Friday, March 7, 2014

How to Make a Polymer Clay Sea Themed Medallion

Before I get to my tutorial, I want to thank Kym from Totally Tutorials and Sculpey for selecting me to receive the Sculpey III polymer clay, tools, and accessories shown below in exchange for making a tutorial using these products.
I am not going to give basic clay info here since that information is readily available all over the web.  A great source for basic information, as well as projects, is on the Sculpey Website. I am going to show you how I used some of these awesome supplies to make this medallion.
Choose some sea appropriate colors and began layering them together.  You can either roll them to blend or if you have one, put them thru your clay machine.  I wanted a very organic look so I continued to combine and blend stopping when I liked the result.

When you are happy with the different blends, simply "patch" them together and roll or put them through the clay machine to smooth them out. Aim for a thickness of about 1/8".

Next I used the Sculpey flexible texture sheet of landscape patterns.  The honeycombs reminded me of bubbles so after the clay was smoothed out, I lightly sprayed the sheet with water, placed it on top of the clay and rolled it with the roller.  This gives a much more subtle effect than rolling the clay side up or rolling it through a pasta machine. The water makes it simple to remove the sheet from the clay.  When done, I chose to cut a circle for my medallion, but you could use any shape as well as a free-form shape.
Next make whatever elements you want to add. I made all the elements first and then applied them to the medallion.  How about some seaweed?  That's what I saw when I looked at the left vein pattern on the same texture sheet.  I had some leftover clay from when I cut out my circle. This time I rolled it through the clay machine making sure to cover the area I wanted with the clay. Don't forget to spritz on a little water here, too. Simply  use the clay knife to cut out the individual branches of the "seaweed" and clean up the edges a little. 

Here I rolled out a bit of hot pink clay, and used a mini seashell cutter from the Premo Nature set.  The needle tool was used to impress some lines like a real scallop shell.
A tiny amount of chocolate brown mixed lightly with white so streaks still were visible became a starfish--also a cutter from the Nature set.  Last of all, I wanted a fish, but alas, no cutter.  So get creative! Here I mixed orange with a touch of chocolate brown to tone it down a little and rolled it out.  I used the aspen leaf cutter (Nature set) for the body and used the starfish cutter to cut out two arms and a fin (not shown).
Perhaps you can see how I assembled the fish using the leaf cutter and starfish arms.  The detail tool helped blend it together. I used one of the texture wheels to lightly add some scales, and the needle and blunt point tools to add an eye and fin lines.
Arrange the elements any way you wish and bake according to the manufacturers recommendation in a clay dedicated oven. When cool, add some waxed cord, hang and enjoy!

My three most important tips:
1) Don't forget to use a light spray of water on the texture sheet for easy removal.
2) Shapes and parts of shapes or textures can be used and combined to make other things.
3) Have fun!


Halle said...

Really fun! I admire polymer clay work. I gave away all of my polymer clay and supplies. I simply can't stand the smell of the stuff.

Valerie-Jael said...

Great tutorial and congrats on getting that wonderful clay and the tools, have fun! Hugs, Valerie

Magic Love Crow said...

So cool Deb! There is a lot that goes into doing these projects! Great tutorial ;o) Hugs ;o)

Nan G said...

Wow! All the teeny tiny details are amazing. A fab pendant!

Sunshineshelle said...

Love the colours and bright seaside fun you captured in this pendant, it would make a great key ring charm too I reckon! Fabulous Deb :)

Bleubeard and Elizabeth said...

Good grief, dear Debbie. I adore that medallion you made. My project is a bit more involved, but now that I see yours, I might scale mine back a bit.

I love what you've done, but how do you get the clay out of the cutters? I tried water, mica powder, and Armour All. Nothing helped. I'm so glad you got one of these sets, too. I'm finding mine more helpful than I originally imagined. Especially the knife (grin).

AntiquityTravelers said...

Awesome piece and great tute!

Dianne said...

A really fun/colorful and fabulous medallion! You made it look easy...

Meg@MegaCrafty said...

Really cute medallion! I love the colors.

Crystal said...

Hey Debbie, love your Sculpey craft medallion! Makes me think of summer! :-)