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Sunday, February 7, 2016

Introduction to Polymer Clay Canes for Dollhouse Miniatures

Okay, I think this might be the longest title for a video I have ever used. LOL I did that because I want anyone looking at the video to know that we are specifically talking about canes as they can be used for dollhouse miniature, mostly foods. Some of the other videos that I have left the titles more generic I have gotten some rude comments about the fact I am talking about miniatures.

Alright now that that statement is out of the way let's get on to the subject for the week. Polymer clay canes! I love to use canes in my miniature foods, they are not only a lot of fun to create they make the job of making multiples of some foods so much easier.

I have done several projects in the past that were based on canes but I have never done a video on the subject of canes. This was requested by several viewers after the Valentine lollipops video last week.

There are so many foods (and other things) that can be made as a cane but here is a list of just a few: any citrus fruit, apples, hard boiled eggs, carrots, avocados, olives, mushrooms, tomatoes, cut strawberries, the list is endless. On the not food category tiles for either the floor or walls of the dollhouse are also fun to make.

This week I am concentrating on what I refer to as a “bulls-eye cane” that is a cane with a solid center and just one color wrapped around it. I feel it is a good place to start if you have never made a cane before since you can learn to roll and lengthen the can without worrying about distorting the insides. We can even use a soft clay for this type since there is not detail to keep.

So pull our your clay and practice away. In the video I make both a hard cooked egg cane and a green olive cane. I also show you a carrot cane I made on my other channel a few months back. There are so many other things you can make with this simple design though.

I am planning to do a couple more weeks of canes probably next week and then I am not sure if the next one will follow immediately or be later on. Next week week we will do a more complex cane- a citrus fruit one. I am thinking an orange since that is one I need for a scene I am working on. If you want to make a different fruit all you would need to do is change the colors of the clay. I also hope to do a red onion next week too if I have enough time to get it done also. That one is my very favorite cane to make simply because it is so pretty when done.

This week I also showed you how to evaluate the colors of you clay and do some simple mixing to match what you are making. If you guys would like a more in-depth video on this let me know. I do have a basic color mixing video on the channel though already (at least I think I do)

One place some people run into trouble is when they attempt to cut their cane. This step can be tricky especially if you use a softer clay. Simply rolling the cane on the work surface as you apply pressure with the blade will sometimes work and is usually my first choice. Also letting the cane sit for a half hour to firm up sometimes helps too. If both of those fail you can also stick the clay cane in the freezer for 15 to get it firmed up then cut it immediately.

Some canes can also be baked before cutting.

For storage the two hurdles I face is trying to not smash the cane into an unusable blob and forgetting what I have. To solve both these issues I store mine in zippered sandwich bags thumb-tacked to my bulletin board in my office. They are visible and nothing can be set down on top of them.

So that's it for this week. Remember if you have questions or requests be sure to let me know.
the egg cane

the olive cane

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