I had heard there was a sale going on and I wanted to take advantage of it. When I looked it up, the 50 gram packets of fine silver PMC were over $100 each! I felt a little lightheaded and decided to wait for another day. Who knows? I might get lucky and win the lotto!
How was I going to make things that looked like the things I used to make (and not break the bank)? I thought about Gilder's Paste, silver leaf, acrylic paints, heat-seat inks, alcohol inks... and more. Sure, they were silver and some of them were even passable. But it wasn't the same. And then, suddenly, as if an answer to a silent prayer, an email arrived in my inbox announcing the NEW WHITE CopprClay!
I've had a lot of success with the BronzClay and CopprClay developed by an American company, Metal Adventures. So, I jumped on the opportunity to work with this new product. I placed my order and started Googling it to see who had been working with it and what they were making. And that's when I came across some rather unflattering comments about the nickel content and that it may not be in compliance with the EU regulations. Some of the comments were heated and took on a frenzied tone warning against the product and how it was poison. I was reminded of the BIG drama surrounding PMC in classrooms and my stomach fell.
Here's my opinion: Use safety measures that you feel comfortable with and use common sense. If you don't eat, snort, or ingest (any) metal clay in powder, liquid, or clay form, you should be fine. Wash your hands often or wear gloves. Don't stand over your kilns during burn out phases and use appropriate ventilation. Wear a dust mask during the carbon stage. If you're pregnant or thinking about getting pregnant, you might want to postpone your metal clay fun until afterwards. And if you're allergic to nickel, then by all means, skip to another medium. For more health and safety tips and to check out the MSDS, CLICK HERE. And when you're selling your products, use full disclosure, so that your customers can make fully informed decisions.
So, before anyone goes and lights the torches, remember to be respectful of everyone's right to choose what materials they want to work with and if it's not your cup of tea, skip the tea party. Don't go raining down hate and negativity, just because it's not for you.
And... without further ado, here are my experiments:
The first stage of working with the clay, was pretty similar to working with regular CopprClay. I found the clay body to be smooth, thoroughly mixed and it didn't dry out super fast. It also wasn't super sticky right out of the package. Sometimes when I'm working with BronzClay, I like to leave new packages open for a little bit to dry out a touch to make it less gummy to work with. When dry, the WHITE CopprClay has a nice flexibility and isn't super brittle.