Polymer clay is a fun, versatile product that can be used to make almost anything. From picture frames to animals, you can shape polymer clay into anything you desire. Polymer clay can be found at any craft store and at some grocery stores. Wal-mart actually carries polymer clay for around $2.00. While you are there, pick up some exacto knives or polymer clay knives.
If you plan to create your polymer clay craft in your house, don’t use your cutting board. The polymer clay has certain toxic chemicals that can harm you if ingested. Wax paper is a good thing to have around since it can protect your rolling pin or other tools from the chemicals.
If you are looking for polymer clay craft ideas, take a look at Donna Kato. She has a book called The Art of Polymer Clay: Creative surface Effects. Kato is considered to be one of the leading experts in polymer clay crafts; she even created her own clay called Kato Polyclay. Kato explains how to create several different polymer clay crafts and includes pictures and how-to photographs in the book.
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. Many people have invested in a pasta machine to help work in the clay so it is not as tough. 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.
Here are some tips to get you started with polymer clay. Let’s start with a simple polymer clay craft, the clay bead necklace.
You will find that most polymer clay beads are pretty heavy, so be sure to purchase a durable material for stringing. A popular material used by many polymer clay crafters is Tigertail. This is a fine steel cable, covered with a plastic coating. Another material to use is Softflex, it is a little more flexible and drapes better.
Creating the beads is fairly simple, choose the style you would like and pierce the bead before firing. There are a variety of beads you can create, from circular to square to oblong, whatever design you would like. To pierce the bead, you will need a skewer or needle. Poke the needle almost all the way thorough, but do not allow it to come out the other side or you will create a lump around the edge of the pierced hole. Poke the needle through the other side as well. You can always fire the bead and then drill a small hole through the bead afterwards.
Fire your beads for about 15 to 20 minutes in the oven at 275 degrees. If your beads look brittle, you will want to make new ones so they don’t fall off the string.
No matter what you want to make, polymer clay is a fun, easy craft to work with. You can find hundreds of polymer clay crafts online or at the craft store. Polymer clay can be created into simple projects for your younger children, or more technical ones for teenagers and adults. Children can start with animals, or easy shapes and adults can start with vases or pendants.
If you are a beginner, remember to pace yourself! After all, a new craft takes a little patience and time to learn.