Have you ever heard of the mica shift with polymer clay? Are you wanting to explore it further? This is a stunning effect created when you use clay with a beautiful natural sheen to it (read: the mica particles themselves) and stamping combined to create a special effect for jewelry components and other objects of art.
Just like other techniques, it’s not a one-off, it takes practice to get good at, and the first attempt may not turn out super good,
Of course in this post I’ll also talk about mistakes to be wary of too, so you don’t mess up that amazing (or expensive, too!) clay while you’re still learning.
Materials to Use
The clay, first and foremost: Choose one of the pearlescent or metallic colors. Sculpey, Fimo, and Kato all have their own variations of these. Metallic tends to be the best to use as it has the highest mica powder content.
With the pearlescent colors, you may want to add a little extra mica powder to bring it up to the right amount of sheen.Does not matter if you want to use gold, silver, white, etc., For this Sculpey Premo! is an excellent choice to use as it does come in these types of colors.
Stamps and texturing tools: Choose a pattern that appeals to you and the look you’re going for. There’s a lot of unique looking stamps out there just for clay.
- Tissue ad cutting blades
- Conditioning tools, such as a roller and pasta roller
Look at your brick of clay…you’ll notice the variations in the way it looks. Mica powder particles are disk-shaped. The goal here is to get a more “uniform” color with your blocks which will flatten out those disks. To do this will necessitate use of your pasta machine,. It needs to be conditioned well to get the right look. Follow the guidelines I have provided in this post to condition your clay slabs.
You may want to dust off the stamp with some cornstarch which will minimize sticking to the clay. Shake off the excess dust.
Now take your stamp and press it into the clay slab. You may want to mist the textured side of the stamp with a little water to prevent sticking.
Remove the texture stamp . Carefully scrape off the to layer of the piece.
You may also consider the use of a shape cutter as well, to get a more precise looking object with clean edges. Also, if you think you will end up using the object for something jewelry related, be sure to pierce a hole near the top.
Bake your object at the guidelines suggested on the clay package.
Let it cool for awhile afterward….now we are going to bring out the best in the object with a little bit of buffing. I covered this procedure in greater detail in this post if you want to check it out.
Now your object is fit to be worn or hung, what do you think?
Images credit: Images by talty
The polymer clay mica shift technique is ideal for earrings, pendants, brooches (that’s lapel pins, if you’re familiar with them) and keychains. Master it and get ready for compliments on your beautiful, wearable “bling”!