For a fun, versatile project, try making polymer clay letters. You can use your polymer clay letters alone or in a number of crafty projects. It’s easy. Just follow these steps.
-Rolling pin ( or try using a can of veggies)
-A cookie sheet or other pan that’s oven safe
-An old metal kitchen spatula
Craft stores stock several brands of polymer clay. They come in small blocks in many colors. Some crafters prefer FIMO. I’ve found Sculpey easier to work with. For this project, I chose an economical brand called Craft Smart. The difference in brands is usually less than a dollar, but a lower price makes a big difference if you need a lot.
You can buy Polymer clay in lots of colors or work with beige or white and add color with craft paint or glitter.
-Polyurethane coating to seal your finished craft item
-Craft magnet strip
-Glue that works with metal and clay.
Prepare Your Polymer Clay
Work on a clean smooth surface
The Craft Smart instructions say “knead” your polymer clay. (like dough) That’s difficult to do right out of the package. Try this:
-Soften your polymer clay by warming the block in your hands.
-For further softening, use your rolling pin (or can) to flatten your clay a little.
-Then knead it until it’s easy to work with.
Make Polymer Clay Letters and Words
-What do you want to say with your clay? Keep it simple.
-Use your plastic knife to cut your clay into two pieces
-Roll one piece in your hands to make a rope. (like you did with Play Doh as a child.)
-Finish rolling your clay rope on the counter. It should be 1/4th inch. (See #2)
-Use your plastic knife to cut your polymer clay rope into pieces you can use to make letters any way you like.
-Fold clay pieces and pinch when you need to form an angle.
-Use your polymer clay letters alone.
-Or gently nudge letters together to form words.
-To help fuse your letters together, try adding small blobs of clay to the back where the letters touch.
-Use your rolling pin to gently flatten and help letters stick together.
-Bake (See below)
Make a Polymer Clay Pendant on a Base
-Roll the remaining half of your polymer clay into a 1/2 inch thick rope.
-Cut it in half
-Flatten half of it to 1/8th inch thickness.
-From the flattened clay, cut a base piece for a pin. (See #3)
-Roll the other half of your polymer clay into a 1/8 inch thick rope.
-Cut pieces of your 1/8 inch rope to make letters. (try LOVE)
-Lay out words on your base.
-Use rolling pin to gently flatten letters and help them stay in place.
Bake Your Polymer Clay Creations
The package instructions for Craft Smart polymer clay recommends you bake at 275 degrees for 15 minutes per each 1/4 inch of thickness. Ovens vary, so if timed baking doesn’t work in your oven, try this:
-Put your clay/pan into a 275 degree oven.
-Remove after 15 minutes.
-Polymer clay hardens as it cools; so take it out, let it cool and test for hardness.
-If it’s not hard, bake for a little bit longer.
-If the edges get brown, you’ve left it in too long.
-If your clay pieces stick to the pan, remove them with a metal kitchen spatula.
-Here are a few more polymer clay curing tips.
Finish Your Polymer Clay Pieces
-Add painted touches or glitter.
-Add a clear coating of polyurethane to seal.
-Glue on a pin back for wearable words.
-Make a refrigerator magnet by adding a craft magnet to the back.
-Create smaller pieces for small pins or earrings (drill holes to add wire or jump rings and earwires)
My personal craft projects