Update: Lightfastness of Polymer Clay Colors

The experiment, testing the color lightfastness of the colors of different brands of polymer clay, is moving along. I have a few changes to the parameters I laid out in my initial article, “Lightfastness of Polymer Clay Brands”.

First, I am happy to say, that I am adding two brands to the test process. In addition to Kato, Premo and Fimo Classic, I have added Cernit and Pardo. I received a new shipment of Pardo and Cernit and, I have to tell you, they were a joy to work with. I will cover my “take” on the workability of each of the different brands of polymer clay in separate article this week.

The canes are all created and I am now working on the little bird sculptures. I have never done a huge amount of sculpture work, over foil armatures, so this is good practice for me. I am working on a list of tips and tricks about creating and working with foil armatures, that I have both discovered myself and compiled from other sources. Watch for this in the upcoming days!

One plan I had to deviate from, was making an identical set of rainbow colors in each brand. I ended up with a slightly different spectrum in two of the brands (short by two intermediary colors), due to lacking enough quantities to mix them all. I’m certain, however, that the spectrum used will provide plenty of information to judge how lightfast the basic colors of each brand are. I did end up adding the packaged green and red to the colors used, so that it increases the out-of-the-package colors we are testing.

Also, because it was so interesting to see the differences in color mixing of the different brands, I took copious notes. That will be shared in another upcoming article, too.

I would love to have some volunteers to help me with this project. If you live in a very sunny area, and have a place outside to keep some little bird decorations for a few months, in full sun, and would like to help, please contact me. I will make the little birds and send them to you for the experiment. Mind you, they will not be works of art, but attractive enough to display in your garden. So, are you in Arizona, Texas, New Mexico, Spain, Hawaii, or some other Sun Goddess part of the world? If so, I would really appreciate your help!

8 comments to Update: Lightfastness of Polymer Clay Colors

  • Barbara

    I live in the state of Texas where the sun is brutal and would be happy to help you with your experiment regarding the sun and polymer clay.

    Let me know if I can help. I love polymer clay and was really envolved with it until I started a full time, high stress job and have had to put it on the back burner for awhile.

    I miss playing with the clay and will some day get back into it.

  • Barbara-Thanks very much for the offer. Several people have stepped forward, and I am going to try to figure out a way to involve everyone, without my having to make a gazillion little birds. I have lots of rainbow cane made in each brand, so will most likely make an easier alternate shape for some to put out. Thanks again!

  • I also live in Texas and would be more than willing to help out- I am in the Houston area so you would be getting a good amount of sun ! Let me know !

  • Tina-Hi and thanks for volunteering! I’m getting a pretty good turnout for this, so now I’m working on a plan where everyone can participate. I’ll be in touch!

  • Hi Patti!
    While we do not get the sun like some of the other places do, what we do have is extreme UV exposure, because of our altitude, though I will say we have at least 3/4 of the year in sunshine. We live just outside the Great Smokys National Park in NC, and I would be happy to add UV exposure to your test. I have noticed that things I didn’t have fade issues with while living at the NC coast, such as the plastic outdoor furniture and doghouses, they quickly faded over a year’s time up here, so I feel it might add something valuable to your tests. Aryd’ell

  • Aryd’ell- thanks so much for volunteering. I’ve taken your info down and I’ll be sending out emails when I’m ready for shipping, to get addresses, etc.

  • Judy C

    I’m in Arizona until the end of March if that helps
    with your experiment

  • Judy- Thanks so much for the offer. To really give this the test of time, though, I would like the items to be outside until at least August. Where do you go at the end of March. By the way, I’m very jealous of people that get to winter in AZ. I love it there!