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I have come with another way of building a leaf cane that I believe has an excellent advantage in that you are able to control the exact points where the shades of the Skinner Blend will locate on the leaf. For example, if you want just a narrow strip in the center of the leaf to be dark, or perhaps a dark section on one side and light on the other, it is very easy to set up. Try this method and I think you'll like it!

Step 1: Choose three colors, roll them out and set them up for a Skinner Blend.

Step 2: Using the usual technique, make a Skinner Blend.

Step 3: Fold the sheet as shown, matching dark to dark and light to light.

Step 4: Run the folded sheet through the Pasta Machine.

Step 5: Fold it again as before, and run it through a thinner setting of the Pasta Machine.

Step 6: The end result is that you have a long narrow sheet, going from dark to light.

Step 7: Start folding the sheet into an accordion fold.

Step 8: When you finish the fold you will have a rectangular block shading from dark to light.

Step 9: Now roll the block into a log.

Step 9a: Here I was trying to see how the leaf would look with the dark shade in the middle. To do this I flattened the dark side against my work surface and worked the log into a "half-cyclinder" (which is actually half of the eventual leaf cane). The flat side is the center of the leaf, so it is easy to visualize how the leaf would look with the dark shade in the middle.

Step 10: Eventually I decided that the dark shade will be set on the lower side of the leaf. To do this I changed the position of the colors as shown but still kept the same shape of the "half-cylinder".

Step 11: Make as many parallel cuts as you want to have veins in your leaf.

Step 12: Put contrasting color sheets between the slices.

Step 13: Mark a line in the middle of the outside of the cane as shown. Now slice the cane in half along the line

Step 14: Now you have two separate pieces.

Step 15: Now roll out another sheet using the same contrasting color that you used for the veins.

Step 16: Attach it to one of the pieces and trim to fit. This will become the stem of the leaf. If you wish, you can also attach more slices to give the stem a feeling of thickness.

Step 17: Position the halves together as shown, making sure that the veins meet each other.

Step 18: Squeeze and compress the two halves.

Step 19: Cover the outside of the cane with a sheet from the same color as the veins.
Step 20: Reduce the cane, pinch the upper side of the stem, and you are done! GOOD LUCK!
And here is another version of the same leaf, this time with a secondary vein lines and different colors as well as Skinner Blend positioning.

by Tami Shvat
© 2008 Text and Photos

We want to thank Tami for sharing this excellent cane design with Polymer Clay Central. If you have a lesson or tutorial, or something you would like to share with PCC, please email Leigh or Stephen and we will help you prepare your project for the PCC Website!

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