Polymer Clay Silkscreening Using PearlEx and Chalk

Silk Screening with PearlEx Powder and Chalk Pastels - Polymer Clay TutorVideo #747: The silkscreens used in today’s demo video were supplied by Tonja Lenderman. Her designs are wonderfully unique!

In today’s video I’m going to show you how to silkscreen onto polymer clay with PearlEx Powders and Chalk Pastels.

Now I have shown you how to silkscreen on polymer in the past, but that was with paint. Today I will show you how to use dry materials with your screens instead.

The silkscreens that I will be using in this video are from Tonja Lenderman of TonjasTreasures on Etsy. Tonja sent me a selection of her silkscreens and stamps (you saw her stamps in my previous video on the Sutton Slice) that she hand makes in her home in the United States. Her designs are unique (especially the ones I chose) and the quality is great.

I show several designs silkscreened onto polymer clay using PearlEx Powders, a couple using Chalk Pastels and one with PanPastels.

The process is pretty simple, as you will see in the video. First you lay the silkscreen onto a fresh sheet of raw polymer clay, and gently rub the screen to make sure it has full contact with the clay’s surface.

Then use a Q-Tip to rub PearlEx powder into the open areas of the screen.

And if you use chalk pastels instead of PearlEx, an applicator is not even needed. You can simply color directly onto the screen with the chalks.

Once you have finished applying your powder or chalks to the screen, make sure that your colors have been thoroughly pushed through the screen to get good adhesion to the clay.

Then you can gently lift the screen, being careful not to let any loose powder fall onto your clay.

Finally, cut and bake the silkscreened clay sheets into shapes, and use them how every you wish. Take care in how you handle the unbaked screened sheets, because the powder can be easily smudged at this stage… though I do show a neat smudging technique where you can smudge the powder on purpose).

Once baked the powder will stick to the clay very well, but your piece may need a protective finish if it will be used in a high wear situation such as with certain types of jewelry.

Do you have any suggestions for videos on tips, techniques or products you would like to learn more about? Let me know in the comments section below!

My goal is to help you to learn quicker and easier ways to bring up the professionalism in your polymer clay art.

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Looking forward to hearing from you!

Cindy Lietz SignaturePolymer Clay Tutor
  1. Cheryl H, 15 August, 2016

    Love them!! Haven’t had a chance to try silk screen yet though I bought the Sculpey silk screen kit.

  2. Cindy Lietz, 15 August, 2016

    You should get them out and try them Cheryl. They’re easy and fun to work with!

  3. Kim Tait, 15 August, 2016

    Love this video! Thank you.

  4. Cindy Lietz, 15 August, 2016

    Glad you liked it Kim! Hope you give it a try!

  5. Betty Bolerjack, 15 August, 2016

    What fun! I haven’t played with silkscreens as much as I would like, but since I absolutely LOVE Pearl EX powders, I will have to give this a try!

  6. Cindy Lietz, 16 August, 2016

    You should get thme out Betty… it’s Fun!

  7. Marie Lilley, 16 August, 2016

    Really enjoyed this, I have some of Helen Breils Silk Screens but haven’t tried silk screening yet, I really must.
    Thanks for the video.

  8. Cindy Lietz, 19 August, 2016

    You should get those out and play with them Marie. They’ll look great! Oh btw, your gift of the Bluestone arrived, thank you so much!! It will make wonderful inspiration for a faux Bluestone Tutorial (that is if I can figure out a good facsimile.) :)

  9. Marie Lilley, 20 August, 2016

    Oh so glad it arrived I was thinking it would be about another 4 weeks or so.

  10. Marion Rayner, 19 August, 2016

    This is brilliant Cindy, thank you so much! I never thought of using Pearl-Ex or chalks, what a great idea, this looks so much easier than messing around with paint.

  11. Cindy Lietz, 19 August, 2016

    It is easier in a lot of ways Marion, but it can smudge so you will need to take that into consideration when using it. Have fun with it!

  12. Kelley Jarvis-Maclay, 19 August, 2016

    Hi Cindy. Was just curious. Was that box set from Tanja’s Treasures made exclusively for you or is there a set like that to purchase? I looked on her store shop and all I saw was individual screens, no set. Great video, as always! ????

  13. Cindy Lietz, 21 August, 2016

    Hi Kelley, that wasn’t actually a set, I just stored the screens and stamps she sent me in a 4×6 photo box and stuck her business card on the top so I would know where they were from. From what I can tell, she only sells them individually.

  14. Marie Lilley, 20 August, 2016

    Hi Cindy,
    Finally got to try the Silk Screens with the Helen Breil ‘Irresistible Rhythm’ screen and so pleased with the result, only had 2 Pearl Ex colours Sparkling Copper and True Blue so I also used Tim Holts Perfects Pearls and also LuminArts equivalents though I’m not sure of the exact name for these but they all worked equally well. As I had made the sheet a little on the thick side – the thickest setting on my Atlas Pasta machine I decided to take a chance and pass it through the pasta machine on a number 3 setting as I was going to cover a previously made pendant template, I was half expecting at least one of the brands of the powders might smudge but no they all stayed in place. They baked ok and just a slight colouring on the brush as I applied the first thin coat of Varathane but nothing noticeable and on further applications clear brush all the way. So Cindy many thanks for opening up this line of experimentation with the various powders in a great video.

  15. Cindy Lietz, 21 August, 2016

    That is really awesome about being able to run your pieces through the pasta machine. I would have expected them to smadge as well. Who knew?! That is the cool thing about playing with polymer clay… you just never know until you try. Thanks for sharing your results Marie!

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