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24-01-2010 10:28 PM #1
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I just spent ages making some beads from Cernit Polymer Clay. I made a mini cane with black and light blue clay and created a pendant and three charm beads out of it. I was so careful and got rid of all fingerprints etc... Anyway, I then baked them as per the instructions and when they were done, the blue colour had gone so dark, the contrast was hardly noticeable and it looked like I'd just made horrible black beads with no blue in them at all.
I waited till they had cooled down but they didn't change. Any ideas/ advice from you guys?
A xxxAmanda xx
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24-01-2010 10:34 PM #2
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Oh what a frustrating thing to happen GRRR!
All I can think of is it must be the clay. I have never used Cernit. So not altogether sure. I am sure someone out there will know.
Dot let it put you off though darl. We all have things go wrong now and then. xxx
24-01-2010 10:48 PM #3
Thanks! It was sooo annoying! Maybe I will have to factor in a certain amount of darkening of the clay...?
25-01-2010 01:52 PM #4
I think certainly the cernit clay is the culprit and nothing you did wrong
All polymer clays are prone to darkening in the oven. And Cernit is is very "old school" in how it behaves and colours do tend to darken / intensify when baked.
So it can be a good idea to make test tiles of any colour and bake them before using in a project, just so you know how the final colour comes out and if you need to lighten it to get the shade you need. Just in the same way ceramicists do test tiles of any glazes / glaze recipes.
Another useful thing with the cernit range is they do two different whites. The regular porcelain white can be added to the clay to lighten it and maintain the natural porcelain look of the cernit.
The opaque white is good to lighten colours if you want to make them opaque as well.
As Pepsi said though - don't let it put you off! It is all part and parcel of polymer clay work.
Polymer clay artist Marie Segal has some useful info on her blog about working with Cernit polymer clay. Interestingly, Marie works exclusively with Cernit these days, even though she was the driving force behind the invention of Premo polymer clay working with Polyform to develop it.
She also has some gorgeous work on her website
25-01-2010 02:12 PM #5
Thanks so much! I got Cernot cos it has such lovely pearlescent and metallic colours... Maybe I should have stuck to FIMO! I will make sure I do a test each time and take the darkening process into consideration in future.
25-01-2010 02:20 PM #6
I think you just have to weigh up the pro's and con's of each clay really and see what works for you best.
The Fimo range is probably a little less prone to darkening - certainly the Fimo Soft range. Also a bit easier to get going.
The cernit can be a pain to get conditioned and the colours can darken and need compensating for. But the incredible range of colours and the brilliant strength after baking still swing it for me and make the other things well worth putting up with.
Mind you, I have been claying 20+ years now and remember when all polymer clays were like cernit. Over the years people grumbled about the ease of conditioning and the colours darkening. SO they reformulated the clays like Fimo over and over - and sure enough did work on those things. But then, we all grumbled that the clay was not so strong after baking, or the clay was too soft in use - or something else and found ourselves missing the way it used to be.
So I don't think you can ever get every need met from the one clay - but I suppose that is why there are so many on the market and so many people who each love their own particular fave brands.
25-01-2010 07:24 PM #7
I see what you mean! I think I will stick to Cernit for now and see how I get on with it. Plus, I just bought quite a few colours so I'm kind of stuck with it for a while!
I shall try making the blue a lot lighter by adding more white and see what happens...
Any tips for getting rid of finger prints? I tried using gloves but I just got glove marks instead
25-01-2010 07:47 PM #8
Cernit is quite good at not taking fingerprints too easily I think.
But... you have to have a light touch and hold the beads like they are baby birds who have a cold.
It is not unheard of for me to drop beads I am working on because I am holding them so lightly - have learned to work over my desk so they don't end up on the floor! Better to drop the odd one though than have fingerprints to deal with on all of them.
Another thing you could try is to make sure the beads have rested and the clay is a little cooler before you hold them to make the holes.
I tend to shape my beads and then let them cool for at least 5 - 10 mins before I make the holes. The clay being a little cooler is not quite so soft and therefore not so likely to take an unwanted dab!
25-01-2010 08:13 PM #9
One thing I've found with fingerprints, is that if I have a little bit of cornflour on my fingertips (I'm using molds I've made so give them a quick dusting to help release) I seem to leave less marks on the clay I'm holding or shaping...
I'm not sure if that's just me imagining it, perhaps I'm just getting better at having a light touch anyway.
I also find that once i have the shape i want I can get rid of fingerprints by lightly stroking the clay with my fingertip... like the baby birds are starting feel a bit better and you're cheering them up saying there, there!
Hehe, in my head every lump of clay will be a tiny sneezy chick now thanks to Emma!
26-01-2010 09:48 AM #10
I will use the baby bird metaphor from now on! :-)
I made some more beads last night- they are not too bad. They were supposed to be light blue but ended up a sort of royal blue after baking! They have glitter in them too (I used some transclucent clay so you can see the glitter a bit more). I will take a pic so you can see my first wobbly attempts!
Thanks for all your advice!
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