My starting material is a smooth stoneware clay which fires at 1220° C. I stain little batches of clay to achieve the colours I want, then I make the beads, shaping them entirely by hand and poking the holes through while the clay is still squashy. When the beads are bone dry I glaze them with a transparent glaze - matt or gloss. Then I thread them onto special wire and carefully suspend them in the kiln to prevent them fusing to one another during firing.
Once the kiln has cooled (about 15 hours) the beads are taken out and arranged in various sets - necklaces, bracelets, earrings - ready for stringing.
I use very strong cotton thong for most of my necklaces, often knotted between beads, and dye it to echo the colour of the beads.