Let's talk canes

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Canes are logs of polymer clay with a design running through it.  They can range from simple to complex patterns.

One of the first patterns I learned was the swirl.  It has so many possibilities. You can use only 2 colours but make sure they are contrasting to get the maximum effect.  The beads below show you what I mean. See how the black and white are so effective? And the other colours as well.


02 Mar swirl beads

You can try out using 3 or 4 colour swirls. Or even more. When you’re doing this, place the light colour next to the darker colours in a repeating fashion. Then your cane won’t look like one blend. You’ll be able to see the distinctive shades.

Other more complex canes are usually a combination of simple cane patterns – swirl, bullseye, Skinner blends – to name a few. The first picture shows a variety of simple canes and the second one shows that by wrapping the canes in a sheet of black clay, it becomes one kaleidoscope cane. This is then ready to slice and combine to create a fuller pattern which is used for pendants or beads or even covering glass.

 02 Mar Beadeze Kaleidoscope canes    Beadeze Kaleidoscope cane_Moment

usually recommend starting with creating simple canes to new students as this builds confidence in working with the clay.

What canes can you start to work on today?