Last week I gave away my two bottom-whorl spindles (the Celtic one and a plain one), along with some fibre, to two lovely young ladies new to the SCA to
get them addicted too encourage the craft. This is all well and fine with me (I can’t wait to see how they do!), but it does leave me with nothing by my now-definitely-too-heavy furniture-caster spindle and my ugly-but-zippy top-whorl clay spindle. Of course for me, this means time to make more spindle whorls!
The art-clay is fine, but I’ve now observed that it takes a good few days to fully cure, and let’s just say I’m not renowned for patience… I thought this time around I’d try polymer clay: I bought me some Fimo from the local art store ($2.50 ea.), which can be “fired” in your own oven. I also hoped that the polymer clay could make some “prettier” spindles :)
I found this great little tutorial on making Lentil Swirled Beads (such a cool site! check out her other stuff, too!), and tried to follow her directions. I didn’t get nearly as spiral-ly beads as I’d hopes, but I was using inferior tools (a CD case and dinnerplate). I made one large bead with about 1/3 pkg red & 1/3 pkg black, and a smaller one using maybe 1/4 red & black with a blob of white .
Then I smooshed some stuff together that hadn’t been working out well at all into a funny little high-whorl.
On the whole, these spindles are still not quite as pretty as I’d hoped, but I have some faith that with practice I could have success with polymer clay (how about a Faux Ivory spindle?). For now, it remains inexpensive, accessable (more so than wood and woodworking tools!), and quick (even though I didn’t get around to firing them until the next night); I’d definitely recommend other home-spindle-makers to “give it a whirl”!