Polymer clay doesn't need a kiln for because it cures at a lower temperature than earth clays. All you need for successful crafting with polymer clay is a little inspiration and a home oven. You can mold the clay over and over without it deteriorating. It's non-toxic, but shouldn't be eaten, so always supervise if using polymer clay with young children.
Leaves, flowers, buttons or small cartouches are simple to make with polymer clay. To make leaves, roll out green polymer clay into a thin sheet, then press a metal leaf charm into the clay to make an imprint. Cut around the imprint with a craft knife, then set the clay aside to bake according to the manufacturer's instructions. If you don't have a leaf charm, use a tooth pick to score a rough leaf shape in the polymer clay before cutting it out. Don't worry about perfection. The charm of homemade items is in the slight imperfections.
Photo or Name Place Holders
Sculpt small animal shapes, or even simple box or pyramid shapes, out of polymer clay and turn them into photo holders or name place holders for the dining table by curling a length of wire into a spiral at one end and poking the other end into the top of the shape to create a hole before baking. Even simple shapes such as boxes or oval egg shapes look stylish or funky when they're painted or decorated with more polymer clay on their surfaces. Try adding a little glitter, or burnishing the piece with a bronze crafting powder for an antique look.
One way to make one-of-a-kind jewelry is to make your own beads. Being small, beads are an ideal project to use up any tiny pieces of clay left over from other, larger projects. Make marbled beads by rolling a couple of colors together between your palms, stopping before the colors completely merge. Make round beads or long beads, or roll polymer clay flat before stamping out disk beads with the end of a drinking straw. Use a needle or toothpick to make a hole through the bead so you can thread it after it's baked.
Magnets, Pendants or Mosaic Tiles
Use deeply etched rubber stamps that have a simple, bold design to stamp texture or patterns into thinly rolled out polymer clay. Cut around the stamped design with a craft knife, or cut out the design with a cookie cutter if you have one that the design fits inside. After curing the cut out shapes, use them as mosaic tiles to decorate mirror or picture frames, or they can become refrigerator magnets if you glue a small, flat magnet onto the back. If you want to make a pendant, remember to pierce a hole before baking the clay.
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