Jewelry Shape Templates by Cool Tools can be used to create fabulous shapes in silver clays, copper and bronze clays, polymer clays, ceramic clays, sheet metal or from paper.
To use with clay, rather than cutting out a complicated pattern, I press the template into the clay slab and cut around the impression. It's a lot easier to cut this kind of fancy shape this way. This also allows me to cut outside of the line instead of inside, giving me the intended shape more easily and allowing me to refine the edges without losing any of the design.
To create the impression, start with a plain or textured slab placed on a Tuff Card or other work surface. Position the template over the slab. Press the template, which has been misted with Cool Slip, into the clay. You can use your fingers to press around the design using firm pressure, or place an acrylic disc or work surface over the template shape and press firmly. Remove the template and cut away the excess clay with a needle tool.
A needle tool can also be used to cut the shape directly, using the template edges as a guide. Use a very fine needle tool. Start
at the outside corners and cut to the inside corners for the cleanest
cuts. Remove the template and lift away the excess clay.
on sheet metal, use a Scotchbrite pad to give the surface a soft satin
finish, then use a scribe to scratch the shape onto metal. China white
can also be used to paint on a white surface that can be scratched away, or another method is to
cover the metal surface with a label, then trace the shape with a
sharpie. It's easier to see it this way and helps with more accurate