Crystal Clay Q and A

1. What is Crystal Clay made from?

Crystal Clay is a two part epoxy clay.

2. Should I bake Crystal Clay?

No baking is necessary. The clay will air-cure in 12-24 hours.

3. Is this product toxic?

Crystal Clay is non-toxic but can be a skin irritant.

4. Why do I need to wear gloves?

Crystal Clay is a very sticky clay, so we do recommend using the vinyl gloves that are included with the clay. Even though the clay is non-toxic, it can cause skin irritation in certain individuals with sensitive skin. The color of the clay can also stain your hands, especially the darker colors, but it can be scrubbed off with soap and water.

5. Will it shrink?

No. Crystal Clay will not shrink while curing.

6. Will the color change?

The color of the clay will become lighter once you blend the colored clay with the white base. Once you have finished blending the clay, the color will not change further.

7. Can I drill it?

Yes, but you will need to wear a face mask and be careful not to inhale any of the dust while drilling.

8. Can I stamp into it?

Yes, you can stamp into the Crystal Clay.

9. Can I use ink and paint with it?

Yes, but you will need to apply a sealant after the ink or paint has dried to prevent the color from wearing away.

10. Can I use it in a mold?

Yes, but you will need to use some form of mold release, wax or oil to easily remove the clay from the mold.

11. Will the clay hold a 3-dimensional shape without a mold?

Yes, the clay is dense enough that it will hold a shape without a mold or bezel. The exact shape and position that the clay is left in will be exactly how it cures.

12. Can I use the clay in an open-back bezel?

Yes. Mix your clay and apply it to your bezel as you normally would, making sure that the clay adheres to all sides of the bezel. Leave the piece to dry on a piece of wax paper for 24 hours. Once it is fully cured, you will be able to peel the wax paper off of the back of the bezel.

13. How much working time do I have?

You have approximately 60-90 minutes to work with the clay before it will not accept embellishments any more. We recommend mixing the clay only until it isn't marbled, because if you knead it beyond that you can shorten the working time.

14. I mixed too much for the piece I’m working on. Is there a way to prevent it from setting so I can use it at a later time?

No. Once you have mixed the clay, you have activated the hardening process.

15. How long does it take to cure?

The cure time for Crystal Clay is 12-24 hours.

16. Do I need to use a different pair of gloves for each color that I use?

During the mixing process, the color and epoxy can stick to the gloves. In order to keep the color clean, use a new pair for each color.

17. Will the clay stain my work surface?

We would recommend taping a plastic bag or wax paper to your work surface, as some of the darker colors can leave visible smudges. If you do get some color smudges on your work surface, you should be able to remove the stain fully with soap and water.

18. Can I achieve a marbled look to the clay by only partially mixing the clay?

No. If the clay is not mixed fully according to the directions, it will not cure properly. To achieve a marbled look to your clay, you will want to start with two packages of clay: one White, and one of the second desired color. You will then fully mix each clay separately and marble the two lumps together once each color is properly mixed.

19. Can I combine two different colors while mixing the clay?

Yes, as long as you have a proportionate amount of white base to combine with the colored clays. We cannot guarantee what shade the resulting color will have once two different colored clays are combined together.

20. Can I add freshly mixed clay to the surface of set/hardened clay?

Yes, the Crystal Clay will adhere to itself. However, the color of the two different batches of clay may not match up. If too much colored clay is used to mix the second batch, it will appear brighter than the first batch. If too much white base is used to mix the second batch, it will appear lighter than the first batch.

21. What is the shelf life?

Crystal Clay can have up to a four-year shelf life.

22. Can the clay still be used if it is hard or clumpy?

If the clay is stored in colder climates, the clay can appear hard, like a polymer clay. Keep the clay in the zippered bag it originally comes in, seal it tight and run under hot water for 2 minutes. This will soften the clay up very nicely.

23. What materials can I adhere to the clay?

You can adhere nearly any material to Crystal Clay, including Swarovski Elements crystal, metal, wood and glass. Please note that the clay will not be flexible when dry.

24. Can Swarovski Elements Crystal Flat Back Rhinestones be set into Crystal Clay?

No. Flat Back Rhinestones would pop out of the clay because they do not have pointed backs like Crystal Chatons do. These pointed backs help to root the stone into the clay.

25. How do I add small crystals or embellishments to the clay?

You can use either the beeswax-tipped toothpick provided or your fingers to add small crystals or embellishments to the clay. Tweezers are also an option, but you run the risk of accidentally gouging the clay surface with the tips. It is easier to smooth a fingerprint out of the surface than to reshape the clay surface to hide a gouge, especially if you have already begun embellishing the clay.

26. How far down into the clay do I need to press the Swarovski Elements Crystal Chatons?

You will want to make sure that the widest edge of the Swarovski Elements Crystal Chatons is even with the surface of the clay. If you press crystals or other embellishments too far down into the clay, cracks can appear.

27. How do I add Swarovski Elements Crystal Fancy Stones to the clay so that they completely fill the surface of the clay?

To get a very full look, start adding Swarovski Elements Crystal Fancy Stones on one side of the surface of the clay and work your way out from that spot until the clay is covered. If you scatter Fancy Stones across the whole surface of the clay, it will be difficult to fill in all of the gaps left between the crystals.

28. How do I dome the clay in a bezel pendant?

To dome the clay, mix more clay than it takes to fill the bezel. Roll the clay into a ball with the palms of your hands, and then gently press the clay into the bezel pendant until it reaches the edges. Use your fingertips to shape the dome. The more clay that you add, the larger your dome will be.

29. What do I do if my clay has cracks in it?

If your clay develops cracks before you start adding Swarovski Elements Crystal Fancy Stones to it, just keep rolling it between your palms until it is smooth. If it develops cracks after you have already started covering the surface with Fancy Stones, you can dampen a soft cloth with water and very gently rub it on the crack to smooth it out.

30. What do I do if my clay has fingerprints on it?

If your clay has fingerprints on it before you start adding Swarovski Elements Crystal Fancy Stones to it, just keep rolling it between your palms until it is smooth. If you wear gloves during this step and when you shape the clay, you will not get any fingerprints on the surface. If you get fingerprints on the clay after you have already started covering the surface with Fancy Stones, you can put the gloves back on and use your fingertip to rub the fingerprints out. If you are filling the entire surface of the clay with Fancy Stones, you don’t need to remove the fingerprints as they will get covered up.

31. If a crystal falls out of my cured piece, can I glue it back in?

Yes, you can use 5 Minute Epoxy to glue the crystal back into the cured clay.

32. Can I get cured Crystal Clay out of my bezel if I do not like the finished product?

You could try to chip away at or drill the finished clay out of the bezel, but the clay may crack or crumble during the drilling.

33. Is the clay waterproof?

Crystal Clay is waterproof once it has cured.

34. Is the clay impact resistant?

Crystal Clay is extremely hard once it is cured. It will not break with regular wear, but the clay may break if it is dropped.

35. Need some tips and tricks?

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Fusion Beads Inc, Beads, Seattle, WA