My favourite leaf is one that has a subtle Skinner Blend type shading that makes it look 3D-ish. If you’re careful to make the grading in the blend smoooooth and subtle you get a lovely leaf cane.
The colour I like to use is Premo Spanish Olive to almost white and a gold outline and vein colour. It makes a nice neutral green leaf that works well with many shades of flower canes.
If you need seasonal varieties, consider using a warm red to a beige like I do in the video linked at the bottom of this. Completely fantasy picks like blues work lovely for wintry patterns.
You will need:
- A Skinner blend plug of your leaf colours
- A colour for the veins, stem, and outline. Something that contrasts with the cane
- A sharp blade, a ruler, a pasta machine, a work surface
Step 1. Start with a blend plug – the video below has the steps but there’s also a tutorial for that – in the colour you want, a vein and outline colour, the regular tools!
Step 2. Cut the blend into 2 similar, evenly sized pieces.
Step 3. Flip one of the pieces over so that you have one piece shading light to dark and the other dark to light. Shape the blocks into half circle pieces (half cylinders like in the picture).
Step 4. To make the leaf veins, cut each piece into 3 (or however many veins you want!) segments at an angle.
Step 5. Flatten out your vein colour to a sheet. I used the second thickest setting on my pasta machine which results in a fairly thin line for the size of cane I’m making. If you want a more graphic leaf, use a thicker vein layer. Trim the veins and avoid adding air bubbles as you put the leaf segments back together.
Step 6. The centre stem is built up of layers of the vein colour, creating a staggered stem. Smooth the centre stack up and then add the other half of the leaf back to create your leaf cane.
Step 7. If you want an outline for your leaf cane add one, popping air bubbles and trimming as you go.
Step 8. You can reduce your leaf cane in the round if you like. I tend to shape the cane to a leaf shape now and reduce it as a leaf / tear drop shape.
Bonus If you’d like an autumn variation try warmer colour blends – the video below is a cayenne red to a mix of white and ecru.
Here’s a video version of this tutorial, with autumn colours (Premo Cayenne to a mix of white and ecru):