Polymer clay is, quite simply, amazing. It’s a relatively cheap product and it’s great for those of us with chronic illness because you don’t have to rush to get your project done; you have time to work with the clay and it won’t dry out because you have to bake it in the oven.
What you will need:
Mermaid tail mould of your choice
Polymer clay – colour of your choice
Glitter – in your choice of colour
I love mermaids and I found this cute little mould on Amazon. You can find it here. You can also get a good selection of polymer clay from Amazon too. I’m a complete noob so I ordered a kid’s set of clay to play with until I am more confident with it (find a selection here on Amazon). I’ve heard that Sculpey and Fimo are two good brands of clay, but as I say, I’m a complete noob so I’m only just starting to experiment.
Also, just so you know, I’m not paid anything by Amazon to say any of this. I just happen to use Amazon because I like it and it works for me.
How to do a mermaid tail in polymer clay:
You can see that the mould above has a small layer of glitter on the bottom. I like to shake my glitter into the mould before adding the clay and then I can move it to where I want it with a cocktail stick before I add in my clay.
Next, pick your clay. Here, I chose a pink and purple colour. Sometimes the clay can be quite brittle and needs warming up so it’s good to work it around in your fingers to warm it up.
Once it’s warm and soft you can start placing the clay into the moulds. I’ve learnt, from numerous YouTube videos and trial and error, that it’s better to pull tiny bits of clay off and work this into your mould. This way it’s easier to get the clay into all the nooks and crannies of your mould. It looks something like this:
Sometimes, when the clay is too warm, it can refuse to stay in the mould and instead comes back out on your fingers. Patience is needed here. You can use a cocktail stick to hold it whilst you move your fingers or, if the clay is really too warm, you can cool it down in the fridge before working with it again.
Fill the mould up to the top.
I like to put a sheet of baking parchment over the clay in the mould and then I run my rolling pin across it to make sure the back of the tail is nice and flat. You don’t have to do this because the part of the tail you can see will be the back of the pendant. I do this because a flat smooth back gives a more professional finish.
Next, take a baking tray and cover it in parchment. Then gently pop the clay tail out of the mould onto the tray. It should look something like this:
The edges of the tail may be a little bit jagged so you’ll need to tidy it up a bit. Carefully cut the rough edges away using a clay tool or a blunt knife. Alternatively, you could file it down after it has baked although it is easier to cut the edges away before it’s baked.
Then, using a cocktail stick, make a hole in the clay at the top of the pendant for hanging:
Once you’ve done that, place your tail in the oven and bake to the instructions that come with your type of polymer clay.
When the baking time is up, take the tail out of the oven and allow to cool. Once the tail is cool you could add a pendant bail and hang the tail from your favourite chain.
This is what the finished product looks like:
There are endless possibilities with colour combinations:
It’s so addictive that my ten-year-old daughter has been making them too!
They’re so easy to do and totally satisfying. Why don’t you have a go? I’d love to see your results!