Week 7: Trials and Tribulations


A customer ordered baseball beads and little bats. Not my usual flowers and birds but doable. These were a simple cane and the size and hole would be custom. Straightforward order. Of course, there’s a snag in everything.

The white Premo for the baseballs was super fresh. I’ve joked I could cane with butter and I got the chance to test my brag with this pack of white. It wasn’t soft like butter but it was just like Play-Doh: soft, sticky and difficult to keep controlled. I didn’t bother leaching – this was a simple cane and not that big – and powered through but yuck. The rest of the batch I ordered is sitting, packages open, airing a bit. I’d prefer to age it to perfection rather than leach and change the chemical makeup much.

I’m not adverse to soft clay. I cane with Premo and Sculpey 3 every day and, while I used to use Fimo Classic, prefer that. Firm clays do give you great, crisp lines but my canes are not normally large enough to worry about uneven reducing and firm clays are tough on my hands. Line crispness, I’ve found, has more to do with neatness of the design, construction and reduction than the clay consistency alone. I’m sure experience plays a part as well.

Still, this stuff was just soft-yucky.

3 Responses

  1. The last block of Premo white I got was just like that too. I had to take breaks when using it to let it cool down. Maybe they are from the same batch.

  2. Compared to the clay I used for the first five or so years – old Fimo Classic – any Premo is mush but this stuff was mushy and unpleasant even for me. Most of the time, I get good results. And when I started I worked with cold hands but in a warm, warm room. These days, with cold sore hands AND a cold room… soft clay is the way to go. I might feel differently if I did multi pound k’scope canes but the only canes I do that big don’t care about soft.