Sunday, January 1, 2012

Tutorial: Collaged Bamboo Tile Bead

I've been sorting and bagging bamboo tiles for my Etsy shop, and it occurred to me to include some of my vintage images in the listing, too. That way, people don't have to search for collage images to practice with. They're sized just right for the beads, with 2 each of 4 different images ready to cut and glue. Makes a great little art attack pack!

So here's a quick tutorial explaining one way to work with the beads and images:

SUPPLIES used in the example
  • 1 bamboo tile bead
  • laser printed image to size (1 for one side, 2 for both sides)
  • scissors
  • sandpaper (fine to medium, use gently!)
  • small flat paintbrush (the softer the better)
  • tinted decoupage medium, or gel medium, Diamond Glaze, etc.
  • tiny flatbacked rhinestone, cabochon, button or other embellishment
  • The Ultimate glue by Crafter's Choice, or jewelry glue
1. Cut away all the white space around the image. I also like to tip the corners.

2. Sand the bamboo tile lightly for better adherance. Wipe it clean.
3. Paint the back of the image with the decoupage medium. It's ok if the tinted medium seeps through the paper a little bit. We're going for an antiquey look.
4. Position the image onto the tile, pressing from the center out to avoid bubbles. Press firmly to adhere the image all the way to the very edges. It looks so cool when the image wraps around the tile a bit. Let dry.
5. Sand lightly around the edges of the image and then gently wipe clean. The sanded edges will look pretty white, until the next step, when they start absorbing the medium.
6. Paint the top of the image with tinted decoupage medium. If the brush leaves strokes or ridges, dilute the medium just a bit with water. Repeat when dry, for a second coat. It's fun to add even more thin coats of tinted medium to some areas and not others.

7. Attach the rhinestone (or other embellishment) with jewelry-appropriate glue, and let dry.

Now your tile bead is ready to string, knot, wrap with wire, etc.

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