Polymer clay can be used for several different crafts. Polymer clay is a pliable, bendable polymer compound that is not true clay. Polymer clay is made up of fine particles of polyvinyl chloride suspended in plasticizer. This basically means it can be used much like clay, but it comes in dozens of colors that can be blended together like paint so you can make your own colors.
Here are some tips to help you get started when making your polymer clay crafts:
Decide on a pattern â€“ What do you want to make? You can find several ideas online for making polymer clay crafts. Decide on how complex you want your project to be.
Choosing the colors â€“ After you have a design in mind, the instructions should tell you what colors you need. If you are creating a project on your own, you can always knead together different clay colors to get the desired color you want. If you don’t want the clays to mix, use a damp cloth to wipe your hands with before touching different colors.
Selecting the brand – There are several different brands on polymer clay. Sculpey and Filmo are softer brands and easier for children to work with. Many people prefer to use Kato Polyclay. This clay was created by Donna Kato, one of the leading experts in polymer clay crafts. No matter what brand you use, most brands will work for whatever project you choose.
Wire and Sculpting â€“ Some project require that you use wire. Make sure you purchase an oven-safe wire that can be trimmed with scissors. Most craft supply stores will carry this wire or you can find it online at several craft web sites. If you are using sculpting materials, such as blades, be sure they are properly handled. Smaller children should not be allowed to use the blades or should have adult supervision at all times.
Baking – Be sure to follow the directions for baking your polymer clay. Most polymer clay can be fired in your oven at 275 degrees for about 20 minutes. Be sure to read the instructions first.
Repairs â€“ The best about polymer clay is that you can re-fire it at any time without affecting the original design. If a piece of your creation falls off or you want to add more to it, you can simply attach it to your design and fire it in the oven again.
To start working with polymer clay, designate an area in your house. Keep in mind that you will need an area large enough to roll out your clay. Because the clay cannot be used around food, keep it away from food areas. If you want to use the kitchen table, be sure to cover it with plastic or a tablecloth that is only used for the polymer clay.
Many people have invested in a pasta machine to help work in the clay so it is not as tough. Keep the materials you use separate from other food or kitchen materials. Most people will use cutting tools, a rolling pin, and a cutting board. Invest in new ones from the dollar store. Be sure to clean the materials after use and store them away from food.
Once you have created your polymer clay masterpiece, you will fire it in the oven. Be sure to read the instructions for firing the clay, as there are different temperatures and times for different polymer clay crafts. Once you have let your clay piece cool, you will want to coat it with a lacquer to protect it from cracking.