White dove cane

Here’s a new cane, a white dove.  Made it from a 50/50 mix of Premo and Fimo.  I think it came out really well. Though reducing a cane in a rounded triangular shape was a challenge!  The last photo is a Pandora-sized bead I made using the dove cane and the red rose cane I’d made a few weeks ago.

white dove

 

 

 

 

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Polymer Clay Tutorials

callalilyetsyI’ve been promising myself for at least a year, to get my tutorials edited into PDF format and ready for instant download.  I finally drug all of them out and started working on those a week ago, and now have a half dozen of them loaded into my Etsy shop.  There’s a binder full of them to go through!  It’s just a matter of getting them converted (and updated, in some cases) for the digital age.

If you’re at all interested in learning how to use polymer clay, I invite you to check out my Etsy shop, C. A. Therien Polymer Clay Arts. 

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Polymer Clay and Stemware

Yesterday I had a question posted on one of my Polymer Clay Basics pages of my old website.  The reader wrote:

“I am placing canes and/or sheets of polymer clay on wine glasses and bar ware. Do I need to sand these items? I just did a test sand, and a few of the dots and triangle embellishments came off. Horrors!!!  Did I not bake the glass long enough or was I too rough? I’m using Sculpey III. Bake 275 15-30 min. I baked the glass for about 20 minutes. The canes were about 1/4 thick.”

I had written a pretty long reply to her, and thought it might be something that other fimo fanatics have had questions about.  So I’m reposting my reply here:

“That’s a great question! You’re wondering why the cane slices sanded right off. Okay, here are some possible solutions for you:

1. Sculpey III might be the problem. This particular kind of polymer clay is known for it’s brittleness and tendency toward breakage. I would recommend using Fimo Soft or Premo for decorating your stemware and barware.

2. Using liquid clay to “glue” your cane slices on will help. Liquid clay bonds two clay items together. Brand names are Liquid Sculpey, Kato Liquid Clay, and Fimo Decorating Gel. Or, you could use Poly Bonder, which is a super-glue like substance that can be baked. All three kinds of “glue” would be baked at 275 degrees for 30 minutes to seal the bond between your cane slices and your clay base.

3. If you are attaching the cane slices directly to the stemware glass, then you will want a 2-part epoxy to adhere the baked cane slices to the glass. Nothing works better than a good, strong epoxy like Gorilla Glue’s 5-minute epoxy. It dries to a translucent yellow, and if you are sparing in how you use it, the yellow isn’t obvious. It will provide a permanent, water-resistant bond between the baked clay and the glass.

4. Baking times may need to be lengthened if you are placing raw clay onto the stemware. I highly recommend a minimum of 30 minutes in the oven, at 275 degrees. with aluminum foil tented over the glass while it bakes (to prevent browning of the cane slices.)

5. Sanding is a good idea, but only if you are embedding the cane slices into a sheet of clay to create a pattern sheet.  Pattern sheets benefit from sanding and polishing, whereas dimensional cane slices used in a 3D applique technique don’t necessitate sanding. It can be done, and nothing wrong with it – sanding will smooth the surface of the clay and even out the thickness. Ii would use an 800-grit sandpaper for this purpose.”

Does anyone have any advice to add to this polymer clay newbie?  Please post a comment if you do.  And this has sparked a question, don’t hesitate to ask.  If I don’t know the answer, I will have a pretty good idea where I can get it answered.

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