Polymer Clay and Regular Clay:
If you’re immersed in the world of all things crafty, then you’ve heard of polymer clay. Polymer clay is a pliable, easily bent polymer compound used for sculpting in a way similar to clay. However, unlike traditional clay, polymer clay is made up of fine particles of Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) submerged in plasticizers.
Nonetheless, it can be played around with in the same way as clay can. You may be wondering at this point, ‘if it’s the same then why not just buy traditional clay?’ The answer is simple; while polymer clay and traditional clay are mainly used for the same purposes i.e. sculpting or glass work etc., polymer clay has many advantages over traditional clay.
Well first off, polymer clay does not dry out. You can use it for as long as you like without any fear. It has almost no expiration date as compared to traditional clay which dries out quickly and needs to be handled with care. Similarly, if you mix two or more clays together, more often than not you’ll be left with a grayish blob instead of the three vibrant colors you began with. In contrast, polymer clay is somewhat prone to turning into gray glop.
There is, however, one thing keeping many people from grabbing as much polymer clay as they can carry – money. That sounds so obvious, but the fact is that polymer clay is more expensive than traditional clay. Today it seems like the pros trumped this con.
Your basic tools for using polymer clay are:
• Your clay
• Your hands
• An oven
Polymer clay does not dry out like most clay nor does it need extremely high temperatures to solidify completely. You only need to keep it in the oven for no more than thirty minutes depending on the specimen’s size. Polymer clay can be used in literally any form of art, but it is most commonly used in making jewelry. While firing, you need to make sure whether whatever embellishment you added to the clay is heat proof or heat resistant at that temperature or not.
Are there any health hazards?
This is the best reason on why you should use polymer clay. If being healthy is your aim while working with substances, then polymer clay is a godsend for you. Unlike ceramics, they don’t leave a powdery build-up after they dry out. This build-up can cause serious health issues if inhaled or digested. Nonetheless, your cutlery should still be ceramic provided that is finished with the right type of glaze.
Polymer clay does not pose as serious of a risk to your health as other clay. It is true that polymer clay isn’t completely safe, but it is better for your child or for yourself to play around with something that doesn’t have the potential to harm you. It has no health and safety concerns.
Crafting using polymer clay:
So, now you know that polymer clay is:
• More durable
• More easily blended
• Less toxic
• More vibrant
• And easier to work with
Keeping all of this in mind, the question is what do you make? Well, you could sculpt using polymer clay practically everything. Sculpting tools are easy to get and cheap, you may also find alternatives to a few tools at home. More commonly, polymer clay is used for making jewelry pendants. Just find a base for your jewelry and start designing your clay onto it. Similarly, you can buy hooks and pins and stick them into your sculpted model before firing. Sculpting, glass work, textile work…The list goes on!