Creative Crafters- Kuzi Clay Designs

Image: Kuzi Clay Designs

I know this is not theatre but this is a feature I am proud of and want to keep going, I see Kuzi on Instagram and asked her if she wanted to be on my blog and she said yes.

 

Tell me more about your craft? What is it? When did you find out you were good at it?

Kuzi Clay is all about polymer clay jewellery. Polymer clay is an incredibly lightweight, oven hardened clay that lends itself perfectly to jewellery making. I focus on statement jewellery – bright, colourful earrings and necklaces, combining patterns and prints with pops of colour to create unique pieces.

I started playing around with polymer clay at the beginning of lockdown during March 2020 – I bought a little starter kit, and just went for it! I was instantly hooked – the first few weeks saw lots of abandoned attempts and mistakes all over the place, but with time and practice, I saw the change in the quality of the pieces I was producing and started being able to make jewellery I was proud to say I’d created!

Why did you decide to turn into a business?

There were a few reasons really – I’d made some small items and shared them with friends and family, and they suggested starting to sell them – I think without their support and gentle pushes, I would have been too nervous to do it. I really wanted to share what I was doing with people as well, show them how accessible working with polymer clay is, and how cute, affordable jewellery doesn’t only have to be available from large retailers. Also, our house was filling up with hundreds of pairs of earrings that I had nowhere to store!!

8

Image: Kuzi Clay Designs

Tell us more about the process, the step by step process of your craft-From the concept to the final product.

I generally start a mood board going on Pinterest – colours, patterns, shapes that inspire me, and from there come up with a concept and design. I like to take inspiration from the places I’ve been around the world, and the colour palettes associated with those places, but I also love taking prints from nature – animal and floral, and combining them with pops of colour.

From there, I source the clay colours I need and mix them as required. If I’m doing a patterned slab of clay, I roll out the base clay, and then start to apply the pattern directly on top of the base. This can be a really time-consuming process – two recent collections, my animal print and sunflower collections took about 8 hours to create just the patterned slab! Once the pattern is finished, or the clay is ready to be cut, I quickly smooth it out and check for any imperfections or air bubbles, and then I’m ready to cut!

I have a selection of cutters in different shapes and sizes, and using the concept and design from the mood board, I pick and choose the cutters I need and get going! I then transfer the clay shapes onto a baking sheet and pop in the oven. Once they’re finished and cooled, it’s time for the real magic to begin!

The next step is to sand and buff each individual piece, to smooth out the clay and give it a real shine. I use 5 different grits of sandpaper, starting out with the coarsest and then moving down to the finest. Once sanded, I use a small piece of denim to buff them up and give them a glossy look!

thumbnail

Image: Kuzi Clay Designs

It’s now finally time to assemble the earrings! I use a small drill and drill the holes I need, and then assemble the pieces together with gold plated jump rings and any other charms or accessories I need. The final step is to glue the stud post onto the back of the earrings and get ready to package up!

I hope you can tell it’s a real labour of love, and I take as much care as possible as I’m doing it as I really want anyone who buys my creations to love them as much as I do.

Where do you sell your product?

I sell directly via my website – https://kuzi-clay-designs.myshopify.com/ or for custom creations, you can contact me on Instagram!

Have you noticed a rise in crafters and people buying creations?

Definitely. I think there’s a shift culturally towards supporting slow fashion and small businesses who might be local or match with your own values and ideals. I know personally, I will always choose to support small and love seeing the journey that crafters go on when starting up their businesses. I also volunteer with a small independent market locally, and from speaking with traders and people who visit the market, it’s definitely something people are looking for on a more frequent basis now.

What is the crafting industry like?

I feel like I’m pretty new to it all, but so far what I’ve seen is a wonderful community of likeminded people, supporting each other and building each other up at every opportunity. I try to support the crafting community as much as possible, as both a seller and a buyer, and most of the people I’ve spoken to do the same. I could spend hours lost in some of the incredible stories and creations made by some of the businesses I follow!

thumbnail (2

Image: Kuzi Clay Designs

Do you recommend people starting up their own crafting creations and turning it into a business?

As with anything, if you enjoy it and it’s something you want to do, I would say go for it! It’s fairly low risk, and can deliver some brilliant rewards! You can always reach out to the crafting community for support and advice as well, there is a wealth of knowledge out there that people are more than happy to share. I think my only watch out would be the risk of the business side taking over your enjoyment of the craft itself – it’s not something I’ve personally experienced, but it’s something I’ve seen shared a lot across various groups – your enjoyment of the craft and personal wellbeing should be at the forefront of everything you do.

5

Image: Kuzi Clay Designs

Check out Kuzi Clay Designs below

Website – https://kuzi-clay-designs.myshopify.com/

Instagram – https://instagram.com/kuziclaydesigns

Facebook – https://facebook.com/kuziclaydesigns

 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.