Homemade tools are such a relief and a pleasure. No need to run out and splurge on the latest cutter or magic potion.
Chicago’s Marina Rios reaches into a drawer and shows us how she sacrifices a comb to make a spectacularly textured snake of clay that becomes a cool bead.
Her generosity and her cleverness remind me of the joy that polymer clay art brings to lots of us. Thank her for sharing.
Sure, StudioMojo looks at what’s trending but we’re really interested in art that requires heart and shows you something new and exciting that makes you slap your forehead with delight. Come take a look.
PCD usually avoids talking about products since new polymer tools have been known to raise heart rates and lead to marital discord. I’m breaking my own rule to suggest you look at the PRO Slicer that has just gone into production.
Ontario’s Gail Garbe and her engineer husband Manfred travel the country in their RV for a good portion of the year. Gail sells her Nifty Stuff at art fairs and other stops along the way. Size is always an issue when you’re working on the road so Gail was looking for something smaller than the coveted and now scarce Simmons slicer.
The new PRO slicer that her husband designed has a 4″x4″x4″ work area and weighs 5.6lbs. See it in action on YouTube. This instrument will cut polymer paper-thin. The $650 price tag reflects the cost of its precision parts. The first small run sold out quickly and a second batch is due in July. Here are the specifications.
Gail says that the downside of the project is that filling orders may keep the couple at home.
If the PRO slicer whets your appetite but doesn’t suit your needs, there’s a free I LOVE TOOLS online party coming up on Craftcast on May 23. Alison Lee loves tools…and parties. See what she’s dug up for her 13th tools show.
Christine Damm’s article on wire and polymer in the summer issue of Belle Armoire Jewelry tempts me to try her loose, eclectic style. I’m on a tribal, primitive jag this week that you can see in her copper and faux jade cuff. The polymer pieces on her Stories They Tell site and Flickr page hint at tales from other times.
Her husband formed the cuff from repurposed copper flashing. The texture is from a Cool Tools plate. (Cool Tools carries mostly metal clay tools and many of them can be used on polymer as well.)
These clay-covered eggs were a recent product of her experiments and she’ll be revealing her discoveries in a class at her studio in Ft. Collins, Colorado this Saturday. Here are earlier posts about Carol’s kaleidoscope-cane works and award-winning pendants.
I’m cobbling together a post from your emails since I’m on vacation and laptop time is limited.
In response to yesterday’s post, Patty Barnes describes how she makes her Kemper cutters organized and portable.
“Since I have many sets of Kemper cutters and I like to take them to classes and meetings, I used a metal tin to hold them.
I pressed scrap clay inside the bottom of the tin so that it was about ½” thick. I cut out each shape with the cutters and baked the entire tin. Coating the cutters with cornstarch or ArmorAll and leaving the cutters in place during the baking helps. Polymer clay shrinks a tiny amount and leaving the cutters in place during baking makes for a better fit.”
Art Jewelry Magazine has two articles about Melanie West in their current issue. One is a look at Melanie’s solar-powered home and studio. The other is a tutorial on bonding seamless polymer over aluminum cuff armatures.
My Kemper polymer clay cutters were always running away from me. When I saw someone at a conference with theirs neatly corralled, I decided to do the same.
I never thought of showing this efficient helper off. I’ve seen other artists’ beautifully crafted tools (see this early shot of Celie Fago’s) and this one is no beauty. Recent visitors to my studio thought readers might find beauty in its efficiency.
I’ve since devised similar helpers for other tools (pictured here) that try to elude me. Roll up some scrap clay, press your must-have-handy tool into it, remove the tool and bake. Voila! A studio assistant!
Name that sculpture and win!
ToyCyte interviewed polymer clay illustrator Jessica Fortner this week. They’re offering one of her newest furry sculptures to the person who can name the new series. Catch a good read and a chance to win.