Hello and Welcome to my Blog ~ I love art of all kinds. Two of my favorites are polymer clay and paper art. I have shops on Etsy that feature both of my passions. I also love writing my blog and finding artists that have a passion for their craft and feature them. I hope your day is filled with sunshine, laughter and loads of creativity.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Great Information about Polymer Clay

I found some great information about translucent polymer clay and wanted to share it with you.

Premo Frost #5310 with Bleach and Studio by Sculpey Frost are the clearest of the translucent clays. They are followed by Kato Polyclay, Sculpey III, Premo #5310, Fimo Soft #014, Fimo Classic #00 and lastly Cernit #010 White Translucent.
Pardo Artist is another translucent clay. Ladysaotome from PCC has been experimenting with Pardo trans and Pinata inks and the results are just beautiful.
She also thought that this post that had some translucent experiments would be helpful.
Premo Translucent and Sculpey III are the most amber colored of the brands. Kato and Fimo clays are the whitest in color.
The tiny circular 'moon' shapes you sometimes see in the layers of translucent clay are caused by a condition called 'plaquing'. Fimo Clay has the most plaquing of all the brands of polymer clay. Kato clay the least. Moisture on your hands and over working the clays will cause more plaquing.
Adding tiny amounts of opaque clay will help to reduce plaquing. Think pea sized amounts with a whole block of clay. White and beige are good candidates for this technique.
Translucent clays start yellowing very easily with heat. Baking directly on a ceramic tile or metal cookie sheet will cause translucent clays to scorch quickly. You can protect the clay either by tenting your pieces while baking or by burying them in a bed of cornstarch. Leigh from PCC also reminded me that we must watch that the temperature isn't too high.
Translucent clay bakes up clearer when layered over raw clay, more so than over baked clay.
All translucent clays can be tinted with alcohol inks. Coat the clay with ink and let dry a minute or two, so the alcohol has time to dissipate. Then mix the clay until you have the look you want. Gloves are a good idea here unless you don't mind colored hands!
Dust your fingers with cornstarch to avoid leaving fingerprints on polymer clay beads.. You can also rub it on raw clay surfaces to remove fingerprints that did end up getting left behind.
Cornstarch makes an excellent release agent for rubber stamps, texture plates, polymer clay molds, etc. Dust lightly on the surface you don't want your clay to stick to. The powder will wash off with water after baking.
Poke your bead piercing wire into some cornstarch before you pierce your beads and you will find it enters the raw clay much easier.
Baking your beads in and under cornstarch is a great way to protect and support fragile beads during baking. A covering layer of cornstarch will also keep the color of your beads brighter and more true. However, don't rest raw beads in cornstarch for too long before baking. The powder may leach some of the plasticizers from the clay and cause weakness.
Mixing things into translucent clay is half the fun. You can mix glitters, colored powders, and other forms of clay. I have even heard of spices being used as coloring agents, which creates a lovely, natural look and smells great while baking. Be careful when using glitters and makeup powders to make sure that everything you're using is safe for use in the oven. Consult labels and your craft store carefully before proceeding.
Sanding and polishing translucent clay gives it amazing depth, and if there are other colors of clay or glitter swirled inside, you can make convincing fax agate, opal and other gemstones - perfect for designing your own jewelry, adding to mosaics or using as decoration.

1 comment:

aquariann said...

Interesting information. Your clay work is awesome, especially the Lizard Wizard!!