Bakelite Bracelets

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Frequently Asked Questions...

How are these bracelets made?

http://www.shopstyle.com/browse/bracelets/Mark-Davis#

These are bakelite bangles with embedded stones. How are all the different translucent colors, marble colors, and opaque colors made? How are the stones embedded? Is bakelite simple lucite? Do you need to make a mold? Is a dremel used to insert the stones?


Answer:

Bakelite isn't the same as lucite though some of those completely clear ones do look like cast acrylic.

You can make very similar bracelets though with polymer clay (which is almost the same thing as Bakelite). Polymer clays come in all kinds of colors including "Translucent" (which can be made almost transparent when it's thin), and all kinds of marbled or more structured patterns can be made in it using various techniques.

Bracelets like this could be made "freestanding" by using a strong brand of polymer clay, but more often polymer clay "cuff" bracelets are made over an armature of some kind.
You can read all about making cuff bracelets with polymer clay, get lessons, and links to various examples, on this page at my polymer clay encyclopedia if you're interested in checking them out:

http://glassattic.com/polymer/jewelry.htm

(...under the Bracelets category, click on "Cuffs" and also on "Forms"...)

For the techniques on marbling polymer clay, mixing colors, using translucents, and giving polymer clay a high gloss finish, go to the page above or go to the Table of Contents page for the wholesite, then click on these page names in the alphabetical navigation bar on the left:
Color > Marbling
Translucents
Finishes
Sanding... Buffing

For "embedding" stones and other things into polymer clay, the ones which can tolerate the low heat used to cure polymer clay (230-275 F usually) can be embedded in the raw clay then baked with it (e.g. glass stones, real crystals, metal or glass beads, etc.).
Plastic "stones" and "rhinestones" can sometimes be done the same way, or instead they can be impressed in the raw clay and removed, and be glued back into the impressions after the clay is baked (polymer clays don't shrink or change shape when cured).
Check out these pages for more on that:
Onlays > scroll down a few paragraphs to "Baking and Onlays"
Jewelry > Misc > then scroll down to "Renaissance, etc"
Mosaics, Inlays > Inlays

HTH,

Diane B.

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Bakelite Bracelets

Bakelite Bracelets

Plastic Jewelry goes Grown-Up Chic

This season, fusionists of all ages are going nuts for modern takes on plastic jewelry in striking colors and bold designs. Lucite, which is a lightweight clear resin, is popping up everywhere in a rainbow of bright spring and summer shades. This type of jewelry is not only fun and fashionable, it's also affordable, so it's easy to add a few pieces to freshen up your look.

Plastic geometric jewelry was big in the 70s, with a retro feel and an artistic edge that added expression to any outfit. Today, Lucite, Bakelite and acrylic pieces with funky angles are being worked into bangle bracelets and multi-layered chain necklaces. Pastels and opaque are very popular, and make great vacation jewelry. Prints with stripes and animal spots are a few other hot styles of plastic jewelry this season, and do a great job of adding character to everyday pieces.

Plastic jewelry has a playful aspect to it, and is often characterized by futuristic geometric shapes, such as rounded rectangles or triangle bangle bracelets. We're also seeing a lot of plastic beaded necklaces in a rainbow of colors. These lightweight pieces can easily update your look without breaking the bank.

With all the talk of green-this and recycled-that, eco plastic jewelry is quickly rising in popularity. Recycled and reused plastic jewelry is the new coveted non-precious jewelry of the X and Y generation. Oftentimes, you can purchase cool unique designs for just a fraction of the cost of more expensive options. And the feel good factor makes this a guilt-free pleasure you can't afford to miss.

Just as every style-setter has her own tastes and preferences, plastic jewelry has its own varieties and options from which to choose. So whether you prefer a giant raspberry colored plastic beaded necklace or a transparent safari print chunky bangle, it's all about having fun with this modern take on retro chic plastic jewels.

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