Tuesday, March 16, 2010

The Makings of a Mystic Wood Elf - Part 1, The Horns

Anyone up for Tutorial Tuesdays? I know I am.

So, I only received one comment on last weeks WIP Wednesday and she had no clue what it was.

Well, it's Polymer Horns ladies and gents! Now, I'm no expert. This was actually my first time working with polymer clay at all. Still, I mentioned a tut and a tut you shall have!

Step 1: Google an image of the kind of horns you want to make- either animal or costume. I googled some to get an idea and then decided to wing it.

Step 2: Gather your materials. You'll need some polymer clay, an oven (and cooking pan), some random food/craft utensils, craft paint, a sealant, & some sort of cord.

3. I used a whole block of ivory fimo clay. As you can see the line is there to help you separate it into equal chunks. I used one full chunk per side but you can divide it into other sizes if you'd like. Just make sure they're equal amounts.

Step 4. Start working the clay. Mine was pretty tough so I just rolled it around a bit until I got the basic cylinders I wanted. I made sure the base was pretty flat and about the right circumference (the width of my thumb or so.)

Step 5. Roll out your tip. All I did was roll mine along the table at an angle. It worked pretty well.

Step 6. Because I wanted to shape mine into some sort of spiral I rolled the center a bit more. Note that the base still kept it's the width. This is important. Also, I overdid it a bit so it wasn't able to keep the original shape I had planned. You'll probably want to leave yours thicker than mine.

Step 7. Form your spiral if you're making one. Because mine was so thin I had to circle it so it rested as shown below.

Step 8. Start adding whatever patten you wish. I used a fondue fork to score some lines into mine.

Step 9. Finish shaping the tips or anything else the way you want. Use some sort of object to make your holes at the base. You want the holes to go sideways. Note that you can't see the holes in my photo. Yeah, that's how you want it to be. You can re-score or shape it again if you have any accidents. Note: DO NOT use a toothpick. I did but it is not big enough for the hole you want.

Step 10. Bake according the directions on your package of clay. Be careful not to over or under bake. I set mine on a little baking tray in the oven to keep it stable.

Step 11. Let cool & paint as desired. I did three coats, each a different shade. I used acrylic craft paints to blend some brown with a copper for the base. I did it a second time with a different ratio of brown to copper. Then I mixed a dark green with some metallic gold using my paintbrush to blot it on. I highly recommend you mix your own shades for this as plain store-bought paints are known to a bit crayola-like. In other words, fake.

Step 12. Seal them using whatever product you'd like. I used a generic craft sealant and brushed it on. There are all kinds of products on the market though.

Step 13. Let that dry and thread. I used a plastic canvas needle on mine because of the drned toothpick hole. I also used twine for the photo but I'll be replacing it with some of that beading elastic. Trust me, you don't want to have to fight tying these things. Go with the elastic.

Step 14: Enjoy! ^_^


  1. VERY NICE! I had a great silver/purple pair from the Renn Faire, but sadly I lost them. Now I can make my own!! ;)

  2. Hey glad to see you again! I've been looking at a lot of costume pieces lately on etsy and such but I figured it'd be better on my wallet if I make my stuff myself. In this case I think the clay was like $2 or so when I bought it online at Joann's. It's a pretty cheap craft.