Here's something to get
I would say the easiest
clay to find (should be in any craft store) is FIMO
polymer clay. You can try color Flesh Pink #43.
You can create a complete figure out of this clay
without mixing it with anything else. I myself use
it quite often. I like mixing my clays with each
other for different color or effect (translucent
or opaque). Be careful using a lot of translucent
clay, because it creates moonies (tiny white patches
of trapped air), they are difficult to fix. But
if you try FIMO just as it is, you should not have
any problems, especially if you follow the instructions
on the back of the packaging for baking. I also
like adding Cernit clay to it, but it's not necessary.
Polymer clay is a wonderful
medium, and I got hooked on it as soon as I tried
to make one face. Although it was horrible, lol,
I didn't give up. It's a lot of hard work but lots
of fun as well! Since then I have been experimenting
a lot and creating quite a variety of different
characters. (Please visit my Galleries to view samples
of my work.)
If you are interested
in making a one of a kind figure, I recommend starting
with a mermaid, because you don't need to worry
about making feet and legs. Besides, it's fun painting
the tail and adding lots of sparkles and glitter.
Inside of each doll
there should be a wire armature, which is pretty
easy to make. I use mostly 18-16 gauge aluminum
wire for my dolls from 5 to 7 inches. If the doll
gets bigger, I get thicker, more sturdy wire, say
for 8-9 inch figure, I use 16 gauge wire, for 10-12
inch I use 14 gauge. For smaller dolls like 5-11
inches you don't need to put wire in the fingers,
just need to be careful when shipping the doll.
It’s a whole separate topic on shipping.
If you do not
want to buy FIMO, there's another clay you can try,
it's Super Sculpey. It is great to work with, only
downside is it's a little too dark for pale doll
face and it can produce tiny cracks. To avoid that
you can add a little white FIMO to it, say 1/10
of your whole mix, not more.
Otherwise, it will become too opaque looking. Make
sure you condition the clay for a few good minutes.
It means squash it in your hand for 5-7 minutes,
until it becomes pliable. Some people use Prosculpt
clay, but it's a lot more expensive, so you can
try with the cheaper clays first,
and then later you can try Prosculpt and Puppen
FIMO which are very nice to work with.
To simplify the
process here's what you can try, when making a 6
inch figure (Note that the process is different
for larger scale figures, i.e. it might have a soft
body and posable arms and legs):
1. Make the armature
2. Make the head, no neck, positioning it on a wooden
chopstick, bake it (away from the armature) (5-7
minutes, completely cool it before removing from
the oven, approximately 30-40 minutes. Here's the
time frame, bake the head for 5-7 minutes, turn
off the oven, let the head cool in the oven for
30 minutes, then open the oven door, let it cool
like this for another 20-30 minutes. It's important
since with the quick change of temperature clay
will cool off too quickly and crack).
3. Make the torso, without feet & hands, add
the head, pose your doll, bake it. (another 5-6
minutes in the oven, then cool the same way).
4. Add feet & hands. Now bake for complete time
25-30 minutes with the temperature indicated on
the back of the packaging. When finished baking,
let it sit in the oven for minimum 30 minutes. Then
open the oven door and let cool for another 30 minutes.
If you have specific
questions, do not hesitate to ask me, I will help
if I can.