Clay Inlay Boxes

Anne Igou shares her technique for making this keepsake box made from clay and stamping.

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Thanks to Anne Igou for this project.

Materials and Tools:

acrylic recipe box
Austrian crystals
copper tape
craft knife
clay blade
card stock
rubber brayer
acrylic rod
clay-dedicated pasta machine
automotive protectant spray
two-part epoxy
ruler
ceramic tile work surface
Lisa Pavelka Designer Series Victorian stamps
Ranger Perfect Powders: Interference Blue, Forever Red
Kato Polyclay blocks: 2-3/4 white, 3/4 copper, 1/2 turquoise, 3-1/2 violet

Steps:

1. Condition all clays thoroughly before use.

2. Mix one block violet and one block white clay together. Roll out on the second-thickest setting of the pasta machine and set aside.

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3. On a piece of card stock, sprinkle a small amount of Forever Red Perfect Pearls Powder. Roll the rubber brayer over the card stock, coating the entire roller with powder.

4. Place stamp face-up on ceramic tile.

5. Roll rubber brayer on top of the stamp, leaving powder on the raised portions of the stamp.

6. Gently place the sheet of clay on top of the powdered stamp.

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7. Using the acrylic rod, roll the clay over the stamp using firm and even pressure. Remove clay.

8. Trim sheet to measure 4-3/4" x 6".

9. Repeat steps 2 through 7 to create two more patterned sheets using the same colors. Trim one sheet to 5-1/2" x 4" and another to 2-1/2" x 4" .

10. Roll out copper clay on the second-thickest setting of the pasta machine.

11. Repeat steps 3 through 7 using Ranger Perfect Pearls Interference Blue powder instead of the red.

12. Trim to create two sheets measuring 5-1/4" x 4".

13. Place all finished pieces on ceramic tile and set aside.

14. To make the canes: Roll one-half block of copper clay into a 2" x 1/2" long rod.

15. Roll two-and-a-half blocks of white clay separately through pasta machine on the thickest setting. Double the thickness of the sheet by placing each sheet on top of the other. Wrap the sheet around the copper rod and trim away excess.

16. Roll one-half block of turquoise clay through pasta machine on the third-thickest setting. Wrap sheet around rod and trim excess.

17. Mix one-quarter block of violet and one-quarter block of white clay, and roll through pasta machine on the thickest setting. Wrap sheet around rod and trim excess.

18. Roll one-quarter block of violet clay through pasta machine on third-thickest setting. Wrap sheet around rod and trim away excess.

19. Roll one-quarter block of copper clay through pasta machine on the thickest setting. Wrap sheet around rod and trim away excess.

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20. Roll one-quarter block of violet clay through pasta machine on third-thickest setting. Wrap sheet around rod and trim away excess.

21. Reduce rod by rolling back and forth to 9 inches in length.

22. Pinch one side of the rod to create a teardrop shape all along the length of the rod. Slice rod into three 3-inch sections.

23. Place each section together to form a semicircle.

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24. Slice semicircle in half and place together to form a whole circle.

25. Reduce the cane by squeezing and pulling from the inside out. Continue to reduce the cane until rod is 4 inches long.

26. Cut rod into four 1-inch sections. Piece sections together to form a square. Trim excess.

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27. Roll one block of violet clay through pasta machine on third-thickest setting. Slice the cane into thin slices and place evenly all over this violet sheet. Roll acrylic rod over top of the sheet to smooth seams.

28. Strips of the sheet need to be cut in the following measurements:

For top of the box:

2 strips 6" x 3/4" with diagonal corners
2 strips 4" x 1" with diagonal corners

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For the front of the box:

2 strips 6" x 1/2" with diagonal corners
2 strips 4-1/2" x 1/2" with diagonal corners

29. Bake all pieces on a ceramic tile at 275 F degrees for 30 minutes. Allow to cool completely.

30. Adhere all pieces to the box using two-part epoxy.

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31. Draw a bead of craft glue in the seams of clay pieces on box. Remove paper backing on copper tape and adhere to seams on top of glue. Allow glue to dry.

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