While researching the proper techniques for using plastic molds during the bead making process, I came across a fantastic book entitled, Techniques, Projects, Inspiration: Polymer Clay Beads, by Grant Diffendaffer. This book has all kinds of useful information about making different types of clay beads, how to make engaging designs and how to use polymer clay tools. While all of these things are useful and informative, the best secret the book revealed is how to make an oven proof bead curing rack.
I have always wanted a bead drying rack (other than my old cookie sheet), but I hadn’t ever considered making my own. I have often visited the one in my local craft store and pined over it, dreaming of all the things I could do with one of my own. Mr. Diffendaffer’s bead drying rack is really easy to make and great for a permanent homemade solution; unfortunately, I didn’t have all the necessary equipment to make the one in his book. I began to wonder if there was a way to use the materials that I already had on hand to make my own bead curing rack. After a little research, I found that I could make my own.
Aluminum Pie Plate Bead Drying Rack
Two aluminum pie plates
Heat resistant glue
Using a permanent marker, and working from one-inch from the side of an aluminum pie plate, draw a mark for each nail being placed into the drying pan. Make sure to mark the bottom of the pan. This will make nail insertion much easier. Keep at least one-inch of space between each nails. This will ensure that there is plenty of room for your larger bead projects.
Carefully, insert a nail into each mark. Make sure that the nail is inserted from the bottom of the pie plate. The nail head will hold the nail in place and prevent it from slipping through to the other side of the pan. Gently insert the pointed end of the nail through the hole. If necessary, use pliers to pull the remaining portion of the nail through the hole. Be careful not to tear the pie plate.
Cover the bottom of the un-pierced pie plate with heat resistant glue. Always read the package to ensure that the glue is non-toxic when heated. Place the nailed pie plate into the top of the glued pan.
Clamp the pie plates together and allow the glue to dry as the instructions recommend.
Techniques, Projects, Inspiration: Polymer Clay Beads; Grant Diffendaffer; 2007
Brandi’s Bead Creation and Craft Supplies
Nail Size Chart