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Faux Surfaces in Polymer Clay: 30 Techniques & Projects That Imitate Precious Stones, Metals, Wood & More Hardcover – October 1, 2003

4.8 out of 5 stars 48 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

In her introduction to this well-designed craft book, Dean promises to give readers recipes for an impressive array of imitation effects that use polymer clay, and her book does not disappoint. Each surface is extremely convincing, whether it appears to be bone, malachite, lapis lazuli, tiger-eye, leather, marble or one of the other 30 surfaces shown. The book first presents instructions and photos that show the process of creating a particular surface, then provides a separate project for each effect. The instructions are thorough, and many of these processes are painstaking, involving up to a dozen steps or more. But the end results dazzle, such as the pewter wine stoppers, which look both colonial and new due to clever design, or the cork switch plate, an amusing and relatively easy home accent. Other projects are candlesticks, jewelry, picture frames and similar small items. The book ends with an inspiring gallery of work in polymer crafted by the artists who have shared their techniques and designs with Dean. However, this is not a book for beginners. All of the techniques require an excellent knowledge of working with polymer clay, as well as a budget that can afford purchasing specific tools and materials, such as a pasta machine. (Though Dean says you don't have to have one, she uses one in every recipe.) Readers who qualify will rush to add this volume to their collection. Photos.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Lark Books (October 1, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1579904084
  • ISBN-13: 978-1579904081
  • Product Dimensions: 10.3 x 8.7 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (48 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,240,265 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
This book is wonderful. When it arrived, I poured myself a cup of hot coffee, put my feet up and drifted off to happy, happy land.

The books begins by covering basics~ yes, this may seem boring to some, but I've learned a little something each time I've taken to time to read what I thought I already knew. For instance: tiger eye mutation, leaching, plaquing, carving, to making your own texture sheet. And this is still in the Basic "Materials, Tools & Techniques" part of the book. Yikes.

She also includes Recipes & Projects for:
Lapis Lazuli
Balinese Silver
Rusted Steel
Copper Verdigris
Burled Red Maple
River Rock
Dichroic Glass
Scrimshaw on Faux Ivory
and last, but not least
Basse-Taille Enamel (which is a totally new technique derivation that is wonderful)

Oh my . . . what a great book. She includes work from Elizabeth Campbell, Alison Ingham, Lynn Krucke, Chryse Laukkonen, Pat Laukkonen, Gerri Newfry, Pat Pettyjohn, Heather Roselli, Dawn Schiller, Julia Sober, Luann Udell, Diane Villano and, of course, her own wonderful art as well.

Check out Irene's website for even more Eye Candy:

My recommendation: Run, don't walk, to get this book. It's fabulous.

Mystic Mermaid
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Format: Hardcover
I now have quite a collection of Polymer Clay books that I have aquired over the years. I decided on a whim to purchase this one hoping to learn a few new tricks to add to my repetoire. I won't list all the surfaces one learns to imitate in this book...previous reviewers have already done this. What I will say is that I am very pleased with this purchase. The photos are clear and easy to understand. Each technique is explained fairly well. What I like most of all is that for each surface/stone/substance that is taught, an example project describing how to utilize your newly made substance is included. For example, the malachite section shows how to make a make-up compact and powder brush cover. It offers a launchpad from which to create your own ideas.
If you are brand new to polymer clay, I still recommend The New Clay by Nan Roche. A better book or more bang for the buck does not exist...trust me, I've looked! If you're somewhat experienced and are looking to broaden your polymer clay horizons, this is a great place to start.
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Format: Hardcover
I am somewhat biased on this topic, because I helped with a few of the projects in this book. Irene and Valerie (the editor) were absolutely fabulous to work for and I enjoyed the whole process, immensely!
I'm not usually one to submit projects for books and magazines, but they made it easy - they asked me to do specific things and set a deadline for each step - that made it easier for me (not very well self-directed ;) to get things done.
It was a very long process - over a year from the first contact, and interesting to observe.
The day that the book came in the mail, there were a few wild minutes of jumping-up-and-down noisy hooplah, and then I settled down with a cup of coffee to read it like a calm and rational human being, instead of like a screeching jumping bean. ;)
I was already excited just to be part of this project, but I was doubly proud to be associated with it after I saw the beauty and the originality and the finely-executed craftsmanship shown throughout the book. Beautiful paper and text, well-organized and laid out, it's just a gorgeous book.
Thirty faux substances and thirty different projects. I was intrigued by this idea from the start, but I wasn't sure how it would show up. Turns out that it works very well - the recipe for the faux surface flows right into the project that goes with it or right into some other project.
The photographs are rich and beautiful and the array of different faux surfaces is amazingly wide. The book has basic information about the clays and materials in the beginning, and the instructions for the projects and recipes are clear and easy to follow.
I love the rusted steel and copper verdigris by Alison Ingham - what a novel approach!
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By Jan Jackson on October 6, 2003
Format: Hardcover
This is one beautiful book. Warning: if you see the cover - you will have to have this book. I was really surprised by the sheer number of "recipes". The recipes are separate from the project, thus allowing one to concentrate on making the faux surface and not becoming bogged down with making pattern pieces. Every recipe has a great project one can easily change into something to fit personal style. In reading over the first part of the book, it's obvious Irene is very experienced and talented in working in polymer clay. There is so much information she has shared so freely. I got the idea she truly wants the readers to enjoy the PC experience instead of "finding things out the hard way". The "recipe artisans" are very talented and amazingly clever. If you don't have time to get involved in a project, reading through this book will give you so much inspiration you will somehow make time for yourself and your clay!
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