Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Technique Time: Cane Work Part 1

I decided to do several posts about doing canes with polymer clay. Today I shall focus on a more basic cane, the bullseye cane.

Update: There are two other parts to this series.

You may find part 2 here:

What is a bullseye cane?

A bullseye cane is one of the most simplest and most forgiving of all canes. It is a simple matter of rolling polymer clay sheets and/or making several snakes.

How to make a bullseye cane?

1) For this post I thought I would use the example of how I make my candy corn. First you will need to make a snake by rolling clay either on the palm of your hand, or down on wax paper. This snake will be the inside color of your bullseye cane, so think carefully of what color to use.

For my candy corn I first used white transparent clay and rolled it into a snake as shown below.

2) Next you need to flatten a sheet of clay either with a pasta machine (on thickest setting) or with a roller. This sheet will need to be big enough to wrap around your snake. If you are using three colors this color will be in the middle.

I used a sheet of orange and wrapped it around the transparent clay.

As you can see from the picture some of the transparent clay is sticking doesn't have any orange around it. I did this on purpose to give myself some wiggle room when applying the orange sheet. This will now be cut off.

3) If you are only using two colors then you will not need this step; however, if you are following my example read on...

Next I added a yellow sheet of clay around the orange.

Again some orange clay does show through and will be cut off once the yellow sheet is placed how I wish it.

4) At this point you will need to reduce the cane. To reduce pinch the middle of the cane to make an hourglass shape as shown.

This picture is not mine! I obtained this picture from this great source: Desirees Desired Creations I used this source often when I first started out. ;)

Now you will need to roll both sides of the hourglass separately until your cane is equal in thickness on both sides.

5) After reducing the inside of my cane looks like this:

6) Now I simply cut off a slice. This slice can be used as a bead itself, simply by putting a hole in it with a needle. For candy corn though you take a different route.

7) I first slice the original slice in half.

8) Then slice that in half at an angle, as you can see the smaller slices look a lot like candy corn, but candy corn is more round.

9) Round out the candy corn with your hands.

Bake it and this is what the completed candy corn piece looks like:

10) I have used this technique to produce individual small pieces of candy corn for my witch Kia as shown below. There is about fifty pieces of candy corn that I did have to round out by hand. That was a lot of work! :P

Kia is in my etsy store at this moment. You can find her by clicking here: :)

Final Say

Now bullseye cane can be used to make various patterns. I will be talking more about that next time in part two. Part three will be a much more complex way of making your very own canes. :)


The Great Ethan Allen said...

wow you make it look soooo easy! I find polymer clay impossible! Looks just like candy!

CB said...

Oh trust me when I first started out many of items weren't recognizable. :P I may just have to post some of my first items...thanks for the good idea!

GrandmasPillowsPlus said...

Very nice technique and cane! Isn't polyclay the best?!

MySweetThree said...

That candy corn looks good enough to eat!

CB said...

Yupe polymer clay is a lot of fun grandmaspillowsplus. ;)

Thanks mysweetthree. :)