Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Polymer Clay Tutorial- Red Lilyish Flower Cane

I wanted to make a flower cane that was like a lily but I didn't want to go through the hassle of trying to get it to look just like one.  (I'm a perfectionist.  If it doesn't look like a lily, it's not a lily.)  Anyway, so I decided to just do the petals and then let the rest take care of itself- hence the name.  I also wanted this cane to coordinate with last week's cane so that I can use them together.  Eventually, I will have several different canes that all coordinate.  To get the colors to go together, I just added a little bit of last week's blue to some plain red.

Red Lilyish Flower Cane Tutorial

red clay
white clay
black clay
translucent clay

pasta machine
tissue blade
clay extruder
needle tool

Make a skinner blend using the photo below as a guide.  You want some plain white on one end so make sure it hangs over the red.  If you've never made a skinner blend before, see here for a really great tutorial.  Stop when you have a long, thin strip.

Lay your blended strip out on the work surface.  Trim the white end so it is straight across.

 Extrude some skinny black strings.

Lay a few strings across the white end of the blend as shown.

Fold the strip back over itself about 2 inches from the end (less if your strip is smaller).  Add a couple more strings.

Keep folding the strip back and forth, accordion style, adding 2-4 black strings between layers, until you run out of strip.

Carefully compress the stack from the middle out on all sides to expel air and get it into more of a square log shape.  Reduce it until the ends are about 1-inch square.

Cut the log in half...

And re-assemble with the red sides in the middle. (Or you could reverse it to have red petals with white down the middle.)

Compress the two halves and reduce into a long, round cane.

Cut it into 6 equal pieces.

Pinch the pieces in petal shapes.

Add a really thin sheet of black clay to one half of one side of each petal as shown and set aside.

Make a small white log and cover with a thick sheet of black clay.

Reduce to about 1/4 inch or smaller.  Put all of the pieces together as shown below.

Roll out a medium-thick sheet of translucent clay.  Wrap it around the cane, using a needle tool to press it into the creases.

Add wedges of translucent clay between the petals.  Make them big enough to stick out beyond the points of the petals.

Trim the wedges so that the whole thing is as close to a cylinder shape as you can get.

Reduce your cane.  Let it rest at least a couple of hours (if you can wait that long) before cutting into it and seeing your work.



  1. Es una gran tutorial, gracias por compartir. Besos

  2. Ahhh. You make it seem so easy. Lovely!

  3. wow you have been busy! thank you for the tutorial

  4. Great tutorial! Your lily is really pretty! You did a great job!

  5. THat's a cool "lily-ish" :) It even made this non-caner think about trying it.

  6. These are so beautiful! Thanks for sharing the tutorial but mine would never come out as pretty as yours. So for now, I will enjoy your beautiful work.

  7. Wonderful tutorial, thank you so much for sharing!! Beej

  8. Wow. Fantastic tutorial! I don't know if I'm brave enough to try it yet, but it looks awesome!!!

  9. Bonjour,

    Merci pour ce partage, c'est merveilleux ce que vous faites.
    A bientôt

  10. How cute!! Ive wanted to make polymer clay canes for such a loooong time, but I always seem to fail when it comes to rolling out the cane to make it longer!! :(

  11. Creative: Reducing canes takes a lot of practice. Just take it slow and steady. There are a lot of great tutorials on the internet to help. Just Google "reducing polymer clay canes."

  12. Vi imate zlatne ruke ,svaka cast,sve pohvale

  13. wow wondered how it was done, lovely

  14. That is beautiful! Thanks for the tutorial.

  15. Fantastic ! Can't wait to try it out....

  16. I finally figured out that the reason mine don't come out well is the clay - Sculpey III is way too soft. I finally tried a small cane, only 1/2" dia, 2" long (BEFORE I reduced it) made from some small bits of Premo, and it actually still looks like it did to begin. Then I got sidetracked with some mokume gane and after punching some holes in that, I slipped in chunks of my cane. And it STILL looks like the original flower! A bit wiggled, but it still looks like the original. So it has to be the clay. I'm not ready to switch to Fimo or Kato, but I'll play with Premo for a while, get used to that, and then move up.

    1. I'm so glad you got it to work for you! I started out doing really small canes 'cause I was afraid of wasting the clay.
      You're right, Sculpey III is way too soft for canework. Kato is really hard to condition and lately (for me anyway) the stiffness has not been particularly consistent across colors so I've struggled with reducing canes made with it. I've been using mostly Fimo for my canework and it has worked really well for me.

  17. Wow this is all new to me, looks amazing :-)

  18. fantastico !obrigado vou tentar faser.