Arabian Palace Clock

Arabian Palace Clock

In the mountain of Lebanon, perched on the hillside and surrounded by cypresses and poplars, stands the beautiful Arabian palace of Beit Eddine. Built in the early nineteenth century by Italian architects for the ruler of Lebanon, it is a rich cornucopia of inlaid marble courtyards, dramatic stairways and sumptuous fountains. Here is aArabian Place Clock little clock that is inspired by an Arabian palace; hang it on your living room wall and it will give you a little touch of splendor!

Premo! Sculpey pearlescent clays are used to stimulate the opulent marbles in this project, but you could use other brands as well.

2-ounce (60gm) blocks of Premo! Sculpey polymer clay: 2 pearl, 1/8 block of gold, 1/16 block of ultramarine, small amounts of burnt amber and alizarin crimson
Several ceramic tiles to work on
Tracing paper and cardstock
Pasta machine or roller and wood strip
Talcum powder

Cutter- I used the following shapes but you could substitute others
3/8" (10mm) triangle cutter
3/8" (10mm) star cutter
3/16" (5mm) flower cutter
3/16" (55mm) heart cutter

A brush protector or circle cutter about 3/8" (10mm) diameter, or wide enough to cut a hole for the clock spindle to pass through PVA glue
Quartz clock works and filigree-style hands
Craft knife.


Marble the following:
> Light blue marble = ½ block of pearl+1/16 block ultramarine
> Light gold marble = ¼ block of pearl+ 1/8 block gold
> Old rose marble = ¼ block of pearl+ a pea size each of alizarin crimson and burnt umber

One: Preparation
Click here for the Template

Trace the clock front outline from the template (click here for the template) onto the cardstock and curt it out. Trace and cut out, separately, the two circles of the clock face to use it later. Roll out a bock of pearl clay until it is evenly shiny and 1/16 "(15mm) thick. Lay this on a large tile and cut out the clock font.
Step 2Two: Cut Decorative Triangles
Roll out the marbled light gold clay on another tile at one setting thinner on the pasta machine. (If you are rolling by hand, roll the clay a little thinner with your roller.) Smear a dusting of talcum powder on the surface to prevent sticking, and use the triangle cutter to cut out lots of little triangles.
Step 3Three: Add Triangles
Use your knife to lift each triangle into the place on the front of the clock, working round the arches, and laying the edge of each triangle along the edge of the clock. To turn the corner between two arches, cut a triangle in half and angle the two halves outwards.
Step 4Four: Cut out stars
To make the inlaid stars, brush the clock surface with talc and use the star cutter to cut out three star in the center of the middle arch. Remove the clay using the point of the needle, taking care not to damage the clock front.
Step 5Five: Inlay blue stars
Roll out the light blue marble clay to the same thickness as the light gold clay. Cut out the stars same way as for the triangles and carefully insert them into the star spaces on the clock front.
Step 6Six: Cut out the flowers
The side arches each have an inlaid star flanked by two tiny flowers. Cut out and insert stars in the sane way as before, but use marbled light gold clay. Now use the tiny flower cutter to cut out the small flower shapes, one inside each star and one on other side.
Step 7Seven: Inlay again
Roll out he marbled old rose clay at the same thickness as the light gold clay. Cut and insert the tiny flowers shapes as before. Use your knife tip to place the tiny pieces in position. Press over the inlays lightly with your fingertip to secure them in place.
Step 8Eight: Finish clock face additions
Work around the rest of the clock front, using the photographs as a guide to the positioning the inlays and applied triangles. The bottom part of the clock has light blue triangles alternating with light gold, and you will need to cut down the triangles to make neat corners. Use a combination of stars, hearts and flowers to decorate each bottom corner as before.
Step 9Nine: Mark the clock center
Lay the large circle template on the clock front and push a pin through the center of the card to mark the point where the clock spindle should go. Use a brush protector or circle cutter to cut out a hole, centered on this exact spot and just wide enough for this spindle to pass through.
Step 10Ten: Create pearl clay clock face
Roll out a sheet of pearl clay on a tile, at a thinner setting than the main clock front, and use the small circle template to cut out a circle for the clock face. Mark the center with a pin as before and cut out the hole for the spindle exactly in the center. Prick holes to mark the position for the motifs that will be used instead of the clock numbers.
Step 11Eleven: Decorate
Use the star cutter to inlay top, bottom and side stars of the clock face with light gold clay. Use the flower cutter to inlay the light blue that marks the remaining points of the clock face. Use the star cutter to impress stars onto the central area of the face in a regular pattern. Cut a 1/6" (1.5mm) thick strip of light old from the gold sheet and wrap this around the outside of the face, butting and smoothing the join.
Step 12Twelve: Finish and bake
Use the large circle template to cut out the clock face backing in light blue clay, and make hole in the center for the spindle as before. Bake all the pieces on their tiles for 30 to 40 minutes. Keep checking the pearl clay as it can brown if your oven gets too hot. Allow the pieces to cool and remove from the tiles.
Step 13Thirteen: Attach face to the clock
Use PVA glue to glue the blue circle to the clock front, matching the spindle holes. Then glue the clock face on the top of the blue circle, again matching the holes exactly.
Step 14Fourteen: Assemble clock
Insert the hanger provided onto the clock works before you assemble the clock. Push the spindle of the clock works through the spindle hole in the clock. Screw on the spindle screw until the clock works are held firmly on the back of the clock with the hanger at the top.
Step 15Fifteen: Adjust hands
Push on the hour hand and then the minute hand. Adjust their positions to a whole hour. Finally screw down the smaller spindle screw to hold the hands in place.
The clock can now be hung on the wall by the metal hanger at the back of the clock works. Clock works can vary in design, so if yours is slightly different, follow the instructions rovided.

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