Introduction: Polymer Christmas Characters
Use as ornaments on your tree, your gift, or yourself!. Attach tree hangers, pins, magnets - wherever you want them to visit!
Gather up the holiday color clays and lets get started.
Step 1: Where Do I Start and What Do I Need?
Silver - optional
Gold - optional
Wire for looped hangers
Modge Podge or other Finish
Nice to have:
Parchment paper to work on
Embellishments for designs
Step 2: Prepare the Clay.
Never attempt to mix clays from different vendors.
You need to take small pieces of clay and knead them until they are pliable. Some clay blocks which have some age to them or have not been stored properly can harden somewhat and be difficult to manipulate.
Is a link to a wonderful site that gives great information on softening hardened clay.
Step 3: Let's Get Started.
I will show in detail how to make/decorate the Christmas stocking, Santa face, and Snowman Face. The rest of the items pictured should be made in a similar fashion and just follow the embellishments I have on them – or use your own ideas.
You can use these for Christmas tree hangers, glue a pin to the back for a holiday pin, glue a magnet for the refrigerator or file cabinet, with a looped hanger on it you can also use it to decorate gift bows.
Step 4: Start Rolling the Clay.
If you use a pasta/clay rolling machine, roll a layer of clay at the #7 setting (.0065 thick). Then fold it in half achieving a 1/4" thickness.
If you're rolling by hand, roll out a layer approximately 1/4" thick.
Step 5: Use a Texture Plate If You Wish.
I used a texture plate to create a “fuzzy” type of texture.
You can use other items to create textures also. You can impress the weave from a cloth into the clay. You can use a straw to create circles. Cut the straw in half to make half circles. Let your imagination go on what can make different textures on your clay.
Put the texture plate on the clay and roll the texture on.
Cut the stocking shape out of the textured clay.
Step 6: Make Multiples to Save Time.
I cut out three stockings from the piece of clay. Next soften a white piece of clay and roll it out. This will be the fuzzy cuff of the stocking.
Using the texture sheet, roll some texture on the white piece of clay.
Using the stocking cutter to cut the stocking cuff out of the white textured clay. Use an exacto knife to “clean up” the fluffy cuff section.
Glue fluffy cuff to stocking.
I then used green clay to form stocking “patches” for the toe and the heel.
On another stocking I used white clay to form a bow with pom-poms freehand.
Make sure you’ve Super Glued embellishments and then bake per your clays directions.
Also, if you are going to insert the wire loop for attaching before baking this is the time to do it. You can attach it after baking by drilling a hole and gluing the wire in.
Instructions for Wire Loop.
The above link will take you to Fire Mountain Jewelry which has great instructions for making the looped wire.
Step 8: Let's Get Started on Snowman.
I used white polymer. Use #7 on the roller machine and then double fold. Or hand roll out to a ¼” finished thickness.
Cut out the snowman face from the ¼” white clay layer.
Step 9: Top Off the Snowman Face.
While we use 1/4" thick layers to make the ornament, when making embellishments we use the thinnest possible setting. The clay should be paper like in thickness. Make sure to Super Glue to embellishment to the clay before baking.
Step 10: He's a Happy Guy.
Embellish the ornaments however you would like. Use sparkles, gems, or anything else. Make sure if the embellishment is flammable or meltable put it on AFTER baking. The finish you use will complete the attachment of the embellishment.
After firing the clay and attaching any other decorations - finish the ornament in Mod Podge or any other finishing product.
Step 11: Make a Santa Face.
Using a flesh color clay of your choice, roll it to ¼” thick and cut the Santa head out.
Making the white paper thin, use the Santa cutter and cut the beard out of white color clay. And although I don't have a picture of the red rolled out - also cut the cap from red clay.
Using white, form a moustache for Santa along with white trim for his hat.
With the same flesh color, form a nose. With black give him a couple of eyes.
Many of the embellishments I have on my ornaments I've just shaped with my hands.
Step 12: Some Finishing Notes.
Remember to bake your clay creations per the products specifications. Different clay vendors may have different baking directions. Check the package.
Do not use different vendor clays together in the same creation.
Do not bake embellishments which cannot handle the oven heat. Apply these after heating the creation with a small amount of Super glue.
DO NOT use an oven that you will use to cook food for baking the clay. Get a small toaster oven for baking clay.
After completing the embellishments and the product, finish off with either Modge Podge or other finishing product.
If you have any questions (or comments), you contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or my Facebook page or my blog. A PDF slide presentation is available for download on my website www.natures-sol.com.