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Picking your polymer clay work surface

Choosing the right work surface for a specific medium is an essential first step. Polymer clay often becomes sticky and can act as a suction to your work surface, which will deform your work. The surfaces listed below work best. You’ll spend less time wrestling your polymer creations from the surface when they’re finished and minimize the scraping and scrubbing during clean-up. 

Small squares or rectangles of these materials can be helpful tools when using molds. Place a piece of one of these hard surfaces over your mold and clay, and apply pressure. The clay will fill the mold and you’ll create a flat back surface at the same time. Try them out for yourself and see which you like best!

A combination of natural materials and acrylic polymer

+ Easy to clean the surface by wiping or sanding; clay does not stick as much as other choices
Hard to find in small sizes unless you know a distributor or contractor


Brand of plastic laminate containing melamine resin and extremely resistant to damage; think old countertops! 

+ Durable and scratch resistant; economical
– Has a slight texture that will imprint your clay


Hard, brittle, clear material made by fusing silicates with soda or potash, lime, and other metallic oxides, and then cooling them rapidly to prevent crystallization

+ Good for stationary work; can place a paper ruler underneath for quick and easy measurements
– Not very portable; easily breakable


Recrystallized limestone that is moderately durable but can be stained or scratched; takes on a high polish and is often characterized by a swirled appearance; dark marble is harder and less brittle than light marble

+ Works well if smooth and polished; good for stationary work
– Natural materials are not completely smooth, and polished marble is expensive, heavy, and breakable


A tough, flexible, clear thermoplastic synthetic resin; a compromise between regular acrylic and polycarbon

+ Easy to clean, lightweight, and portable
– Scratches easily and can crack under pressure

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