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But never fear, it is not completely useless and you can successfully roll it to thin sheets in your pasta machine.

Really, I'm serious...it is possible. I use lots of Sculpey III in my mokume gane so I'm always needing sheets of this stuff.

Sculpey at in the best conditions is an extremely soft clay. Add a warm environment or warm hands and you've got a potential gooey mess on your hands. I know I have warm hands...sometimes they are hot like FIYA!

Hey, now, huh-huh
Hey, hey, hey, no, (Ow, now)
Hey, now, huh-huh
Hey, hey, hey, no

Fire (Uh) [Uh]
Fire (It’s all about) [Uh, uh]
Fire (Woo, woo, woo)

Sorry bout that but couldn't resist tossing a little Ohio Player's "Fire" lyrics in there.

Ok, back to the lovable mushy sticky Sculpey III . those of you that have been working with different brands of polymer clay, probably groan at the though of using Sculpey III and scream in horror even considering putting it through a pasta machine.
But it can be done...with out you having to use choice words as you disassemble you pasta machine trying to get out the 3/4 of the package that has gotten jammed up in there.

You really only need three things to create a thin sheet of sculpey using a pasta machine:
1. acrylic rod or roller
2. Patience (huh, what....don't worry I'll explain what I mean by this)
3. Wax or deli paper

How to do it and keep your sanity

1. Let's start with the stickiest, mushiest offender of the Sculpey III family (can I get some dramatic music inserted here)....translucent!
Ok no body head for the hills, it will be alright.

The suspect:
The troublemaker

2. Start by flattening the translucent with an acrylic rod or whatever you usually use to flatten clay. Oh, you may want to take it out of the package first.
Manually flattened with rod

3. Roll the flattened sheet through the pasta machine on the thickest setting. The fold the sheet and roll flat again with the rod. Here's when you insert some of that patience. Remember that sculpey turns to mush, so instead of immediately sticking it back in the pasta machine, let it sit a minute or two. Then roll it through the thickest setting repeating this entire step 2 or 3 more times, remembering to let the clay rest.
Rolled on thickst setting

4. Reduce the setting in the pasta machine by 1. Roll the sheet of clay through the pasta machine again and then let the sheet rest. Repeat reducing the setting, rolling through the pasta machine and resting until you reach about the mid point of setting on your pasta machine. (My pasta machine goes from 1-9, with 1 being the thickest. So I do this until I reach setting 4 or 5. It will depend on how warm my krapht room is. If is pretty warm. I'll stop at 4)
Rolled on next 2 settings

5. Cut a piece of the clay sheet. I generally work in 4-5 inch lengths. Now you want to grab your wax paper and tear off a strip of paper about 2 to 3 times longer than the legnth of you clay. This will let your clay elongate on the wax paper...otherwise you'll be digging clay out of your pasta machine anyway.
I fold the paper in half lengthwise then once again. I cut just enough of the folded long edge off so that the strip fits into my past machine.
(cut waxed paper.jpg)

6. Place you clay on the wax paper about 1 inch from the bottom of the paper. Add the 2nd piece of paper on top of your clay.
Clay placed on wax paper

7. Feed the bottom of the paper through the pasta machine just until the clay hits the rollers. Now turn the pasta machine to the next smaller setting.
Feed into pasta machine then set to smaller setting

8. Roll just a bit of the clay through. Then separate the clay from the wax papers and begin rolling the clay through. Insert a little more patience and let the clay rest a moment or two.
Separate paper and clay

9. Remember the setting you are on, then open you pasta machine back up to a setting large enough for the bottom of the paper to fit in again. Now go to next lower setting than you started with at the beginning of this step. Separate just the top sheet from the clay and Again roll the clay trough.

If at any time you get one of these pesky puckers, just separate the clay and bot sheets of paper again and roll through. Uh-huh you know the routine...let the clay rest

10. Continue to reduce the setting, separating the top sheet, rolling through and letting the clay rest until you have reached your desired thickness.
Repeat rolling through machine. Rolled on thinnest setting

You have now just beat Sculpey III at it's own game. No more sticky, gunked up pasta machine.

Hope this helps.

Viewmaster slide show for da kidz

I really love these slide shows.

Originally uploaded by Kraphti-Dez
I was doing an ice bath for some mokume gane pieces trying to make the translucent a bit more translucent. Well, I stuck the bowl of water and polymer clay pieces in the freezer. When I'm in my right state of mind and not tired because it's almost midnight and I have to work the next morning, I take it out in less than 20 minutes.

Went sleep got the better of me and I completely forgot about it. Fast forward to the next afternoon after I get home from work, I go to the freeze to pull out some salmon to cook....and I'm standing there trying to figure out what the heck is the bowl of frozen water in here.

Well Duh? Who'd thunk water would freeze if left in the freezer that long.

Mask with long scarf
Originally uploaded by Kraphti-Dez
Ha, bet ya thought I'd stopped making stuff and let the kids do all the work. Nah....but they are so creative, I have been posting more of their stuff than my own.

I haven't named this lady yet...I'm open for suggestions, if anyone has any.

This was a difficult piece to sand. She's about 20" long. and the scarf has lots of hills and valleys. I had to be extra careful when sanding her so that I didn't break the scarf. But I managed to get her done and ta-da....here she is!

I made her some time ago, but had been putting off sanding because of the challenge she presented. I can't remember what brand of clay I used for her, but I'm pretty sure the backing for the scarf is Kato polyclay. The mokume gane is probably a mix of premo and kato with some silver leaf thrown into the slab.

Yep, yet another page change.

Well, I was playing around with the new Beta Customize thingy and found this great fall look.  I really like it.  Of course the fall is my favorite season. I love all the rich reds, yellows, oranges  and all their variations in the trees.  But this year I think we're gonna see mostly brown.  That late freeze early in the spring did a number on things here.  Then the "blazing" hot  dry summer didn't help matters.  So.....it looks like if we get any color I'll have to look at the leaves on the ground.  They'll probably start falling from the trees any day  now.


New Shoe alert!!!!

Oh, now these I must have:

It has been sooooo long since I've bought a pair of shoes.  At least 4 months. Yea, ya heard me right....4 months. Must be some kind of new record for me.

You know, I think i want both of these too:


Time to clean out the shoe closet so some new ones can fit in.....not that I have a lot of pairs of shoes mind you....{looks around for the lightening strike}

So for the past couple of weeks or so, some pretty great kids came over to “clay” with me….and man are they awesome.  They are the children of several of my friends and are very dear to my heart.

Now, because the internet is big and sometime not so friendly place, I’ll only refer to them with their first initials with the titles “Diva” for the glamorous girls and “Prince” for the rad boys.

{Side note to adults:  please be a little more conscious about the information you are posting on the internet about children.  I am always amazed at the personal information and pictures of children that I see on forums, photo hosting sites and blogs.  Often you have given so much information about yourself that it won’t take much for some devious person to find you…..and your kids.  Before you post, think of your children’s safety and ask if you are putting them at risk.  Sorry to preach, but I’ve got a pet peeve about children and internet safety.  Children younger and younger are spending more time out there in the World Wide Web, and it can be a dangerous place if you are not on your toes.  Teach your children internet safety and practice it yourself. } 



Ok now on to the good stuff...be sure too click on the pictures to go over to my flickr page and check out the closeup details on these pieces. 

Let me start by introducing the players: 

Diva “R” is the first artist and you can’t help but to be jealous of her because she’s all that.  She sassy (in a good way only), smart and creative.  WOW, what a combination.  She’s got some cool sculpting skillz.  Hey Diva “R” the next time we play in the clay, I need for you to teach me how to make figurines like yours.

Diva "R"s" Sculpture Close up of Diva "R"s" sculpture

She is also the texture queen...check out these pieces:

Diva "R"s" Textured pieces.


Diva “K” is up next and she’s also very smart and creative. She is like me and likes color.  Girlfriend puts together these cool collages.  I’m thinking I need one of them for my wall.  And, she is quick to uses what’s around her to make her art more stable. Now that’s what I call resourceful.


Diva "K"s" Collage Top view of Diva "K"s" Collage

Now are you as clever as Diva "K"? She used toothpicks to make her piece sturdy:

Diva "K"s" Heart Ornament

Check out the detail in this sculpture, loving the bow topper: Diva "K"s" Sculpture


Diva “S”  has been claying with me a little longer the others.  But she is also smart and very creative.  She can take some left over clay and work it into a masterpiece.  Diva “S” took most of her pieces with her before I got to photograph them, but believe me they are awesome.  She has got the marbling technique mastered.


Sculpture by Diva "S"


Prince “D” is the dude of the bunch…and he’s “da man”!  Watch out all you clay-mation  wannabes,  Prince “D” is on the scene and he is in charge.  Like the others, he is very smart and creative.  And his inspirational work just makes you want to cry, it’s really touching.


Prince "D"s" Pokemon figure Top view of Prince "D"s" Pokemon Figure

Ok, pull out your tissue, this is so precious, you may cry:

Prince "D"s" Angel

Now, I was not able to get a good image of the writing on the angel, but it says "Love 4 the Lord. In God we Trust."


These guys started using Sculpey III, but their work is so great and complex, they need a stronger clay.  I think this class has graduated to Premo.  We’ve got a little to learn about conditioning clay, but they catch on super fast and I’ll probably have it a little pre-conditioned anyway.  Hey, I just thought of something….their parents are doing any claying…..hmmm I’ll have them condition the clay, that give us more time to play in the clay.   By George, I’m brilliant.  {Takes a bow}


Also, for the next go around, they’ll all be pleasantly surprised.  I purchased a new pasta machine, so now I have 3.  One of these will go into their clay tool box for their play.


{Whispers} Shhhhhh….next time, they’ll get to add stuff in their clay.  I won’t tell them what, but they’ll have a ball.  Watch for their next set of work to have lots of “bling”. I've given them their own little corner on my flickr site....so check back now and then to see the marvelous work they've done. Da Kidz Kreative Korner


Ok, here's the problem with my muse learning a new technique....she tends to go overboard. Since she's got the hang of making swirlies. She's made about 100 of them. But guess what, she doesn't like to do the sanding. So you know who has been locked in the sanding box doing them. I swear my hands are beyond wrinkled.

I've been trying to convince folks of how much fun sanding is, but alas, there have been no takers.

{Sigh} I'm on 800 grit and only plan to go up to 1200. Hopefully by Friday, I'll be done.

Mastering the Swirly
Originally uploaded by Kraphti-Dez
What's it been about 3 months now and for the life of me I could not manage a decent swirly. Oh, I did one by accident early on, but could not repeat it for the life of me.

But a minor...no make that a major miracle happened this weekend. I FINALLY GOT IT! I CAN NOW INTENTIONALLY MAKE A SWIRLY!

My new theme song: {Gotta picture me in a leotard and leg warmers Flashdance style} "She's a maniac, a maniac, for sure. And she's swirling like she's never swirled before!"

No, no, no....let's leave the leotards alone (keeping the leg warmers though.) Jump to something a little funkier "Girl get your swirl on. Get your swirl on!"

Problem is, now that I can swirl, I can't seem to stop. Help I've swirled and I can't get up...

OK, can I get a swirly intervention please?!!!! Canes used in my swirlies