Polymer Clay Matchbox Pendant
Lisa Pavelka shows how to craft a unique and creative polymer clay matchbox pendant.
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Project designed and demonstrated by Lisa Pavelka.
Materials and Tools:
Kato Polyclay: black, violet, magenta, fuchsia
Kato Acrylic clay roller
Shade-Tex Nature set texture plates
Kemper heart-shaped clay punches
two 2" head pins (gold or silver)
2 large glass or metal (purple or silver) beads
clay-dedicated pasta machine
ruler or cloth tape measure
work/baking surface (12" x 12" or 8" x 8" smooth tile)
Armor All or Son-of-a Gun automotive protectant spray
needle-nose pliers (with wire cutter)
black fine-tip permanent marker
rubber or leather neck cord or chain
charms and/or beads
1. Condition all clay thoroughly before using, starting with the lightest colors first. Knead for 1 or 2 minutes until soft and pliable, or cut a block into four or five slices and run through a pasta machine on the largest setting several times.
2. To make the drawer: Remove the drawer from the matchbox. Use the pushpin to punch a hole through the center of the end of the drawer. Enlarge the holes by inserting the needle tool through each hole.
3. Roll a quarter of a block of magenta clay through the largest setting of the pasta machine. Spray the clay sheet with automotive protectant spray and spread over surface with fingers.
4. Place the sprayed clay facedown over the water texture sheet (cut sheet in half with scissors first). Run the clay and texture sheet together through the largest setting of the pasta machine. Peel away texture plate.
5. Apply glue to one side of the matchbox drawer. Place the glued side down over the back of the textured magenta clay. Use the clay blade to trim excess clay away from the drawer's edges.
6. The other end of the drawer is a repeat of the previous step, but the trimming is different. Trim the clay along the drawer's long sides so that they are flush with the drawer's edges. On the narrow sides, cut the clay 1/8" away from the edges, leaving a lip or extension that will prevent the drawer from slipping out when hung by a chain.
7. Insert the eye pins through the clay end from the inside of the drawer.
8. Place the drawer on an index card and bake on a ceramic tile, in a 275 F degree oven for 25 minutes.
9. To make the matchbox cover: Roll a half-block of black clay through the third largest setting of the pasta machine. Spray one side of the clay sheet with automotive protectant spray and spread over surface with fingers.
10. Place the sprayed sheet facedown over the water texture sheet. Run the clay and texture sheet together through the third largest setting of the pasta machine. Peel away texture plate.
11. Measure the matchbox's dimensions (height and combined widths plus depths). A standard matchbox measures approximately 2-1/4" x 4-1/2". Use the clay blade to cut the textured clay to fit the matchbox's dimensions.
12. Apply glue stick to all four sides of the matchbox. Carefully wrap textured clay around the glued matchbox. Work out air pockets and heal seam with fingertips. Trim any excess clay from edges with craft knife.
13. Roll violet and magenta clay through the fourth largest setting of the pasta machine. Cut out several hearts using the three largest pattern cutters. Cut out the centers of the hearts with the two smallest pattern cutters.
14. Insert clay hearts of different colors into the centers of the larger hearts. Place these hearts randomly over the front of the matchbox.
15. Roll a large pinch of pearl clay through the sixth largest setting of the pasta machine. Punch out several pearl hearts using the smallest pattern cutter. Place the pearl hearts on the centers of the larger hearts and around the cover of the matchbox.
16. Roll a large ball of magenta clay into a 1/8" diameter snake. Press the snake along one vertical edge of the matchbox cover and trim off excess clay. Use the needle tool to press indentations every 1/8" along the length of the snake. This decorates the edge and helps it to adhere to the cover. Repeat this step on the other vertical side of the matchbox cover.
17. Place the matchbox on an index card and bake on the ceramic tile in a 275 F degree oven for 30 minutes.
18. While the matchbox is baking, place a bead over one eye pin of the baked and cooled drawer. Cut the eye pin to 1/2-inch with wire cutters. Bend the eye pin backwards at a 90-degree angle. Grab the tip of the eye pin with the round-nose pliers and bend the pin back towards the stem of the pin to create a jump loop. Repeat this step for the other eye pin.
19. When the matchbox has cooled, glue or tape a photo or saying into the drawer. Insert the drawer in the matchbox. Open the top jump loop with the needle nose pliers and insert a chain or cord to suspend the matchbox from. Close the loop.
20. Open the bottom jump loop and insert a charm or bead (use a jump ring if necessary to make the charm hang properly) and close the loop.
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