Whether you’re new to polymer clay or have been around the block, here’s a great tip for simplifying traditional polymer clay mica shift technique. I’m talking about the technique that involves stamping a sheet of clay and shaving off the raised surfaces.
The orthodox approach is to adhere the stamped clay securely to a ceramic tile and draw a slightly bowed flexible blade across the surface. The trick is to do it without gouging the clay and without depositing little clay particles in the “wells” as you go. Both of these mishaps can ruin the finished look.
This tip comes from Cindy Lietz, the PolymerClayTutor. Just stick your stamped clay on a full 2-liter plastic bottle. The bottle’s curvature makes it easy to shave just a portion at a time, and gravity pretty much takes care of the pesky particles unless your clay is very sticky. I have just one minor quibble with Cindy’s video: she shows stamping clay by rolling the acrylic roller back and forth over the clay. For a really crisp impression I prefer to roll over the clay just once as clay likes to move when it’s rolled. If I feel the impression isn’t deep enough, I’ll press straight down with my fingertips.
Thanks to Cindy, I’m on a mica shift binge.