I was after some healthy activities to do with the kids when I found out about polymer clay. It’s easy to model with because it is soft, simple to work with, and it’s versatile too. Plus, the kids will love it because it comes in a huge range of vibrant colors and they can decorate and paint it.
The grown-up stuff
Once you are done modeling, your creations need to be baked in the oven. It is important to follow the manufacturer’s instructions when you bake your clay to ensure the best results. To prevent it from going brown in the oven, cover your art loosely with some aluminum foil to protect it.
I also discovered that once baked, it is water resistant and pretty robust and durable. This means there is no end to the things you can create with it!
Polymer clay is relatively new to the craft world. I did some research, and there is no need to worry about safety with polymer clay, as it is non-toxic. However, be aware that it is not certified as ‘food safe’ and make sure you wash your hands once you finished creating.
Don’t forget that if any of the art is going to be decorated with paint or embellishments, it may need sealing for protection.
The fun stuff
Polymer clay can be decorated with acrylic paint, and the clay can be painted before or after baking. The painting once baked is probably easier when doing this with kids, as there is no need to worry about ruining the shape of your creations!
The clay can be adorned with pretty much anything. So don’t be shy and get stuck in with plenty of glitter, paint, and beads. We even used things we had lying around the house like shells, buttons, and sequins.
There is a lot of scopes to add texture to your art. Polymer clay can be etched, and I saw some cute coasters made with etchings of leaves on them. The clay can be ‘roughed up’ with brushes to give a feathered effect or scored with something pointed. It can also be impressed with the sharp end of a pencil to make holes and even impressed with letter stamps.
There are so many things you can create, and the possibilities are endless. One of the great things about it is you can make it as hard or as simple as you like.
If you have little ones, you might want to stick to making simpler things like tealight holders and hand-prints. If your kids are a bit older, there are loads of great tutorials on making jewelry. Personalized jewelry would make seriously cool gifts for friends!
One of my favorite ideas was to make shape the clay into hearts and then put the kids’ names on them as a keepsake.
If you are stuck for inspiration, there are some great creativity tips for polymer clay on Pinterest. Or you could just ask the kids if they have any ideas – they will likely end up teaching you!