Gingham Cane Extruder Project | Polymer Clay Tutorial [Video]

Gingham Polymer Clay Cane BeadsVid #185: “Gingham
pattern is called a Vichy
cane on the French blogs. I
have never thought of using
it on a lentil though. Just
Beautiful!” ~Squash

Classic, Simple and Cool! That is how I would describe this neat little polymer clay cane based on the traditional fabric pattern called Gingham. And because this technique can be done using the clay extruder took, you can also add Fast to the list of attributes!

What a great pattern! I love my extruder, and I’ll have to try this pattern. ~Deidre-R

I would really like to learn this process – gingham canes… for the older set. ~Carolyn-F

Hi Cindy! The gingham lentil is just beautiful, I’ve made that kind of cane some time ago, the pattern is called a Vichy cane on the French blogs. I have never thought of using it on a lentil though. ~Squash

I forgot about this cute cane. This gingham is so cute! ~Phaedrakat

These gingham beads are absolutely beautiful! Where can I learn to make them? Caning looks like it’s difficult to me! I’m looking forward to learning the technique! ~Marsha-N

Well… coming up tomorrow, on Friday December 31st, 2010 I’m going to teach you all how to make this easy polymer clay pattern in the Vol-031-4 Gingham Cane Tutorial Video, at the Polymer Clay Library.

Please Note: A general prerequisite for all of my weekly 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 or Teardrop 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.

Supplies & Tools: Video-031-4 Gingham Cane:

  • Well conditioned and softened polymer clay in White and the color of your choice. For my project I used one section White Premo and 1 section Turquoise Premo Sculpey Clay.
  • Pasta Machine for conditioning clay (optional).
  • Clay Extruder. Preferably the Makin’s Professional Ultimate Clay Extruder (green metal one with the screw in plunger).
  • If you do not have an extruder, this gingham cane can be made by cutting your clay into strips manually… it’ll just take you a bit longer to get the job done.
  • Square Extruder Die.
  • Clay Blade.

The full version of the Vid-031-4 Gingham Cane video will be posted in the Polymer Clay Members Library on Friday December 31st, 2010. But if you would like to see a sneak peek intro clip right now, scroll down the page a bit to the video player below.


Cindy Lietz SignaturePolymer Clay Tutor


Click Video Play Button

Here’s That “Link Below” Referred To at End of the Video
>> Polymer Clay Tutorials <<

The full version of the “Gingham Cane” preview video shown above, is now available for purchase at the Polymer Clay Library in the Volume-031 Back Issue Package.

Customer Feedback About Membership Value:

Cindy your videos are worth MORE than every penny a membership costs.  Especially to me.  I live in a very rural area and your tutes make me feel as if I am visiting your studio without leaving my own home. Well done, and thanks. ~Sue-W

I see says the blind man….thanks, one of my issues was getting the translucent thin enough, thanks for showing this. I have some very ornate cigar bands, and this is perfect for showing detail and encasing in poly clay. Thanks again Cindy, the price of the membership is saved in the mistakes I will no longer make! ~Rob-K

I feel sorry for the people who don’t subscribe to your website, they are really missing out. ~Bonnie-K

The following topics are included in this week’s Polymer Clay Tutor Library, Gingham Cane video tutorial:

  • See examples of several different colored Gingham Canes plus examples of beads made with them.
  • Discussion of the tools and materials needed to create this fun and simple polymer clay cane.
  • Learn about how simple it really is to build this classic cane pattern.
  • Plus, with some creativity and ingenuity there are many ways to come up with unique versions of your own!

The full version of the “Gingham Cane” preview video shown above, is now available for purchase at the Polymer Clay Library in the Volume-031 Back Issue Package.


  1. pollyanna, 30 December, 2010

    Oh my goodness……this should be fun!

  2. sarahwww, 30 December, 2010

    Oooohhhh, love me some Gingham!!This will be great!!

  3. Koolbraider, 30 December, 2010

    This will make the coolest buttons. (And beads and pendants and…)

  4. Silverleaf, 30 December, 2010

    Cute! Although this is one of those things that totally isn’t my style, I know that I’ll learn things from the video that I can apply to other projects, like how to use a square cane on a round bead.

  5. fran, 30 December, 2010

    I love this look !

  6. Elizabeth S., 30 December, 2010

    Ok, I’m inspired again. LOVE THIS!!!

  7. Laura Z, 30 December, 2010

    These are so cute!! They will make great buttons or cute earrings or bracelet for little girls. Not to mention all the ladies that are into the cute country look. There are a bunch that I work with that would love these. Can’t wait to learn another technique. That lentil bead is modern country, LOL!!

  8. Carrie N., 30 December, 2010

    Those buttons are adorable!
    BTW, thanks to Cindy and Brenda M. for your responses to my question on the wire rings. My 3rd one came out pretty good, and I bought a bunch of wire yesterday so I’ll be getting a lot of practice in!

  9. Phaedrakat, 31 December, 2010

    Gingham is so cute! Love the way it looks swirled in a lentil, too. I’m also happy to see gingham cane on your beautiful hearts (with color interiors.) With Valentine’s Day not that far off, it’s good to be reminded of your cool heart bead tutorial, too.

  10. Becky C., 31 December, 2010

    Thanks, Cindy, for another brilliant tut! I can see these easily as buttons; wouldn’t black and white be cute on a black shirt? Hmmm….I have one of those, too, just begging to be updated! Would make great spring/summer earrings and necklaces, bracelets, too. Can’t wait to try!

  11. sarahwww, 31 December, 2010

    So cute and as Becky said, so “Springy.” Can’t wait to get to the clay table!

  12. Paula Maburn, 31 December, 2010

    Thanks Cindy,

    I love your work and appreciate all that you do for the polymer clay community.

    I do have a request if possible. Could you show how to use the Makin’s Ultimate Clay Extruder. There are no books and very few videos on the subject. It would be great.

    Best wishes for a happy, healthy and prosperous new year

    Paula Maburn

  13. Laura Z, 31 December, 2010

    @Paula Maburn: Hi Paula, Cindy did a tut on the Makin’s Extruder already. If you go to the back issues in Volume 7 you’ll find that tut. Hope this helps.

  14. Kathy Bloom, 31 December, 2010

    Could you please tell me which tute it was that showed how to twist the clay to look like the one in this video?
    Thanks and Happy New Year

  15. Lisa Whitham, 31 December, 2010

    @Kathy Bloom: They are called Swirly Lentils. It’s Volume 001 Back Issue Package… On this page: Lentil Bead Tutorial Videos. Hope this helps Kathy!!

    Happy Claying,
    ~Lisa :)

  16. Lisa Whitham, 31 December, 2010

    @Kathy Bloom: Dang it…! I thought spelling out the dot in dot com would avoid moderation… They are called Swirly Lentils… and they are addictive. The secrets to them? Watch Cindy’s videos and practice, practice, practice… Have fun making them!!

    Happy Claying,
    ~Lisa :)

  17. Cindy Lietz, 31 December, 2010

    Thanks everyone! I am looking forward to seeing how you guys use this simple cane. Sounds like you’re already coming up with some twists of your own.

    @Laura Z: Thanks Laura for answering Paula’s question. I really appreciate the help!! It is getting harder for me to respond as quickly as I would like, so having members like you popping in with a quick answer makes a huge difference in making sure that everyone is getting timely responses. Thank you!

    @Kathy Bloom: As Lisa said, the bead with the twist in it is called a Lentil Bead. And it really is a fun and addictive technique to learn how to do with polymer clay. In fact, it is such a fundamental polymer clay bead making technique which everyone should know how to do, that it was the theme of the very first volume at the Polymer Clay Library.

    There are actually 4 Vol-001 tutorial videos dedicated to making lentil beads, including:

    >> How to Roll the Lentil Bead
    >> How to Make Lentils from Scrap Clay
    >> How to Pierce Holes in your Lentil Beads, and
    >> Special Tricks for Adding Cane Slices to Lentils

    I have linked my name to the back issue if you are interested in learning more.

  18. Lisa Whitham, 31 December, 2010

    Looks like fun…!! It’s going to be hard to choose what color(s) to make it in! :)

    Cindy, I hope you, Doug, and the kids have a wonderfully Happy New Year!! You guys are the best..!! xoxo

    Also I’d like to wish ALL of our little clay community a Heartfelt Happy, Healthy, Clay-filled New Year!! You guys rock..!! xoxo

    (((((HUGS for Everyone!)))))
    Peace, Love, & Clay Forever,
    ~Lisa :) xoxoxoxo

  19. Isabel, 31 December, 2010

    Love this tutorial….easy and a cute effect. My little grand-daughter has been joining me in my workshop and is fascinated by what she can do with pc. She covered a glass ball and made a Christmas ornament for her Dad and made heart charms for her Mum and herself. I’m sure she’ll love the gingham canes.
    Thanks again!

  20. Isabel, 31 December, 2010

    p.s. still haven’t figured out how to post my photo….i’ll make that one of my new year’s resolutuions! All the best for 2011 to everyone!

  21. Laura Z, 31 December, 2010

    Wow, again you make it soooo easy!! I really like the gingham lentil bead that you did, it’s so cool!! Thanks again, Cindy, for all you do!!

    Happy New Year Everyone!!!

  22. Brenda, 31 December, 2010

    Great tutorial as always!

    Cindy & Doug,

    It has been one wonderful year here with you. I am really looking forward to the new year of claying. May your family be blessed this upcoming year. ;)

    To the rest of you: HAPPY NEW YEAR! Keep safe, don’t drink & drive , but have fun. *Hugs*

  23. Kathy Bloom, 31 December, 2010

    Thank You Everyone!!!

  24. pollyanna, 31 December, 2010

    I’m thinking pink and white for my gd. She would love them as earrings!
    Happy New Year everyone!!!!

  25. Sandra, 01 January, 2011

    Happy new year from down under in NZ!! I am sitting here, quite sunburnt and quite sore (won’t forget the sunblock again!) and enjoying the neat tutorial on gingham canes. Have ordered a makins clay gun, and when arrives will have fun with it.
    Been doing a bit of internet surfing and came across a product called Pardo jewellery clay, has anyone used this stuff before and if so, what did you think of it? There are also some neat paints and creme type paints made by the same people called Viva Decor Pardo Clay embellishing, has anyone used these?
    Thanks, and have a great day!

  26. Phaedrakat, 02 January, 2011

    @Sandra: I haven’t found the Pardo clay yet, although it sounds beautiful. I’ve heard that it’s quite soft, but that’s the extent of info members have shared here (at least according to my search.) I’m hoping to “bump” this up the recent comments list so someone who’s tried Pardo will give us their thoughts on it! Same goes for the paints…I’d love to hear if they are as nice as the reviews I’ve read about them say they are! Viva Decor’s metallic paints sound really yummy (dry fast, then crackle when put thru pasta machine.)

    Happy New Year, everyone! And thanks so much, Cindy: for everything you’ve done all year — you’re amazing! And of course, thanks for the latest cool video…I can’t wait to bust out my extruder and make some gingham… :D

  27. geetha, 01 January, 2011

    A VERY HAPPY NEW YEAR to my great tutor cindy & To All my friends here.

  28. Isabel, 02 January, 2011

    i’ve already made purple, blue, red and black gingham…..i LOVE them!

  29. Linda K., 02 January, 2011

    Another great video, Cindy & Doug. I have 3 little grand-nieces and this technique will be great for buttons for their little pink (they love pink) outfits.

    It should be very easy to adapt this technique to reproduce plaids as well.

  30. Patt W, 02 January, 2011

    On the serious side -Cindy, you have taught me to really LOOK at the technique you are teaching. It has helped me figure out HOW things are made. I thank you for that -but that’s not all. The tutes drive me outside my comfort zone. Isn’t that great ? I am much more serious about my art -but no about myself. I am growing old, but not growing UP. LOL

  31. Cindy Lietz, 04 January, 2011

    @pattw: It is nice to see that you are stepping out of your comfort zone and growing from it. Something that is good for all of us! Happy New Year to you. I have big plans for this year that should push you even further if you choose to be pushed. :-)

  32. Jan G, 02 January, 2011

    Another Happy New Year to everyone from hot summery New Zealand! Sandra, it’s nice to know there’s another Kiwi in the group. Where are you? I’m in Dunedin. I hope everyone enjoys the learning we are sure to get from Cindy this year.
    Jan B

  33. Sandra J, 03 January, 2011

    Hi Jan, nice to hear from you, I am in Katikati, just north of Tauranga and it is another warm day here in the sunny Bay of Plenty!
    I love Cindy’s tute’s i look forward to every friday and saturday (time zone’s a bit of a pain) with great expectation and have not been disappointed yet!

  34. Pam, 03 January, 2011

    Wow, that was so easy! I was really intrigued with your black ball headpin and bead caps, that were on the big gingham lentil bead, did you spray paint them? Hoping everyones holiday was safe and fun!!!

  35. Cindy Lietz, 04 January, 2011

    Thank you everyone for your comments and also for helping to answer each others’ questions! Right now both Doug and I have been extremely busy moving everyone over to the new shopping cart. It is now in place for being able to manage the subscription payments, and is working great. What this means is that all paid members will be receiving an email just before your next renewal payment is due. That email will provide you with special instructions on how to make the easy switch over to the new payment system. What would be REALLY helpful is if you all could be sure to watch for that email and also to follow through with the simple instructions right away. This way we don’t have to send out multiple reminders which will just add to the workload. The whole transition process is already quite an undertaking, so anything you guys can do to help speed things up, is greatly appreciated!

    @ Sandra: I haven’t tried Pardo yet, but it is on my list of things to do. If anyone else has already worked with it and would like to share, that would be nice.

    @Pam: I didn’t spray paint the findings but did paint them with a special paint meant for using on metals. I had drilled the hole funny on the lentil bead and wanted to disguise it with a bead cap. But the only thin, bend-able caps I had were brass and I didn’t like how they looked, so painted them Black just for fun. I really like the contemporary look they gave the bead. Will do that again sometime… even if I haven’t screwed up the drilling! LOL

  36. Loretta Carstensen, 05 January, 2011

    Well, I jumped right in and got started on the gingham canes. Love the retro feel of gingham. I posted them on Facebook, or you can see what I put together on my blog. I can’t wait to make something with them. I like the idea of the black and white buttons on a black shirt that someone mentioned. Thanks, Cindy, for a fun tute.

  37. Elizabeth S., 05 January, 2011

    @Loretta Carstensen: I took a peek—-love them! Please post what you do with them.

  38. Cris W, 06 January, 2011

    This is not on the subject of gingham cane-exactly, but can someone tell me why my 20ga copper wire will not ball up when I attempt to make headpins.

    I’m using a mini torch from Harbor Freight and I just ordered a Little Torch in hopes it will accomplish the task. Thanks for your help.

  39. Phaedrakat, 10 January, 2011

    @Cris W: Hi Cris, Kathy’s right…but I just wanted to point out some additional info, if you’re interested. This has been discussed in several places here at the blog. If you type something like “headpins, ball” (or similar) in the search box you’ll find the discussions. In one of the posts, Cindy features 6 guest videos on “How to Make Headpins“, which is helpful. Plus, there are lots of tips and tricks in the comments below the article & videos… Hope that helps!

  40. Cris W, 10 January, 2011

    @Phaedrakat: Thanks a bunch. I’ll look those up.

  41. Kathy Bloom, 06 January, 2011

    Cris W,
    Copper is much harder to ballup than silver. Try fluxing your wire before you heat it. 21 or 22 gauge wire might work easier than 20. Make sure your torch is fully loaded and as hot as it can be.

  42. Cris W, 10 January, 2011

    @Kathy Bloom: Thanks. I now have a Little Torch that uses Mapp gas and Ox, so hopefully that will do the trick.

  43. Kathy Bloom, 11 January, 2011

    Great! Hope it works for you.

  44. Natalie H, 27 February, 2011

    Cindy I just watch making the gingham cane .. Do I cut them into thin slices to make milifiore beads so I don’t waste the cane? or do I make the entire bead out of the cane?

  45. Cindy Lietz, 01 March, 2011

    @Natalie H: You cut thin slices of your canes Natalie and add them to other clay. Goes much further that way!

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