it is just my handy "left hand". After one minute, slide the bead off the mandrel.

String it as is, or for a more realistic look, coat it with water based gloss, when dry wipe on a wet stain of black or burnt umber then wipe off. The stain remains in crevices. This is the technique used in the finished photo above.

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