Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Student's Work, Openwork

Received this lovely email and a picture yesterday:

Hi there
Here is a pendant made based on your tutorial. I filled the cells with liquid clay and ink.
The reverse is in clear colours. I joined two spheres together.
Thanks so much. I am going to try one with the new flexible soufflé clay.
Kind regards

Thank you, Sue! I really appreciate when other artist share with me pictures of their creations made based on my tutorials. Love the idea with the liquid polymer clay inside the open-work cells.  Looks cool!

Here is the link to the tutrial that Sue followed to make this beautiful pendant: Openwork Pendants Tutorial

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Dealing with an Empty Nest Syndrome

With my youngest daughter leaving for college this Fall, I decided to get ready for the empty nest syndrome. 

I am afraid there will be no time for my polymer clay for a while...

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Future Tutorial: Controlled Mokume Gane and Faux Carving with Wonder Stamps

The latest among my two-sided polymer clay creations, this necklace was made using my hand-made Wander Stamps for polymer clay

I am in the process of writing a step-by-step tutorial that will explain how to use Wonder Stamps in Controlled Mokume Gane technique and in Faux Carving technique.  

Saturday, May 7, 2016

Polymer Clay Pendant: Textures and Steampunk

Here is another two-sided polymer clay necklace.  

The pendant for this one has watch parts and resin on one side and various textures on another. 

If you want to make something similar for yourself, let me recommend the following tutorials:

Faux Metal Necklace (with many different ideas for interesting textures).

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Two-Sided Polymer Clay Necklace

I want to show the necklace I just made for myself.  It has design on both sides – one of those ideas that make you wonder why you have not thought of it before.  It makes perfect sense, right?  Shaping and stringing each component takes a lot of time and effort, so why not double the return by making both sides of the necklace work. 

For this particular piece, I made one side with crackle technique and another with my Fantastic Filigree technique. 

To make the crackled surface, I rolled a very thin layer of polymer clay on a ceramic tile and briefly heated it with a heat gun.  As a result, the very top layer of the clay was cured, leaving the rest of it still in its raw form.  When the raw clay was expended by rolling my heat-treated polymer sheet through a pasta machine, the crackles appeared.  I cut out the parts for my two-sided necklace elements, baked them, and treated the crackled surface with some white acrylic paint to make the texture more visible. 

These necklace elements were finished with hand-made antique bronze frames and covered with two-part epoxy resin to give them nice and smooth finish.  The frames were made in the same way as described in my tutorial “Polymer Clay Pendants with Sterling Silver Frames”.  The tips and tricks for using epoxy resin for polymer clay jewelry are explained in my other tutorial, “How to Work with Two-Part Epoxy Resin”. 

Fantastic Filigree technique (used for the other side of the necklace) is described in a tutorial with the same name.  Al three of these tutorials can be found on my website, polymertutorials.com.

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Cool Tools: Concave Forms for Polymer Clay

If you would like to make lentil-shaped hollow polymer clay beads or concave/convex polymer clay pendants, you will need some spherical forms.

Since the beginning of our craft, polymer clay artists developed a habit of looking at various household items as potential tools for polymer clay. That is why you can often see old incandescent light bulbs recommended in polymer clay projects as forms for convex pendants. This used to be a cheap and simple option, but with the spread of fluorescent bulbs, finding the old ones is getting more and more challenging.

The second option is also stemming from the same idea – trash to tools. If you cut out the bottom of a soda can, it can be used as a concave/convex form. The issue with this approach is that the obtained form is a bit more shallow (and it also has nasty sharp edges that you have to keep in mind all the time).

By now, there is a professional tool for this task is available from Polyform. It is called Sculpey Hollow Bead Maker. Nice, but a bit pricey. I also do not like that it has a few forms on the same base and feels kind of crowded to work with.
Here is the best option I found so far (cue the drum roll): Aluminum Sphere Cake Molds. They come in a few sizes, cost less than a dollar per pair on eBay, and very easy to work with. Enjoy!

P.S. These sphere cake molds (3" in diameter) can be used for my projects described in the following tutorials: Sea Creatures, Openwork Pendants, Faux Metal Necklace.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Student's Work, Pictures from the Class

A few pictures from my polymer clay class at Cabin Fever last week.

Polymer clay pendants in organic style made by the class participants.

Thank you, ladies, for being good students!  I hope you will use the things you've learned in this class in many of your future creations.

Saturday, February 20, 2016

New Tutorial

My first tutorial in the series demonstrating how to use hand-made Wonder Stamps for different polymer clay techniques is ready for you to enjoy.

I am sure you are familiar with back-filling idea in general, but believe me, the Wonder Stamps really do wonders for this well-known technique. Following this tutorial, you will learn how to easily make pretty elaborate and delicate designs in different colors and even with color gradations.

I am showing this technique using a polymer-covered business card case as an example project, but the possibilities are truly endless.

Get your copy while this tutorial is on sale! The sale ends at 9 pm (EST) on Monday, February 22, 2016. 

Find it on my website (polymertutorials.com) or in my Etsy shop (etsy.com/shop/PolymerClayTutorials).

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Don't Break My Heart - Openwork Necklace

Polymer clay openwork heart pendant

I just finished this new polymer clay openwork  pendant and decided to name it "Don't Break My Heart!".

This heart is actually much stronger than it may look, but I think it still reflects the idea that we are responsible for those who loves us.

This pendant will be my donation for the silent auction at Cabin Fever 2016, which begins tomorrow in Laurel, MD.

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

How to Choose Jewelry

Making jewelry is very popular among polymer clay artists, which makes us part-time jewelry stylists.  If not helping our clients with choosing the best earrings and necklaces, we are faced with the same questions for ourselves.

On a number of occasions I've heard polymer clay artists saying that they do not wear jewelry at all because nothing seems to look good on them (this is usually said with a sad sigh).  I am pretty sure that there is the right jewelry for every woman in every outfit (except when she is dressing for work-out, hiking, or some similar activity, to be exact).

Anyway, having polymer clay with its endless possibilities for creating any color, texture, or shape, enables us to come up with the perfect jewelry piece for any occasion while all other mere mortals have to hunt it down in shops, boutiques, and on-line.  There is only one question: what to make?

To answer this question, I want to share a very informative post from Imogen Lamport's blog Inside Out Style.  Imogen is a Melbourne (Australia) based blogger and internationally certified image consultant.  Her blog is packed with fashion and style information for real women.  Enjoy!
Click on the image to proceed to Imogen's post "How to Choose Necklaces"

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Student's Work, Faux Cloisonne

This beautiful polymer clay Faux Cloisonne heart was made by Rita Hammock, who took my class during Fandango 2015 retreat. 

Polymer clay and resin Faux Cloisonne heart by Rita Hammock
I love when people who buy my tutorials or attend my classes share pictures of their work with me.  Seeing how an idea conceived by one person evolves in the hands of other people is always fascinating. 

Although Rita kept the shape of the project I showed during the class, she came up with her own original design and a beautiful colors.

Thank you, Rita, for sharing this picture with me and for letting me use it in my blog!  Looking forward to seeing more of your works.

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Openwork Pendants: Experimenting with Colors, Shapes, and Settings

Polymer clay openwork pendant, red

Polymer clay openwork pendant, turquoise

Polymer clay openwork pendant, hot pink
Polymer clay openwork pendant, dark green
Polymer clay openwork pendant, sapphire blue
Polymer clay openwork pendant, coffee brown
Polymer clay openwork pendant, turquoise
Polymer clay openwork pendant, scarlet
Polymer clay openwork pendant, multi-color

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Super-Duper Tools

Happy New Year!  Wishing all my friends lots of creative energy in 2016!

Here is my first finished project for this year: a set of custom-made super-duper tools for polymer clay. 

People who buy my tutorials know that I love using knitting needles for sculpting.  I had a set of very short knitting needles in three sizes.  Finally, I made handles for them.  The handles are triangular in cross-section, so they are extremely comfortable to hold.  An added bonus: they do not roll on an uneven working surface.  I could not possibly leave the handles of new tools plain, so I decided to decorate them using my Wonder Stamps (I am supposed to be working on a tutorial for a project with these stamps, by the way).

And the other two tools are an X-acto knife and a needle tool.  For these, I covered their existing handles with polymer clay and finished them in the same style as the knitting needles.  Their handles are much thicker than those of the knitting needles, but still are very comfortable.
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