Hi, I’m Xarin from Three Smitten Kittens, and for some of you who don’t know, I’ve been making a livelihood for about four years now, making cosplay accessories out of polymer clay. It’s such a versatile medium that you can use to make anything from your imagination, as long as you’re equipped with the proper tools and knowledge. Here’s a basic guide for making your own cosplay jewelry from clay. This guide is for flat jewelry, but you can apply the knowledge here to your other projects.
The example we’re using today are the hair accessories for Corrin of Fire Emblem: Fates.
Before that, here are some resource materials you may need to learn about clay!
Where to Buy Clay in the Philippines
Which Polymer Clay Should I buy?
Polymer Clay Starter Kit Shopping List
STEP 1: MAKE A TEMPLATE OR PATTERN OF WHAT YOU WANT TO MAKE
I have templates and patterns of almost everything I’ve ever made. I either extract the pattern from the actual reference on a software like Photoshop, or hand-draw my own pattern on paper or board, making sure to have accurate measurements. It helps make the item visibly proportioned and accurate. Having templates also gives you ease of reproduction–you can make an even, almost exact same duplicate copy, especially if you need to make something in pairs or more.
STEP 2: ROLL OUT EVEN SHEETS OF POLYMER CLAY
Making sure the sheets are perfectly even in thickness gives your accessory a professional finish. After conditioning the clay, I use a pasta machine to roll out even sheets of clay for me to use. It was an old pasta machine no one at home was using anyway, so I got permission to use it for clay. Note that once you use a pasta machine for clay, you MUST NOT use it for food again. Polymer clay, when ingested, can be toxic.Not everyone has a pasta machine or clay conditioning machine at home though, and buying some costs a lot. You can use slats instead to help guide you to getting an even thickness.
STEP 3: Cut out your clay using aid of the template.
Depending on the thickness of your project, you may stack your clay on top of one another, and use a craft knife to cut your clay based on your template. I like to put the template on the clay and go over it with my acrylic roller lightly, so it “engraves” the design on the surface, and then cut based on it.
STEP 4: Assemble your accessory, bake and then add the finishing touches.
All that’s left is assembly of your item and then baking! Then you can add the finishing touches, which may be paint or varnish, and adding metal findings.
Goodluck and hope that helps!
EVERYONE WHO KNOWS ME knows that my frustration as a crafter is making and piping fake whipped cream. For some reason (maybe my unsteady hand) it dislikes me, and it can’t turn out pretty when I do it, unlike when when the cake artists or those who make decoden phone cases. Then there’s that making icing to begin with is a pain. You can use silicone caulk from hardware stores, but you need to thicken them first. The ones that come from Japan are expensive, costing about P600.
So browsing through a local toy store one day, I saw Whipple Craft’n Fun Creme, which as the saleslady said, is air dry fake whipped cream, retailing at P299 for a plain “flavor” and more expensive for one with two flavors/colors. I decided to grab one, since at P299 and quite a big box, it seemed like a steal.
It comes in a big box, with, thankfully, big enough content inside. I was glad there there was a lot of whipped cream here! The faux whipped cream came in a sealed piping bag with a seal and screw on cap at the piping tip, so you can reseal it with no problem after you’ve completed your project and not used up all the cream.
The pack, however, does NOT come with a piping tip, so you’ll have to allocate your budget for that. Their craft kits for kids that go for P600+ have piping tips and fake food bases for kids to practice on.
Last week, I made macaron shells with Mont Marte Polymer Clay. (Check out our review of the polymer clay here, or you can also look at our tutorial on how to make your own fake macarons here.) I made them on a 1:1 real life scale, which was best to go with this cream, because I had a very big piping tip.
Sorry that I’m not making anything elaborate like a cupcake–my piping skills are very amateur! Then you’d just be looking at a hot mess.
The cream dries to the touch in a few minutes, but for it to dry all the way through, I suggest waiting for over a day. I thought it would be a silicone, rubbery finish, but it dries to a paper-clay finish, only of course finer.
Actually, it smells a lot like white glue when you pipe it out, so I can’t help but feel it’s just paper clay and white glue, which you can diy if you have fine paper clay to make it into whipped cream. The Whipple cream has the easy of being sealed tight in a convenient piping bag though, meaning you can use it whenever.
Here are the finished macarons!
Have you tried the Whipple cream before for your projects? What did you think about it?
You can buy Whipple Craft’m Fun Cream at toy stores like Toy Kingdom or Toys R Us nationwide.
AT THE BEGINNING of the month, when I was browsing around National Bookstore, I was surprised to find that they finally carried a line of polymer clay in their store! This line is the Mont Marte Polymer Clay line, which currently comes in very limited colors, but however is enough to get you started.
I picked up two colors from National Bookstore Fairview Terraces, and they sell for P95 each for 60g of clay.
The clay itself is very soft, almost like marshmallow, but isn’t sticky to the touch unlike other soft clays. Being soft makes it easy to condition, but it isn’t as densely packed and has holes and such inside, meaning air could get trapped inside, so I’d still recommend conditioning it as much as you can.
Most soft clay brands tend to have supreme flexibility, so I tried baking a thin sheet to test the flexibility of this clay. It’s REALLY flexible, and I was even able to roll the sheet I baked like so. I imagine the clay will be great for making thin flower petals and the like.
To check for the finish when it bakes, I made some macaron shells. The finish isn’t a flat matte (like Sculpey III or Bakeshop) but it isn’t shiny either, just a bit in between.
All in all, I think this is a great clay to work with, and I’ll pick up some more when the need arises! (I have too many clay haha) The only con right now is that these really come in very limited colors, but hopefully they release a full line someday!
One thing I’ve been asked a lot in my craft by beginners is which clay brand they should buy when they’re starting out, or which clay brand is the “best” to use. So finally, I’ve decided to write a blog post about it!
Actually this all has been written down a year or so ago in an e-book I was planning to finish but never continued—
There are different clay brands in the market from different brands, each with their own different properties. Not one is superior to the other—I personally think it’s a matter of what project they are suited to. If you make a wide variety of things like I do, it’d be best to keep stock of various brands that will fit your different projects.
Polymer clay is generally priced from 65-130PHP and is usually sold in 50g and 100g bars.
One of the cheapest clay in the market. It is marketed as a kid’s polymer clay, thus it is very soft and easy to knead. Color selections are limited. It bakes brittle and heavy, with sort of a rough surface.
Sculpey III is easily bought in specialty art stores in the country and comes in a wide array of colors. The clay is soft and easy to condition, which is why it is recommended for beginners. The clay bakes with a matte, bisque finish.
Premo! By Sculpey
Premo is more pigmented compared to Sculpey III, and is a tiny bit more expensive. The clay bakes with a slight sheen, and has slight flexibility when baked in thin sections. Color selections are limited, and the complete colors are rarely carried in stores. This is a good choice for metallic-colored clays, and those with “special” colors (eg., marble, granite, glittered) The clay is a little firmer, making it suitable for detailed work. The clay cures to a slight sheen.
FIMO Classic, manufactured by German company, Staedtler, is a very firm clay that requires a bit of conditioning, and in most cases, a clay softener. Despite that, this clay is still a favourite of many artists due to the great color selection, and the fact that the clay’s vibrant colors are retained very well even after being baked. FIMO Classic also cures with a glossy finish, almost like hard candy.
FIMO Soft mostly has the Classic’s properties, except it’s (obviously) much softer and easier to knead. I find the colors from Soft have less shine when baked compared to Classic.
Nendo Polymer Clay
Nendo is a locally-available clay that is noted for its supreme flexibility. The clay is easy to condition and is elastic. Once baked, the clay has a slight sheen, and is very flexible. As with flexible clays, the clay may be a bit sticky to work with for those with warm hands.
Flexiclay 3 Polymer Clay
Another local brand, Flexiclay comes in a wide assortment of colors and, as the name suggests, has good flexibility. Flexi3 is firmer than Nendo, and is not as flexible, but it is easier to handle as they clay is not overly sticky or soft. To try out this clay and order some, you can check their facebook page here.
Sculpey Ultralight Clay
Most, if not all polymer clay has significant weight once they are cured, especially if you intend to make big pieces. Except Ultralight clay, which is almost like marshmallow to the touch. It only comes in one color (white) and is mostly used as the core or filler for bigger clay projects.
Different brands carry their own lines of Liquid Polymer clay that come in different colors. They become firm when baked, and are mostly used for adhering two pieces of clay together in the baking process, or as decorative “sauces” or paints.
Which Clay should I Use?
As I’ve said before, no clay is truly superior, each clay has its properties that makes it suitable for different types of projects.
Matte polymer clays that bake with a dry, “rough-to-the-touch” finish are ideal for paintwork. The rougher surfaces of these clays once baked make them ideal for being painted. Clays with a shiny finish will resist inks and paints unless they are roughened beforehand.
Firmer clays are ideal for detailwork such as engraving or carving out shapes or tiny details. Soft clays are easily distorted with a simple nudge, making them unideal. Firmer clays are recommended for making canes for the same reason.
Soft, flexible clays are ideal for making thin pieces pieces that have to resist breakage (ex. Flower petals). While soft, matte clays could also do the same thing, they bake hard and brittle, making thin pieces prone to snapping and breaking.
Hope this post helps you out if you’ve been trying to decide which brand to buy! Soon I might make a youtube guide so you can better see the qualities of the clay and their differences!
HELLOOOOO KITTENS!! We’re finally back to blogging, technical issues with our internet connection and our website provider are now solved. *tears of joy* We’ve acquired quite the backlog, so let’s start and get our DIY ready right now! Today we bring you a polymer clay tutorial on how to make a “cookie sandwich”–a chocolate filling sandwiched between two crisp cookies… except it’s in clay and isn’t edible. xD
While you can’t eat them, they’d be perfect as keychains or phone charms, right?
Our materials are as follows: Tan, white, translucent and yellow clay. Texturing tools like an old toothbrush and a pointed tool. Brown acrylic paint (i suggest something that’s not a dark muddy brown and instead is like a burnt or acorn brown), and your usual claying tools, like your roller and oven. We’re making cookies, so you also need cookie cutters in the shape you prefer.
Mix all your clay colors in the proportion pictured in the materials photo. You can actually just use one color of your preference, but I decided to mix colors because I really wanted to get the pale cookie dough look. Feel free to experiment with what colors you have available or what proportions you want. I want a classic cookie, so I’m using these colors.
Mix all the colors into a uniform, even sheet, and then take your cookie cutter out and cut out two cookie bases.
Using a pointed tool, poke out holes in a uniform pattern that’s usually seen in cookies.
Roughen up the cookie and make it look imperfect/not so smooth by dabbing an old toothbrush all over it.
The textured cookie should look like this. With that, you can bake this cookie in your oven according to your clay’s instructions. Don’t worry if it looks like it’s still raw and doesn’t have that golden-baked color! We’ll get to that after the baking~
After the cookie is baked, take your brown acrylic paint and dab it onto the corners of the cookie, where the color should be more concentrated.
Spread the color from the corners towards the center. Looking more edible now huh?
If the color has become too strong for your liking, you can use a wet cloth to rub off the excess color to desaturate the color. After this, you can embellish the cookie by using some liquid clay/deco glue stick to make fake icing or such.
The cookie is perfectly fine as it is now, and I can imagine you can make pretty things like bracelets and earrings with a flat, one-layer cookie.
Oooorrr you can make a cookie sandwich!
Simply roll out a log of clay in whatever “filling” you prefer, and use some liquid clay to attach it. And then sandwich it between two cookies, and bake again using your clay’s instructions.
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