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Topic: Polymer Clay and ceramics?  (Read 1130 times)
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ChelseaLou
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« on: March 03, 2012 10:19:56 AM »

Hello!

I had an idea about making some clay beads but, with polymer clay.
I figured I could go through the whole process (on the bead itself) with glazing and firing.
But after the process is done, I wanted to take some polymer clay and make flowers or anything really
and attach them to the bead.

 Because obviously the (clay) bead will not be destroyed on an microwave oven I figured this could work.
But now that I think about it more, do you think the polymer clay will stick to glazed and fired bead or not?

Thanks!
Love some feedback! :3
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Hey! I can do that! :3
Crabcake
« Reply #1 on: March 03, 2012 06:23:54 PM »

I have always been under the impression that polymer clay is NOT to be fired in a microwave (prefired ceramics, of course, being fine).  Frankly I've always wondered what would happen if one did do that, but haven't had spare space or microwave oven to try it out Mythbusters style.   Grin

That having been said, you shouldn't have any problem adhering raw polymer clay to a fired ceramic bead.  It sticks pretty well by itself, or you can use liquid polymer clay as a glue for extra security.
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Diane B.
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GlassAttic --polymer clay "encyclopedia"


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« Reply #2 on: March 04, 2012 10:29:07 AM »

I'm confused about just what you're wanting to do.
Is it that you want to make a bead from earth/pottery/ceramic clay and fire it in a kiln (then refire with a glaze or not)... then add some flowers made from polymer clay to that bead?

If so, you can do that, but microwave ovens usually wouldn't be involved.  Polymer clays must be cured to harden but can darken or burn at temps over around 300º F (or less for some brands/lines) and they are seldom heated in a microwave to cure.  If they are, they must be boiled in water in the microwave, not heated directly. There is one new kind of "clay" though that will harden or sort-of-harden in a microwave oven directly, but I think it's one kind of air-dry clay not a polymer clay (polymer clays are basically a "plastic" and are oil-based rather than water-based...they must be heated to harden/cure since they'll never "dry"; air-dry clays can have their drying speeded up in heat but that isn't necessary to harden them).

So if what I guessed above is what you want to do, you can kiln-fire your earth clay then add raw polymer clay flowers to it and bake in a low-heat (regular) oven to harden the polymer clay.  This low heat won't bother your hardened earth clay at all.

If you glaze and refire your earth clay bead before adding the raw polymer clay embellishments, the polymer clay will usually stick nicely (since the surface is very smooth and non-porous) and especially if there's a lot of contact between the two materials.  If there won't be much contact, you can use liquid polymer clay as a glue between the parts (though it's not tacky), which when heated will be a fairly strong bond.  The polymer bit may still pop off the ceramic bead after curing if it sticks out a lot and is stressed or if it's a lone clay bit on a large non-dimensional ceramic surface (since nothing much to "grab").**
...If you don't glaze your earth clay bead before adding the raw polymer clay embellishments, the earth clay bead will be porous and raw clay won't stick well to it so you'll need to seal it first...the usual ways to seal something porous for adding polymer clay is to use a coat of permanent white glue or clear polyurethane, etc, or to coat with liquid polymer clay and bake.  White glue (PVA) will stay a bit tacky allowing the polymer clay better grab, and also act as a buffer against too-high temps and any slight swelling or shrinking of the two materials.  (The same warning above** about popping off and "grab" also applies here, but to a lesser extent).
...If you can manage to create a mechanical hold of the raw polymer clay on the fired earth clay bead (instead of the adhesive hold, or along with it) by wrapping it around the bead or having it go into our around some dimensional bits or holes/etc in the bead, that will create an excellent bond--even alone.

You can also make and cure the miniature polymer clay flowers, then just glue them onto your bead. 
The flowers could be baked/cured on the bead then popped off and glued back on after baking, or they could just be baked separately and glued on later.
For extra hold if needed, you could then put a clear finish like polyurethane, etc, over the entire finished bead which would completely surround the earth clay bead and any polymer embellishments, encasing everything.

Btw, doing this kind of thing on glazed ceramic would be pretty much the same as if doing it on glass or smooth metal.
And doing it on unglazed fired earth clay would be similar to doing it on other porous surfaces like bare wood, cardboard, papier mache, etc.

You might also want to check out a few pages at my polymer clay site for more info on doing "onlays" onto polymer clay, as well as putting raw polymer clay in particular onto various other materials (which is called "covering" if it's done pretty much or entirely all over the surface of the other material), as well as baking polymer clay and using various kinds of adhesives with it:
http://glassattic.com/polymer/covering.htm > Glass & Ceramic if glazed
.....or Terracotta, Plaster, Earth Clay, Greenware if not glazed
http://glassattic.com/polymer/onlay.htm > Dimensional (>>molded, or non-flat, etc)
http://glassattic.com/polymer/glues-Diluent.htm
http://glassattic.com/polymer/baking.htm

If none of this helps with what you want to know, ask again but specify the type of clay you're referring to each time you mention a "clay."

HTH
« Last Edit: March 04, 2012 10:47:46 AM by Diane B. » THIS ROCKS   Logged

POLYMER CLAY "ENCYCLOPEDIA" 
http://glassattic.com/polymer/contents.htm
few of my photos
http://s96.photobucket.com/albums/l163/DianeBB
(had to move them from YahooPhotos, so many now without captions)
ChelseaLou
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« Reply #3 on: March 04, 2012 11:32:21 AM »

ok, well I feel really dumb because I meant toaster oven first of all

And secondly:
"Clay": earth clay (not polmer clay)

What I want to do:
take REAL clay, put it in the kiln, Paint it, glaze it (clear glaze), then put it in the kiln again
(that is the whole process for REAL CLAY)

Then take POLYMER CLAY (fake sorta like play dough) and apply it to the finished bead. (the finished bead *made of real clay, that went through the process above).

Do you think it will stick?

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
What I meant.....again sorry about the microwave oven thing

thanks!

p.s. I feel super duper stupid at the moment



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ChelseaLou
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« Reply #4 on: March 05, 2012 04:56:24 AM »

Diane B.

I forgot to say this:

I am jealous! You know everything about polymer clay!
Thanks for the great reply I will check out the links today!

-ChelseaLou
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Diane B.
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« Reply #5 on: March 05, 2012 08:37:38 AM »

Oh, okay, I think that's what I was assuming.  I just don't call earthen/pottery/ceramic/kaolin/phyllosilicate-mineral clay "real" clay... Grin.  
That kind of ultra-fine grain soil (actually there are numerous kinds of clay-from-the-ground) was just the first clay-like material discovered to have properties for plasticity then greater strength after hardening, especially by fire.  Since then it's been used by many people so all those clays got shortened just to "clay."  

But you're on the Polymer Clay sub-board now, and here "clay" almost always means polymer clay (since polymer clay is a mouthful to say every few seconds in a conversation); if another kind of clay is meant it'll be spelled out or referred to by its "full name," whatever that is.
  
On the Pottery, Ceramics sub-boards and for potters/ceramicists/etc though, "clay" usually means one of the earthen clays (usually pottery-type clay), and I assume if they talk about other kinds of earthen clay or about other materials that have plasticity then harden, they specify those.  
A lot of people who use those kinds of clay also aren't aware of, or don't know much about, the newer kinds of clay from synthetics like polymer clay (a plastic) to the many varieties of air-dry clay**, plasticine, etc.  Even if they do, they often think of those other clays only in terms of "sculpting" rather than all the other things that can be done with them*** (especially with polymer clay), so it really helps to differentiate the types. (No reason to feel stupid though. All humans are born knowing very little, and all have to learn --or not, which is worse!).

** manufactured air-dry clays like PlayDoh, Creative Paperclay, Crayola Air-Dry Clay, Model Magic, various cold porcelain clays and "mineral" clays, etc, etc... as well as homemade air-dry clays like play doughs, bread clay, sand clay, cornstarch clay, paper pulp clays, etc.
*** http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=179746.msg1871616#msg1871616


So if you are using a glazed and fired earthen clay, and wanting to put polymer clay bits (raw or baked) on it, the ways I mentioned below for glazed earthen clay beads would be the ones you could try.

(Btw, if you're interested in info on making "sculpted" polymer clay flowers in particular, there's a category on the main sculpting page at my site (Sculpting-General) for flowers:
http://glassattic.com/polymer/sculpture.htm > Flowers & Leaves
Also, the Baking page will have a lot more about curing polymer clay, types of ovens as well as other curing techniques, times/temps, avoiding darkening and more, if you're interested:
http://glassattic.com/polymer/baking.htm )

Diane B.




« Last Edit: March 07, 2012 08:15:56 AM by Diane B. » THIS ROCKS   Logged

POLYMER CLAY "ENCYCLOPEDIA" 
http://glassattic.com/polymer/contents.htm
few of my photos
http://s96.photobucket.com/albums/l163/DianeBB
(had to move them from YahooPhotos, so many now without captions)
ChelseaLou
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Posts: 190
Joined: 01-Mar-2012

Too many projects to do, soo little time


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« Reply #6 on: March 05, 2012 03:13:31 PM »

Thanks really appreciate all of the help!
I cant wait to try the tutorial about the flower! Its fun to learn new techniques!

Again sorry about the misunderstanding in the begging.....
But I am glad I was able to talk to you. Hopefully the links will help me soon in the future!  Cheesy

Thanks again!
-ChelseaLou

p.s. super pumped to try this out!!!!! :3
THIS ROCKS   Logged

Hey! I can do that! :3
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