Presented by Christi Friesen, Award-Winning Artist, Author and Educator,
Exclusively for Fire Mountain Gems and Beads®
Christi Friesen, award-winning artist and instructor, is here with some jewelry clay baking basics and tips such as the type of oven needed, putting a thermometer inside the oven and making sure to pre-heat for best results.
Polymer clay is not an air-drying clay. It fuses at temperature and needs to be baked to become hard, firm and wearable.
Using a tabletop oven is especially convenient, easy to use and it can be stored out of the way when not in use. A conventional oven may also be used if desired.
Oven Temperature and Specifics
Keep an oven thermometer inside the oven because the knob is not always reliable. Always preheat the oven then adjust the knob until the thermometer shows the proper temperature is achieved.
Always read the manufacturer's instructions before baking since each brand of clay requires a different temperature and time.
After the required baking time, remove the clay from the oven and let cool. Polymer clay fuses in the oven but it hardens as it cools down. If adjusted before cooling, the clay may break apart.
Clay is a plastic material so there will be flexibility to some thin or small details in any clay project that has been baked. If it wiggles, even after baked and cooled, the clay was baked correctly.
Sometimes clay projects require adding more clay after baking. Just apply liquid clay to the desired area then add the extra clay. Afterwards, place the project back into the oven. Bake according to manufacturer's instructions, then allow to cool.
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