For the last month I’ve been making polymer clay turquoise. After eight ‘almost got it’ attempts to perfect my former technique, I think I have it now! I made a tutorial for creating the beautiful Persian Blue turquoise with as many or as few inclusions as you like, and it can be adapted to any shade of turquoise you prefer, of course.
You need patience for this, I’m afraid. This technique is in two steps and includes drying time which can be anywhere from a few days to a few weeks, depending on your environment.
Quality turquoise is an opaque, clear blue mineral that,s a hydrated phosphate of copper and aluminum. Early stones were found mostly in the arid environments of Iran and Afghanistan, hence the name Persian Blue. It will look have a green tint when small amounts of iron is for substituted for aluminum in the turquoise structure.
The way turquoise is structured is fascinating to me. Rainfall infiltrates downward through soil and rock, dissolving small amounts of copper. When the water evaporates, the copper combines with aluminum and phosphorus to deposit tiny amounts of turquoise on the walls of the host rock. The more time goes by, the more turquoise fills in cracks. If eons go by, the turquoise will have less inclusions than ‘newer’ turquoise that has more matrix of the host rock.
Creating faux turquoise from polymer clay gives us so many options- cabochons, beads, veneers- all exactly how we want it. Lots of host rock with iron pyrite (Fool’s Gold), just a little matrix of more quality turquoise, and any shade of blue, teal, blue-green, greenish-yellow that we like.