No, I haven't accidentally posted this here instead of at my clay blog. Don't worry. It's just one entry. ;o)
At least a couple of family members have expressed an interest in trying out polymer clay. If you're still interested, now is a great time to pick up some clay on sale. Michaels will have 2-ounce blocks of polymer clay on sale for 99 cents each, starting today and running through Saturday. Two ounces may not sound like much, but it can go a pretty long way-- especially if you're making beads or putting the clay on top of a wooden or aluminum foil base (armature).
I suggest Premo brand. (Kato brand is supposed to be at least as good as Premo, but they don't stock that at Michaels.) Fimo can be ok, too, if the Premo stock is low. I would avoid Sculpey III, as it is the weakest of the major brands-- much more likely to break than Premo.
It's easy to mix just about any color you want, so if you can't find the exact shade you want, keep that in mind. If I were just starting out, I would buy at least one of each of these colors: black, white, fuchsia, turquoise, and a lemony yellow. (Of course, that's just a suggestion. (g)) If you know that you want a specific color-- red, brown, green, golden yellow, purple-- then it can save you some trouble if you go ahead and get that, too. (You can still tweak it to get just the right red, etc.)
It's also fun to play around with the translucent and metallic clays. Common metallics are pearl, gold, silver, and copper. There are sometimes also "green pearl", "blue pearl", etc. I think I like pearl the best of the bunch. It's easy to get pearly pastels by mixing a pinch of any color with pearl. Translucent clay is a must if you want to make "faux stones" from clay. Mixed with glitter, spices, dried flowers and other things, it can take on some really neat looks.
I'll be happy to tell you what I know about the clay, if you like-- and there are lots of websites and books (several in the local library system) that can help, too. If you'd like someone to walk you through the basic process, I'd be glad to host a clay party sometime, as well. Just let me know what you think. I know that we're coming up on a busy time of the year, but there's no reason we can't plan ahead. ;o)