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Images by Saved Spirit Designs

Saved Spirit Designs
Handcrafted Jewelry and other Artisan

What is Polymer Clay (PC)?

As the name implies, Polymer Clay (PC), is a pliable, blendable polymer compound used by artists and crafters.  It’s not a true clay, which is fine particles of silicate suspended in water.  PC is fine particles of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) suspended in plasticizer but can be used much like clay.

Polymer Clay is non-toxic.

How does polymer clay become firm, beautiful jewelry and accessories?

In a word, firing, the process that fuses the particles into a solid, requires low temperatures; low enough to use a home oven as a kiln.  The colors and size are not changed during the firing.  

When fired, the clay becomes hard enough to make extremely durable objects and can be finished in various ways to obtain textures from glassy to stone-like.

The majority of the pieces displayed in the Jewelry Galleries are one-of-a-kind (OOAK) creations made with polymer clay.

Some are embellished with sterling silver, silver plated, gold plated and pewter beads and findings and high-quality crystal and glass often adorning fine-quality leather, sterling silver, suede, cotton and ribbon cording or chain.

Jewelry Care and Information

The Mica Shift technique manipulates the mica within metallic polymer clay to produce the illusion of a three dimensional design. The surface of the pendant to the left is perfectly smooth however it appears to have huge depth. *

Mokume Gane (mah-ku-may gah-nay) is a Japanese term borrowed from metal smithing.  It means “wood grain metal” and refers to the growth rings in trees.  In the metal smithing world, various colors of metals are laminated together, positive and negative spaces are cut out of the laminate and it is rolled through a rolling mill creating a pattern similar to annular growth rings in wood. *

Clay artists have adapted this technique using different colors of clay, creating texture using various stamps and texturing tools, then cutting away the texture to reveal colors below.

Canes are logs of clay with patterns running through their entire length, from which nearly identical slices can be cut and used in various ways.  The patterns created by canes can be simple to complex.  They can be pictorial or simply geometric.  Canes, and therefore their images, can be reduced in size so that they become quite small, and then combined to make multiple images.

The sample shown to the left illustrates simple orange and white “jellyroll” style cane slices placed onto a polymer clay bead.

Care and Cleaning of Polymer Clay Pieces

When not being worn, please store your jewelry in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight.  Avoid getting aerosol sprays, perfumes, or chlorinated water on the items, as they may discolor or deteriorate the finish.  If your pieces are accompanied by metal components, they  may tarnish over time.  Special care must be taken when cleaning those items.

Please do not immerse your polymer items in liquid jewelry cleaners, as the chemicals in those may adversely affect the clay.  A dry sheet of jewelry cleaner could very carefully be used to remove any tarnish from the metal components.  


* Information, in part, comes from and


Scrimshaw is derived from the practice of sailors on whaling ships creating common tools, where the byproducts of whales were readily available. The term originally referred to the making of these tools, only later referring to works of art created by whalers in their spare time. Whale bone was ideally suited for the task, as it is easy to work and was plentiful. *

Artists in many mediums created a “faux scrimshaw” using similar techniques of carving a design into the medium of choice.  In the case of clay, the crevices are filled in with paint or pre-cured clay to highlight the artwork.