25 October 2014

Turquoise birdies

Turquoise is a stone that I saw a lot of in Peruvian jewellery, so today I'm showing you how I made some faux turquoise birdies.

To make faux turquoise from polymer clay, I first needed to look at some recipes. Luckily I had three, in the books Faux Surfaces in Polymer Clay by Irene Semanchuk Dean, The Polymer Clay Techniques Book by Sue Heaser, and Polymer: The Chameleon Clay by Victoria Hughes. I also found many more recipes online. They were all slightly different, but all had a similar principle: creating chunks of clay with fissures in-between filled by paint or dirt.

I wanted my turquoise to have quite a lot of variation of colour, so I mixed up various colours of turquoise as well as some other colours. I then placed them all in the fridge to harden for a few hours.
Meanwhile I got a little soil from the garden, and mixed in a little copper-coloured eyeshadow powder, and gold-coloured metal leaf. I also formed a couple of bird shapes from plain turquoise coloured clay.
I chopped up all the colours using a wavy cutter. Then I mixed in a little of the earth mixture, and covered the bird shapes with this, squeezing a little so it would stick, but not so much that the definition between the different lumps would be lost. I pierced holes for the eyes, and from top to bottom. From the remaining clay mixture I made two cube shaped beads.
After baking the beads, I rubbed them with brown acrylic paint and rubbed off what I could, then when this was dry I buffed them with the buffer attachment on my drill. Then I varnished them with a high gloss varnish. 

Buffed on the left and unbuffed on the right
Finally I put them together with some other beads to make a pair of earrings.

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