If I wanted to attempt to use either sand dollars or other sea
shells as a PMC project, what would be the proper technique?
There is a new book on metal clay technique from Kalmbach Publishing
(publisher of Art Jewelry Magazine, my part-time employer) that
shows how to make a two-part mold of a shell. I must say, the
projects in the book do not look at all professional to me, but the
tecnique appears sound (the book is Metal Clay Magic). You press the
shell halfway into polymer clay or a two-part silicone mold material
(Costaldo has a good one-- I forget what it's called). Dust with
talc, make the other half.
For scallop-type shells, a one-piece mold is all you need-- press
the metal clay in, let it dry. "Conch" shape shells need two parts,
trimmed and fitted together hollow, unless you don't mind a lot of