Bead Baking Rack Tutorial

I am getting ready for an opportunity to really work with clay for about a month and am very excited about it. I have been busy getting a long to do list ready with a lot of eye candy and some great tutorials. I have also been trying to get supplies that I will need for said projects as I remember I need whatever it is that I need. While thinking of the fact that I would be working with more beads than I usually do I realized I really needed a bead baking rack. I have used tins, boxes, bottles, anything you can think of to hold the bead piercing pin with beads on it while baking or coating with a finish without much success.

Do you know that those suckers are expensive? To get three would cost me about 70.00. Do I need three? No but it sure would be nice and I can see myself having three full of beads in various stages of finish. My next thought was that I could make them out of the metal pieces I purchased while trying to make cutters. The cutters turned out real nice by the way :).

Okay now I am getting off track…….. I needed bead baking racks and I had some lightweight sheets it should be easy and you know what it was. Enjoy the bead baking rack tutorial I know I do I got racks baby!



Wire Cutters



Permanent Marker

Bead Pins


Step 1

I used 5X7 Aluminum  Flashing if you use a different size your measurements will be different. I am not sure what this is for exactly but you can get it at home depot where you find the ductwork.

Step 2

Here is a blank sheet as you can see on the package you need to be careful of the sharp edges.

Step 3

Mark 1 inch segments along the length of the sheet at the very edge.

Step 4

You will have 6 marks.

Step 5

Place another mark right at the end.

Step 6

Repeat for the other side.

Step 7

You want to make sure that the marks on this side of the aluminum sheet match up with each other. These marks are what the bead pins will sit on so you want them to be even.

Step 8

Turn the sheet over so you have a blank sheet again to mark on.

Step 9

This time you will mark 1 inch in on the sheet. See how this mark is different from the last one you made?

Step 9

Continue marking all the way down this is for you to gauge the heights of the sides of your rack.

Step 10

Repeat for the other side.

Step 11

Now you will want to take your pliers and move them to your mark starting at the very end. This picture was taken by me sitting the camera on the table and taking it. I tried not to get another set of hands to help me in the realization I need to figure out how to take good pictures when I need both hands. So I started in too much on this picture and left it in to help teach you what not to do.Step 12

Continue folding in moving up the length of the sheet. You want to make sure that you see the marks you made on the inside of the tray. I gave up and had my son help me with the next few shots. I think he did a great job. I know the way I have my hand bracing the sheet looks very dangerous but I found it helped me to get a good fold if I held it in my hands and not on the table. I did not even cut myself once but please please be very careful remember the metal can be very sharp.

Step 13

Finish folding the first side.

Step 14

Repeat other side and you get something that looks like this.

Step 15

Remember these?

Step 16

Using sharp cutters cut a small triangle in each mark on both sides being careful not to cut off an end when working close to the edges.

Step 17

Here you can see some of the triangles.

Step 18

Reshape the tray so that the sides are standing up straight.

Step 19

Place bead pins in each of the cut outs to make sure that this thing really does work. Reshape as needed being careful not to unshape an area you just got right.

Step 20

As good as it looks its naked so I had to get some beads. I thought about making some real quick out of a scrap cane sitting on the table but decided against it as I would start making beads and forget the finishing of the tray. So here are some that I really like.

Step 21

Do it all over again and make another tray because the package came with 10. You will have baking racks AND racks for finishing if you make enough.

That was fun. Next week some of the things on my to do list complete with links and lots of eye candy!

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7 Responses to “Bead Baking Rack Tutorial”

  1. Laurence Says:

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  2. Tina Adams Says:

    Great tut, I so need to make this, tired of having those beads roll all over !

  3. Mozelle Sansone Says:

    Okay, you know I don’t have to say it but I will. You are an artist and a genius!! 🙂 thank you for all you’ve taught!!! Mozelle, ( who is still waiting for hubby to fix her computer so I can print this)

  4. Sue Castle Says:

    Just to give you another idea, If you have a counter or table with a square edge, you can bend the metal over that, or you could use a large, heavy book to help you make the total length of the bend, rather than having to do it one mark at a time. I had a friend who was a sheet metal worker and he showed me how to do this. Thanks for a great tutorial for a useful piece of “polymer clay equipment”.

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