Friday, June 22, 2012

My First Polymer Clay Buttons

If you’ve been following me, you know I like to work in many mediums and learn new techniques.  So when I bought Donna Kato’s book, The Polymer Clay Millefiore Techniques, I knew I’d be making canes! http://www.amazon.com/The-Polymer-Clay-Millefiori-Techniques/dp/0823099180/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1340064070&sr=1-1&keywords=Donna+Kato.  I also took several classes online with craftclass.  www.craftclass.com 
One day I was playing around on Facebook and joined a group of polymer clay addicts!  ‘Just Polymer Clay Tutorials’ where artists post tutorials about polymer clay for free and for pay.  I’ve downloaded several, watched a few and was sure I could do any of it!  I understood the concept.
A friend and I took a trip to a quilt shop. She quilts – I don’t!  I wore my new brass/polymer bangles https://www.etsy.com/listing/102355695/classy-bangles and that got me some attention and started a conversation!  The owner showed me the polymer clay buttons that she buys from Albuquerque and said, ‘It would be nice to have a local source!’   You see where this is going don’t you?
My friend had just made me a quilted tote for my birthday and I decided to make a button that matched the fabric.  As I worked on this first button project, my ‘I can do anything attitude’ became….’I can figure this out!’
I mixed my clay to be the color I thought would come out butterscotch.   After adding the surrounding colors, I remembered a lesson in color mixing.  The color changes depending on the adjacent colors
Stages of getting the right color!
Lesson two – Putting warm clay in the refrigerator helps keep a shape.  I worked with the clay long enough to get it mushy.  So much for the nice pointed ends on the long oval shape. 
Colors I used in the button

Finally I made the center cane and liked the colors and shape.  The white background sheet of clay was ready for me to start placing the designs.  I started in the center and worked my way out to each side.  Yeah! It looked good until I realized that I had not added the white around the center cane.  After experimenting and much to do, I finished it and baked it.  I must say I am happy with it. 
Lesson three – Tutorials are there for a reason…practice.  Like anything else, good quality work requires practice.  I’ll be working through some tutorials and small projects to develop my skills!
Lesson four– Matching the fabric exactly may mean that the button disappears!  In this case it does not because the stripes do not line up.  Next time, I will take a design element from the fabric and enlarge it.  After all, I want my buttons to be noticed!
Not ready for button sales but I’ll get there! 
Finished buttons and fabric

1 comment:

  1. I really like the buttons with the fabric. These are awesome!

    ReplyDelete

Friday, June 22, 2012

My First Polymer Clay Buttons

If you’ve been following me, you know I like to work in many mediums and learn new techniques.  So when I bought Donna Kato’s book, The Polymer Clay Millefiore Techniques, I knew I’d be making canes! http://www.amazon.com/The-Polymer-Clay-Millefiori-Techniques/dp/0823099180/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1340064070&sr=1-1&keywords=Donna+Kato.  I also took several classes online with craftclass.  www.craftclass.com 
One day I was playing around on Facebook and joined a group of polymer clay addicts!  ‘Just Polymer Clay Tutorials’ where artists post tutorials about polymer clay for free and for pay.  I’ve downloaded several, watched a few and was sure I could do any of it!  I understood the concept.
A friend and I took a trip to a quilt shop. She quilts – I don’t!  I wore my new brass/polymer bangles https://www.etsy.com/listing/102355695/classy-bangles and that got me some attention and started a conversation!  The owner showed me the polymer clay buttons that she buys from Albuquerque and said, ‘It would be nice to have a local source!’   You see where this is going don’t you?
My friend had just made me a quilted tote for my birthday and I decided to make a button that matched the fabric.  As I worked on this first button project, my ‘I can do anything attitude’ became….’I can figure this out!’
I mixed my clay to be the color I thought would come out butterscotch.   After adding the surrounding colors, I remembered a lesson in color mixing.  The color changes depending on the adjacent colors
Stages of getting the right color!
Lesson two – Putting warm clay in the refrigerator helps keep a shape.  I worked with the clay long enough to get it mushy.  So much for the nice pointed ends on the long oval shape. 
Colors I used in the button

Finally I made the center cane and liked the colors and shape.  The white background sheet of clay was ready for me to start placing the designs.  I started in the center and worked my way out to each side.  Yeah! It looked good until I realized that I had not added the white around the center cane.  After experimenting and much to do, I finished it and baked it.  I must say I am happy with it. 
Lesson three – Tutorials are there for a reason…practice.  Like anything else, good quality work requires practice.  I’ll be working through some tutorials and small projects to develop my skills!
Lesson four– Matching the fabric exactly may mean that the button disappears!  In this case it does not because the stripes do not line up.  Next time, I will take a design element from the fabric and enlarge it.  After all, I want my buttons to be noticed!
Not ready for button sales but I’ll get there! 
Finished buttons and fabric

1 comment:

  1. I really like the buttons with the fabric. These are awesome!

    ReplyDelete