Rock 'n Roll with Polymer Clay

Presented by Christi Friesen, Award-Winning Artist, Author and Educator,
Instructions by Jennifer, Content Development Group, Exclusively for Fire Mountain Gems and Beads®
E65A

STEP 1
Combine green, white and navy blue piece of polymer clay with your fingers or through the largest setting on a clay conditioning machine, making a sheet of color approximately the thickness of a quarter.
STEP 2
Place your sheet of clay on top of a cutting mat then place the cabochon on the center of the sheet. Use a needle tool to cut around your cabochon, leaving a border of clay.

Tip: The clay cut-out may be larger than the cabochon or form an uneven shape.
STEP 3
With your fingers, pinch and press the clay, partially tucking the edge around one end of the cabochon.

Tips: Fingerprints only enhance the piece.
STEP 4
Tear off more of the same colored clay and roll it inside the palm of your hands, creating a snake-shape. Pinch the ends of the snake-shape while rolling so that each end is thinner than the mid-section, turning it into a slug-shape.

Press the slug-shape along the tucked edge of the clay, creating a bezel for the cabochon.

Continue adding as many slug-shapes as desired around the edge of the cabochon, securing it in place.

Tips:
  • Polymer clay adheres to itself when touching, so there's no need for adhesive
  • The cabochon will hold better if more clay is added around it
  • It may be easier to add more clay to the piece while holding it rather than keeping it on a flat surface
STEP 5
Tear off more of the same colored clay then roll it into a ball. Press the ball onto the clay then flatten it to create space for embellishments.

Continue adding balls of clay as desired.

Tip: Often times adding an uneven amount of embellishments to your piece makes for a more natural look.

Creating the Embellishments

STEP 6
Option 1
String a bead onto a headpin. Trim the excess wire, leaving about 1/4 inch of wire. Create a hook on the end of the headpin with chain-nose pliers.

Option 2
String a bead onto a short length of wire. Bring the ends of the wire together then twist the ends together using chain-nose pliers. Trim the excess wire, leaving about 1/4 inch of wire. Create a hook on the end of the wire.

Note: Avoid using plastic beads since plastic melts during baking.
STEP 7
Use tweezers to insert a beaded embellishment into a flattened ball of clay, or where desired, hook-end first. Press the wire in with a finger to secure.

Continue adding as many beaded embellishments as desired.

Tip: Adjust the embellishment or add more clay if the hook of the wire hits the cabochon.
STEP 8
Drag the sharp end of a needle or clay tool along the clay to add a design, pattern or texture as desired.
STEP 9
Use an artist brush to apply mica power to the piece as desired.

Tip: Mica powder does best when applied before baking.
STEP 10
Option 1
Use pliers to form a small hook on one end of an approximately 2-inch length of 20-gauge wire. Bend the wire over a finger to create a shepherd's crook then trim excess wire.

Apply a flattened ball of clay about the width of a dime into the shepherd's crook, leaving a loop hanging over the edge at the top to later string. Press the clay onto the back of the piece, so the loop hangs above the top edge. Set the piece back side down then gently press it onto the working surface, careful not to flatten the clay on the cabochon.

Bake according to manufacturer's instructions.

Option 2
Bake the piece.

Apply adhesive to the back of the piece, add pin back and let adhesive dry according to manufacturer's instructions.

Have a question regarding this project? Email Customer Service.

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