Friday, March 2, 2012

Try, Try Again

Okay, so much for not having time to blog.  Actually, I really don't have time right now but I love doing it too much to stop completely.

Anyway, I got a request this week for a stand to go with a pen I had listed on Artfire.  I can easily do stands for any of the pens but for some reason I don't bother most of the time.  Anyway, the customer really loved this pen and wanted to know if I could make a stand to go with it.  Of course I told her I
could and I got started on it. 

Attempt One:  I couldn't find the blue flower cane I used in the pen so I decided to just do without it.  Made up some of the green background, covered a ball of scrap with it and proceeded to add the flowers.  Not a big deal except that I was just getting over a bad cold and just wanted to get it done.  But it only took about an hour so I was okay.  Left it sitting on the craft table to bake it later.  Later arrived and I went in there to get it to pop it into the oven and I discovered that my 2-year-old (who loves to clay) had arrived ahead of me and "improved" on my work.  Holes, cuts and chunks missing. 

Lesson One Learned:  Bake it immediately or risk the "help" of the toddler.

Attempt Two:  Mushed the first one all up into scrap clay and got started on the second one.  Used the leftover green clay from #1 and covered scrap ball #2.  Meanwhile, I had found the blue flower cane so I was able to put all of them in there.  Whew!  Got it made and safely into the oven.  Set the timer and went to lie down for a minute.  Forgot it was there.  It was nicely browned all over.

Lesson Two Learned:  If I'm not going to stay within hearing distance of the timer, tell the kids in the room why it's set.  Dd heard it but said, "I didn't know what it was for so I didn't do anything about it."  She's 12.  She couldn't ask what it was for?

Attempt Three:  Made up some new green and a covered a new scrap ball.  I was now almost out of both the light pink cane and the orange cane.  So, instead of covering the ball all over with flowers, I decided to just make a ring around the edge.  Got it made, safely into the oven, safely out of the oven, and sanded and buffed with no more trouble.  Thank heaven!

Lesson Three Learned:  If at first you don't succeed, try, try again.

(lousy photo taken with my phone)

The stand is now finished and, along with the matching pen, is on it's way to its new owner.  Hopefully she will love it and make the whole thing worthwhile.  I love my customers!

This just goes to show that, no matter how "expert" you are at a skill, there's always room for mistakes!



  1. I love how the stand turned out, and the pen is beautiful. Maybe it was meant to be, to look like this. I hate when so many mistakes happen to one piece. But I think it turned out beautiful.
    Melissa D

  2. I think it turned out beautifully - I really like it with the canes in a ring around the edge!

  3. I love that cane that you used. Do you have a tutorial for it or may I ask where you found out how to make it. I am new to PC. That pen would make me want to write all day. Beautiful work.

  4. Thanks, Everyone!

    Chunky Monkey - the canes are all just basic flower canes. I've published a few here on my blog. (Scroll down to the "Labels" block on the right and click on "polymer clay" or "tutorials.") You can also find a ton of tutes if you do a Google search for "polymer clay cane tutorials" or something like that. That's how I got my start. That and reading every pc book I could get my hands on. I've never had the opportunity to take a live class. Oh, and beware of the tutes you find on YouTube - the "teachers" in a lot of them don't really seem to know as much as they are letting on...

  5. They are gorgeous! I also have learned from books and online tutorials though I'd love to be able to get to some of the amazing workshops I've seen advertised.