As many of you know, texture is one part of the Balance Bead equation. The textured back helps prevent the Balance Bead from slipping around because it creates a small amount of friction.
In September of last year, when I was just beginning to manufacture them, I hadn’t figured out a way to build the texture into the mold. Therefore, I had to hand “scratch” the back of each one with an engraving tool. That process was very labor intensive, and it prevented me from achieving a uniform look from bead to bead. And let’s be honest, it wasn’t very pretty!
By November, I’d created the first mold with a textured back. The mold was created from a hand-textured piece, so although I could now achieve uniformity from piece to piece, it still didn’t have a professional look. Also, can you see my meager attempt at branding on this version? I engraved “BB” into the piece for the first time.
In February of this year, I had a CAD (computer-aided design) model created based on my handmade design. The computer was able to achieve a level of precision my little hands could not. And check out the branding at this point: a real logo! I was pretty happy with the look of the back at this point and stuck with it for the majority of this year.
This month, I finished my newest batch of Balance Beads! Although I was happy with the previous version, I wanted the design to be just a little bit cleaner. See how the edge is smoother? The texture dots are more uniform? The logo is cleaner? I was able to achieve that by creating a revised CAD and using a metal mold (as opposed to a rubber mold which had previously been used).
You may also notice that the surface area is slightly greater than it had been in the past. Well, that’s a story for a future post!