You Will Need
1 Work on a clean, smooth and nonporous surface, like a sheet of glass or Perspex, or a large tile. Cut the clay with the blade of a craft knife – we used half a block at a time.
2 Roll the clay between your hands to make it soft and pliable. TIP Wrap the remainder of the clay in plastic wrap so it doesn’t dry out.
3 Roll the clay even thinner on your work surface.
4 Continue rolling until you have strands about 2mm thick and cut them into pieces as you go along. Repeat with the other colour. TIP Keep your hands, equipment and work surface clean with baby wipes, especially when you work with white clay.
5 As soon as you have enough of each colour, you can start arranging the strands in alternating colours. Press them lightly onto each other so that they stick together.
6 Roll over the strands of clay until they form one flat strip. TIP For neater stripes, first roll each piece of clay flat and then cut it using a metal ruler. You can also use a pasta machine to roll the clay, or use a special extruder, available at some craft shops.
7 Press letters out of the clay with the alphabet cookie cutters. TIP You can use any other shape of cookie cutter, if you prefer. We also shaped bows by hand.
8 Carefully lift up the shapes with the blade and place them onto the ceramic tile. TIP If the clay is very soft and is distorting, place the glass or tile with the shapes in the fridge for a short while before you lift them.
9 Place the tile with the shapes in an oven preheated to 130°C and bake them for about 15 minutes. Leave them to cool before you remove them from the tile.
Polymer clay from The Deckle Edge
Words and images: Ideas magazine