Metal Clay Magic

Published By: Kalmbach Publishing Company

Book Category: Non-Fiction, Crafts & Hobbies

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Reviewed by Jan Warren

If you love unique silver and gold jewelry but don't want to become a metalsmith, read Metal Clay Magic. With the development of metal clay, only your imagination limits what you can create in quality silver and gold.

Metal clay consists primarily of pure silver (or gold) in tiny particles smaller than 20 microns (less than half the diameter of a human hair). These particles are mixed in an organic binder and water formula. During firing, the binder burns away and the precious metal particles sinter leaving just the precious metal, which can be hallmarked as .999 silver or 24K gold.

The price for the clay may vary with gold and silver prices or suppliers however, the day I checked online, I found: Art Clay--gold was $149.56 per 5g pkg; Art Clay--silver, the standard was $26.88 per 20g pkg. (this amount will yield 10 or so, small, simple earrings)

You have minimal waste, because you recycle your mistakes, reducing the cost risk compared to the rewards

If you enjoy working with polymer clay, this is probably your next step in the creative evolution. Make one-of-a-kind heirloom jewelry and more, with tools you probably already have in your home. (You will need either a small inexpensive butane kiln for small projects like earrings to a more expensive programmable electric kiln to fire certain projects needing longer firing times.)

The instructions are easy to follow and the large color pictures inspire. If you follow the step-by-step lessons, you should have a finished piece within the day. (I would agree as long as you have sculpted clay before.)

Good news: The metal clay is non-toxic (it conforms to ASTM D4236) and it doesn't go bad. Polymer clay has to be conditioned; metal clay does not.

With 25 easy projects, including beads, earrings, pendants, and unique origami items, it should be easy to find one for your skill level. There is also a handy guide for resources and suppliers.

Armchair Interview says: Metal Clay Magic will inspire you to create your own signature pieces of gold and silver jewelry.

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