Additional, Useful Polymer Clay Tools You Need!
You can have tons of fun at home making your own creations with little more than some polymer clay, a clean surface and your hands. However, as you get more involved with clay as an artistic medium, you might wish to complement your skillset with some specially designed polymer clay tools.
This article will cover everything you need to get started - and give you some creative ideas for making your own tools if you want to save some money!
- A Feather Tool Brush
Our Feather Tool Brush contains fine bristles that are perfectly spaced and have just the right level of stiffness to add texture to hard-to-reach areas. They’re great for creating striated textures, such as that of fur or grass, quickly, easily and efficiently.
- A Detailing Stylus
The Detailing Stylus we feature here on our website has two ends, a pointed end and a rounded end. This simple but highly effective tool can be used for texturing and manipulating small and hard to reach areas.
- A Clay Extruder
A high quality clay extruder, like the Makin’s Professional Ultimate Clay Extruder that we feature here on our website, can be used for a wide range of creative applications. This extruder comes with 20 extruder discs that can be used to create everything from cross-sectionally even clay ropes to find strands that can be used as hair or rope!
- A Sculpey 5-in-1 Tool
The Sculpey 5-in-1 Tool that we offer on our website features high-quality construction, is easy to use, and has a wide range of uses. It comes with a blade, a pointer, 2 shapers and a metal ball. You can use this 5-in-1 tool to cut clay, shape clay, add texture and fine detail, smoothing clay, forming indentations, and more!
- Shaping tools
Clay shaping tools come with a variety of different points for making all different sorts of indents, marks and cuts in clay. Like wire loop forming tools, they can be indispensable for making very precise alterations to polymer clay.
- Ribs and scrapers
Ribs and scrapers can be used to smooth, form, and section clay. Some can even be used to texture the surface of a piece of clay. Many clay ribs are made from smooth wood or plastic, but some scrapers are made from very thin sheets of metal that can also be used to cut the clay or striate its surface, simulating the appearance of hair or fur.
- Needle point tools
Some forming tools have needle points of varying degrees of fineness that can be used to texture and manipulate clay on a very fine level. The details you can create with needle-point tools will vary according to the fineness of the point. You can use these tools to create the appearance of textured rock, water, hair, feathers, scales, and much more.
- Texturing tools
In addition, there are also dedicated texturing clay polymer tools. Among these are stamps, stencils and rollers that can be used to pattern or texture the clay. Some of them need to be pressed into the surface, whereby they can leave a detailed, textured impression behind.
Thinking of Improvising Polymer Clay Tools? Try These Instead!
In the event that you want a cost-effective solution to provide the functionality of these tools without shelling out too much money, there are a lot of them you can improvise at home. Remember, your two most important clay sculpting tools are your hands and your mind - with these tips, you can create some of your own polymer clay sculpting tools at home.
- Toothpicks or pins
If you don’t want to pay for special clay sculpting tools like needle tools, you can get the same type of functionality from round toothpicks, or make an even better substitute with small metal pins or nails. Toothpicks have a tendency to deform over time, but pins are perfect for texturing and making small adjustments to clay.
- Use parchment paper instead of a mat
Clay sculpting mats are great working surfaces, but if you don’t want to pay for a piece of artistic equipment that will serve only one purpose, you can sculpt your clay on a piece of parchment paper. It’s clean out of the package, easy to work with, and clean up is even easier.
- Butter knife
In the absence of a clay rib or scraper, you can make a butter knife to make an improvised replacement. It won’t be effective as a cutting tool because most butter knives are too dull, but you can use one for forming, smoothing and general shaping.
- Improvise a texturing tool
One of the great things about clay texturing is that you can use a wide range of found items to improvise texturing tools. For example, you can use shells, stones, small pieces of clean fabric, and even clean bits of concrete to impart texture into a piece of polymer clay.
Here’s another really cool trick. Roll up a piece of aluminum foil into a ball and then use it to create impressions on your polymer clay. It’s an instant clay texturing tool that’s basically free to make!
- Use the teeth of a comb as an additional texturing tool
If you need a quick and easy way to replicate the effect of our feather tool brush, you may be able to use the teeth of a hair comb. Simply use the teeth of the comb to create an impression on the surface of the clay or draw the teeth along the clay to create the appearance of hair, fur, grass or other striated surfaces.
As you can see, you can buy special polymer clay tools for working with polymer clay, but you can also create your own high quality substitutes at home. With these tools, some polymer clay and a little imagination, you have everything you need to get started!
If you have any questions, please feel free to get in touch with us at 314-762-1434. We’d be happy to get you started crafting!