- 2 sheets of 8"x11" typing paper
- Wide cellophane tape
- Narrow cellophane tape (optional - you can
use the wide)
- 2 ounces translucent clay
- 2 ounces of opaque clay in
the same brand as the translucent
- 1/2 ounce of a
second opaque clay, also in the same brand as the
- A jar for rolling out the clay (or a pasta
machine if you have one)
- Long, thin cutting blade
- 2 small pieces of
plexiglas or mirror or glass for reducing
"Why," you ask, "must you use the
same brand as the translucent?" When you are making
canes, it doesn't matter which brand of polymer clay you use. What does
matter is staying with the same brand for
all the clays used in the cane. As an example, you would
not mix Fimo Classic clay with Fimo Soft as they are actually
two different types of clay. Or Sculpey III with
Sculpey Superflex since they, too, are two different types of clay.
While Premo and Sculpey III are similar in consistency, they are not
compatible in canework. Again, you ask "Why?"
Different clays are made with different ratios of
chemicals, so some "move" faster than others. The softer clays will squish
out faster than the firmer clays. Think of a sandwich. You put cream
cheese on one slice of bread and mayonnaise on the other. Jam them
together and squeeze. The softer spread - mayonnaise - will squish out
faster than the cream cheese. Canes work along that same principle.
Therefore, when you use the same type of clay - all Fimo Classic or
all Sculpey III or whatever - you are using clays made with the same
A word of caution, though. Even if you use the same
brand of clay, different colors will move at different
speeds unless the cane is allowed to "rest" before you begin to reduce it.
Also, it can depend on how much you have conditioned and
then worked a color - this, too, can contribute to its moving faster. So
just let it sit overnight to let the different sections reach the same
consistencey. If you're in a hurry pop it into the freezer and leave it
sit for 15-30 minutes, depending on the size of your cane.
Making Guides For Rolling Out Your
(When You Don't Have a Pasta Machine)
Click on any of the
thumbnails for a closer look.
If you don't have a pasta machine, you need
something else to make sure you get even sheets of clay. If you roll
it out with a jar, marble rolling pin, or whatever, just eyeballing
it will never give you a perfectly flat sheet. That's where the
guides come in. Guides can be practically anything from two equal
width pieces of balsa, two equal rods of metal to whatever you can
find that meets your requirements in thickness. You can make your
own to any thickness that suits your needs. In this demonstration,
I've used two sheets of 8"x11" typing paper and folded them so the
guide will be 11" long.
1) Fold the paper
lengthwise in half and, leaving it folded, fold in half
2) Leave the paper
folded, and repeat with two more folds until it looks like the
completed guide on the left.
3) Place the still
folded paper in the middle of a length of wide cellophane tape. If
the tape is too long, that's ok.
Bring the tape over the side of the paper
away from the fold, taking care to keep the paper tightly folded.
Looking at the picture above, that would be the edge facing away
from the demonstrator. If the tape is a little too wide, that's ok.
Next, grab the edge just covered and roll
the paper back onto the remaining tape to give you a perfectly
aligned edge and insure a nice, tight, smooth
4) Snip off any tape
(this step is optional) extending beyond the ends of the
5) Tape the guides
parallel to one another on your work surface. Be sure to tape both
ends. I made sure the tape was even with the work surface between
the guides in case the clay completely filled the space
|Folded lengthwise and wrapped in tape will yield the
thickness equivalent on a 9 setting Atlas pasta machine
1 fold = 9 (thinnest setting)
= 6 (medium thin setting)
4 folds = 3 (medium thick setting)
folds = 1 (thickest setting)
These guides also make excellent straight
edges for cutting and marking your clay....
Making A Jellyroll Cane
1) In this
demonstration I am using Premo! clay. My opaque color is the Premo
Pearl White. My translucent is the Premo Bleached with fine
microglitter included into it.
Making sure you have the same amount of
both clays, condition them by squishing, squeezing and folding until
you can roll them into a fat log and bend it in half without the
clay splitting along the outside of the fold.
2) Roughly roll your
clay into a log and place it in the center between the
3) Smash it down with
your fingers to get a good start, taking care not to smash any of it
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