Friday, December 30, 2016

A Piece of Fabric Becomes An Inspiration

My polymer interpretation of a piece of fabric

A piece of fabric caught my eye in a fabric store and became the inspiration for my current project.  I started out wanting to make a lot of polymer canes (sticks of polymer with a design running through them) in colors that would go together but not match and would make me happy.  I also wanted to use up my Sculpey polymer clay that was getting old.  I used all the colors I had left and combined them in design strips of various sizes.   The wave design you see makes me think of fabric and gives a counterpoint to the structure of lines.  The piece above is approx 5" x 7" and it really does make me happy to see it.  

Canes made into design strips
Here's a little about the process:  The packages of clay were conditioned so they would be easy to work.  I made sheets of thin black polymer to use as wrapping for the finished design strips.  I think the black delineates the strip and pops the color. Each design strip is made of layers or rolls or extruded shapes of clay and put together.  Some took quite a bit of time and some not so much.  

All the design strips were made at one time so I knew what to select for each design story.


A sheet of black polymer rolled on the thickest setting became the backing for my mosaic. I selected design strips that were cut thin and placed them side by side until I filled the background. Since this was my first piece and I had lots of cane design left I decided to make buttons and beads.  This lets me see how the colors blend and change during the curing.  

Buttons after curing and polishing

Beads before curing.  I used some translucent/white swirls on some to get a different effect.

Cured Beads - See how the color changes with the heat.

The buttons and beads turned out nice but I was disappointed at losing the mosaic pattern.  I liked all those design strips!  

After sleeping on it, I figured out what to do with a large mosaic of design strips.  Check back next Friday and I'll have more to show you! 

Friday, December 30, 2016

A Piece of Fabric Becomes An Inspiration

My polymer interpretation of a piece of fabric

A piece of fabric caught my eye in a fabric store and became the inspiration for my current project.  I started out wanting to make a lot of polymer canes (sticks of polymer with a design running through them) in colors that would go together but not match and would make me happy.  I also wanted to use up my Sculpey polymer clay that was getting old.  I used all the colors I had left and combined them in design strips of various sizes.   The wave design you see makes me think of fabric and gives a counterpoint to the structure of lines.  The piece above is approx 5" x 7" and it really does make me happy to see it.  

Canes made into design strips
Here's a little about the process:  The packages of clay were conditioned so they would be easy to work.  I made sheets of thin black polymer to use as wrapping for the finished design strips.  I think the black delineates the strip and pops the color. Each design strip is made of layers or rolls or extruded shapes of clay and put together.  Some took quite a bit of time and some not so much.  

All the design strips were made at one time so I knew what to select for each design story.


A sheet of black polymer rolled on the thickest setting became the backing for my mosaic. I selected design strips that were cut thin and placed them side by side until I filled the background. Since this was my first piece and I had lots of cane design left I decided to make buttons and beads.  This lets me see how the colors blend and change during the curing.  

Buttons after curing and polishing

Beads before curing.  I used some translucent/white swirls on some to get a different effect.

Cured Beads - See how the color changes with the heat.

The buttons and beads turned out nice but I was disappointed at losing the mosaic pattern.  I liked all those design strips!  

After sleeping on it, I figured out what to do with a large mosaic of design strips.  Check back next Friday and I'll have more to show you!