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Polymer Clay Necklace Tutorial with Inbuilt Bail

I must admit I usually take the easy way out with the polymer clay pendants I have made.  Glue-on metal bails rock. But there are other ways.  This  pendant tutorial with inbuilt bail is by Gloria Uhler of Domestic Diva Online.  The fold-over style is achieved with a wooden skewer which keeps the gap during baking.

Those wooden skewers also come in useful for the matching cylindrical beads!

Before You Go:

Original Post by THE BEADING GEM
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  1. Question - The only time I played with polymer clay was to make some dog bone decorations for friends for Christmas. I "cooked" them in my toaster oven for the recommended time. The end product was rubbery. I've never handled anyone's polymer clay jewellery; is the end product like a hard rubber? Or did I mess up in some way? Thanks, Pearl, you're an invaluable resource.

    1. Hi Susanna, It usually should be like a hard rubber. There is some flexibility. Also some brands like Kato will result in a stronger and more rigid result. What did you use? Bear in mind that toaster ovens are notoriously bad at temperature settings and regulation. I usually keep an oven thermometer inside so I know to adjust the dial accordingly.

      Many PC artists bake for an hr rather than say the 30 min recommended by the manufacturer. When you open the door to insert the piece(s), the temperature drops and will take some time to regain the set temperature. So allowing extra time will mean that the clay does bake at the right temperature for long enough. Please check my blog for other polymer clay tips!!

    2. Thanks, Pearl. The word "clay" had me thinking that it would bake like pottery and I thought I was doing something wrong.

    3. Many things could affect the firmness of the finished project. As Pearl suggests, baking the piece longer than the time recommended by the manufacturer will result in stronger clay. The most important step in working with polymer clay though is conditioning. I've had clay crack, or burn in spots when it wasn't conditioned properly. Conditioning distributes the plasticizer evenly throughout the clay. That guarantees even results when baking. As for flexibility, generally, the thinner you roll the clay, the more flexible it will be. I've created several projects with nearly paper thin clay. Need more bail ideas? See my Scrolled Curio Pendant that uses double wooden skewers to support thin strips of clay that tie into the surface design forming the bail. Thanks for your input and support, Pearl!

    4. Thanks for all your ideas and tips, Gloria!


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