Thursday, December 31, 2015

Polymer Clay Journey: I Need To Condition My Clay? Explain It.

Something that I learned a year ago when my polymer clay "journey" began, was that polymer clay must be conditioned prior to using it. My young friend Luke who has been working with clay for years now, uses Sculpey 3 and has never concerned himself with conditioning. In fact, I asked him if he knew about this requirement and he said, "no." Several months ago when I decided to try out the other few brands of clay, I did check out the only brand he has ever used and discovered it was super soft and squishy. Which then caused me to wonder if super soft means you do not have to worry about conditioning your clay. Well as always, I researched the hard work already done by fellow clay artists and the answer from the folks who make it, Polyform, is "yes." If you do not condition or mix and knead your clay, it won't be able to reach it's maximum strength potential because the polymers or plasticizers won't be evenly combined through out the clay. That being said, I did discover that sculpted 3 is one of the weakest clays on the market. I do try mixing it with the Premo, Souffle or Fimo to use the great colour selection Sculpey offers, but  I have since concluded that Sculpey 3 is just too weak to use on any projects that require durability and strength. It is great for children and people with weak hands like me or arthritis, because of it's easy condition-ability. And it is great for the great little critters that my young friend makes, take a look here:

Just recently he received Premo clay and today, I am going to help him to learn how to use it. I don't want him to give up when he sees how much stiffer it can be compared to S3. On that note, I wanted to share some great Polymer Clay Tutorial Videos about Clay Conditioning and other basics. Hope it helps!!
Conditioning Polymer Clay 

HeArtfully Creating,

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