5 Tips for Mixed Media Polymer Clay Jewelry and More with Christi Friesen

I love a good tip and collect them like some folks collect stamps. I post them on a cork board above my desk and keep a list on my laptop. A good tip can save you time, money, and something else just as precious–frustration! So when we released our newest polymer clay workshop, Christi Friesen’s Advanced Polymer Clay: Mixed Media, the first thing I did was read the tips.

mixed media polymer clay

All those polymer clay “petals” (or whatever you’d like to call them) above come together in the flower pendant, below left. Below right is a stack of lace-imprinted polymer clay layers, perfect for a brooch.

polymer clay mixed media jewelry by Christi Friesen

Interweave workshops include the host’s top five tips to help you succeed. In each of Christi’s earlier polymer clay workshops, Polymer Clay Jewelry: Design Basics and Polymer Clay Jewelry: Learn 10 Beads and Charms, she shared tips to help you master polymer clay, like:

  • why you should never “hoard” polymer clay but use it soon after purchasing;
  • the number one tool for working with polymer clay (hint: they’re attached to your hands!)
  • how a piece of accordion-folded paper can help you in your polymer clay work

After covering the basics, Christi focuses on advanced polymer clay techniques in her new course on mixed media polymer clay.

mixed media polymer clay by Christi Friesen

Christi’s Top 5 Tips for Mixed Media Polymer Clay

Excerpted from Christi’s workshop materials, here are five of her top tips for making mixed media polymer clay designs.

  1. Safety First: Don’t be fooled into thinking that arts-and-crafts materials can’t hurt you. Be extra careful around sharp tools and make sure you have good ventilation when using resins and other materials.
  2. Use All the Things! This is mixed media, so mix it up! Have a look around you, because everything is at your disposal. If you can imagine a use for something, you can include it.
    mixed media polymer clay by Christi Friesen
  3. Funky and Functional: Wire can serve a dual purpose. In a supporting role, it provides an inner framework to give stability to your piece (above left). In a decorative capacity, it can accent your jewelry in beautiful loops and wraps.
  4. Make an Impression: Using lace to create imprints in your clay is just one way to incorporate fiber. Fiber can also be embedded and baked into your clay and even used to tie pieces together
  5. It Ain’t Over Yet: Just because your clay has come out of the oven doesn’t mean it’s done! You have plenty of other options to consider. Resin, for example, can imitate water (below), and metal coatings and patinas can give your pieces an entirely different feel.

mixed media polymer clay by Christi Friesen with resin as "water"

Polymer Clay: From Basics to Mixed Media

If you’re new to polymer clay, Christi’s Polymer Clay Jewelry: Design Basics workshop is the perfect little introduction to this fun, affordable, super versatile material. You’ll learn to use polymer clay as you make leaves from clay and then turn them into earrings.

mixed media polymer clay by Christi Friesen

For those of you with a little experience working with polymer clay, Polymer Clay Jewelry: Learn 10 Beads and Charms is the workshop for you. In it, you’ll learn to make 10 different beads and charms using polymer clay using crystals, patterns, surface effects, carving, sculpting, and more.

mixed media polymer clay techniques

But if you have polymer clay experience–or have been fortunate enough to take Christi’s first two workshops and are ready for the next level–her new workshop, Advanced Polymer Clay: Mixed Media, is ready for you. Taking Christi’s mixed media polymer clay workshop will teach you:

  • how to glue items that can’t be baked or rebaked
  • the best clay-to-clay connectors
  • coatings for oxidation and other surface treatments, like lace imprints and molds (below)
    mixed media polymer clay by Christi Friesen lace molds
  • how to embed items in clay properly
  • how to create translucent embellishments
  • ways to use resin with polymer clay to create effects like glass and water
  • how to use bits of leftover clay and clay canes in mosaics

polymer clay mixed media mosaic

You’ll master using polymer clay in your mixed media designs and get loads of ideas for adding the “mix” to mixed media polymer clay. Don’t wait to add this incredibly versatile material to your mixed-media toolbox–sign up for Advanced Polymer Clay: Mixed Media!

Web Producer and Social Media Manager, Interweave Jewelry

mixed media polymer clay mosaics by Christi Friesen

Learn more about Christi at ChristiFriesen.com.


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