Wednesday, January 30, 2019

"Super Simple Shimmery Snowflakes" by Linda Hess

The East Coast was hit with a snowstorm this past weekend.  What better way to spend my snow day off from school than by bringing the snow into my studio!  Of course, real snow would be a bit messy, so I grabbed my Delight Air Dry Modeling Compound and set to work.

I recently purchased snowflake cookie cutters when they were marked down after Christmas.  At $.40 each they were a steal of a deal!  As soon as I saw them I knew they could be used with air dry clays as well as my polymer clay creations.  Naturally I bought one of hindsight I should have purchased more!

I cut open a package of Delight clay and set to work (NOTE: Be sure to rewrap any leftover clay in a plastic baggie or plastic wrap).  I have a pasta machine in my studio, so I used it to flatten the clay into an even sheet.  However, if you don't have a pasta machine you can use an acrylic roller or rolling pin to flatten the clay. (TIP:  To achieve an even thickness, place the clay between 2 parallel popsicle sticks or 2 parallel pencils and roll flat with the acrylic roller or rolling pin).

Place the clay sheet on your work surface.  Press cutter firmly into clay sheet, pressing down along all of the edges.  Then press the plunger to transfer the texture to your snowflake.
Be sure to use enough pressure or the design will not transfer evenly.  If you look at the above snowflakes, the snowflake on the right didn't receive enough pressure (it was in all honesty my first try).  
The next "issue" I discovered is the plastic cutters sometime left a rough edge. 
This was easily taken care of by rolling a beading pin carefully along the edges.  If you don't have beading pins, a turkey lacer will also work (they're not just for lacing turkeys!)

Anyone who follows my work knows that I can't stop with plain, white snowflakes.  That would be too easy.  I have a huge draw full of powders and glitters.  The perfect additional touch for snowflakes?  A little Pearl Ex shimmer.  
This first one has Interference Violet.  

A little goes a long way, so the best way to use this powder is straight from the lid.  I turn the container upside down...tap, tap...and then turn it right side up...tap, tap.  Remove the lid carefully, then rub your pointer finger over the powder residue in the lid. 
Gently rub the powdered finger over the snowflake to transfer color to the snowflake.  I chose "True Blue" for the second snowflake.  Remember that a little goes a long way.  If the color is too light, then it can be darkened by adding another layer of powder.  Squelch the desire to dip your finger directly into the powder pot as this will result in a cloud of powder going into the air as well as powder falling into the snowflake crevices!

For my next snowflake I thought the introduction of some ultrafine glitter might work...I was wrong!  The glitter didn't spread smoothly over the surface.  It collected heavily in some areas and left other areas blank.  Chalk this one up as my learning experience for you 😉
For my last snowflake I returned to the powders and chose a purple shade.  The snowflakes still needed a little "something".  Luckily I had some crystals and silver spacer beads sitting on my table, screaming to be used.  I pressed a silver spacer into the center of my first snowflake, a blue crystal into the center of the blue, and a purple crystal into the center of the last snowflake.  PERFECT!

Allow the snowflakes to dry.  Once dry, gently remove crystals and spacers and then glue back into place.  

If hanging the snowflakes: A hole can be drilled after drying OR use the beading tool/turkey lacer to create a hole in the top before drying.  Once dry, add a string/ribbon and hang.  Create multiples in a variety of colors and use them for a mobile.  Super lightweight...these would also make great earrings!

For jewelry: Do not create a hole in the snowflake!  Instead glue a pinback on after the snowflake has dried.  By running a chain through the pinback, you can also wear the snowflake as a pendant! 


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