Tips and Tricks

Double duty polymer bail

Holt and Montarsi on PCDaily

Syndee Holt tweaks Jan Montarsi’s easy polymer bails to get double use out of a brooch/pendant.

Syndee added a small hole at the bottom of Jan’s domed circle bail design which allows it to accommodate a pin that slides diagonally from the top hole to the new bottom hole for a brooch. Or slide a cord through the top two holes to wear the piece as a pendant.

Jan makes his bail on a domed form and uses liquid polymer to adhere it to the brooch. You’ll find more examples and clever adaptations on Flickr,

Holt and Montarsi on PCDaily

See more of Syndee’s innovations on her Pinterest site and on Facebook.

50% off sale

My extruder disk sets and Helen Breil’s stamps and screens are all deeply discounted only on the KazuriWest site starting today (while quantities last).

Lingering Euro vibes

Rotta on PCDaily

This jewel-encrusted polymer bead from Monica Rotta keeps my European vibe going even after I’m back in the USA.

Rich textures are topped with metal caps and faceted red beads like a sundae with juicy cherries.

Monica’s booth setup in Italy makes me sigh at her easy euro-elegance. She uses picture frames, hangers, and even astro-turf to show off her wares.

Visit her Facebook photos and breathe in the Tuscan air. There’s more on Pinterest and Instagram for your Italian interlude.

Layers of complexity

Corbin on PCDaily

Kathryn Corbin’s pieces in the sales gallery at EuroSynergy had usual touches  – epoxy sculpted findings (for strength), tube beads with windows, heavily textured beads made of white polymer and colored only with pastels and crayons. Her pieces have a mysterious depth and complexity.

The tube beads are rolled (not extruded) to emphasize their handmade quality. The window in the larger diameter tube reveals another bead underneath (click to see the details on the blue beads below).  Recently Kathryn added a gauzy nude portrait brooch (pastel again) that floats on a sharp geometric base.

Corbin on PCDaily

It was great fun to pal around with Kathryn who’s from Massachusetts and speaks French. She’s not very flashy online. You have to prowl around in Facebook to discover her treasures.

Challenging polymer forms

Dettai on PCDaily

The Challenge exercises tackled by participants at EuroSynergy in Bordeaux netted some of the most exciting developments at the 2016 conference.

French scientist/artist Agnes Dettai shares her exciting 3D challenge research in a post that may  mystify you. Using water soluble clay (PlayDoh) as a resist and limiting herself to one bake, she creates polymer forms that look impossible to construct.

Working with hollow forms and negative spaces has long intrigued her. Examine her results on Flickr.  Agnes asks only that you share your further 3D exploits and discoveries with her.

Dettai on PCDaily

Here are some of her pod form ready for a 2-hour baking. Once cured, the water soluble parts (purple) are washed away. Read about Agnes’ successes and failures along the way and add your own ideas to the challenge.

Cut and run polymer

resta_monica_youT2

There’s nothing quite as nice as a free tutorial to put you in a studio mood. This YouTube video from Monica Resta (MoClay) should do the trick.

Cutting and folding polymer is becoming her specialty and she offers several variations on this theme on her YouTube channel. A few straight cuts and careful shaping turn a stack of clay into summery earrings in a hurry. Your head will reel with ideas for variations. Read more about Monica on Facebook.

See-through polymer

Hyde on PCDaily

Just look at those translucent patterns layered over each other by Susan Hyde as she played with Cernit. Susan sent her experiments to Marie Segal who posted them to tempt the rest of us.

Bannister on PCDaily

Then Patti Bannister’s gradations of color upped the ante. Her lovely watery blues and greens melt into each other.

What is it about translucent that’s so seductive? Patti and Susan make it look easy. My first effort wasn’t as successful. Seems that thin, thin, thin layers are key. Are you as captivated by the possibilities as the rest of us?

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  • I'm Cynthia Tinapple, an artist, curator, and leader in the polymer clay community for over 20 years.

    On this blog I showcase the best polymer clay art online to inspire and encourage you. I also send out weekend extras in the premium newsletter, StudioMojo.

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