Cold Porcelain Designs
Handmade Clay and Figurines by Ibenia
Cold Porcelain Clay
Cold Porcelain is a soft and clean air hardening clay that can be formed into any shape with exceptional details. It is great for artists, crafters and children. It dries with natural air and does not need to be baked to cure. The pieces dry hard and not sponge like, making it ideal for modeling pieces such as flowers, figurines and sculptures. Cold porcelain clay can also be used to decorate store bought items or combined with other craft projects. 

Cold Porcelain can be stamped with rubber or acrylic stamps, shaped with modeling tools, molded in silicone molds, rolled with rollers or in a pasta machine, cut using cookie cutters and of course free hand sculpted.
Its original color is translucent and you can add color using acrylics or oil paints. The clay can be colored before modeling or you can paint the finished pieces once they are dried, depending on the effect desired. Powder colors can also be used on pieces that are dry. 

The designs you can make are only limited by your imagination. 

So let's get Creative! 

Basic Guide  
 
  • Keep your work area clean. 

  • Do not eat while working with the clay. This will keep the clay, your hands and the work area clean. 

  • Do not mix your clay utensils with your kitchen utensils. Do not add color into clay that is going to be stored and not used for a while. This way it lasts longer. 

  • To give the clay elasticity, always knead each piece of clay as you use it. 

  • Mix your colors and color all the clay before starting a project. This way you avoid having clay of the same color with different tones in your design. 

  • Wash your hands and dry with paper towel before working. Avoid drying with a towel to keep your hands fiber-free. 

  • To prevent fiber pieces from being embedded in the clay, you should wear a white apron or white t-shirt while working. 

  • When making a project, keep in mind that as the clay dries it shrinks as much as 30% and its color will intensify because it becomes more concentrated. 

  • Keep in mind that the quantity and quality of the ingredients will modify the final results. 

  • Keep the porcelain clay in good condition by storing it always in a zip plastic bag and inside an air tight container. This will maintain the consistence of the clay and it will not dry. 

  • If the clay feels a bit firm, it can be warmed up by kneading it between your wet fingers. 

  • If the clay feels too soft, it can be left unwrapped and exposed to the air for a few minutes. 

  • To stick pieces together use white glue or a glue gun.

  • When you make a large piece, it is better to use Styrofoam shapes as bases and then coat it with the clay. Large solid pieces of clay do not dry very well in the center and crack on the surface. 

  • To make firmer pieces, insert wire, toothpicks and/or bamboo skewers into the piece. 

  • To join two pieces together before they are dry, wet your fingers and smooth over the joint. If they are dried, add some extra soft paste (mixture of water and clay) and apply to the joint smoothing out until the pieces join. 

  • To repair a crack on the pieces, apply onto the crack a mixture of white glue and some water or extra soft paste and smooth out the crack with your fingers until it disappears. 

  • To fix and remove details made using markers on a piece, rub a wet sponge on the zone and dry with a clean rag. The traces from the marker will disappear and the piece will be clean to start again. 

  • Dry all pieces in a clean and ventilated area. Avoid direct air current when drying to prevent cracking. 

  • Once your finished work has dried, spray it with clear matte lacquer to seal it.
  • Thickness: it can be any thickness, though the thicker a piece, the longer it takes to dry.

  • Volume: Volume on a big piece is done by using a styrofoam piece as a base / armature. You cover the styofoam with a good layer of clay. The bigger the styrofoam piece, the more clay you need for coverage.

Frequently Asked Questions
 
  • Q. Is cold porcelain really soft and pliable to use or does it take some working with?
    A. The cold porcelain clay is soft and pliable to work . It is up to you if you want to knead the entire batch before making something. Simply kneading the clay as you work is fine and also by doing this, it eliminates cracks or lines, making the final piece nice and smooth.   

  • Q. What can I use to color the clay and How to color it? 
    A. Its original color is translucent and you can add color using acrylics or oil paints. The clay can be colored before modeling by kneading the color into the clay or you can paint the finished pieces once they are dried, depending on the effect desired.   

  • Q. How long does the clay take to dry? 
    A. Now, for a finished piece, depends on the thickness and size of the finished piece. Remember the cold porcelain dries from the outside in, so no rushing and waiting is a must. Bigger pieces are done in parts and some things will need to be done and let sit to dry some, before continuing the sculpture.   

  • Q. How strong is it once it is totally dried? 
    A. Hard. The clay does not dry sponge like. Make something solid out of clay and you can crack someone’s head open with it. (Please do not attempt this at home) But again, same as with any fragile item - Handle with Care.   

  • Q. Well, what do you mean knead the cold porcelain clay? 
    A. Knead means to work the clay in your hands. I prefer to “work the clay in your fingers” … like a piece of chewed gum...YES...chewed gum. Kneading is NOT flattening the clay on your palms, it is working the clay in your fingers (no need to work at it for long) until you feel it a bit elastic, then proceed to make a ball shape, then whatever shape you need. 

  • Q. I've worked with air-harden clay before, and I found that it would start to harden while I was working. Do you ever find this to be a problem? 
    A. Air dry clay will dry when exposed to the air. How fast...depends on the weather. Different places, humidity and skill (or rather how fast you make things) will make the clay dry faster or not. You can always add a little bit of water to your fingertips to keep the clay from drying. Be sure to knead the clay nicely, it should stay good and shouldn't dry hard in your hands while you work. Also remember to keep the clay not being used inside a bag. 

  • Q. Can I make some pendants out of cold porcelain? 
    A. Yes. I have made some in the past and they are fine. Just seal them well once done to protect from water or sweat from the wearer. Like with any clay jewelry, it is recommended to care for the items like you care for your pearls…you know…don’t throw them in the wash. 

  • Q. So what exactly do I seal cold porcelain with? 
    A. You can seal it with any Clear Acrylic Sealer spray lacquer or sealers which you brush on or dip into. You can find and use many different sealers for your work, (glossy, satin to matte) depending on the finish look you wish your pieces to have. 

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