Polymer clay is a good medium to be used by beginners because it is very versatile and gives you the possibility of using your imagination to create a great variety of shapes. Learning a few simple techniques will allow you to obtain the best results when working with polymer clay. One characteristic of this type of clay, as compared to other types, such as air-dry clay, is that it does not necessarily require the application of a protective layer of sealer. Baking makes polymer clay water-resistant and it will withstand wear and humidity very well. In fact, some of the varnishes are problematic, and it is always good to test them before use and to only use them if it is really necessary. Some types of varnishes can peel, become cloudy, or sticky and this is one more reason why they should be avoided. Sometimes the use of varnish is necessary, such as in the case of decorating the surface of your items with gold foil, or mica powder to prevent the decorations from rubbing off.
If polymer clay is kept for a longer period of time it may become hard and crumbly. Nevertheless, it is not necessary to dispose of it, because there are several methods to make it soft again. One useful method is to warm the clay. This will make it softer and easier to work with. You can either put it on a heater or place it in a plastic bag and put it in some hot water. Another method is adding some mineral oil or liquid clay.
In order to obtain a resistant and beautiful polymer clay item, baking is very important. While underbaking leads to breakage, overbaking will lead to a darkening of the colors. Always use a thermometer when baking and never bake at a temperature lower than indicated on the package, since this will make the item brittle. As a rule, you should consider that baking a little longer than indicated will make the clay more durable and resistant to wear. It is recommended to protect your projects from burning during the baking process. You can use an inverted lid or some aluminum foil to do that.
Never use nail polish on your polymer clay, because it will dissolve it and make it sticky. Paint can be used on clay, and most acrylic colors do not create problems, nevertheless, it is useful to test the colors you will use, because, depending on their chemical structure, some colors may remain sticky.
Regarding the polymer clay brands, there are different brands on the market, and each of them has different characteristics. If you are a beginner, it is useful to use major brands such as Fimo, Premo, or Cernit. When storing your clay, you don't necessarily have to wrap it up, as you would do with air dry clay, but it is recommended to keep it away from heat sources.
In this tutorial, I'm going to show you how to create this miniature bread out of polymer clay.
- polymer clay in beige and white
- soft pastel
- baby powder
- a brush
Mix the beige and white polymer clay to create the bread dough.
Create the shape of the bread.
Using the cutter, create the scoring pattern on top of the bread.
Start by adding the yellow pastel using the brush.
Apply the second color, orange.
Then apply the final color, brown, to give the crust a realistic aspect.
Now sprinkle a little bit of baby powder on the top of the bread and bake the item according to the instructions on your polymer clay packaging.
The polymer clay bread is ready now and you can enjoy turning it into a jewelry item or a charm!