Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Glow-in-the-Dark Clay

Glow-in-the-dark (GITD) clay doesn't seem to be used much, in general, but there should be some interesting applications for it... For instance:

  • Try GITD clay for anything you need to see or find in the dark-- keychains, switch plates (for light switches), lighters, ceiling fan pulls, pens (?), etc. The clay won't glow all night long, of course, but it works for a little while.

  • Why not use GITD clay for doll house miniatures or artistic representations of anything that would glow or give its own light "irl"? Stars, the moon, flashlights, lanterns, lit matchsticks, candle flames, light bulbs/fixtures, lighthouses, etc.

  • GITD clay is an obvious choice for anything spooky-- ghosts, eyes on scary animals or figures, bones (I've seen some great GITD bone earrings!), skulls, UFOs, alien faces, jack-o'-lantern faces, etc.
  • Kids love stuff that glows in the dark! (Well, at least they did back when I was a kid in the 80's, and I think they probably still do.) So basically anything that you make for a kid, if you make it so that it glows in the dark, it'll just be that much cooler. ;o)

  • You can buy different colors of GITD clay or start with the basic color (the only one readily available to me without ordering on-line) and tint it yourself-- just don't add too much color, because that will decrease the glow of the clay.
  • Rather than only making things out of one color of GITD clay, consider combining colors or even combining GITD clay with regular clay. (I think opaque white, black, green, pink, or fluorescent colors could all make interesting combinations with glow clay, as could tinted or untinted translucent.) I'd like to use some of these different clays in combination with GITD to make simple, bold canes, such as checkerboard, bull's-eye, jelly-roll, and striped canes. (Can't you just imagine how pretty they'd be while glowing?)

  • Crisp-edged shapes or patterns with clean outlines would probably be the most effective with GITD clay. I'm thinking stars, moons, hearts, diamonds, key shapes-- anything with a simple, clear shape.
Here's a tip: As anyone who's been claying a while can tell you, polymer clay addicts live for the clay sales that happen at certain chain arts and crafts stores (Michaels, mostly) every few months or so. You can get the 2-oz. blocks of clay for .99, .88-- even .77 each. (Usually it's a 99-cent sale.) This is a great deal for any brand or color of clay, but it's an even better deal if you're interested in glow-in-the-dark clay, because that type is usually more expensive than the non-glowing clay. (Or at least, when I compared prices, it was.) So don't forget to try a block or two of GITD clay the next time there's a sale!

I haven't done a whole lot with GITD clay, myself, yet, but as you can see, I've been brainstorming possibilities, and there are quite a few. And I did whip up some glow-in-the-dark polymer clay earrings to give to the women in my family at aNew Year's Eve party. (I thought we'd have fun glowing through the fireworks display, but as it turned out, there were no fireworks, so the glowing was at a minimum in the well-lit house. :o( Oh well, it's the thought that counts, right?)

So, here are the two styles of earrings I've made (to date) with glow-in-the-dark polymer clay. This is how they look when the lights are on:

And here are the "moon and star" pair with the lights off:

Pretty neat, huh? Well, I like them, at least. Maybe it's just the kid in me that gets such a kick out of making my own cute trinkets that actually glow in the dark. Seriously, I feel the need to a have a little girl just so I can shower her with GITD jewelry and room decorations-- maybe her name in glow-in-the-dark "lights" on the wall... ;o)

Go ahead! You know you want to! Satisfy the kid in you-- pick up a block of GITD clay and spread a little glow across the world! ;o)

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