This revolutionary new material was invented by Mitsubishi Materials Corp. of Sanda, Japan. It consists of 3 ingredients: tiny particles of pure silver (or pure gold) water and an organic binder. In its wet or fresh stage it is clay like and malleable and can be sculpted, textured, rolled, pushed into a press mold, or draped around a kernel of cereal to create a hollow form bead. When it is air dried or leather hard it can be carved, cut, filed, drilled, and joined to make complex forms. When PMC is fired in a small electric kiln, the water evaporates and the binder burns away. The material shrinks as the metal particles fuse together, sharpening the surface detail, leaving an object made of pure silver. Precious Metal Clay comes in silver and gold; in lump form, paste (or slip) and sheet. It also comes prepackaged in a syringe that can be extruded to ornament a surface.
Polymer clay is an art material that's malleable out of the package and cures in the oven at 265 - 275 degrees Farenheight. This plastic clay material was patented in the 1930's but didn't come to the United States until the mid 70's. It is now used throughout the world by artists, sculptors, doll-makers and hobbyists. It can be carved, textured, molded, sculpted, sanded and polished. PMC & polymer together make a unique and lovely combination. Fired and finished, PMC offers an aesthetic counterpoint to the resonant color of polymer clay.
Keum-Boo is an ancient Asian metalworking technique, meaning literally, "attached gold". It is a simple, reliable process through which thin, hand cut sheets of pure 24k gold foil are applied to the surface of fine silver as a decorative embellishment. The surfaces are heated to 750-850F and the gold sheet is burnished on to the silver, making a permanent bond. The beauty of using Keum-boo with PMC is that silver metal clay, unlike conventional fine silver sheet, needs no preparation. It's never cleaner than when it comes out of the kiln.
Click HERE to read my introduction to Bronze Clay