Baking Polymer Clay with a Magnifying Glass

Sun Powered BakingVideo #361: At the end of the clip, I share a fool-proof way to prevent burning if the sun gets too hot.

Topics Covered In This Video:

  • Sometimes there are those off-the-grid situations, like when we are out on a PcT Roadtrip with no power hookups for example. So how are you supposed to bake your polymer clay when that happens? Well… with the sun of course!
  • Today I want to show you a really cool and innovative way to make a Sun Powered Polymer Clay Oven using just a few simple tools and a Magnifying Glass.
  • Make sure to watch to the very end of this video, where I share some important information about how to avoid burning your clay when using this eco-friendly, baking technique.

Question of the Day:

So… did you like that? Wouldn’t this just be the perfect thing when camping? Or for those folks that live in Arizona? ;)

I’d love to hear what you think.

By the way, if you have a polymer clay question or challenge you’d like me to address in an upcoming video vlog, do post it in the comments below. I’d love to help you find quicker and easier ways to bring up the professionalism in your polymer clay art.

Oh and don’t forget to give these videos a Thumbs Up click at YouTube if you are enjoying them. The more Likes a video gets, the higher it rises in the searches. And that means even more people will be able to join in on this polymer clay journey of a lifetime.

Also, by subscribing to our YouTube Channel directly, you will receive notifications as soon as new videos are uploaded. To subscribe, click here… Sun Powered Polymer Clay Baking Technique. The Subscribe Button is right near the top of that YouTube page.

Looking forward to hearing from you!

Cindy Lietz SignaturePolymer Clay Tutor
  1. tantesherry, 01 April, 2013

    Anna, Cindy and Doug
    That was great :D
    No better way to start a Monday
    …you guys R 2 FunE

  2. Anna Sabina, 01 April, 2013

    It is important to be environmentally conscious in all areas of life. Thank you SO much for thoroughly researching the strengths of magnifying glass. The ones from the Dollar Store may actually be plastic and would definitely not work. Would it make a difference if you used a clear glass bowl for your “sun oven”?

    OMG. How did you ever get through that with out laughing the whole time. You know when Cindy says “Send me any questions you have a bout polymer clay”? Well she really does mean that. The inspiration for my magnifying glass question was claims of curing clay with a heat gun., a equally stupid idea. So I have been waiting months for this video !!! Thank goodness Canada also recognizes April Fools Day.

    I read you can cook food on a car manifold. Do you think that would work with clay?

  3. Cindy Lietz, 01 April, 2013

    :D So happy that your quirky sense of humour inspired us to do something fun Anna. I barely kept it together, which you may be able to detect if you look carefully. During the part where I was talking about the importance of a quality magnifying glass, I looked up at the camera and Doug was biting his lip try not to laugh, you can see a quick smirk on my face and a look to the side to gather my thoughts. I was hoping it would just appear that I was trying to remember where to purchase said magnifying glasses and it look like it worked! lol Thanks for the idea! And for being our oldest, I mean longest members!

  4. Andrea P, 01 April, 2013

    I was taken in also. lol

  5. Debi S, 01 April, 2013

    You had me going, but i was sure, as I watched, I would never bother with all of that!!! GLAD that I did watch til the end…..

    As I watched this I wondered firstly… how does one check on the internal temperature when you can’t see the thermometer through the bowl!! That should have been my first clue!!

  6. Gayle T, 01 April, 2013

    Cindy – You are just too funny! You had me on this one and I pride myself on seeing pranks coming. I never saw this one! Great prank!

  7. MK, 01 April, 2013

    You had me lol. I totally believed it, but was thinking the sun doesn’t get hot enough here to do it. Hahaha

  8. Melissa D, 01 April, 2013

    You got me. Haha

  9. Lesley Symons, 01 April, 2013

    ha ha ha, that was HILARIOUS!!! Thanks Cindy!

  10. Lesley S, 01 April, 2013

    ha ha, love it!!

  11. Andrea Paradiso, 01 April, 2013

    Hi, Cindy!

    I went on Face Book and saw a post about this technique and tried to get it to play but couldn’t. So I went to my e-mail to see if I could get in from there but couldn’t find any mail from you, either. And I can’t get this to play! I wonder if something is wrong with my account or I’m not getting something I should?

    Please HELP! I don’t want to miss any news or updates from you, especially on a technique like this one. Even though we don’t get much sun in western PA, I would really like to find out what this is all about and hopefully we’ll get a sunny summer day.

    By the way, I scrubbed my nails REALLY well and gave them several coats of Ren Wax. They look awesome!!! I will never have to polish my nails again EVER! You saved me money on future manicure bills, too!




  12. Cindy Lietz, 01 April, 2013

    Here I was thinking, “you probably shouldn’t put it on your nails, I’m not sure it has been approved by the health board for application on humans…” You got me! I can’t believe it after all we did to get this post up today. You’d think I’d not be that gullible! :D

  13. Andrea Paradiso, 10 April, 2013

    Did I REALLY get you? I had to find some way to get your attention and be serious. Telling you I couldn’t get in to the video seemed like the logical thing to do. LOLOLOL But I have to tell you, you really had ME going. Then, when you said the magnifying glass had to be professional quality and might only be found in special stores…that was FISHY! Not you, that’s for sure! That’s when I started thinking hmmnnn…and all that balderdash with all the equipment! You guys are great! What a hoot!

  14. Gina A, 01 April, 2013

    I honestly thought, she has lost her mind. I also love how you kept it together until the VERY end.

  15. Andrea Paradiso, 10 April, 2013

    True, Gina! I thought she’s lost it, too!

  16. Nettonya R, 01 April, 2013

    Patt W is right! You’re BAD! ;-) I did watch the thing right through, but you didn’t mention how to use the thermometer, so I figured that something was up!

  17. Patricia R, 01 April, 2013

    Girl, you are bad. That was too funny. Talk about keeping a straight face, you had me believing that. :)

  18. Nettonya R, 01 April, 2013

    That’s almost as bad as Flylady’s message today, which included duct taping a full soup can to each foot/shoe, to do today’s cleaning! I guess you can call me “Miss Gullible”! ;-)

    I didn’t add the soup to my feet, BTW!

  19. Andreja F, 01 April, 2013

    :) :) :)

  20. Bonnie K, 01 April, 2013

    Actually, here in Arizona in the summer it’s gets to be 118 and you can bake clay in the sun. LOL That’s why we can’t order clay or leave it in the car. This is a good video though and at first I thought you had a little too? much wine.

  21. Elizabeth K, 01 April, 2013

    Hi Cindy, I thought it was very rustic even for you, but never thought of April fools, you had me.See how we really believed in you.

    But just good fun,great acting as one gal said. XXX

    P.s. I do cure my resin out in the sun under a clear glass bowl. works every time.

  22. Andrea Paradiso, 10 April, 2013

    Rustic! LOLOL

  23. Annie B, 01 April, 2013

    Thank you! It is really funny )))

  24. Susan R, 01 April, 2013

    Your TOO funny!!! I told a friend of mine I was on the phone with OK I’m watching this video from Cindy Lietz and I’m not sure WHY she’s wanting to teach us how to bake clay outside but she’s never given bad advice yet so I’m going to watch this ( the whole time thinking “has Cindy lost it “)
    What a great April Fools Day Video especially for those of us like me who had no idea what the date was LOL.
    You and Doug are precious making videos together ,what a wonderful marriage message you two send out to the world of clayers !
    ~Susan R

  25. Annie B, 01 April, 2013

    So much fun, love it! I was thinking wow, she sure is a dedicated clayer. What fun, I bet you had as much fun preparing for the video as making it. Lots of laughs, I am sure. ? Great actress, by the way, Hollywood may come knocking on that trailer door. Great job. I loved it, and yes I was fooled at first.

  26. elaine faulks, 01 April, 2013

    This was so much fun Cindy, great Aprils fools prank, I had an inkling you n Doug were up to something !! It was great to have a giggle with you.
    I know you can cook a joint of meat in hay and bury a pig in mud and light a fire on top, but has anyone used a magnify glass to light a camp fire? Better take it along on your next PCT road trip……………………..cheers xx……….

  27. Debs A, 01 April, 2013

    That was so funny. When you said you had a surprise for us today I did wonder if it was a joke so was ready for it. What is scary is how easily you performed that joke!!!! lol

  28. Michelle Adams, 01 April, 2013

    LOL LOL LOL!!!!!! Even if you had me going there for a minute (or five) I wouldn’t tell you, lol! I had a quick thought right before I watched this about if it could possibly be an April Fool’s day joke. Good one guys. Thanks for the laugh. :o)

  29. Louise S, 01 April, 2013

    Loved it!!!! Can’t wait to try it!!!

  30. Freda K, 01 April, 2013

    What a lot of work to amuse us. And you did! All the way through I kept thinking, Why would anyone go to that much trouble to bake a few pieces of pc. Glad to know you don’t.

  31. Cecilia Kirketerp, 01 April, 2013


    I thought you had had a sunstrike (is that what’s it’s called?). No, not really but I figured it seemed like an awful lot of work.

    Thanks so much for this! :D

  32. Cindy Lietz, 01 April, 2013

    No I didn’t have a sun stroke but I think if I had sat out there waiting until my clay was properly baked with that contraption, I probably would have!! ;)

  33. Moma S, 01 April, 2013

    I thought you were full of it!!! Good joke!

  34. Anna Sabina, 01 April, 2013

    I was late to work today because of this funny video. The best part was the serious and factual delivery by Cindy. But…Holy Crap where did you ever get that HUGE red clamp !!! Loved the piece of firewood used to hold the magnifying glass in place, surprised you didn’t have a tree brach sized log.

  35. Cindy Lietz, 01 April, 2013

    Whaaat? You don’t have one of those red clamps? I thought everyone had one! LOL

    I did look for a tree branch but I couldn’t find one the right size for my oven, so had to go with the chunk of firewood. My favorite part was how handy the battery powered turntable was and how it wouldn’t take up much space when you’re camping. Almost laughed out loud in that spot! Since I was ‘winging it’ the whole time I wasn’t sure what I’d end up saying!

    PS my Mom kept asking me if I was sure I wanted to post this video since other people might not think it was funny. I think she was worried that I’d get embarrassed by an epic fail! I’m 47 years old and she’s still trying to protect me. This is why I’m doing videos and she is not. Besides I knew that at least 1 person (you) would think it was funny! LOL

  36. Ken Hamilton, 01 April, 2013

    That’s what mom’s do, we’re never too old to protect.

  37. Bertha A., 05 April, 2013

    Hah, I’m 51, in the same well-paying job for 13 years and my mother still worries that I don’t have enough gas money and will get stranded somewhere (I have AAA+, too). :-D

  38. Andrea Paradiso, 10 April, 2013

    That’s right, Cindy! Go for it! you are always so professionally serious and conscientious who would have thought you had this in you! (I have a feeling, however, after the Ren Wax headline, that Doug’s lighter side has rubbed off on you). You used the image we have of you to your advantage, had fun playing the Trickster and gave us a wonderful gift. Thank you! (And Mom will ALWAYS try to protect you. It’s part of her job, alas!)

  39. Andrea Paradiso, 10 April, 2013

    I loved the clamp, too! It was so unwieldy! And so RED!

  40. Ken Hamilton, 01 April, 2013

    Y’all are crazy, LOVED IT, but crazy! Right up there with the one when you were going to give up claying, that one you got me on, this one, um not so much.

  41. Cindy Lietz, 01 April, 2013

    That is good to hear that after all these years of hanging around here Ken, that you are getting wise to our tricks! :)

  42. Ken Hamilton, 01 April, 2013

    there is a website I subscribe to that does experiments using the power of the sun, this was totally in that style, if someone didn’t know you all or you didn’t say it was an April fools gag, it could have been believed. Thanks for the laugh I needed it.

  43. Sandra J, 01 April, 2013

    okay, so now i get the comments. I did wonder! good laugh at the end though! well done

  44. Ginny M, 01 April, 2013

    Oh Cindy, what a fun video! You had me going, lol I’m still rather new to this, and I was thinking oh dear I don’t think I will need to bake clay on my vacation, besides that looks like a lot of skill keeping that glass in place for an hour with the sun moving, hahaha

    On a serious note I love all of your videos! Thank you:)

  45. Dixie Ann, 01 April, 2013

    Omg, Cindy that was too funny. I was begining to wonder if anyone was going to pull an April Fools joke. Thing is you had me going there for awhile almost to the end because your so passionate about your claying. I though aha! she’s getting ready for another PCT road trip. You two are something else. Love it!

  46. Ruth L, 01 April, 2013

    I am one of the gullible ones. Ha ha

  47. Diane V, 01 April, 2013

    Loved it! Too funny, glad you held it together until the end.

  48. Catalina, 02 April, 2013

    When I first saw this I thought you were nuts!! I thought man Cindy is going in a direction that is not for me! But, I have to watch EVERYTHING do you, so I did! I think we have been cut from the same cloth. LOL!!! Now, two people got me on April Fools Day.
    I watched this a day late, (you know it was Open Day of the Baseball season :), so I was a little distracted. Thanks for the “lesson” I thought I knew it all :)

  49. Jill V., 02 April, 2013

    That was ambitious. Well played!

  50. Patt W, 02 April, 2013

    You’re so BAD! ROFL

  51. Dixie Ann, 02 April, 2013

    So are we suppose to get the new tutorials on the first of each month or the first Friday? I have not been paying attention (my fault) since I am still working on some of Cindys older ones.

  52. Polymer Clay Tutor Doug Lietz, 02 April, 2013

    It’s the first Friday Dixie Ann.

  53. Dixie Ann, 02 April, 2013

    Thanks Doug, I couldn’t remember and all the poetry has got me so excited I still can’t figure out what it is! ;)

  54. Pauline D, 02 April, 2013

    OK-CINDY….. Time to get inside from too much sun! LOL You almost caught my curiosity with so many questions that I couldn’t figure out. Now I know why! Silly girl – glad that you can have fun with this.

  55. Donna G, 02 April, 2013

    Living overseas, I always get postings a day late! Got me.

  56. Jeanann A, 02 April, 2013

    I loved it!!! I knew it when I saw the title that it was a spoof–But loved it anyway! And you are so right–There are some real dandy videos out there!

  57. Fran R, 02 April, 2013

    Thank you for such an entertaining video !!! I kept thinking – who would be crazy enough to go to all that trouble to bake their clay !!! You did such a convincing job of pulling this off.

  58. Phaedrakat, 02 April, 2013

    You had me, too! I was thinking, “I’m not sure I’ll try this one…but it’s interesting & clever!” Good one, Cindy! LOL

  59. Michele K, 03 April, 2013

    I’m a loyal follower Cindy, but I truly thought you had lost it … that was one I’ll never forget!

  60. Jocelyn C, 03 April, 2013

    I am crying I am laughing so hard, You got me. I checked the link a couple of times in fact, LOL!!!

    Cindy between you and Doug, your ingeniousity and humor….combined, the perfect pair. Love the video!

    Just got the hard drive back from the repair shop, so I had to wait until just now to see it. It was worth the wait , every second.

  61. Kimberly G, 04 April, 2013

    You are a brat!! Roflol! Totally had me hook line and sinker!! Good job! I’m a little disappointed now though LOL

  62. Svetlana O, 05 April, 2013

    The Fools day does not exist for nothing. Reading the comments (luckily not all of them are the same), I wondered what those people did at school? If they believed even for a second…wow! Some of them would really try to make an oven with a magnifying glass with the constant temperature of over 200 F!!!! There is a real joke – in the comment section! Good job, Cindy – maybe this way they will learn a teeny-tiny of elementary physics.
    You were so enthusiastic during this performance (talented), so I got really scared for you…

  63. Judy Clarke, 05 April, 2013

    I was actually disappointed that it was just a joke, as I winter in Arizona and thought that it would be such a great idea. It can get awfully hot with the oven on….

  64. Mrs Rainbow, 07 April, 2013

    Only just seen this today actually….*8th* April……. so the gig was already up, but it was still funny to watch. Laughing and trying to talk at the same time really suits you Cindy! Lovely! Laughter is good for the soul! x

  65. Mrs Rainbow, 07 April, 2013

    Oh…and my date IS correct…….it is not my way of a late April Fools joke…… My time in Finland is GMT +2 and it is 1am in the morning of the 8th… but yours reads 2.58pm on the 7th still. Funny……

  66. Bev Kennedy, 04 April, 2014

    I found it interesting to watch your video on baking without an oven. During my working days, which ended in 2001, I would ride light rail to work. I parked my car in a handicap stall (legally), and it would be facing west. One day I decided to do an experiment. I had created a small sculpture of my sister when she was about 5 years old, and she was holding a ball in her hands. I made the ball, then took it with me to the train station, placed it on a piece of paper on my dashboard, and left it there all day until I returned from work to go home.

    The sun had baked the ball — and it was hard enough to use. I was impressed. Luckily, I had all day to let it bake. I don’t always have that luxury. But the sun DOES sometimes get hot enough to work for us.

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