DIY – Polymer Dragons & Elven Ears
If you happened to be one of those kids who loved to sculpt with play-dough – Here is a post for you! It is time to rekindle that craft for your next cosplay project.
Polymer clay is an easy-to-use, hardenable modeling compound, which comes in a myriad of colors, and can be purchased from most craft stores. You warm it up between your hands, shape it, and cure it in your oven – simple as that! Actually not clay at all, even though commonly referred to as such, polymer is based on PVC, and cures at 265 or 275 degrees on average. It is a versatile crafting material, perfectly suitable for making cosplay accessories - think of elven or fairy ears, ear gauges, and tiny fantasy, science fiction, or steampunk companions – such as baby dragons.
Originally developed in 1939 to replace its predecessor bakelite (which was highly flammable, by the way), polymer clay has become a common component in making art and crafts. Initially dismissed as cheap and childish, polymer art is now making its break-through also in the art world, and can be admired in museums. Brands such as Fimo, Sculpey, and Cernit are widely available throughout the world, and come with an affordable price tag.
Easy-to-shape polymer clay ideas:
For inspiration, check out the following video. You can easily spend hours on Youtube watching tutorials on geeky polymer crafts.
The Mother of Dragons: Christi Friesen
One of the very first commercially successful geeky polymer clay artists was Christi Friesen with her fantasy and steampunk sculptures in the early 2000’s. Her dragons make outstanding statement jewelry and decorative items. And the best part – They are super easy to make. Christi gives workshops and has written several books about polymer clay sculpting. She has through her surprisingly easy-to-follow tutorials proven that you really do not have to be a gold smith to be able to succeed in crafting – Anyone can be creative.
Watch Christi explain some simple dragon-making here:
Inspiration from Dragons and Beasties by Becca Golins
Becca Golins’ dragons and little ponies are so kawaii that you almost want to eat them. Perfect as collectibles – if you can get your hands on them. Becca’s adorable creations dominate the geeky Pinterest crafts world with their delicious colors, and perfectly sculpted shapes.
Polymer Clay Elven Ears
Elven ears are a fun project to make out of polymer. You will need to purchase approximately 3 – 4 packs of clay, depending on how large the ears should be. The serious cosplayer will be happy to hear that the material costs will remain around 10$ for the ears. Watch the numerous tutorials until you get the hang of it – and off you go, creating your very own accessories, which will dramatically improve your outfit.
What’s Next in Polymer Clay?
The thing that gets you hooked on polymer crafts is that they give you endless possibilities to express your creativity, and to explore the borders of it in a relaxing way. Mix the colors, shape the clay – and every time you think you have tried it all, a new idea pops out. It’s like a Minecraft session, except that you are not restricted to just blocks. With a little bit of patience you’ll soon be building the most sophisticated and fantastical items imaginable, just like you did when you were a child.