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81  COOKING / Dessert / strawberry hearts with tutorial on: February 14, 2011 09:35:32 PM
these look so cute in pairs on individual dessert or make loads and toss them with other fruits as cheese cake topping or in a fruit salad Grin

cut the tops of your strawberrys and cut them into slices (thick slices will give you chunky hearts but will be harder to remove from the cutter, thin slices will quickly start to go mushy) i cut these about 5 to 7mm

make sure the slices are larger than the cutter you are using, you will need to push quite firmly to cut through the strawberry.

this method wastes a lot of strawberry so you could munch the lot or chop and use to create a strawberry Coulis.

82  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Completed Projects: General / Racing Snails (polymer clay pendant) on: February 09, 2011 11:49:02 AM
found a set of six stamps at a closing down sale at the weekend....just knew i could use them for something! Grin
i hadn't tried stamping on polymer clay before but im quite pleased with this.
i rolled out white clay and stamped the image (using ink from your joe average ink pad) and indented lines for the 'snail trails' with a cocktail stick. i cut the clay to shape and baked, once hard i back filled the snail trails with silver and covered the entire thing with a layer of liquid clay to add durability to the design before baking again.

as always comments and advice are more than welcome Smiley
83  POTTERY, CERAMICS, POLYMER CLAY / Polymer Clay: Completed Projects / valentines heart brooches and faux stone pendants on: January 31, 2011 01:24:40 AM
experimenting with food colouring and salt grains to achieve a subtle colour and a mottled reminiscent of stone.
approx 1 by 2 inches. i added a layer of liquid clay over the coloured area to add durability to the design.

using green food colouring.

i attempted the same technique with acrylic inks but the lower water quantity in the ink gave a poor result, though the colours themselves were far more vibrant.

i think the sudden explosion of valentines crafts has effected me Embarrassed its all gone pink and girlie! Shocked
more faux knitted brooches.
i used glitter red for this unfortunately the glitter seems to make the clay more likely to crackle when extruded and looped in very thin strands.
im still pleased with this one though : )

not sure about the pink heart brooch...i think this effect works better on a larger surface area : /
red and white heart approx 2 by 3 inches.
pink heart approx 1 by 2 inches

finished cable heart brooch

as always comments or advice are more than welcome Smiley
84  POTTERY, CERAMICS, POLYMER CLAY / Polymer Clay: Completed Projects / polymer clay reverse stocking stitch Tutorial on: January 10, 2011 10:14:58 PM

i hope the photos make this easier to follow.

step one: extrude strands of the desired thickness in your chosen colour and cut lengths of about 2.5 cm with a craft knife or a tissue blade.

step 2: take one of the cut lengths and push the ends together to form a loop. repeat.
           group the loops together as shown.

step 3: take a length of extruded clay and lay it across the group of loops as shown.

step 4: using the back of the blade deeply indent the clay making sure the indents are aligned with the centre of the loop.

step 5: i flatten the tails of the loops with a cocktail stick. this ensures each line of loops will lie reasonably flat. if you are making long lines you will need to do
           this bit at a time. be carfull you dont mark the 'stitches' with your fingers/nails as you roll the cocktail stick.  
          repeat steps 1 to 5

step 6: place one line of stitches overlapping the flattened tails of the loops.        

you can use this effect on its own or experiment with knitted cables, plaits etc.

if you have any questions or anything seems unclear please dont hesitate to ask me. for some reason the photos have come out smaller on this site than others Undecided
there is a larger version of this on my deviant art site ( http://originalbunny.deviantart.com/gallery/#/d36x1wf  ) or email/pm and i'l send you a larger version Smiley

love2knit heart brooch (wip)

knitted cuff bracelet

more an experimental piece than anything else. im not entirely happy with it. i wanted give the cuff a curved shape but it was hard to achieve without squashing and distorting the 'stitches'
im think next time it would be easier to create an armature and layer the stitching as i go rather than create a sheet to cover the armature with. i think this would reduce the distortion.
i kept the colour a light cream both the keep the emphasis on the texture of the bangle and to mimic the colour of undyed wool.

85  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
86  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
87  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.
88  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....

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.
89  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
90  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.




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