Getting Started Do not use unbaked clay on unprotected furniture or finished surfaces. Start with clean hands and work surface area. Good work surfaces include wax paper, metal baking sheet, or disposable foil. Knead clay until soft and smooth. For best results, clean your hands in between colors. Shape clay, pressing pieces together firmly. Bake on oven-proof glass or metal surface at 275°F (130°C) for 30 minutes per ¼" (6 mm) thickness. For best baking results, use an oven thermometer. DO NOT USE MICROWAVE OVEN. DO NOT EXCEED THE ABOVE TEMPERATURE OR RECOMMENDED BAKING TIME. Wash hands after use. Baking should be completed by an adult. Begin by preheating oven to 275°F (130 °C). Test temperature with oven thermometer for perfectly cured clay. For best results, condition all clay by running it through the clay dedicated pasta machine several passes on the widest setting. Fold the clay in half after each pass and insert the fold side into the rollers first.
Things to note about carving on polymer clay:1)If this is your first time carving you might benefit from practicing. This is a good way to get a feel for how much pressure you need and the best angle at which to hold the tool.2)Since different clays have slightly different properties you should practice carving on Soufflé since that is the clay called out in this project.3)Keep in mind that you are working with a sharp tool and sometimes the blade might slip, especially when working on a curved surface. A good way to protect your fingertips is to wear a leather thimble. While carving you are going to be holding the piece steady and you may often place your finger in the path of the blade without realizing you’re doing so.The last thing anyone wants is the blade slipping and jabbing their finger.
Starting with a ¼ block of each of Lagoon, Sea Glass, and Robin Egg, pass each color on a medium/thick setting on the Clay Conditioning Machine. Once conditioned, you are going to create some “muted” colors. To get those muted colors you are going to add small pinches of Igloo and Sandcastle to the Lagoon, Sea Glass, and Robin Egg. Add small bits at a time and keep mixing until you get something you like. Pick up the sheets of clay, stack them, and begin tearing, twisting, and pulling them apart; keep going until you have a lump of clay with some nice mix of color. There is no specific formula for this part you just mix the colors until you get something you like. Once you have the lump with the mix of color to your liking run it through the Clay Conditioning Machine on the thickest setting. Check both sides of the sheet to see if there is an area of pattern that you like. If you find that the mix of colors are too intense you can make them more subtle by folding the sheet of clay in half and rolling it through again. Once you have the sheet marbled to your liking cut out a circle using the Sculpey® Graduated Metal Cutters (4.4 cm).
Place the circle of clay onto the largest dome on the Sculpey ® Hollow Bead Maker. Gently press it down so it is making good contact and so the edge is touching the form all of the way around. Use the 5/8” cutter to cut out a hole near about 5/16” in from the edge. Use the non scratch scour pad to texture the entire surface of the clay.
Add the circle indentations by using the pearl end of the Sculpey ® Etch n’ Pearl tools. Simply press the end of the tool into the clay and spin it a little in place so you have a nice even circle with a reasonably deep impression. Repeat this process using all three sizes of the Sculpey ® Etch n’ Pearl tools and continue to add until you have a pattern of circles you like. Bake on the Hollow Bead Maker for 15 minutes and let cool completely.
Note: The carving you will be doing in this step will go smoother if you have the baked piece supported from underneath. The best way to support it is to leave it on the Hollow Bead Maker. To carve the straight line you can either pencil in lines to follow or you can chose to carve “free-hand”. Load the small “v” shaped blade into the handle of your carving tool. Place the tip of the carving tool somewhere along the edge of the 5/8” opening you cut earlier. Carve a straight line towards the outer edge of the piece. If you chose you can carve right through one of the circles you pressed into the clay in Step 3 or you can choose to stop at the edge of the circle and start again on the other side. Keep adding straight lines that radiate from that 5/8” hole to the edge of the piece until you are satisfied with the pattern.
Squeeze some white acrylic paint onto the surface of the carved piece. Use your finger to rub it into the clay; make sure it gets into the circle indentations and all of the carved lines. Once you have the piece coated with paint use either baby-wipe or damp paper towel to wipe off the excess paint. You will notice that the paint also sticks into the texture you added using the non scratch scour pad. This added bit of texture helps add to the antique look of the piece.
Condition and roll out a sheet of Igloo on the thickest setting of the Clay Conditioning Machine. Place this sheet of clay on a piece of plain copy paper. Add a thin coat of Bake n’ Bond to the lip on the underside of the carved dome and position on top of the sheet of Igloo. Gently and evenly press the dome down into the sheet of clay. You do not want to push it all of the way through you just want it to go in far enough so the outside edge is about level with the sheet of clay. Pick up the Needle Tool from the Sculpey® 5-in-1 tool Set and position it with the tip pointing straight down and directly up against the side of the domed piece. Keep the Needle Tool pointed directly down and push all of the way through the sheet of clay to the paper underneath. Drag the needle all of the way around the edge then lift away the excess clay and set it to the side. Lift the clay backed dome off of the paper and use your finger to smooth the Igloo clay against the edge of the domed piece. Bake for 15 minutes and let cool completely. Note: Performing this step on the piece of paper allows you to turn the paper as you use the Needle Tool to cut the sheet of clay away from the dome and also to help lift it off of your work surface.
Select a drill bit from the pin drill set that will drill a hole big enough for the headpin to fit through. Position the drill bit so you are drilling from inside the hole up through the top edge. Gently twist the drill bit through until you have come out through the top edge. Twist the drill back out of the hole and then drill back through from the opposite direction. Note: Drilling through in both directions will result in a clean hole so the headpin will go through the hole smoothly.
Slide the bead onto the headpin and then thread the headpin through the drilled hole going from the inside of the 5/8” hole up and out the edge of the bead. Pull the headpin until the top edge of the bead is snug against the inside top of the 5/8” hole. Use the chain nose and round nose pliers to wire wrap a bail that your cord will fit through. Slide the pendant onto the cord and you’re finished.