Sunday, 5 April 2009

Oranges and lemons (better make that onions)

Today I bought some polymer clay to start making some of the items I will need for the shop. I've decided that it will be a general dealer/grocer, so fruit and veg will feature strongly.

Polymer clay doesn't actually contain clay, it is a PVC with a liquid plasticiser. It needs to be baked in the oven - carefully (more on that in a minute).

As a trial run today, I started with oranges and lemons using orange and white polymer clay and a cocktail stick. They looked fairly good for a first try, but a little like an orange/peach hybrid.

My next try was better. Rather than trying to make the leaves look like perfect leaf shapes, I tried them looking a bit shrivelled and not very even: a bit more realistic. I also managed to make the top of the orange look more realistic by moving the cocktail stick around to create a better 'dip' at the top.

The lemons were a more difficult as I couldn't decide on a lemony shape, nothing seemed quite right. Anyway, these are my first efforts.

And of course they need a box to hold them for when they go into the shop. I made this from an envelope from the tax office (!), using the rough side as the outer. Once I start to expand my materials I'll likely varnish it to give it a more solid look and feel.

The instructions for the polymer clay state to bake at 130 degrees for 15 minutes per 6mm of depth. Well if you've a fan oven, like me, you need to drop that to between 100-110 degrees. My lemons were just turning brown when I took them out. Another point: baking tends to darken the polymer so I'll go for a shade brighter than I really need next time.

Et voila: onions!

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I love to read comments so thank you in advance. I read every one and try to reply to all. Julie :)