Oven bake clay is a medium made of mineral salts that harden when baked in the oven. From air dry clay, oven-bake clay is more durable. Standard products are polymer clays and sometimes baking chocolate. In this article, I will discuss how to store oven bake clay.
A Detailed Stepwise Guide on How to Store Oven Bake Clay
- Break up your clay. If it is an armature, make sure you break the wire with pliers first. Otherwise, break it into small pieces using your hands or a knife/scissors/wire cutters if needed.
- Clean out any dirt orbits, especially if they are large pieces.
- Put on gloves. Trust me on this one! Oven bake clay is pretty easy to clean off most things if you let it dry, but it will stick to your fingers like glue and be challenging to get off later!
- Get some Ziploc bags. It’s best to use quart-sized bags for more significant bits of clay and gallon-sized bags for smaller ones so that each bag has less clay.
- Put the clay into the bags, seal them and shake them around to distribute the clay evenly in each pack.
- Get some paper (can be newspaper or printer paper is fine) and tear off some sheets that are large enough that you can fold over the top of your Ziploc bags without covering where you need to write.
- Write on the paper what type of clay it is (brand, color, etc.), how much there is in each bag (so when they get full, you know when to stop filling/weighing journals!) and how many bags there are. This will help protect against accidentally using old-clay-that-you-thought-was-new-clay or getting confused about what you have.
- Put the paper into each Ziploc bag, one sheet for each bag, and seal it up! Repeat with all your bags of clay.
- Place them in a cool, dry place, away from any heat sources (like ovens). I also suggest doing this with a mask on because tiny bits of baking clay go everywhere when you break it up!
- When you are ready to use your clay again, reheat it until it is soft, using whatever technique works best for that type of clay. It should be as good as new!
Precautions While Storing Oven Bake Clay
Oven bake clay is hazardous if ingested. If children or pets eat oven-bake clay, it can cause serious health problems and even death. So store oven bakes clay away from children or pets that may be tempted to put the material in their mouths.
Keep oven bake clay containers closed, sealed, and dry. Do not allow the water of any kind into the container with the oven-bake clay as this will turn some of the materials into mush which cannot be reconstituted later on. Also, do not store empty containers of oven-bake clay near full containers to prevent suffocation by removing empty boxes, etc.
Use only plastic or metal storage bins with tight-fitting lids for storing open or unused portions of overtakes terracotta-based clays. Do not store oven-bake clay in old clothing, pillowcases, paper bags, plastic grocery bags, or anything permeable to water vapor. These storage materials can also suffocate children or pets if used for storing oven-bake clay because the materials will allow moisture to escape, which turns some of the components into mush.
Freeze smaller amounts of leftover oven-bake clay rather than storing it at room temperature. Never thaw out frozen portions of oven-bake clay until you are ready to use them since the material should not sit around once it has been frozen; otherwise, it may turn into mush when exposed to warm temperatures.
Frequently Asked Questions
When to Use an Oven Bake Clay?
Clay is used for two main reasons: decoration or play value. You might use it on your models to add special effects, but you can also decorate various items: Christmas tree ornament, small vase, packaging box. Children will learn about colors when playing with oven-bake clay while creating shapes or letters. They will also know that they can mold clay into different shapes using their hands and various utensils.
How to Make Oven Bake Clay?
Oven bake clay is made from polymer clay that hardens to a solid plastic state when heated up in the oven. To make this type of clay, some manufacturers mix some pigment, fillers, and polymer, and a few other ingredients that aren’t necessary to know about. The resulting mixture is then heated up at very high temperatures until it becomes a malleable substance.
This substance is then put into molds before being baked again at an even higher temperature: a sort of ceramic kiln for making one specific item only. Once the baking process is finished, you have your oven bake clay ready to be painted or used for whatever purpose it can be put to.
Successful baking of oven-bake clay requires the use of special tools and equipment. For example, you cannot simply grab a cookie sheet and expect your creation to come out fine: that’s like trying to cook a roast in an oven that isn’t preheated and then wondering why everything turned into charcoal by the time you took it out!
No matter what kind of clay you’re working with (whether polymer clay, air dry clay or even salt dough), making sure your equipment is thoroughly preheated before sticking anything in will make all the difference between success and failure.
What Are the Features of This Kind of Material?
First, because it’s made from minerals, people who have allergies should avoid using this material due to the possibility of an allergic reaction.
Secondly, this material is not suitable for hot places. For example, people living in Florida need to avoid oven-bake clay materials because they may expand when exposed to high temperatures.
Thirdly, some oven bake clays are very porous, so if you store them without sealing, they will absorb dampness and change color or shape. It can happen even if you use plastic bags to wrap up your clays.
This is why many bakers prefer sealed containers made from glass, aluminum foil, or ceramic plates for storage instead of plastic bags or boxes made from the paper board, which is usually more porous than other materials.
Fourthly, oven-bake clay cannot be used more than once after the first time baking.
Fifth, bakers need to pay attention to the expiration date on the clay package. Using clay that has passed its expiry date means it will be more likely to crack when you bake it, so please check the date before purchasing.
Is Oven Bake Clay Hazardous?
Oven bake clay is non-toxic, but it does have a small amount of lead in it. This much lead would take hours to leach out. Since you will be baking the clay inside an oven at around 250 degrees F, most of this will burn off away before you ever put food into your mouth.
Considering that this is not enough lead even if ingested to cause any harm, many artists are comfortable using OBC on the same surface as food preparation areas. However, some feel safer using separate boards or surfaces for their work and food preparation surfaces ostensibly because they can’t guarantee that no one used their clay boards or knives to prepare foods. So if someone wanted, they could swallow trace amounts of lead.
I hope this article has provided you with all the information regarding how to store oven bake clay. Ensure all the precautions while performing the task. Thank you and have a nice day!
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