5 Bead And Cane Making Tips for Polymer Clay Artists with Hot Hands and Warm Studios:
Warm work areas and hot hands can create challenges with polymer clay. When the clay gets too warm it becomes soft and then sticks to your hands and tools. Plus the softness makes it almost impossible to get crisp details in your polymer clay cane designs!
Here are a 5 things you can do to deal with the hot hands issue that Adrienne Lindsey brought up in the recent Polymer Clay Recipe Card challenge:
1) Use a Firmer Brand of Clay: Products like Kato, Fimo classic and Premo are a lot firmer than Fimo Soft or Sculpey III. For a detailed list of the different brands of clay that I have worked with and their qualities, you can read this article: Best Polymer Clay for Cane Making and Sculpting
2) You Can Firm Up Clay that is Too Soft: Some brands are just too soft coming out of the package. But you can leach out the excess plasticizers to firm them up a bit. Here’s an article on how to do that: Using Your Pasta Machine To Firm Up Soft Polymer Clay
3) Cool Down the Clay: Pop your clay into the fridge for awhile to cool it down. As an alternative, keep a frozen ice gel pack at your station to set your clay on to keep it cool. It’s a good idea to have a couple of them in the freezer so you can swap between them. More info here: Cool Polymer Clay Tutorial
4) Cool Down the Room: Try a fan or air conditioner to cool down the environment a little. Or work at cooler times of the day, closing curtains and blinds if the sun is beating down.
5) Cool Down Your Hands: Try dipping your hands into a bath of ice water. Not only will this help your clay from getting to warm, it will help your hands if they are uncomfortably hot. Splash a little on your face as well, just for the fun of it! How refreshing!
If you have any other tips on how to keep your clay cool, please do share them below in the comments section!