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by Nan Hawthorne
A bicone is two cones attached at their bases (See figure at the right).

Making bicone-shaped polymer clay beads is actually a lot of fun. Start with a roughly spherical piece of unbaked clay on your work surface. Take any small flat surface - a shallow jar lid works great - and place it over the bead. Applying gentle pressure slightly tilt and rotate the jar lid several times. The result should be a bicone. The length and sharpness of the bead will depend on the pressure you use, tilt angle and the number of rotations. Practice until you get what you want.

Polymer Clay Express sells a specially designed bicone bead shaper consisting of a trough and several different paddles to make different sizes and shapes of bicone.

©2003-Nan Hawthorne

Thank you, Nan! You can Email Nan at or visit her Website at

From Debbie Goodrow
Tip: "I start with a round, raw, bead shape, on a flat worktable. Hold a -flat- surface in your hand so it always stays parallel to your work-surface. It’s best to use something sized so that you can put your fingertips around the edges (a can lid works, but you can’t see what’s happening underneath. A square or round tile of Plexiglas or very sturdy glass about 3 to 4 inches is perfect). The important part is to keep the upper surface parallel to your worktable all the time!

Then move the surface in your hand in a circle repeatedly, the same size circle each time. Try this... you're probably holding the surface with your hand down over it, fingers around several edges. Note where your index finger is pointing down, and think of having a circle drawn on the table under your index finger. Start with the size of a quarter, maybe. Point to it with your index finger and keep your finger pointing at the rim of the circle to guide you as you move the surface (tile) around. Just keep going, don’t use a lot of pressure, keep it rather light, and you’ll see it evolve into a bicone.

The ‘tallness’ or ‘squatness’ of the bicone will depend on the size of the circle you use as your guide. I find it’s one of those things you just have to try. If you don’t get it right away, just keep trying. Suddenly it will work, and suddenly you’ll get the feel of them. - Live Succulently! "

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