Making Gifts in Polymer Clay
About the Author: Stacey Morgan is a designer, professional crafter, writer and teacher. At the age of nineteen, she started her own business, Tender Heart Originals. Stacey is a member of the National Polymer Clay Guild.
Initial Opinions: Having a love for all things whimsical and loving seasonal influences, this book screamed at me to buy it. The front page boasts some specific pictures of what you will be taught to make, but in no way shape or means, is that it.
Introduction: The first area of the book, like many others, goes through the basics. Now even the most talented and experienced clayer should always read the introduction section, where it explains how to get started – sometimes to remind ourselves by going back to basics, but also due to the fact that the author is giving hints and tips in here from their own personal experience, which may not be known already! This was the case for me in this book when Stacey goes through each different type of glue and how it can be used with the use of clay effectively. I found this very helpful.
Basics: We then progress to how to make the basic elements of the projects that are going to be taught in the book, which included at the end information about basic skinner blends. Some detailed pictures are used here, so you don’t have to understand what she is trying to describe, but can see it for yourself!
Main Content: The book is split into the four seasons, with a minimum of 5 projects in each section. All of the projects have a similar cuteness to them, but do vary from figures to wearable art. Each project starts out with a picture of what the finished article should look like. It gives a list of the tools required to complete the project and tips at the beginning of how to overcome any pre-thought obstacles you may encounter. Overall, I found this part very informative to read, prior to setting out on completing the project.
The step-by-step instructions are clear with detailed pictures as you go. She teaches a variety of skills throughout the book, so do not be deceived if you aren’t interested in figures, in thinking that you won’t gain some knowledge from it. It covers specific projects which include:
How to adapt things at home to make tools
Inclusions in clay
Fabric with clay
3D pictures with clay
Incorporating Gold Leaf in clay
The main thing to remember in this book is that it was published in 2001 and therefore, a lot of the techniques were newer then. It was approx. 17 years ago, how knowledgeable were you about polymer clay back then? We have all learnt a lot.
Conclusion: Overall, I found this book fun and full of great inspiration. It does have the same feel with each character, which I love. The faces are cute, happy and full of character. I love the pictured, step by step basics, on this and I think anyone from beginner to expert could follow it easily, without feeling unsure at all.
Where to purchase: As it was first published 17 years ago, its availability is limited. However, I have seen second hand copies available on Amazon for less than £5 including postage which is a BARGAIN: Making Gifts in Polymer Clay .
For those of you who are eBay lovers, unfortunately, they tend to stick to American sellers as this was an American published book and tend to be more expensive.
reviewed by Shelley Wylie