Archive for the ‘polymer clay’ Category

Ghosts of Christmas Past – Mine

December 29, 2012

For Christmas, we went to Illinois to stay with my folks.  It had been a few years since we had done this and when I stepped into their home, I found myself thrown back in time.  I had forgotten all the crafts I had made for them over the years and it was wonderful to see my crafting Christmas past.  I wish I had kept some of these for myself when I created them long ago but at the time when you make 100 of something, you are really sick of looking at it. It was at the time in my crafting career when I was doing lots of craft shows.

 Santa stuck in a chimney.

 

 

 A Lucia commemorating my mother’s Swedish heritage.

For breakfast one morning we went to the Stockholm Inn.  It was Christmas Eve and packed.  We came in the back way and we could tell it was going to be a long wait.  I asked the hostess how long the wait would be and was told 40 minutes to an hour.  We decided that would be too long (I’m so impatient when it comes to things like this) and we made our way through the restaurant to the back entrance.

Right by the back door was a long counter with only a few taken seats.  Even though we could sit across from each other, we could sit next to each other .  I suggested eating there and we all agreed.  The waitress, Carmen, was a hoot and put on quite a show for us as the chairs quickly filled.  We had to wait a long time (30 minutes) for our food but it was worth the wait.

A gentleman sitting down from us sat down and asked Carmen if she had any Wheaties or Cheerios.  She said, “Honey, if you came in for that kind of food, you better just get up and head out to the nearest grocery store and make it yourself.  We don’t serve that kind of food here.”  She was hilarious. 

Rocketman isn’t the type of guy to split a meal but it’s a favorite thing I do with my mom.  We both get plenty of food without leftovers.  We went with a bacon and cheese omelet and it was delicious.  My Dad got their famous Swedish pancakes and Rocketman went for a ham and cheese omelet.  We even were serenaded for a time and sang a round of “Jingle Bells.” 

Snowman Polymer Clay Ornament Project!

December 16, 2012

Last Friday, the day of the horrific killings at Sandy Hook Elementary School I went to Noah, our grandson’s 1st grade class to teach them how to make this polymer clay ornament.  I thank God that I had errands to run before the class and that I did not know what had occurred until I returned home later that day.  I don’t know how I would have gotten through the class without tears and sobs.  The children killed were the same age as my grandson and his classmates. 

 Snowman Face Ornament
by Becky Meverden copyright 2012
 
Materials:
Polymer clay: white, orange and black
Toothpick
Plastic straw
Blush and cotton swab
Red ribbon
 
When working with children and especially white polymer clay, make sure their hands are clean.  The white clay picks up everything and will get quite dirty.  Luckily, I brought papertowels and waterless handcleaner.
 
Instructions:
1.  Flatten a 1″ white ball of clay into a circle.
2.  For eyes, roll two 1/8″ black balls and press onto face.
3.  For squint lines, use toothpick to indent two lines next to each eye.
4.  For nose, roll a 3/8″ orange ball into a oval.  Press onto face just under the eyes.
5.  Use toothpick to indent the mouth.  I start in the center of the nose and go out each side from there to insure that the mouth is even on both sides.
6.  Blush cheeks.
7.  Use straw to make hole for hanging.
8.  Bake in a 265 degree preheated oven for 30 minutes. Let cool.
9.  String with ribbon.
 


Here are Noah’s classmates creations.  They all wanted to do the blush themselves and as you can see, a few really went crazy with it.  When I asked why they put it all over the face, they told me that it was because the snowman had been to the tanning salon and had a sunburn.  I had to giggle over that one.

Even Noah’s teacher made one and the kids really enjoyed themselves.  I love how unique and different each one is.

I can’t tell you how many hugs I got that day from the kids.  A couple of girls even told me that they wished I was their grandmother.

This is Noah’s.  He was over the moon to have me there.  As soon as I walked in, he ran over with a huge smile on his face and gave me a huge hug.  I treasure these days because I know how fast time goes.  It doesn’t seem so long ago that I was coming in to teach a clay class with his mother and his uncle.  I was also fortunate to have my sister live close so I continued the tradition with her children too. 

Halloween Crafting with Noah

October 17, 2012

Noah stayed overnight last weekend while Rocketman was in Asia and of course, he wanted to get out the polymer clay.  I was in a mini mood so I found some old bolts and used them as a base for some polymer clay ghosts.

                   Noah wanted to make a snowman and he made this all by himself.  We had a blast!

We met his mama and little brother, Ezra, at Donatelli’s.  Rita even came out of the kitchen to give Ezra a squeeze.

They are having a pizza month with three very different kinds of pizza.  This is the Oktoberfest. This delicious pizza has a taste straight out of Germany. They take their thin 10” crust and layer it with slightly spicy horseradish mustard, thinly sliced Beer Brats, a handful of chopped white onions, sauerkraut and a mighty tasty smoked Gouda cheese.  I got it  without the onions and it was fantastic!!!

Rocketman landed yesterday from two and a half weeks in Asia.  As I was waiting for him near the International Exit, I spotted a Korean couple also waiting a few chairs down from mine.  Rocketman called as soon as he landed and I answered as I always answer him, “Yeobo sae yo.”  I glanced up and the couple was leaning over staring at me.  It was so funny.

Then when Rocketman came through the doors, I greeted him Korean ajumma style with palms to his cheek with some more Korean.  I’m sure that Korean couple was wondering what was going on.

I had some trouble short term parking at the MSP.  They were flagging all the cars saying the lot was full and we would have to go to the other terminal which is the Humphrey terminal and far away.  The first set of guys I encountered I told them that my husband was landing in 15 minutes and coming from Japan and that he never is able to sleep on the plane and please oh please let me park in Short Term.

The first set waved me through and only me.  The second guy I can upon was NOT going to let me park so I gave him the whole spiel again.  By then I was really panicked and worried.  He finally let me through and I found a parking spot very close to the entrance and was very grateful.  I still don’t know what is going on at the airport.

Halloween Polymer Clay!

September 8, 2012
 
Copyright 2012 Becky Meverden
 
Polka Dot Pumpkin Magnet
by Becky Meverden
Materials
Polymer clay – For pumpkin: orange, brown, white, black, Polka dots: magenta or purple
Toothpick
1/2″ round magnet
3/4″ round Kemper cutter, optional
E6000 adhesive
Instructions
1.  Flatten a 1″ orange ball into a 1 5/8″ circle.  Use your fingers to flatten the ball and  have the center thicker than the edges.
2.  Use a toothpick to indent lines on the pumpkin.
3.  For the stem, roll a 5/16″ brown ball into a 1/4″ long tapered log.  Use a toothpick to indent lines all over the stem.  Press onto the back of the pumpkin.
4.  For the eyes, flatten 2 3/16″ white balls into teardrops.  Press onto pumpkin.  For the pupils, flatten 2 3/32″ black balls and press them onto the eyes.  Use a toothpick to make two squint lines by each eye.
5.  For the eyebrows, roll two 1/8″ orange balls into 1/4″ long tapered logs.  Press above each eye.
6.  For the nose, roll a 1/4″ orange ball into an oval and press onto the pumpkin.
7.  For the mouth, press the lower half of a round cutter into the pumpkin.  You can also use the lid of a tub margarine container.  Cut a 1″ x 2″ strip, use your fingers to curve one end and press into the pumpkin.  Use a toothpick to place a hole on both sides of the mouth.
8.  For the polka dots, roll 1/8″ magenta (or whatever color you choose) balls and press randomly all over pumpkin.
9.  Bake in a preheated 265 degree oven for 30 minutes.  Let cool.
10.  Glue magnet to the back of the pumpkin.
 
We broke out the polymer clay while Noah was here also.  I forgot how much I love the stuff!!  I made the pumpkin refrigerator magnets and Noah made the pumpkins in the photo above.  He loved it!


Claying with Noah

June 19, 2012

I haven’t touch my polymer clay for, well let’s say a long, long time, but it only took an interest from Noah for me to pull out my clay box, dust it off and jump right back in.  I thought I would be rusty but one of the things I love about polymer clay is that it is so forgiving.  We started by making monsters.  Mine is on the right.

Then we made a couple of farm animals from my Leisure Arts booklet “I Can’t Believe I’m Sculpting Clay Figures.”  I have several of my booklets in my Etsy store for sale right now.

                                                                He loved how they turned out!!!

Then last Wednesday we ventured down to Maureen’s and her Center for Creative Arts in Jordan, MN.  She has kid’s clay classes every Wednesday and I took Noah as I had his mother and uncle all those years ago.

It’s truly a magical place and you can’t help but smile as you look around at all the things she has on display.

                                                         Noah was so excited to be there.

 Maureen did a lot of demoing so we would know exactly what to do.  We were making a dragon.

       Finished dragons.  It was so cool to see all the creativity.  I love to see how creative kids can be.

                                                                Noah and Maureen

                                             My dragon which I sent home with Noah.

                                                                         Noah’s dragon.

Maureen even had a giveaway at the end of class and Noah was lucky enough to win a copy of one of Maureen’s books.  I made sure to have it autographed for him. 

Maureen was my first polymer clay teacher and that was over 20 years ago.  She’s been a mentor and friend of mine ever since.  If you ever are in Minnesota, I highly recommend taking a class from her.  It is something you will never forget.  You can see what she has to offer on her website.  Her Wednesday kid’s class schedule is here.  You just might see me and Noah.

Making Miniature Korean Food

August 7, 2011

 I have gone back to my roots.  Yes, I am claying again thanks to my miniature class in Suwon.  If anyone remembers, I used to do polymer clay figurines on “The Carol Duvall Show” and had quite a few books on clay published as well.  The miniature class meets twice a month on Thursday and is 6 hours long.  This is what we made the first month.  The photo above is classic deep fried street food that you would find anywhere in Korea.  It comes with a side of soy sauce.  The dish includes shrimp, green peppers, sweet potato slices and pumpkin slices.  Everything was made out of clay including the dish.  The deep fried look came from melting candle wax with a little yellow crayon and using a toothpick to apply it too all the food.

 We made a box of chocolates using an angel mold for the chocolate shapes.

Next came a summer favorite, samgyetang, which is chicken soup with ginseng.  My teacher was picky about how the soup look down to the ginseng, jujubees and green onion slices.  Then it was covered in resin.  I never knew you could use resin and polymer clay.  The kimchi looked so real to Rocketman, he wanted to taste it and the beer was also made using resin we colored.  We even made the beer steins by hand by using a piece of plastic tubing.

Finally, this is Chinese food with beef chunks, potatoes, carrots and green peppers in a resin gravy with a side of rice.  The sidedish of pickles and yellow radish.  It looked to real.

I call these pictures “money” shots because they ended up costing me about $1000.00.  I couldn’t get a good picture using my point and shoot camera and Rocketman didn’t have a lens for closeups.  He thought we would never need one.  He ended up getting a really nice one in Taiwan during his recent business trip. A couple of his Taiwan co-workers are really camera buffs like himself and were thrilled to take him to a favorite shop of theirs.  He spent less than he would have back in the States.  The prices in Korea were really high so that wasn’t an option.

My classes for the month of August are the 18th and the 25th.  I have no idea what we are going to be making but I can hardly wait.  It truly felt like getting on a bike again.  I’ve missed my clay days!

A New Class – Miniatures!

June 24, 2011

 Guess who I met?  If you were here during my “Amazing Ajumma Week” you may remember the video of this talented lady.  I told Hannah about her and that she was in Suwon.  I also told her that I was very interested in taking lessons.  So off we went!  It is easiest for me to get to her place by taxi and it was about 4200 WON ($3.91 USD).  Her shop is pretty close to a subway station so it’s easy for me to tell the taxi where to go.

 This is a sample of her work.  I bought this for Rocketman.  I want to learn how to make miniatures of Korean food and that class is held on Thursdays from 10-4, twice a month.  The next class starts in July and I signed up.  It is a three month course.

Here is a closeup of her amazing work.  This is really a blast from the past for me.  My first experience in polymer clay was making miniatures and my first book was on polymer clay miniatures.  I think she uses air dry clay and colors the clay.  It will be interesting since I haven’t played with clay for ages.  She is so talented and I feel lucky to be able to take classes from her. 

I just have to rearrange my hanji class that is on Thursdays.  I think I may go to twice a month with it, the opposite weeks of the miniature class.  Now I can’t wait for July!

FaveCrafts Blog Hop!

April 15, 2011

It’s that time of the month for the FaveCrafts Blog Hop!  This month I’m sharing a cute polymer clay octopus container.  I am living in South Korea where octopus is a common sight on a menu. I hope you enjoy this project.

Polymer Clay Octopus Container
This jaunty eight-legged creature makes a great place for children to store little treasures.
Project designed by Becky Meverden

Materials and Tools:
3 oz. packages Kato Polyclay: 2 white, black, violet, magenta
lavender clay (2″ ball white plus 1/2″ ball violet)
pink clay: (7/16″ ball white plus 5/16″ ball magenta)
pasta machine or acrylic roller
2-1/2″ glass votive
3/4″ Kemper circle cutter or toothpick
ball stylus
Kato NuBlade
paring knife, dedicated to polymer clay
aluminum foil
paper towel
parchment paper or index cards to bake on

Steps:
1. Flatten two sheets of lavender through the pasta machine at a #1 setting (1/8 inch). Flatten one sheet large enough to cover the top of the votive and the second sheet long and wide enough to cover the outside of the votive.

2. For the top, place the votive upside down on the smaller sheet and use a knife to cut out a circle about 1/8 inch from the votive top. Set the top aside.

3. Use a NuBlade to cut a straight edge across and along the side of the larger sheet. Wrap the sheet around the votive, lining the straight edge with the top of the votive and press. Use a NuBlade to trim the edges. Use your finger to erase and smooth the seam. Use the NuBlade to cut off the excess clay on the bottom of the votive and smooth with your fingers.

4. Press the votive against a flat surface to smooth out the entire surface.

5. For the eyes, flatten two 1/4-inch balls of white into 5/8-inch-long teardrops. Press the narrowest ends together and press onto votive. For the pupils, flatten two 3/16-inch balls of black and press onto the eyes. For the eyebrows, roll two 1/8-inch balls of lavender into 1/4-inch long tapered logs and press above each eye.

6. For the nose, roll a 7/16-inch ball of lavender into an oval and press onto the votive.

7. For the mouth, use a circle cutter or a toothpick to indent the mouth. Use a stylus to indent both ends of the mouth. For the cheeks, flatten two 5/16-inch balls of pink and press onto both sides of the mouth.

8. For the tentacles, roll eight 5/8-inch balls of lavender into 2-1/8-inch-long logs tapered to a tip. Arrange into a circle and press together. Press the votive onto the top of the tentacles. Lift up a tentacle on each side of the face and place a scrunched up paper towel ball under each to support during baking.
9. For the hat, roll a 3/4-inch size ball of white and press edges onto a flat surface. Roll a 3/16-inch-diameter log of white and flatten through the pasta machine at a #1 setting (1/8 inch). Wrap around the bottom of white ball and use a knife to cut off the excess. Press the hat onto the center of the top.
10. Make an aluminum foil ball small enough to fit into the votive but large enough that it sticks out over the top of the votive slightly. Lay the top over the top of the votive and press the ends of the top so that it lines up with the votive.

11. Bake in a preheated 265 F degree oven for 30 minutes.

FaveCrafts Blog Hop!

March 16, 2011

It’s that time of the month for the FaveCrafts Blog Hop. I thought this might bring Spring a little early. Enjoy!

Polymer Clay Daisy Frame
by Becky Meverden

Materials:
Polymer clay: white, yellow, green, purple, magenta, turquoise, ultra blue, orange and black
Chartreuse: Mix a ¾” ball of green with a 7/8” ball of yellow
Pasta machine or acrylic brayer
2 5”x7” pieces of plexiglass
2 ¾” binder clips
24 ga. Fun Wire – blueberry
Wire cutters
9/16”, 11/16”, 13/16” Kemper leaf cutters
5/16” Kemper circle cutter
Round toothpick
Paintbrush
E6000 glue
8 ½” x 11” piece of paper
Pencil

Instructions:
1. Frame template: Take one of the pieces of plexiglass and use a pencil to trace the frame onto a piece of paper.

2. Daisies: Flatten a sheet of white through the pasta machine at a #4 setting (3/64). Use the 9/16” teardrop cutter to cut out seven petals. Curl the narrowest ends slightly and press the seven petals together. Roll a 7/32” yellow ball into a 1 1/8” long, tapered to a tip log. Starting at the narrowest end, roll into a lollipop and press onto the center of the flower. Make 28 flowers. Center the flowers onto the template overlapping slightly. It will be 7 flowers across and 9 down. Set the frame aside.

3. Worm: Roll four 5/8” chartreuse balls. Flatten three 3/8” purple balls. Eyes: Flatten two 1/8” white balls into teardrops. Press narrowest ends together slightly and press onto one of the chartreuse balls. Roll two 1/16” black balls and press onto eyes. Eyebrows: Use a toothpick to indent above each eye. Nose: Roll a 5/32”purple ball into an oval and press onto head. Mouth: Use a circle cutter to indent the mouth.

4. Spots: Roll 1/16” magenta balls and press randomly all over the green balls including the head.

5. Assemble the worm in the following order: head, flattened ultra marine ball, chartreuse ball and so on. Press the worm onto the upper right corner of the frame.

6. Butterfly: Roll a 5/8”turquoise ball into a 1-½” long tapered log rounding the widest end. Use a toothpick to indent lines around the log, leaving about ½” from the widest end. Eyes: Flatten two 3/32” white balls into teardrops. Press narrowest ends together slightly and press onto the body. Roll two 1/16” black balls and press onto eyes. Nose: Roll a 3/32”yellow ball into an oval and press onto head. Mouth: Use a circle cutter or toothpick to indent. Antennas: Use wire cutters too cut two 4” lengths of blue wire and wrap each one around a paintbrush to coil. Press into the top of the head. Roll two 9/32” orange balls and press onto the top of each antenna.

7. Wings: Flatten a sheet of magenta through the pasta machine at a #3 setting (1/16”). Use a 13/16” teardrop cutter to cut out two upper wings and use a 11/16” teardrop cutter to cut out two lower wings. Press the wings together. Spots: Roll 1/16” orange balls and press randomly all over the wings. Roll a 3/32” diameter log of yellow and wrap the edge of the upper wings and around the outside edge of the lower wings. Press the body onto the center of the wings.

8. Press the butterfly onto the lower left corner of the frame. Bake and let cool.

9. Take the two pieces of plexiglass and place the picture between them. Take a binder clip and clamp the bottom center. With your fingers, remove the metal paper clip hinge from both sides of the frame. Place a binder clip on the opposite end of the two binder clips and in the center. Flip the metal paper clip like hinge and this will be your hanger. Put a line of glue around the entire frame, about ½” from the sides. Press the flower frame onto the plexiglass and let dry.

FaveCrafts February Blog Hop!

February 15, 2011

I hope you are enjoying this FaveCrafts Blog Hop. I am having a blast participating and also seeing what my fellow designers come up with. I hope you enjoy my project.

When I was a little girl, my mom had a wooden refrigerator magnet set featuring a dog house and a dog with each of our names on it. We took turns each week putting someone in the dog house. I seem to remember my dad was in it alot. I made this one for my children to enjoy.

Polymer Clay Dog House Refrigerator Magnets


Copywrite 2011 by Becky Meverden

Materials
Needle-nose pliers
Kato Nublade or knife
Kato Nuflex blade
Round toothpick
5″ x 8″ index cards
Scissors
E-6000 adhesive
bBlack fine-tip permanent marker
Circle template, optional

For Dog House:
Kato Polyclay: red, ultra blue, gold, beige
Three 1/2″ round magnets
Kato Repel Gel
Pasta machine or acrylic roller
Shade-Tex Architexture Rubbing Plates: stone

For Daddy Dog:
Kato Polyclay: brown, black, white, red, beige
Pink clay: Mix a 1/4″ ball of white with a 13/64″ ball of red

For Mommy Dog, same as Daddy Dog plus:
Kato Polyclay: violet, yellow, orange, white
Lavender clay: 3/8″ ball of white plus 9/32″ ball of purple
3/16″ Kemper flower cutter

For Brother Dog, same as Daddy Dog plus:
Kato Polyclay: turquoise

For Sister Dog, same as Dady Dog plus:
Kato Polyclay: magenta

For each dog:
1/2″ round magnet
Eye pin
7mm jump ring

Instructions:
1. Condition clay according to manufacturer’s instructions.

2. To make the house pattern, fold a 5″ x 8″index card in half the widest way. Use scissors to cut 1-5/8 inch, parallel to the fold, 1-1/2 inch from the open end. Angle towards the fold and cut approximately 2-1/2 inches.

3. For the door, cut 1 inch from the fold and up 1-1/2 inch and then curve around to the fold. Open and you will have a house pattern.

4. To make the house: Flatten a sheet of red through the pasta machine at a #1 setting (1/8 inch). Rub the sheet with Kato Repel Gel to keep the sheet from sticking to the rubbing plate. Set the rubbing plate against the sheet and carefully run both through the pasta machine. Lay the pattern on top of the sheet and use the Nublade to cut out house.

5. For the roof: Roll a 1/4-inch-diameter log of both ultra blue and gold. Twist together and curl one end. Press around upper edge of house and cut off 1 inch beyond end and curl.

6. For the door trim: Roll a 1/8-inch-diameter ultra blue 12-inch-long log. Fold log in half and twist both ends. Press around door opening and cut off excess.

7. For the sign: Flatten a sheet of beige through the pasta machine at a #4 setting (3/64 inch). Curve Nuflex blade and slice sheet. Curve blade again and slice 3/8 inch from previous slice. Cut a sign that is 1-5/8 inch long. Set aside rest of beige sheet to be used for name tags for the dogs

8. To make the daddy dog body: Roll a 5/8-inch ball of brown into an egg shape. Use toothpick to draw center line 1/4 inch from the top to the bottom. Draw a half circle at the top of the line.

9. For the feet, flatten two 5/16-inch balls of brown and attach to the bottom of the body.

10. For the head, flatten a 7/16-inch ball of brown into an egg shape. For the eyes, flatten two 7/64-inch balls of white into egg shapes. Press narrow ends together and press onto head. For pupils, roll two 5/64-inch balls of black and press onto each eye. For the snout, flatten a 5/16-inch ball of beige into an oval. Press onto the head under the eyes. For the nose, flatten a 3/32-inch ball of black into an oval and press onto the snout. For the mouth and tongue, use the toothpick to indent bottom of snout. Flatten a 1/8-inch ball of pink into a teardrop and use toothpick to press onto snout and to indent tongue.

11. For ears, roll two 7/16-inch balls of brown into 1-1/4-inch-long tapered logs and flatten. Curl under the narrowest end and curl out the widest end of each ear. Press onto both sides of the head. Press head onto top of the body.

12. Make the mommy dog the same as the daddy dog. For the hat, flatten a 1/4-inch ball of lavender. For the brim, roll a 1/4-inch ball of lavender into a 5/8-inch-long log. Flatten and pleat using your fingers. Press onto the top of the head. Press the hat on top of the brim. For the flower, flatten a small sheet of yellow through the pasta machine at a #5 setting (1/32 inch). Use the flower cutter to cut out a flower. Roll a 1/16-inch ball of orange and press onto the center of the flower. Press flower onto the hat.

13. To make the brother and sister dog, follow the directions for the daddy dog except use the following ball sizes: body: 7/16 inch, feet: 9/32 inch, head: 3/8 inch, eyes: 3/32 inch, pupils: 1/16 inch, snout: 9/32 inch, nose: 5/64 inch, tongue: 3/32 inch, and ears: 3/8 inch.

14. For brother’s kerchief, flatten a small sheet of turquoise through the pasta machine at a #5 setting (1/32 inch). Use Nublade to cut a triangle wide enough to fit around the neck, 3/4 inch long on its longest side, 1/2 inch long on the other two sides. Place around the neck of the dog.

15. For sister’s bow, flatten two 5/32-inch balls of magenta into triangles. Use toothpick to press a like into each triangle. Press together slightly. Roll a 7/64-inch ball of magenta and press into the center. Press bow onto the top of the head.

16. Press an eye pin into the bottom of each dog.

17. For the name tags, use the beige sheet from the house sign above. Use the Nublade to cut rectangles, 3/8″ x 3/4″. Use a toothpick to make a hole in the center top of each tag. Make one for each dog.

18. Bake house, house sign, dogs and name tags according the clay manufacturer’s instructions.

19. When everything has cooled, use black permanent marker to write the family name on the dog house sign and individual names on each name tag. Glue dog house sign over door.
alternate design

20. Use the needle-nose pliers to attach a jump ring to the eye pin of each dog. Add name tag to each dog. Close each jump ring.

21. Glue three magnets to the back of the house, one near the top and the remaining two near both bottoms. Glue a magnet to the back of each dog.