Perhaps you can no longer find a certain coveted bead in the craft store, or perhaps you wish to make copies of your own original creation. Whatever the reason, you can duplicate beads quite quickly from an original once you make a mold. The mold making process is challenging but also rewarding, and the result will last for a long time. With it, you can create a large number of duplicate beads.
Things You'll Need
- Original bead
- 1/16-inch diameter wire
- Talc powder
- Acrylic kit
- Resin dye
- Polymer molding clay
- Metal tray
- Aluminum foil
- Face mask or respirator
- Popsicle sticks
- Paper cups
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Select a well-ventilated workplace with a level surface. Lay out three layers of newspaper. Place your original bead on it and thread a 4-inch long piece of 1/16-inch diameter wire through the hole of the bead.
Tear off a wad of modeling clay big enough for your bead and roll it into a ball. Squish it slightly so that it has a flat face. Sprinkle it with talc powder.
Embed half of your original bead, along with the wire, in the clay. Remove it carefully.
Place the mold on aluminum foil, and place that on a tray. Stick the whole thing in an oven. Bake it for 20 minutes at 275 degrees F.
Remove the mold and let it cool. Place the wire and bead back in the impression.
Tear off a second wad of modeling clay to roll it into a ball. Sprinkle it with talc powder and press it against the bead and wire and cover them completely. Make sure the clay is flush against the mold that you already baked and that the wire sticks out at either end.
Carefully remove the first half of the mold and your original bead. Place the second impression on aluminum foil and place that on a tray. Bake the second half the mold in the oven for 20 minutes at 275 degrees F.
Remove the second half of the mold and let it cool. Don your gloves, goggles and face mask.
Remove the wire from your original bead and roll it in talc powder. Lay it in the groove on the first mold you made. Place the second mold on top of the first, lining up the grooves.
Take out your acrylic epoxy kit. It should come with two bottles. Pour a portion of one bottle into a paper cup, and an equal portion of the second bottle into a separate cup.
Pour the contents of both cups into a third cup. Stir the mixture for one minute with a Popsicle stick.
Add any epoxy dyes you have in order to color your bead. Stir the dye in until the acrylic is evenly colored.
Pour the mixture into your mold through the hole around the wire. Allow the acrylic to harden. The amount of time this takes depends on the brand of acrylic epoxy.
Pop the top off of the mold when the resin is cured. Remove your duplicate bead and gently wiggle the wire to remove it.