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How to Make a Polymer Clay Angel Figurine

Make this angel figurine with polymer clay and a wire mesh skeleton.

Materials and Tools:

12-by-12-inch sheet of 1/8-inch pattern mesh
1/8-inch armature wire
18-gauge galvanized wire
2-ounce packages of polymer clay: 5 for background color, 1 pearl, 1 flesh tone, 2 or 3 colors for jellyroll caning
pasta maker or rolling pin
rubber-tipped clay shapers
craft knife and clay-cutting blade
black acrylic paint
2 small paintbrushes
polymer-clay glaze
clay face mold
transparent liquid polymer clay
gloves
scissors
oven
cookie sheet
plastic bag
paper trapezoid template
paper towels

Steps:

1. Wearing cloves, cut a 10-inch curved trapezoid shape from the mesh with scissors. Wrap the wire mesh into a cone shape. Set aside.

2. Cut two 1-foot-long pieces of 1/8-inch armature wire for the wings. Set aside.

3. Condition ¼-package each of blue, gold and white with a rolling pin or a pasta maker. Cut three rectangular pieces and stack the sheets, gently press them together and trim them so they're all the same size. Roll the jellyroll cane up to form a tube. Put the cane in a plastic bag and set it aside.

4. Condition four 2-ounce packages of clay with a rolling pin or pasta maker for the robe: two transparent, one blue, one pearl. Cut the clay sheets into random slices with a craft knife.

5. Piece the slices together, overlapping some and mixing the colors, to form the robe.

6. Run the clay through the pasta maker to combine the clay slices.

7. Slice the jellyroll cane from step 3 into 1/8-inch-thick slices with a clay blade. Save some for creating hats, scarves and buttons for the angel.

8. Place the jellyroll slices randomly on the robe.

9. Merge the background clay with the jellyroll slices by rolling them together through the pasta maker or with a rolling pin.

10. Place the robe clay around the mesh form.

11. Using a craft knife, cut two ½-inch holes in the clay on the back where the wing armatures will be attached. Do not cut the mesh. Trim the excess clay around the bottom.

12. Shape the two 1-foot armature wires into wing or "P" shapes.

13. Thread one 2-inch piece of galvanized wire through the mesh at each of the two holes where you plan to attach the wings.

14. Thread wing armatures through the ½-inch holes. Twist the galvanized wire to secure the wing armatures to the mesh.

15. Cover the wing armatures with pearl clay.

16. Sculpt a 2- to 3-inch-diameter head from flesh-tone polymer clay, using a clay face mold.

17. Adhere the head to the body with transparent liquid polymer clay.

18. Cut additional slices from the jellyroll cane and press them together end to end, forming a chain. Run the chain through the pasta maker to fuse them together. Press the chain down the front of the robe, around the bottom and around the neck for a scarf, adhering the clay with transparent liquid polymer clay.

19. Create a ring halo from pearl clay. Adhere the halo to the top of the head with transparent liquid polymer clay.

20. Place the angel on a cookie sheet and bake in a 275-degree oven for 25 to 30 minutes. Let cool.

21. Mix a small amount of black acrylic paint with a little water. Brush it onto the angel's to accent her features and onto the wings for texture. Wipe away the excess.

22. Let dry for at least 30 minutes.

23. Apply polymer-clay glaze to the figurine.

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