by Barbara Bechtel
Thank you for all the positive comments on my last polymer clay video! This time, we're talking about what I feel is the best and most important tool in any polymer clay artist's arsenal and that is.....
Super big THANKS to Patti at http://myaddictionshandcrafted.blogspot.com/ and her Etsy shop and Patty at http://mylifeunderthebus.typepad.com and her Luulla shop for their questions! I only hope I answered them in my long diatribe.
Here's a brief recap:
1) Always make sure you use a dedicated oven. Polymer clay emits fumes as it cures. A thrift store toaster oven is a great start.
2) Toaster ovens, like home ovens, operate by cycling on and off with heating elements, save they lack the padded insulation like a home oven. This contributes to fluctuations in the temperature that may be causing under/over baking. Your goal is to find the setting on your thermostat that keeps the median temperature in the oven for manufacturer's specifications for the brand you are using.
3) Purchase an inexpensive oven thermometer to help you achieve that perfect median temperature.
4) Clay can be baked on ceramic tiles, tempered glass tiles, or a parchment lined baking sheet.
Next time, we'll talk more about actual tools. I'd love to hear your questions about tools in the comments below!