Category Archives: Studio

Week 5: Monarchs

The Beginning

I am not a fan of orange or yellow as colours. I can recognize their value in establishing a mood, a good food shade and in mixing to get other colours I DO like but as a rule… these are not my friends. The exception of course is the rather queasy mix of orange to yellow that I use in making monarch butterfly designs in clay. Then I can just bear it.

Monarch Wing Cane

I lucked out and got the kiddo to make blends for me on her semester break. That resulted in a whole pile of proto-monarch which turned into monarch wing canes and monarch beads and monarch butterfly canes.

The Resulting Clay

I’m pretty happy with how it all came together. I blew through a pile of clay with this because a few blocks of my translucent were tougher than I wanted to use. I don’t care what people say about caning needing firm clay – my opinion is firm to a point, past which is just pain on your hands.

Week 4: Fairy Doors

Doors in Progress

I love all things fantasy and sci fi and make belief. The first time I saw little fairy door decorations I was intrigued. I’ve made a few over the last few years but this year I promised myself I would do a real run of them. I sorted and mixed up my scraps to give myself some play clay for these and started with the simplest forms.

Cured Fairy Doors

After cutting out basic shapes from layers of mud clay and marbled brown “wood” I made little scrap clay pebbles for edges. I added simple decoration beams and fake brass (I do love Premo! antique gold) hardware for the doors and tucked bits of moss, flowers and toadstools on the edges.

The next run will have a few more details but these guys were done simply so I could write up the steps for sharing as a tutorial in a couple of weeks. I may add a little antiquing and varnish to the relevant parts of these.

Week 3: Buttons!

Cane Slice Buttons

One thing I always seem to put off is making buttons. I make an outrageous number of beads and, to some extent, buttons are beads with two holes so you might rightly wonder why no buttons. So while I was making batches of beads this week I made some of those birds and flowers into buttons. And I made some simple patterned cut out buttons. And we’ll call that a good start.

Polymer Clay Buttons