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81  POTTERY, CERAMICS, POLYMER CLAY / Polymer Clay: Discussion and Questions / adding oil to polymer clay on: January 05, 2011 10:52:24 AM
i know that some artists add oil to the clay to soften it. if you are using a pale coloured clay and use vegetable oil for example will it change the colour of the clay?
does the addition of oil effect the baking time or cause browning of pale/white/translucent clay?

any advice or words of experience would be greatly appreciated Smiley
82  POTTERY, CERAMICS, POLYMER CLAY / Polymer Clay: Completed Projects / experiments in knitted polymer clay (reverse stocking stitch + cable) on: January 01, 2011 01:19:08 AM
as the knitted polymer clay tree decorations were so popular i thought i would share what i have been working on

as before i havn't actually 'knitted' the polymer clay. the illusion is a result of twisting and looping strands of extruding polymer clay. the cable is made the same way as the tree decorations (original thread with tute: http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=367662.0)



excuse the fluff Embarrassed im usually meticulous about it but since these are 'sketch book' pieces im not to fussy.


experimenting with plaited cables. i struggled trying to get the plait even as it kept stretching and distorting Undecided
83  POTTERY, CERAMICS, POLYMER CLAY / Polymer Clay: Completed Projects / Elephant cuff bracelet (NOT an image transfer, no paint just polymer clay!) on: December 22, 2010 12:34:27 PM
Elephant cuff bracelet.
polymer clay, sanded and backfilled.
 a Christmas pressie for my aunty. a few of you may remember i posted an ammonite bangle back in may with this technique ( original thread + tutorial :  http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=346176.0 ) i finally got around to creating something else. i wanted to try something a little more challenging though some parts didn't turn out as well as i had hoped im quite pleased with how well this turned out



i drilled holes in each side of the cuff and secured with ribbon to allow for more or an adjustable fit and greater security.



W.I.P shot taken prior to baking and sanding.



now all the christmas crafting is out of the way and im feeling more confident with this technique im looking forward to seeing exactly what i can do with it Grin

advice or comments are always welcome.
84  POTTERY, CERAMICS, POLYMER CLAY / Polymer Clay: Completed Projects / knitted polymer clay tree decorations with Tutorial on: December 19, 2010 11:08:33 PM
i made these as a Christmas pressie for a knitting mad friend at work. this is the first time i had tried this particular technique but i think they work quite well Smiley though i suspect practice is needed to get the 'stitches' a little more even. i baked each 'knitted' piece on a cocktail stick then trimmed the stick and wedged on a pearl bead to make the needle and tied on tread to hang them.



my favourite of the two (an unfinished purple scarf)


action shot....



Tutorial:
use a clay extruder gun to get even strands in your chosen colour.
lay two strands as shown below





gently twist the strands. the tighter the twists the tighter the 'stitches'. twists the strands in opposite directions.







place the strands side by side matching twists to create stitches.



repeat to create the desired number of strands. place two sets of strands side by side matching the twists.



once the knit is the desired length i weave a few strands at the bottom to neaten it. either then tim or leave strands to create tassles as for the scarf.



this is why you need to leave a loop at the top. thread a cocktail stick through each loop making sure each twists in the same direction





shape and bake Smiley.
trim one end of the cocktail stick. you can either do this before baking and add a ball of clay to the end to make the needle or tightly wedge/glue a bead after baking.
85  POTTERY, CERAMICS, POLYMER CLAY / Pottery, Ceramics, etc: Completed Projects / Birdwatchers breakfast mug and Black Sheep beer mug on: December 18, 2010 11:54:32 PM
more Christmas pressies! Grin
i made a bird watchers breakfast mug for my father in law who is a keen birdwatcher. since he is one of the RSPB volunteers at a new red kite feeding station being set up on the east coast of Scotland I had to include his favourite bird the red kite. all the others are birds frequently seen in Scotland


great tit (on feeder) and red kite


lesser black backed gull and red kite.


puffin and swift

the beer mug is for my dad and features one of his favourite beers 'the black sheep'



both were painted onto premade bisque with black underglaze, dipped in clear dipping glaze and fired.
comments and advice are always welcome Smiley
86  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Winter Holidays / nightmare before christmas baubles on: December 09, 2010 04:04:59 AM
my christmas pressie for my Halloween obsessed friend (nightmare before Christmas is one of her favourite films) we both wanted to make pressies this year as neither of us has much money.

these are painted with under glaze onto premade bisque ware then dip glazed and fired.

Zero


Sally


Jack


the set:
87  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Winter Holidays / Wayne the Wobin painted bauble on: December 09, 2010 01:20:12 AM
Wayne the Wobin.
(named for a disgruntled (ex ) Grin manager of a similar shape and unhappy disposition)

hes painted with under glaze onto premade bisque ware, dipped in clear glaze and fired. the highlights on his eyes ran slightly in the kiln but  im still kinda proud of him.



88  POTTERY, CERAMICS, POLYMER CLAY / Pottery, Ceramics, etc: Completed Projects / 'Ginger ninja-bread man!' reusable air freshener on: November 12, 2010 10:29:06 PM
'Fights bad odours! smells of Vanilla!'  Grin

very simple to make. bisque ware is porous and will absorb not only water but essential oils (you can also use fragrance oils designed for use in an oil burner or aromatherapy oils for this) so the basic idea is too create your desired  shape (though in this case i used premade bisque in the shape of a ginger bread man Smiley )
i usually cut a shape from a slab of scrap clay with a cookie cutter and pierce a hole with a skewer which is then bisque fired and then glazed (make sure you leave an area without paint or glaze or you wont have anywhere to put the oils). in this case i painted the front and left the back mostly bare before handglazing the front and sides and firing.
once out of the kiln simply smear a few drops of your chosen oil or fragrance onto your new air freshener add a matching ribbon or beads and hang.

to renew the sent simply add more oil

i made this as part of my brothers Christmas pressie as he was jealous of the one i made my other brother last year. i hope he will be pleased with it Grin




(the yellow discolouration is a result of the oil i have applied to the bisque, which had not been fully absorbed)

89  POTTERY, CERAMICS, POLYMER CLAY / Pottery, Ceramics, etc: Completed Projects / Marbled Baubles with tutorial on: November 02, 2010 10:11:28 PM


i apologise for some of the photography in this. the light pretty bad and im trying to take most of the pictures with one hand Embarrassed
if anything is unclear please dont be afraid to ask Smiley
for this tutorial i am using 'gare' under glaze and clear dipping glaze and a premade bisqueware teardrop bauble from country love ceramics.



step one. i prefer to decant the colours into smaller bottles with fine nibs (you can dribble them from a bigger bottle but this is easier ). since im using white as a background colour a larger bottle is fine.


step 2
tightly wedge the baubles onto the end of a pencil (alternatively the end of an old paint brush, a stick etc...as long as its wedged reasonably tightly)
 

step 3
wipe the bisque with a damp sponge and using a large brush begin to cover the area in your background colour (you would usualy leave the paint dry between coats, covering the area in three layers....this is not what we are doing Wink ) keep going, work quickly and ensure the bauble is covered in wet paint.


step 4
take a Bottle of the same background colour and pour it over the bauble , covering it entirely (so it looks a bit like a giant melting ice cream)

if you have 'pits' like this gently smooth them with your finger. what we are trying to create is a smooth surface to marble onto.


step 5
add a few lines of your chosen colours. strong colours (black, dark blues etc) will be over powering in large quantities.


step 6
the fun bit Grin
begin to twist the pencil (stick/paintbrush end etc) quickly in your hands or bang (firmly but not really hard or will break the bisque) either the pencil or the teardrop tip onto the work top to encourage the paint to begin to move and marble.


when you are happy leave to dry

i wedge the end of the pencil in an old cardboard box ( you dont want anything to touch the surface otherwise it will spoil your design)

once dry dip your bauble in a clear dipping glaze and fire.
for inspiration here are a few i made last year (they are addictive!)


[black and white (i marbled the paint with my finger on this one)


a bowl of blue and white baubles


black white and red

enjoy! Grin



90  POTTERY, CERAMICS, POLYMER CLAY / Polymer Clay: Completed Projects / my first polymer commission: ) on: November 01, 2010 09:12:54 AM
this was for an old friend who i recently got in contact with again. she wanted a 'night sky' bracelet i tried to keep the design simple to suit the bangle style bracelet she liked so much yet i wanted it to have depth. (as some may recall i was unsatisfied with the initial results but after tweeking the blend i got what i was after Grin
as usual the bangles were created from a covered scrap clay armature, sanded and buffed
i used a skinner blend of glitter white to metallic sapphire to black with added additional glitter for these. i limited the amount of black used in the blend so the glitter in the metallic clays was visibal around the entire bangle.
i also discovered because the glitter white contains transparent clay unless you want the pale whites and blues marred by grey flecks of the additional glitter beneath the surface of the clay...apply the glitter sparingly over the paler parts of the blend Smiley


the commission bangle and one of the experimental versions.






commissioned bangle and both experimental versions (you can see the difference between the first attempt (the one at the very back) and the two newer versions made with the tweaked blend)
i really enjoyed this and felt i learnt a lot  Smiley

as always comments or advice are more than welcome
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