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Most unlikely tool?

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  • Most unlikely tool?

    I was thinking today about how we all use all sorts of "unauthorised" things as tools for our polymer clay work.

    I suppose the best example is the pasta machine - which we have pretty much taken over I think. I bet more people use pasta machines to clay than actually make pasta!

    What other things do you use as clay tools which were not designed for polymer?

    Some of mine include

    A plastic embroidery canvas - texture tool
    shards of old victorian patterned glass - again, as a texture tool
    sea shells - not only for texture, some of them make great mixing dishes for paints etc
    Emma
    www.ejrbeads.co.uk - unique art beads & more
    www.ejrbeads.co.uk/shop - beads, polymer clay, glitters and inks oh my
    www.facebook.com/EJRBeads - Like me at Facebook!

  • #2
    Originally posted by ejralph View Post
    I was thinking today about how we all use all sorts of "unauthorised" things as tools for our polymer clay work.

    I suppose the best example is the pasta machine - which we have pretty much taken over I think. I bet more people use pasta machines to clay than actually make pasta!

    What other things do you use as clay tools which were not designed for polymer?

    Some of mine include

    A plastic embroidery canvas - texture tool
    shards of old victorian patterned glass - again, as a texture tool
    sea shells - not only for texture, some of them make great mixing dishes for paints etc
    I used my husband's cufflinks for PMC. Great imprint of welsh dragons on them. (picture on my blog). Also use glue tops for little circles.
    Charters
    http://charterscharm.blogspot.com/last updated 28th Mar '11

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    • #3
      Great thread Emma!

      Bit of leather from an old boot with rouge polish on for a final polish on silver (idea borrowed from a colleague at Kernowcraft!)

      Playing cards, for rolling out PMC evenly.

      Flat head screw in a piece of wood - use as a jump ring opener.

      and my most make-shift but possibly most useful is a card board stand with two pins in to hold a bracelet whilst attaching charms - so I can attach them evenly on the downward hanging links - so all the charms hang the right way - it looks a bit funny but makes it SO much easier!

      I look forward to hearing everyone elses unexpected tools and will have a think if there are any others that I use that have forgotten...

      Hannah
      WWW.KERNOWCRAFT.COM

      Kernowcraft Rocks & Gems Ltd
      Your Destination For Gemstones & Jewellery Making - Since 1967

      For jewellery making advice, call our friendly team on 01872 573888

      FACEBOOK | TWITTER | INSTAGRAM | PINTEREST | GOOGLE+

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      • #4
        I use a straw end to make perfect pendant holes or the inside of a biro pen for smaller cut out holes. Also my favourite tool is a toothpick for making perfect bead holes (can't get much cheaper than that!). I use a left over bathroom tile as a work surface and a piece of cling film to go over the clay before I cut out pendants or charms(it rounds the edges). As you can tell - I am a skin flint!
        Jayne
        http://www.folksy.com/shops/Jaykay

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        • #5
          I don't use polymer clay, as a potter I use ordinary clay, but we potters also have little tricks! I use a kitchen sieve: I push clay through it and it comes out the other side looking like foliage. So if I'm making a miniature house or castle (see my website for pics) I can have little bushes or trees against the walls.
          Daesul

          http://www.clairemanwani.com
          http://www.folksy.com/shops/clairemanwani
          http://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/ClaireManwaniPottery

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          • #6
            A gum stimulator for smoothing and defining while creating life like facial features this is a brilliant tool!
            My dentist tool kit the best shaping, smoothing, defining tools in the world :-)
            Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/bespokeclaycaketoppers

            Blog http://amaaqua-claytoppers.blogspot.com/

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            • #7
              Blue Tack.
              Its great at holding fiddly things while they are baking. It comes out of the oven fine and ready to use again.
              Mops up fluff and dust from my sculpts too.
              Holds my bits of unfinished work so it dosnt flatten on the bottom waiting for my return.
              Holds my cocktail sticks so the don't roll away the moment I put them and other small tools down.
              Cant work without the stuff now haha!


              Folksy shop http://www.folksy.com/shops/Fairyweb

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              • #8
                I would be lost without cocktail sticks pluis diamante pins for hair as well as q tips!

                I'm sure there is loads more 'junk' on my table that I could not do without but its too late for my brain cells to work...lol

                Pauline
                Personalised Wedding Cake Toppers

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                • #9
                  Cocktail sticks again but stick into old polystrene packaging to hold the beads while varnishing.
                  LC's Beads
                  http://www.freewebs.com/lcsbeads
                  http://www.lcsbeads.folksy.com
                  http://www.lcsbeads.misi.co.uk
                  http://www.facebook.com/home.php?#!/...?v=wall&ref=ts

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                  • #10
                    My current favourite is an old peach stone which is great for using to add random texture.
                    full time mum and very very part time crafter.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by beadsbydesign View Post
                      My current favourite is an old peach stone which is great for using to add random texture.
                      Oh that is so cool!

                      I love using different things for textures and also making moulds, like acorns and stuff I find in the woods. I have some great moulded victorian glass shards that I press the clay onto too, albeit carefully!

                      Just love the peach stone idea though, bet that gives a fantastic organic surface effect.

                      Emma
                      Emma
                      www.ejrbeads.co.uk - unique art beads & more
                      www.ejrbeads.co.uk/shop - beads, polymer clay, glitters and inks oh my
                      www.facebook.com/EJRBeads - Like me at Facebook!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by ejralph View Post
                        Oh that is so cool!

                        I love using different things for textures and also making moulds, like acorns and stuff I find in the woods. I have some great moulded victorian glass shards that I press the clay onto too, albeit carefully!

                        Just love the peach stone idea though, bet that gives a fantastic organic surface effect.

                        Emma
                        Looks fab with a highlight of gold on it Will post some pictures when I find my camera!!
                        full time mum and very very part time crafter.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          A drinking Straw can be cut at different angles to make wonderful fish and mermaid tail scales! Also different sizes of smiles.
                          Personalised Wedding Cake Toppers

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by pepsi View Post
                            Blue Tack.
                            Its great at holding fiddly things while they are baking. It comes out of the oven fine and ready to use again.
                            Mops up fluff and dust from my sculpts too.
                            Holds my bits of unfinished work so it dosnt flatten on the bottom waiting for my return.
                            Holds my cocktail sticks so the don't roll away the moment I put them and other small tools down.
                            Cant work without the stuff now haha!
                            Last week, I was using some Blu-Tack to pass through my pasta roller to clean up the Fimo residue!
                            Autumn Thyme

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