I was asked to write about Liquid Sculpey and I thought, “What am I going to talk about? How to use it? When to use it? That’s pretty much been talked about already.” So I decided instead to take you on a little pictorial journey with me and my LS.
Translucent Liquid Sculpey (which we affectionately all refer to as TLS) has been available for years. We actually had some colors many years ago as well. But nothing like the range of colors available now! And the Clear LS? Well it still amazes me.
The first thing I tried with the Clear LS was to transfer my photo images to it. It looked great in the circle cutter I was baking in, I could see it clearing. Then when I took it out EVERY SINGLE ONE had this weird ripple in it. Over and Over I baked – same thing! I was driving home from work and it hit me, it was a “standing wave” created by the convection air! I put a large bowl over the next one and problem SOLVED! (NOTE: You *might* want to not use the convection setting with LS) TIP: peel your color laser print when the clay is still fairly warm from the oven – color will stay on the LS and the paper will peel right off.
Once, I literally thought I had lost my LS in my oven when I put some on a piece of glass to cure before adding alcohol inks for a project. The oven dinged, I looked inside and panicked, “Where was the LS? Did it run off?” NOPE, it was soooo clear I could see it! I let it cool (after I took photos through it) and added the inks. When they were dry, I was ready to cut my pieces. I thought to myself, “is this so thin that it’s just going to tear?” The answer to that is NO, the stuff is tough when cured!! I ended up cutting out the main shape and then transferring the design lines to Souffle Igloo so I could add the black extruded pieces after I mounted the cured LS.
Then I had to experiment with making the final cure shiny. One of the Polyform chemists had told me a long time before the product was commercially available that if you hit it with a heat gun when it was hot out of the oven, it would gloss over. So here are some coasters, created the same way as above, except I added another layer of Clear LS and hit it with a dual speed heat gun (not a craft gun).
Once I made friends with my heat gun, there was no stopping me! What a perfect way to preserve and protect my transfers I LOVE to do! I could make the final coat matte, semi-matte or shiny – all depending on what the design was about. NOTE! Pre-heating the gun really helps me! It saves time and exposure that the clay has to the heat. I use a small pair of silicone tipped tongs to hold the bracelet while I cure it.
I found that I could also STAMP with LS colors. Both of these pieces were stamped with a piece of wired lace that I painted the LS onto the lace before applying it to the Souffle base.
And of course, I had to play with a toothpick and colored LS clays in a Black LS background to create images. Fortunately, my chef son walked out just when I was celebrating being able to make the hearts and said, “Oh we do this is edible foam when we plate, lemme show ya..” And I was able to create the leaves and flowers. These pendants were featured on a television episode of Beads, Baubles And Jewels.
Next blog – my exploration of LS using molds, Layer Sets, and even silkscreening with LS!