Friday, April 02, 2010

Polymer Clay: Nothing Wasted

I promised a post about what I did with the trimmings from this clay piece. After browsing through Donna Kato's book, I found a great chapter with instructions for what she calls "starry night" canes. She put odds and ends in a food processor and whizzed 'em up until they were tiny pieces. I'm not ready to sacrifice another kitchen appliance to my Clay God, so I used my clay blade to chop mine up.

I've sorted them into color bags, so when I'm ready to make a cane I can pick and choose what goes into it.

Following the instructions outlined in the book, I assembled my chopped pieces of clay into a sheet and rolled it with my brayer.

This melded the sheet together to the point where I could send it through the pasta machine without crumbling.

Cut the sheet in half and stack, send through the machine again. Repeat...The finished cane had wonderful striations, although it didn't look like the samples in the book.

I tried to make a tile cane like the one on this page of Kato's book

and ended with a mess. For some reason, as I reduced my starry night cane, the striations wound up marbling. The directionality was lost.

So, I made a second cane in different colors and assembled a tile cane to resemble a quilt block. I like it!

I left one of the canes intact and used slices to make one half of a lapel pin. The other half of the pin used this wonderful kaleidoscope cane.

Lots of sanding and buffing later, I have two pins I can be proud of.

I used corners from a cane slice to embellish the backside of the pins.

All that's left is to sign the backs and they're done.

copyright 2010 Shibori Girl


Snap said...

You are having so much fun. I really enjoy your posts. They make me smile! Beautiful results, too! :D :D

Doreen said...

I love those pins...even the backs are lovely!

SweetbriarStudio (Christie) said...

neat-o! It's amazing how resourceful artists can be...and it's beautiful to boot. And what a very fun back - yea!

Beadwright said...

This is a very good post. I love this idea. Thanks so much for sharing it with us.


Createology said...

Your pins are beautiful. Great way to re-purpose your clay. Happy creating...

surfingcat said...

I have that book too and saw those canes but they didn't scream - make me to me. Now having seen your pins I am off to read it again.
They look great! The backs look very neat too.