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Your Company Name: Polymer Therapy
Email Address/Web Page: rehlo1@juno.com
City & State: Long Lake, MN
Type of Craft:

Tell us in your own words, how you discovered polymer clay and how long have you been using it?

I discovered polymer clay by accident. My sister rented a booth at a craft show and knowing I couldn't crochet, rug hook, collage etc enough material, I grabbed some Fimo I saw in the craft store. The craft booth didn't materialize but by then I was hooked! I have been playing with clay for about two years.

Are there any special artists that you can attribute your interest to or that have inspired you?

Donna Kato, City Zen Cane, Kathleen Dustin, Kathleen Amt, Steven Ford

What is your specialty?

'Ceramic' animals. I go to flea markets etc and buy glass,wood and ceramic shapes (everything from bear cookie jars to wood bird houses to vases) and cover them with a mad variety of canes. I have also made beads by the thousands but never seem to get the jewelery put together.

Can you tell us why you find polymer clay the expressive medium for you?

I have also been told "Julie, you're a little different!" and "Julie you are so creative!". The clay lets my mind wander in any direction and come up with something completely unique. I do many more eclectic designs than I do faces, mushrooms etc. I also love the ability to create whatever colors my mind can concieve. I have nine perennial gardens and this gives me a wonderful view of the wide spectrum of hues.

Have you published any polymer clay books or do you have any in the works?

No, not yet.

I know it is very difficult to express, but have you won any awards for your polymer clay work?

No, again, not yet!

What are your expectations for the future? Where do you hope to be 5 years from now?

I hope to be making a large part of my income from my clay creations. A craft store in the area has just agreed to buy my vessels outright. The more complex, the more they will pay. For me, complex is easier than repetitious. They don't want my critters, though, and this is what everyone tells me is my best work.

Do you have any advice for the beginning polymer clay enthusiasts?

PLAY! Experiment. Some of the patterns I didn't like at first, when rearranged or added to, came out as some of my best. Follow the talents you already have. Perhaps you are great at sculpture or jewerly and beading. Try everything. It's cheap and you can always start over if it hasn't been cooked.

Are you a member of any Polymer Clay group,or any other craft organization?

No, but I plan on joining the Polymer Clay Guild this week.

What brands of polymer clay do you prefer and why?

Sculpey because of it's pliability. I have just found Fimo Soft which also has great pliability and terrific colors. I do buy 'basic' Fimo and use a blender to soften it.

Last and most important can you tell us all about you? Your family, your training?

I live alone with two large dogs and four cats. I have nine perennial gardens, hundreds of succulents, bonsais etc. I am an avid bibliophile. I have always been interested in crafts. I crochet an afghan every couple of years or so, am always hooking a rug and savings pictures for collages (door length). I've stenciled the walls and rasemaled trunks. I really don't have any training. It has been self taught. I would like to take a couple of Polymer Clay classes but the ones in the area are for beginners. I'll keep looking! I am also an avid computer buff and now make most of my money punching the keyboard. None of my friends of family are interested in pc's or crafts so I am the person who takes care of these things for them.

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