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Create Realistic Ice Creams from Polymer Clay

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Clay Blends for Realistic Ice Cream and Cones
1/16 block of zinc yellow Premo! clay is mixed with tiny amounts of blue and red to make ochre.

1/16 of a full block of zinc yellow Premo! clay (1/4 of a 1/4 section) is mixed with tiny amounts of red and blue to make a basic ochre or caramel color for dolls house baked goods.

Photo copyright 2009 Lesley Shepherd, Licensed to About.com Inc.

Realistic blends for ice creams, sherbets, gelatos and cones are somewhat dependent on the clay brand you use, but can be tweaked to be more realistic in all brands.

Basic Ochre Clay for Cones - The photo above shows the blending proportions to make a standard ochre clay used for miniature baking. This color by itself was used for the waffle cones in the instructions that follow. You can add more realism by dusting your cones lightly with an appropriate color of pastel or chalk if you wish. For the lighter forms of commercial ice cream cones, add small amounts of white to your blend until you have a light ochre color. For darker brown sugar cones and cornets, add a bit of deep brown, or a bit more red and blue to your basic ochre mix. Some clays darken noticeably as they bake. If your brand is prone to this, remember that some of these cones are baked twice and try to create a lighter blend of clay to begin with.

Ice Cream Colors - Ice creams are based on an off white mix, a touch of ochre or brown added to white, with a small amount of translucent clay added. You can add fine lines of color into this mix when rolling it out to create marbled clays for 'ripple ' ice creams, or add small chunks of baked colored clays to your mix to represent pieces of chocolate, cherries, strawberries or other fruits. Try to add a bit of translucent clay to the colors you want to 'ripple' as this will give a better ripple effect, especially for caramel and chocolate ripples. Do not over mix ripple clays before you shape them into ice cream balls. For other ice cream flavors add coloring mixes to a basic vanilla color to achieve the shade you want, remembering that some clays will darken with baking. (Usually the more translucent in the clay, the darker it tends to get as it is baked.)

Sorbets, Sherbets and Gelati - Sorbets have more translucent clay added to the mix than do ice creams. Test your blend and more if necessary. Sorbets are generally fairly pale colors. Sherbet is usually a whiter base than a sorbet and fairly vivid colors. Add a bit of translucent clay and mix it thoroughly into a medium dark color to make a sherbet. Add more white if necessary to tone down the color. Gelati can be very similar sorbets, with only a trace of color, although the ones based on more colorful fruits, mango, raspberry etc., will be very brightly colored. These blends need more translucent clay added to intense colors to create believable mixtures. The raspberry sorbet shown in the photos in these instructions has a high level of translucent clay, notice the difference between the unbaked clay color in the ball forming instruction and the finished sorbet cone.

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