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Sculpey Premo™ Amber Faux Tortoiseshell Votive

Designed by Amy Koranek

Premo Amber Translucent is the perfect color for many faux techniques including Tortoiseshell. This project is a votive candle holder, but you can adapt to jewelry and other home decor projects.

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Grouped product items
Product ImageProduct Name Qty
Sculpey Premo Burnt Umber 1 lb
Sculpey Tools™ Clay Conditioning Machine
Sculpey Tools™ Clay Blades
Sculpey Premo™ Amber Faux Tortoiseshell Votive
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Sculpey Premo™ Amber Faux Tortoiseshell Votive
  • Large glass votive

Project Instructions

    Getting Started:
Please make sure your work area is covered and you are not working on an unprotected surface. We recommend working on the Sculpey® Work ‘n Bake Clay Mat, wax paper, metal baking sheet, or disposable foil. Uncured clay may damage unprotected furniture or finished surfaces. Be sure to cover your crafting area appropriately.
Start with clean hands, unwrap and knead clay until soft and smooth, or condition by running clay though a Pasta Machine. We recommend using a designated machine for clay purposes only. When working with multiple colors, clean hands with soap and water or baby wipes (we have found that baby wipes work best) before switching colors. Shape clay, pressing pieces firmly together. Wash hands after use.
Begin by preheating oven to 275 °F (130 °C). After you are done creating; for best results bake clay on an oven-proof surface such metal, aluminum foil, an index card or the Sculpey® Clay Mat at 275°F (130 °C) for 30 minutes per 1/4" (6 mm) thickness according to package directions. Oven safe glass or ceramic surfaces are also acceptable for baking; however please note that the baking times may take longer as the glass or ceramic surfaces take longer to heat up. For best baking results, use an oven thermometer. DO NOT USE MICROWAVE OVEN. DO NOT EXCEED THE ABOVE TEMPERATURE OR RECOMMENDED BAKING TIME.
I used two 2oz. Bars of Amber Translucent to complete my 4” high votive. If you need to use more than one bar, it will be best to follow the instructions using only one bar at a time. Then repeat with the second bar if necessary. Handling two bars of clay at one time will be pretty difficult for hand work. From one bar of Amber Translucent create a thick rope. Border the rope with strands of Burnt Umber leaving space between each one for the Amber to show through.
Start by rolling the thick rope on your work surface to make sure all the Burnt Umber stripes are level to the Amber. Twist and roll the rope to multiply the stripes and make the rope thinner - about 1/2” thick at this point.
Fold the rope in half and then in half again.
Roll the rope down to 1/2” thick again twisting it as you roll.
Fold the rope in half and in half again. Then using the palms of your hands, form the slab into a rectangular shape. This shape will be easier to slice and give you more even pieces to work with.
Stand the slab on end and carefully slice down through creating 1/8” thick slices.
Cut as many 1/8” thick slices as you can from the slab
Sheet the pieces through the Clay Conditioning Machine on the thickest setting always feeding the short ends through the rollers first to make the pieces longer.
Sheet the pieces again through the Clay Conditioning Machine on the second thickest setting. Compare the length of your pieces to the height of your glass votive. Make sure your pieces are tall enough to cover the full height of the votive. You can make your pieces thinner if needed but don’t go too thin as this will distort the pattern in the clay.
Place the pieces side by side around the outside of the glass votive. If you need to repeat the steps to make more Tortoiseshell pattern to cover the glass, you should do so at this point. Cover the entire outside of the glass votive with Tortoiseshell patterned pieces and trim the final piece to fit. Place the pieces close together with sides touching to create very flat seams. Buff the seams with your fingers to make sure they are closed.
Trim the top and bottom edges with the Super Slicer. Do not allow any clay to extend over the edge to the inside of the votive. Fingerbuff the cut edges so they are nice and neat
Bake the votive following the baking instructions for Premo and allow to cool completely before use.