Faux Abalone Paua Cuff | Polymer Clay Tutorials Vol-065

Faux Abalone Paua Cuff - Polymer Clay Tutor6 Videos #439 to #444: An easier way to make Faux Abalone… Or Paua Shell from New Zealand.

For a while now, many of you have been repeatedly asking me to do a Polymer Clay Faux Abalone Tutorial, but I hesitated until I could come up with my own unique version. Well, it’s ready! Not only does it look like the real thing, but it is also faster and easier to make, as compared to what I’ve seen others teach.

This months Faux Abalone Paua Shell Tutorial, is based on a cane technique that anyone can do… plus you will learn how to use your beautiful faux shell technique to a create a stunning brass cuff. You’ll end up wanting to make dozens of them to impress your family, friends and customers (if you sell your work).

Posted just below is a Sneak Peak and overview of my Faux Abalone Paua Cuff Tutorial. The rest of the 6 part video series will be posted tomorrow (Friday, October 4th, 2013) in Vol-065 at the Polymer Clay Tutor Library.

BTW, if this Faux Abalone Paua Cuff tutorial looks exciting to you, please do click that YouTube Like button. Many of you have been giving the Thumbs Up to the weekly YouTube videos, which is great… Thank You! However, these monthly intro clips need some love as well. When they don’t get as many likes, it makes it look like they are not appreciated as much… which surely can’t be true with all the nice comments you all leave :)

Vol-065-1: Video #439: Introduction: In this 6 part video tutorial series, you will learn techniques and tricks for creating a realistic looking (though easy to do) Faux Abalone Paua Shell Polymer Clay Cane design, as well as use it to construct a stunning Brass and Polymer Cuff of the quality that you can be very proud of. The ideas and techniques can not only be used for this particular bracelet design, but for many other polymer clay and jewelry projects as well.

Pt 2 Faux Abalone Paua Cuff Tutorial - Polymer Clay TutorVol-065-2: Video #440:
Mixing and Blending the Colors:

In this video I will help you to create your own custom color mixes and blends that will create the perfect Abalone Paua Shell look alike! I use Premo Accents Clay for this project because of the rich sparkly metallic colors available with this brand.

Pt 3 Faux Abalone Paua Cuff Tutorial - Polymer Clay TutorVol-065-3: Video #441:
Making Faux Abalone Paua Cane:

In this video I will demonstrate the simple techniques and tools you will use to mimic the wonderful layers and rings found in the shell of the amazing Abaolone or Paua shellfish. I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised to find out how easy and forgiving this technique really is!

Pt 4 Faux Abalone Paua Cuff Tutorial - Polymer Clay TutorVol-065-4: Video #442:
Building the Cuff Bracelet:

In this video, I show you how to properly prepare your Brass or Copper Metal Cuff Blank and add the layer of polymer clay. Your creation will not only be gorgeous to look at, but will also be professionally constructed in a way that will stand the test of time.

Pt 5 Faux Abalone Paua Cuff Tutorial - Polymer Clay TutVol-065-5: Video #443:
Sanding and Finishing:

In this video, you will learn some pro level finishing tricks that will take your piece of jewelry from JUST OK looking to everyone-wants-one FABULOUS status! It’s all in the finishing baby! As they say, a little bit of elbow grease goes a long way.

Pt 6 Faux Abalone Paua Cuff Tutorial - Polymer Clay TutVol-065-6: Video #434:
Polishing and Waxing:

In this final video of the series, you will discover the tips and techniques to finishing your metal and polymer cuff, so that it is comfortable to wear, feels like luxury in your hands and looks like a million bucks! Remember, people judge value not only by what they see, but by how it feels when they hold it in their hands. Make sure it feels amazing and you’ll not only “Love What You Make”… but so will anyone who owns your work!

Supplies Available at Rings & Things:

Other Supplies:

  • Paper Towels.
  • Rubbing Alcohol.
  • Soft cloth or fabric for waxing.
  • Felt for buffing.
  • Tile for baking on.
  • File Folder or Cardstock for tenting.

By the way, many of the “shopping” links I provide for the various tools and supplies used in my tutorials, are “affiliate” resources. That means companies like Amazon and the other suppliers I refer, pay me a small commission if you click on the links and end up making a purchase at their site. It’s not a lot, but every little bit helps in keeping the cost of my tutorials down. And, the prices for products that you may purchase through my links, are exactly the same as what you would normally pay, even if it is a “sale” price. So please feel free to click whenever you need to pick up a few things for your studio. Thanks so much for your support.

The full video series for the Faux Abalone Paua Cuff tutorial described above, is available in Vol-065 at the Polymer Clay Library.

If you would like to receive 3 free beginner videos right now, plus some free color recipes that get sent out each week in my Friday email newsletter, please click this link: Polymer Clay Tutorials


Please Note: A general prerequisite for all of my monthly library tutorials is that you have a good understanding of the polymer clay basics, including: conditioning clay, using a pasta machine, clay blade and other simple tools, making Skinner Blends, baking clay, as well as sanding and finishing. If you need help in these areas, my Polymer Clay Beginners Course will get you up to speed quickly. There is also plenty of free information on this blog. Use the search box at the top of the page to find articles on specific topics.

Customer Feedback About Membership Value:

Cindy you have a way of talking us through something that seems impossible and suddenly it is so doable. One of the few teachers who has that wonderful quality. That is why I never want to miss any of your tutes even if I have done it before and think I know how. When you show it to us all of a sudden it is so much easier than before. You shine with the ability to do that with all your tutes.  ~Peggy-B

You most seriously want to think about joining Cindys tutorials. I have learned so much in the short time I have been here. I too was hesitating about joining but it was the best thing I ever did. I’m sure there are a whole lot of members out there who will tell you the same thing. Never have I experienced great teaching methods and the best tips as I have from Cindy. My frustration level went from 10 down to practically nothing. I am now starting to sculpture flowers and smaller things with a great deal more confidence. You will find a big family of wonderful Clayers here in all different levels. ~DixieAnn-S

Thanks for always keeping us thinking new thoughts about older techniques. And of course for showing us lots of new ways to use our clay as well. ~Jamie-H

Cindy there are tons of manufacturers out there who should be aware that you are influencing bunches of folk to buy their goods, and for good reasons… you have done so much testing of the products and that leads to us all having confidence in a new product (or an “old” one we may never have heard of) and so much more willing to buy, and then go back and buy again when we see the results for ourselves! Truly, the day I stumbled upon your website was pretty much the luckiest day of my life. I have learned so much, and Cindy and you demonstrate and record everything so well that it is hard to fail on any technique. My thanks to you both Doug and Cindy, again! ~Becky-C

Thanks Cindy for so many fresh, fun ideas to look forward to. ~DJ

The full video series for the Faux Paua Abalone Cuff tutorial described above, is available in Vol-065 at the Polymer Clay Library.

If you would like to receive 3 free beginner videos right now, plus some free color recipes that get sent out each week in my Friday email newsletter, please click this link: Polymer Clay Tutorials

Cindy Lietz SignaturePolymer Clay Tutor
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  1. Can’t wait for tomorrow! This looks fantastic and I am looking forward to learning your technique for this wonderful look!!!

  2. I wanted to add a big thank you to Cindy for all she does for us. I have learned so much from her in the years I have been a student of her tutorials. Learning what I am capable of and seeing success is amazing. Cindy has helped me grow and be willing to take on challenges I thought would be to daunting for me. She is an awesome teacher. She encourages us to learn and have our own voice as an artist. The small sum for all of this is soooo worth every penny.
    Not only does she guide me in learning but is willing to point me in directions of success. She has mentored me on the next steps to take in my journey and helped me see possibilities that would follow in the course of progress. I am grateful for her wisdom in knowing what I am ready for and what could be a disaster. Cindy doesn’t tell me I cannot do something (wise..cause I am stubborn and tend to say “watch I’ll do it”) but suggests that I might try a different way. Or will say to “experiment” and just see how it works. How blessed we are to have a teacher who allows us our own heading if we choose. Always the cheerleader for our success and never a detractor when we fail. Her hand is always extended to help us back up and a kind word to send us into the try again mode.
    Cindy, thank you for being my Tutor and friend.

    • Karon, you make my heart sing with the kind words you have shared today. Getting the chance to spend a little time with you this summer was wonderful as I don’t get to sit next to and chat about polymer clay in person very often.

      Seeing your work and how far you have advanced this past year was inspiring for me. I love seeing improvement. Whether it is a new skill learned or a great challenge overcome, it makes me want to improve and learn more too.

      I don’t see anything as failures or mistakes… just things to learn more about. I do find it hard sometimes to point out something that I think could be improved upon, but know it would be a disservice to you (or anyone else) if I didn’t share what I know that could make your piece even better.

      I have learned so much from you and you have even surpassed my skills in certain areas. You make me feel proud to have known you and to have been part of your polymer clay journey. Thank you for your support and friendship. ~Cindy

  3. Cindy, I am so excited about this Faux Abalone Shell tutorial. Not only is it beautiful when finished, the techniques and tips you teach us to help create it, is so well thought out, easy to follow and helps lead us to a failure rate of zero. I love every tutorial you do but especially the ones that involve canes that create these beautiful faux stones and gems. They are precise, easy to follow step by step and make us all winners. Providing links to the materials we might use are also a plus for us as it shows how much you want us to succeed. You never leave us hanging and are always there to encourage us, support us, and follow up on whatever questions we may have until we have the answers. I have experienced this several times and I really want to encourage anyone who wants to truly learn Polymer Clay to join our group and sign up for your tutorials.

    • Thank you for your heartfelt words Dixie Ann! I am so happy that what I can teach you, has you feeling successful with your polymer clay. It means a lot to have your support and know that I will continue to be here for you whenever you need it. You are a tremendous help to everyone here and I consider you to be a dear friend. ~Cindy

  4. Just the tutorial that I have been waiting for Cindy. When I saw this is what is coming up next, cause I usually stop by to get a peek at the new series , my jaw literally dropped with excitement!! Yesterday was my birthday that kind of ended on a sour note and I was still feeling down. Well after seeing this and being that I am one of many that requested it, I couldn’t be more thrilled or happy. Well I could, but I’m trying to contain my excitement. Will have to post pics from my studio for you to see that and the joy that you bring to me and definitely to so many others. Thank You so much for making this possible. If I could I would just give you a big hug for this, see you tomorrow!

  5. thanks again Cindy and Co for another wonderful tute! i was wanting to have a go at the abolonie tute thats out on the web, but it looked too hard. This one is so easy looking fwd to giving this a go.

  6. Hi Cindy,

    Wonderful tutorial, I can’t wait to make some really cool jewelry! One question for this ‘still’ new kid on the block, does Premo make a blue pearl???? I thought I had all the pearls, but blue isn’t one of them. Can you help me? Thanks in advance, and remember, I tend to shop for my clay at Michael’s…..

  7. CINDY YOU DID IT AGAIN. I remember last year in talking with you how I wanted to make the abalone sp? and you did it. Is this your own creation. ??

    Also in those scraps. At Rings and things looking for the real thing. They would take little chunks of puaa or abalone and make lil mosaic type squares and put them together into little tiles and make jewelry out of those lil pieces. So Im sure you can do that with the scraps. and make a really cool patchwork sheet. Or use scraps as inlays. I cannot wait to do this. but need to finish the outside work while sun shines. Then to my indoor crafts as the weather signifies. thank you CINDY I tell so many people about you

    • Thanks Patty! The mosaic idea is an awesome one! I had thought of doing that but ran out of time to make up some samples for the tutorial. I’d love to see what you make with it!

      I too need to get outside and do some gardening. Looks like this weekend is going to be pretty nice so maybe I can do it then.

      Thanks for your comment!

  8. Wow, this technique is amazing – I couldn’t wait to get home and watch it! Thank you again for such awesome and dedicated work!

  9. QUESTION: Is it possible to mix a bronze mica powder with a brown clay to make the bronze color? I could not find that color in any of the stores near me that sell Primo, Sculpey or Fimo clay. I could not find the bronze, 18K Gold or Peahook Pearl.


    • Sure Maria, you could add bronze mica powder to the black to get a close enough color. With the others it may be a little trickier to get mixes with similar color and concentration, but you could definitely come up with something suitable with a little experimentation. Do show us pics when you’ve got it how you like. I’d love to see how it turns out!

  10. Thank you so much for this tutorial!!! I have scoured the web for tut’s on making abalone and found them all wanting, they all fell short of ” believable ” but this one is so real. One question… I would like to make the abalone and was wondering if adding some teal instead of bright green or in addition to would do the trick making it more green than blue. I have already made a jar using the blue cane as an inlay and covered some seashells for a pendant and earring set as well as some hearts for the same use and just need to wire them up. What an inspiring project!

    In a future tutorial could you show some more wiring techniques for earrings and pendants. Some pieces just don’t look right with a hole drilled through them and a jump ring, They need the added drama and architecture of the wire. I have some really great books but somehow watching you do the same thing jjust makes it so much easier and less complicated.

    Thanks again and have a great week-end, I too need to start the fall clean up and cutting back of my plants that seem like they JUST grew last week. This summer was a fast one, but the color here in the Catskills is really beautiful it makes anticipating the winter snow clean-up less stressful.

    They are breaking ground for a 5 star convention center and hotel in our townhouse complex in a couple of weeks so we will at least be entertained. The property values have plummeted over the last few years ( without the taxes going down ) and this will bring them back up again, so many of the empty houses will be sold to the employees who want to be close to their jobs and this place will once again thrive. On the flip side we can say good-bye to all the peace and quiet. I guess to get something you have to give something. I am looking at this as an opportunity to present and grow my business in some way.I have a severe phobia towards public speaking and it translates into putting myself out there and selling my products even on the web, I need to develope my page on facebook and get cards and take my things to shops but I am frozen with doubt. I do much better with some one to work with and am looking for that ” other ” who will walk the path with me. Someone who does their own thing while I do mine, I am not competetive so am quite easy to work with. I am trying to include my husband but he is enjoying his retirement too much at present. If a partnership is truly needed it will find me as has always been the case.Does anyone have any suggestions as to how I can battle this particular dragon, I used to be quite a dynamic speaker and could sell anything until the phobia hit, I even had my own design business for clothing and some household products like custom covered lamp shades and throw pillows. Now I shrink at the thought of asking anyone to pay for what I do. My daughter keeps at me but that doesen’t help it just stresses me out.I will beat this but it will take time. these tutorials go a long way to giving me some confidence by giving me the skills to do things the right way and know that my products are quality.Thank you for that.

    • Cheyrl, thank you so much for your comment! I love it that this tutorial has been a success for you, when other peoples version were not! :)

      As far as the adjustments to the colors that you are asking about. Why don’t you just experiment with some tiny batches… You never know how it will turn out until you try.

      I will be adding more wire techniques to the tutorials over time. I have to keep a good balance between different polymer clay techniques and mixed media techniques so that everyone is getting good value.

      I am no expert when it comes to phobias, and suggest you find some good support if you need it. I do believe however, if you once had the strength, you can have it again. You have everything you need already to be a success, it is just a matter of allowing yourself to be one again.

      Maybe there are others in this community that can help point you in the right direction? I wish for you all the success that you desire!

      Thanks again for your wonderful comment!

      • Thank you, I am going to mix teal instead of the blue and see what happens,if nothing else I will still have a beautiful cane

        Also thank you for caring, I know I will find the method to further my clay madness somewhere, I am not fragil just a little broken and broken things can be fixed,repaired or patched. I have a very strong alfa personality and I have learned to temper it and be supportive and not competetive, getting feed back even negative is seen as something new to learn and not an attack on me personally but a tool to help me grow. Being bi-polar and having phobias does not need to translate into being a jerk.Everyone has problems of some kind or another and how we deal with them define us, everyone here has such heart wrenching and at the same time inspiring lives,it seems we really do suffer for our art but our art saves us and having a site like this with someone who cares for and nurtures our talent is priceless, Thank you and your beautiful family for all that you do to nurture our endeavors

        • Hi, Cheryl!

          You sound like an awesome woman of many and diverse talents. I need to chime in here and first, echo Cindy’s comment to you that if you once had the strength, you still have it and it will be at your beck and call again.

          I have battled many of the Dragons you mentioned. It may sound trite, but once I let go of battling them and just let them teach me why and where my fears where and how they originated…they became fast friends and allies. You do not have to suffer to be an artist, and everyone who suffers is not necessarily an artist by trade or even desire. Thru your fears, you are only being directed to find the truth of what is stopping your brilliance. As for the perfect partner…that just may be yourself. Find your own self-confidence and you will lead yourself out of your fears and soon you will lead others out of theirs.

          If you have been diagnosed bi-polar, phobic, or alpha you don’t necessarily have to remind yourself of it all the time. That only leaks away precious energy that you could use to fulfill your dreams. You may have worked too hard and pushed yourself too much in too many directions in the past and you fear doing it to yourself again.

          I used to hate the phrase “One step at a time” because I wanted to do everything all at once. Now, I love it. As long as you DO keep making each step you are convicted of making and follow it thru to completion, you have nothing to fear. Honor yourself and your dreams and you will achieve what you set out to achieve.

          My love and all of my spiritual support to you. I will be waiting to see you selling the heck out of your art online!


        • Thank you Andrea,

          I do tend to push and be super Mom, Grandma and Wife, I really don’t need to be super artist as well, my art is an extension of who I am and should come as naturally as walking or breathing. I took a big step forward yesterday….I found out that the contractors from China who are building a huge hotel and convention center in the townhouse complex where we live were on site putting up a stage for a show on Friday for about 100 Chinese dignitaries and investors that are being brought in by helicopter. I put my game face on and marched down there and introduced myself and spent an enjoyable hour talking and finding out about the facility. Most importantly I actually made some suggestions that they found quite useful, one being making space for local artisans to show and sell their products.I will go to the show on Friday and take the baby, she will see the traditional dragon dance and the fireworks, but most exciting to her will be the helicopter.I was even invited to the lunch afterwards.

          On a funny note, as I introduced myself I was eager to hear what exotic Chinese names they had and was completely stymied when the first one said “nice to meet you I am Bob ” and the second one said ” hello I am Leon.”

          Any way I was very proud of myself and will continue to make progress due in large part to this community that is so nurturing and accepting and individuals like you who take the time and energy to impart your own wisdom and experience. The caring and very real concern for my well being is written in every word and I thank my lucky stars for all of you and Cindy and Doug who have provided this haven of acceptance for all of us.

  11. This is amazing!! Have wanted to do the abalone but as others have said, it was too difficult to get my brain around. This is terrific!!
    Thanks Cindy

  12. Ok, I’m on my way out to get the pearls for this and I just have a question, would a small food processor fit the bill for the chopping or do you need the “sharp” edges on the bits as provided by the blade?

    • Hi Ken, I think with such a small amount it would be just as easy to do it by hand. With a food processor you could take it too far pretty quickly and lose that depth of color that you are looking for. OF course you could always try it yourself and prove me wrong. :) Let me know how it goes!

  13. Lovely, lovely, lovely, I am thinking I will also make Faux Abalone pens, barrettes as well as cuffs, beads, earrings, the list goes on. So glad you came up with this super easy “Cindy” version of this beautiful shell. A BIG thank you Cindy, I love it……cheers xx……….

  14. I have a batch in the oven right now curing. Can’t wait to see how they look once they are sanded. Pics from me hopefully tomorrow. I really enjoyed this tutorial, it was a fun one!

  15. Hi Cindy,
    Loved your videos as always, keep up the good work. Thanks for all your tips, but I have just one question. I watched your video on buffing using the jool tool and I purchased the jool tool,(because of your video) . You said you would show us how to sand with the jool tool after you had tested it. Well on this class you said you used the jool tool to sand the bracelets….When will you do a video on sanding on polymer clay using the jool tool???? Thanks

    • Hi Sandra, just so you know I have been working on this. (I have a lot going on behind the scenes right now and am not able to move on things as fast as I would like, but I am getting there.) At the end of the Summer I received a comprehensive selection of the different abrasives to test from Anie the Designer of the JoolTool. I have narrowed the kit down to the essentials needed to sand and buff both flat polymer clay pieces and round/curved ones. There are a few different products that will do a good job, but I want to choose the ones that will do the best job and will last the longest time, so that you all are getting the best value out of the kit we suggest. It takes a little time to give it a proper evaluation. Just know that I am very close and should be able to let you all know soon. It will be worth the wait. I am LOVING the results so far!

      • Thats wonderful news Cindy! I know I sometimes forget you have a life, other than teaching. We all know how hard you work for us to have the best tools and tips. Its always hard to wait for something to come to fruition but we also know that when it does and comes from you it will BE the BEST that we can do/see/use.
        Thanks again Cindy for all you do.

    • Hi Nancy, How cool! I just love it when people combine tutorials like that! I have one of those perfume dispensers from the same company that makes the pens. After reading your comment it made me think that the Faux Abalone technique would be perfect for that.Sounds like I have one Christmas present figured out already. Thanks for the idea!

      Oh btw, do make sure to post pictures of your pens on the Members Facebook Gallery Page. I am sure ever one would love to see them!

  16. Hi Cindy,

    Thank you I’m all signed up after deliberating about it for a few months. Just watched your Faux Abalone tutorial it was totally amazing and just ordered loads of polymer clay to do the project. Your tutorials are very easy to follow wish I had done it ages ago.

    Thank you
    From a newbie

    • Hi Pamela,
      we are so happy to hear you have joined our group of clayers. I too waited much to long to make up my mind about joining but when I did, I never looked back. Just wanted to welcome you and let you know that we are all here for you to help answer your questions or give our input. Congratulations! I know how excited you must be.

    • Welcome Pamela to a wonderful new adventure in the Polymer Clay World. I said the same thing when I joined. Fortunately I found Cindy not to long after she started and I caught myself up and bought all the tutorials I had missed. I wasn’t new to clay but I still purchased her beginners course and loved every bit of it. Learned things I should of already known but thanks to Cindy I know so much more now. She is a bottomless pit of amazement. Never a dull tutorial with Cindy. Even the techniques I already knew Cindy made them so much easier to understand and do when done her way. Enjoy!

  17. I can’t wait to try the Cindy way. Your way is always so much easier with even better results. I have made faux abalone with the translucent and pearl ex powders before. You have to make thin slices then lay over base color. I never like the results I got so I just made a few pieces and gave up one it. Your tutorial is so much easier to follow and I love the way you use the thick slices. You can sand it to perfection without worrying about going through to your base color. Then your results are so much richer. Thank you Cindy for giving me another chance to try to make some beautiful faux abalone. Your way is the best way for me every time. Another Wonderful tutorial you and Doug have created for all of us to enjoy.
    Many Uuugggs

  18. Hi Everyone
    I have a bit of a FYI to share
    While making a pendent like the one on the black cord that Cindy made – I didn’t bother with finger cots or did I bother to fill the ridges of my fingerprints with corn starch….so while sanding I noticed that I’d left a permanent a fingerprint due to the high mica content of this cane:/
    Quite frustrating that now it will take more sanding to get it off
    Oh well lesson learned…………now if I can just remember it ;)

    • Hi Sherry,
      I remember a lesson not long ago about fingerprints and in it Cindy suggested acetone to dissolve the ridges, I did buy some ( about 6-7 dollars at walmart for a large can ) I used it and it worked great! well worth the money and as little as you use of it at a time it will last forever. The fumes are quite strong so I keep mine in the garden box on the back deck and bring in small amounts in a baby food jar when I need to use it. My Husband ( a retired computer engineer/scientists ) has always drilled into me ” work smarter not harder ” I think it is finally sinking in because that seems to be what Cindy’s tutorials are all about…….Thank you Cindy!

  19. Actually these are the lessons I remember best, because I’m just so upset with myself for taking that “shortcut”, Sherry :) Tell yourself it could be worse (like a custom order of 20+ with the same oops only noticed AFTER baking LOL)

    A Half-Baked Notion

    • Nooo Monique, that’s terrible I bet your heart just drop

      and my oops is gone now – used a bit of 220 w/d sandpaper on it
      thanks for the giggle -Sherry

  20. Hello Cindy, First I want to tell you thank you so much for putting these together I have learned a ton already.

    My questions is were can you buy polishing cloths?


    • Hi Kari, Dixie Ann is right… the search box is your friend. You will find that almost every answer you need can be found there.

      BTW, if you want to do a little treasure hunt, the answer is actually right here on this page. If you scroll up and look around you will find a link to the place you can buy these polishing cloths (Rings & Things).

      When you find it, come back and leave the answer so I know you got it. :)

  21. Hi Kari, any of the usual PC vendors will carry polishing cloths. However, at the top of the blog page is a search engine. Just type in the words “polishing cloths” and I am sure several suggestions will pop up that you can look into. This search feature is your best friend, so whenever you have a question, I would look there first and most generally you will find your answer. Hope that helps.

  22. Cindy, have you had any problems with the clay separating from the bracelet blanks? I hate glueing, so was glad to see you didn’t do that.


  23. Love this faux abalone/paua technique, Cindy. Especially because your take on this adds the dark lines that are so prevalent on the type of abalone/paua I have purchased in the past and see on the Google imagery of both types.

    It also makes a great mokame gane type cane if you vary the colors. Cannot wait to try it with other color combinations!

    Also thrilled to hear you are getting closer to releasing new techniques for sanding using the JoolTool.

  24. Hi CIndy
    Great tutorial. I have one comment and one question. First, could you not use a mini food chopper. I use one to mix colors and it looks just like in your video. Secondly, I am an optition who did lab work for years, I never, never heated any type of superglues. They give off toxic fumes. I would be Leary of anything that did not state it was safe at higher temps. Did that second glue you used say such? I will be trying this tomorrow. Also why did you not sand etc the blank before you applied the clay?

    • Hi Wilma, those are good questions, though you guys need to be careful that you are not giving away too many of the tutorial’s secrets in these comment sections. For the Mini chopper, see the answer I gave Ken Hamilton above about that one. As far as the super glue being heat safe, the tiny bottle doesn’t say anything about that. If you have concerns use the Lisa Pavelka Polybonder. Also you could sand the blank first if you want. but the heat and the fumes from the clay will likely discolor the metal so you may have to do it after again, any way.

      • Hi Wilma! Glues are essential and I mirror your concerns. Others here have taught me to get the official name of the glue and/or the manufacturer, off the label, then just go and google them.

        In most cases, you can get to the actual spec documents within a couple of clicks, and these specs will give all the temp ranges, contents (mostly, lol), plus offer a toll free phone and email links so that you can ask questions.

        Finally, it seems that poly clay with have oven save superglues as an option, and hopefully the product offered by Pavelka and soon, Kato, will be preformated for our “climate” and not contain anything harmful.

  25. HI Cindy just completed my first round of using the abalone technique. Boy is it easy and so addictive. I’ve posted a pic at the members gallery of your facebook page. There is a pair of earrings to go with that too. Haven’t got that pic up yet.
    My daughter snaffled that necklace so have made another cane to make myself one and one to sell too. I just love this.

    • I think you did an excellent job on your Faux Abalone pendant Sandra! Like I mentioned on Facebook, my only suggestion is that you give your bezel a tiny bit more sanding with some 400 grit paper to start and then through the finer grits to finish. This will give your piece a smoother, more polished look. The more seamless and even a polymer bezel looks, the more professional the whole piece will look.

  26. oops, i knew there was something else i wanted to say. I love the viking knit chain in your video, so i went googling (is there such a word?) for instructions. Happy to say i found some really good ones on youtube so am busy trying it out. Also had instructions on how to make a draw plate for this knit. looking forward to seeing how it goes/

      • I knew something was up with the viking knit, I always keep an eye open in the background of the youTube vids or something you show off a creation on, there are clues sometimes as to what’s coming up in the near future, I did a short experimental piece of viking knit and it came out quite nicely for my first try, can’t wait to see what tricks you have up your sleeve to make it easier, I “Think” I understand it, but I will see how much I do understand in the future. Hopefully will get to try the Paua/Abalone tonight, been having internet troubles (my provider) maybe I can get enough time with it up to watch the videos again on making the cane. Brought an actual Blue Abalone shell at Michaels when I got the supplies so I actually have something to look at while I’m learning.

          • SHHHHHHH, I know, maybe if we’re quiet she won’t realize. :D I’ve noticed a couple of times something sitting in the background not even part of what’s being discussed saying “Oh, I wonder what she’s trying with that”

          • I am on to you guys!!! (Or maybe you are on to me!! LOL) Yeah I think it is fun to leave the stuff I am working on for the next tutorials, lying around the workbench. I mean why clean up when I can tease you a little? The only problem is a viewer on YouTube said I needed to clean up my clutter if I wanted to up my game so maybe I should clean up a little and leave a little? ;)

          • Nah, a cluttered desk is the sign of an organized mind. It’s like a game, find the clues and try and figure out what’s going on, like the hidden image games on Facebook.

        • That be so neat! The one I found is quite fiddley, though do-able. Looking fwd to seeing your take on it. I’ve already ordered some wire for this technique. It looks so great!

      • yay:)
        I remember Ken talking about the Viking knit technique a while back and you saying you’d put it on the list
        sooo… this past summer at Michael’s I got the kit for $1.49 on sale/clearance(?) down from $4.99/reg
        it’s by Bead Landing it’s also still in it’s package;) I had a feeling you wouldn’t leave us hanging (sitting in my chair doing a happy dance!)

  27. Hi everyone – had the best time w/ our latest tutorial – posted a pic on Cindy’s FB page
    it was so easy and fast doing it Cindy’s way that I made a 2nd one right away:)

  28. Hello, Everybody!

    Great tutorial, Cindy, as always! Love the palette on the other cane you did. Maybe you would consider incorporating that in a future tutorial as it is really beautiful.

    I have a couple old brass and copper bracelets I was hanging on to for PC use…this tutorial is just the ticket!

  29. Yep, I too look around on Cindys desk to see what she is up to, but it is so much better to be totally surprised each month with the new tutorials. It’s like Christmas 12 months a year instead of only one so I’m not guessing anymore! I just know she puts a lot of work and effort in the tutorials and I like being surprised!

  30. Just want to make sure I understand, Paua is paler and bluer and Abalone is brighter and more varied, I’ve seen photos on google that look closer to what you called the phoney abalone, much more yellows and pinks than blues and greens

    • Honestly Ken, I am not sure about the color. There are a ton of species, and they all do something else according to what I have seen googling images of them all.

      I just like the ones with deep color, blue/turquoise with brownish spots the best. Others prefer less brown and more pastel color and white.

      I have seen both color variants come up when googled “abalone” and “paua.” I own a few favorite pieces in the darker shades about 2 inches square and they are lovely. Just wish I could remember what box I put them in, LOL!

    • Hi ken, sorry to take so long to respond. The abalone shell around here is mostly white with an rainbow ‘oil slick’ look to the layers and the rings ten to range from a dark amber to black/bronze. The Paua shell is a darker blue/green with that same oil slick look and the rings are a darker black/bronze. There is a Red Abalone which is a little bit like my phony abalone but more reddish and not the strange purpley color I ended up with.

      • So does that peachy orange color I’ve seen in the google images actually happen or is it a play of light off the shell itself, (I would swear that there is a peach/orange in some of those images), I was going to attach the image that best fit what I saw but was concerned over copyright, and didn’t want to get you into trouble.

        • Hi Ken, sorry to take so long… I’ve seen some peach colored ones too on Google images when I searched Red Abalone. I think there are all kinds of natural colors not to mention probably some dyed ones as well. You can pretty much take the color where ever you like. Make whatever makes you happy! Btw when you do make some faux abalone/paua projects show us pics… would love to see them!

          • I will, right now cleaning and straightening up so the Verizon FiOS installer doesn’t kill themselves on the junk thats neede to be put away for quite some time now, I’ll finally get to try out the photo light box I brought online a while ago

  31. I just want to make sure – looking at the colors you used the magenta pearl is the old Premo color is that correct? I know that they changed the color about 6 months ago and now magenta pearl it is a very dark almost raspberry color?

    • Hi Kari, I just saw that they did indeed change the color of Magenta Pearl! Geez, shouldn’t they call it New Magenta Pearl or something instead… the color is much darker. Anyway, no big deal for this project. Just use a little less, it won’t make that much of a difference in the end.

  32. Hi Cindy,

    Recently I purchased the paua shell video and tried at home. It was great as I could reproduce the technique at home. Unfortunately, I didn’t have all the required accents pc at home and in Brazil it is hard to find this material. I have ordered on line from the US and, hopefully, will receive my purchase soon.
    I just love your videos, they are very useful and simple to understand.


  33. Doing a happy dance – my first cuff is finished. Boy is this addicting!!! Mine is quite blue, with whispers of pink and purple. I’ll post a pic, as soon as I can corral my DH to take some pics. I didn’t have any of the new glue. So if it separates from the cuff – I’ll just have to make another …………

    Next I am going to try for the Abalone look. Love the oil slick look.

    How much fun can you have…………………LOTS

    Thanks for such a beautiful and easy tute.

    FYI – the new hip is coming right long. Pain gone. Feeling more like my old’self!

    • Glad to hear your hip is healing nice. That is such a major thing to go through. Said lots of prayers for you. Can’t wait for you to post your pics! :)

  34. OT -re new hip. Thanks for all the well wishes and prayers. It all worked!!!! I am using a cane ( not PC-LOL) , for a while. Go the go-ahead from my Doc this a.m. – cleared to drive ( I have been driving up to get the mail. And one trip to Safeway). But now it is official !!! Teehee. Going to Pc Guild meeting Saturday – DRIVING.
    Life is good!. I feel so much better.

  35. Hi. This is the first video of yours I have tried, and it is AWESOME! (: Thank you. I want to get started today (of course) but I do not have the adhesives recommended. I did some ‘surfing’ and some sources say that you can use Crafter’s Pick “The Ultimate” to adhere the two components discussed in the tutorial. Have you tried this? Do you think you might consider this in one of your tests? Thanks.

    • Hi Alisa! Welcome to our happy little blog! I actually haven’t tried Crafter’s Pick “The Ultimate” glue yet on polymer clay. It might be a good one to do some tests with… I’ll keep an eye out for it.

      You could try a different brand of high temp super glue if you like. I hear there are many on the market. (Another thing to test I guess. SO many products to try and so little time!) :)

      Thank you for the compliments on the tutorial! I am so glad you are enjoyed it and happy to see you are a new member. Do make sure to ‘take a swim’ around the pages of this blog. There is absolutely tons of information and lots of friendly folks to interact with. Use the search box at the top of the page to find the answers you need and make sure to leave lots of comments. It is wonderful to have you here!

  36. Hi Cindy I just ordered your faux abalone video, which is fascinating and I wondered what colors you used for the “phony abalone” rose colored items.

    Thanks for any info you can give me.

    Janet Loos

    • Hi Janet, glad you are enjoying the tutorial! I don’t have that piece anymore, but I believe I used some Fuchsia Pearl, Purple Pearl and Regular Pearl in that one and used some of the Copper instead of the Bronze/Black. Just play around with whatever shades you want, when you’re making a Phony Abalone… there really are no rules when you’re making something up! :)

  37. Cindy – I LOVE the abalone tute!!! Can’t wait to try the rose colored one soon. I really appreciate your answering all my questions so fast (I am a new customer and seem to have many doubts,, but you are right there with all the right answers – keep up the great work!


  38. Hi Cindy! LOVE the abalone technique and was wondering if you would share the colors you used for the bronze looking piece in the background of the tut? That would be so great!


  39. Hi Sheila, Thank you for the kind words… so glad to hear that you enjoyed the Abalone technique. As far as the colors, I was just playing around so I can’t be positive, but I believe I threw in some tiny pieces of fuchsia in the mix and used a copper layer instead of a black/bronze one. The idea is to use small amounts of different colors with the pearl, and to use a contrasting color for your rings. Play around a bit in small batches and see if you can come up with a combination of your own that you love. Have fun!

  40. I’m at an impass. I love this tute and want to make more however I’m told that I no longer can get the blue pearl premo. Do you by chance have a recipe that makes me the blue pearl color so I can proceed with this tute? Thanks

    • Hi Nancy,

      You can actually still buy Blue Pearl in the Premo Metallic/Pearl Multi-Pack… and Sculpey does have a PDF page of recipes for the discontinued colors, which includes Blue Pearl if you want to check that out. The link above will let you download the PDF to your computer.

      That should get you back to working on this tutorial! (And by the way, you can really do this tutorial with any colors that you like, so you aren’t stuck, even if you don’t have one of the colors.)

  41. I don’t think I ever thanked you for the abalone tutorial. It ended up beautiful and I have made buttons from it. It is kind of funny that I made the cane right after the tutorial was released and used it, but never connected it to what I had asked to be explored. It wasn’t until I had a customer that was again asking if I had any abalone buttons yet that I thought man I need to figure that out. I went home and messed around with some clay until I saw a small piece of the cane and I thought, Oh My Goodness I do have it and it was thanks to you. So I am so sorry for not thanking you earlier and letting you know how much I appreciate you doing that tutorial.

  42. I have found Premo Accent Blue Pearl only in the sample box on Amazon and Blue Sculpey
    clay at the Polymer clay superstore only. Are they ot making the 2 oz blue pearl clay anymore?


    • Cindy P. I have not been able to find it either so I don’t think they are making it available anymore in the 2oz. block. However, you can mix your own with the Premo receipe. 6 parts Ultramarine Blue, 1 part pearl, 1 part white, 1/8 part Florescent yellow.

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