Polymer Clay Golf Stroke Counters and Glowing Buttons [Spotlight]

Polymer Clay Projects “It’s 5 in the morning here and I’m looking for my Glow in the Dark clay. LOL.” ~Bonnie-K

These “Spot” features are for you guys to display your accomplishments and share stories of inspiration. The projects are based on techniques learned from articles here at the blog, as well as from tutorials at the Polymer Clay Video Library. My hope is for these “Show and Tell” features to help you guys get to know each other better through your wonderful creations. I am soooo… proud of everyone’s work!

Inlaid Shells and Faux Bone


Our guild just did a button exchange. We had to make 60 polymer clay buttons and these are some of the ones I made. I used inks and paint to give some of them an antique look. And the others are glow in the dark.

Love the idea about the inks to make the skinner blend with Glow In the Dark Clay. Once again, you out did yourself and it’s 5 in the morning here and I’m looking for my Glow in the Dark clay. LOL Thank you, I love Friday because of you.

By the way, I also had a special request to make 5 golf stroke counters and I decided to use the beads that I made when you did the tut about the extruder flower cane. Thanks for this too.


If you are interested in sharing pictures of your polymer clay projects with the community, please follow these 2 simple steps:

1) Email several of your photos to me as attachments. My email address is shown in the “From” line of the weekly Polymer Clay Newsletter that gets sent out each and every Friday morning.

2) Include a description and/or story about your pieces, being sure to reference the tutorial(s) or blog article(s) that provided at least some level of inspiration for your work.

Don’t be shy. Everyone is VERY friendly here.

In the comment section below, please do compliment each other; Offer encouragement; Ask questions about the techniques used; And in general… be social. This is your community! It’s up to you to make it a fun and supportive place to hang out. All of you are amazing and it’s wonderful to have everyone here!

I do try not to push my art (whether wire or clay) into what I think, but rather let it decide. ~Carolyn-F

** Did You Know… Members with current subscriptions to the weekly tutorial videos are always entitled to a 10% discount when purchasing 6 or more back issue packages in a single transaction. If you are interested, let me know which back issues you would like and I will send further instructions on how to complete your order.

Cindy Lietz SignaturePolymer Clay Tutor

  1. Peggy Barnes, 24 March, 2010

    Oooooooooooooooh button exchange how awesome does that sound. Wonder if there is anyway we could do something like that. Or is there way too many of us far and in between????? One thing I do know is your buttons are so unique. I love the second set in the group setting, is that a faux stone? What an imagination to come up with so many beautiful buttons. I’m not sure what you do with the golf stroke counters but I would love to have that one. Bonnie congratulations on a terrific spotlight. Hats off to Bonnie – You go girl!!!
    Many Uuuuuuuuuuugggggggggggggs to all, Peggy

  2. Ritzs, 24 March, 2010

    Bonnie I love your buttons, they are better than anything we could buy in the shops and just to no you made them yourself is such a boost to the ego, they are lovely well done

  3. Bonnie K, 24 March, 2010

    Peggy and Cindy thanks for the spotlight and all the wonderful words. Not sure which buttons you mean but one set I made with translucent, colored clay and I burned them so I added alcohol ink and antiqued them with burnt umber clay.

    One set is made with glow in the dark clay and some I did with pearl clay.
    The golf stroke counter has 10 beads on it and every time you hit the ball you pull a bead down. It helps people who can’t remember how many times they hit the ball. I’ve sold 60 of them so far and I need to make more but everyone loved the black and white one I made from Cindy’s flower extruder cane. They are also good if you go walking and want to keep count of how many times you go around the block or around the walking path.

  4. Elizabeth S., 24 March, 2010

    Wow Bonnie,

    One would have to pay a fortune for buttons this beautiful, and let’s face it, it would be difficult to find such unique pieces in any store. I love all of them and can’t pick a favorite.

    Like Peggy, I am not sure how one would use a golf stroke counter, but I love the beads you incorporated into it. May I ask what colors you combined for the cane? Am I seeing black, silver and white?

  5. Bonnie, 24 March, 2010

    It was just black and white and a little pearl in the white. Thanks for the comments on the buttons.

    I was worried that putting black and white in the extruder would make them all gray but it didn’t. When the cane comes out of the extruder some of it didn’t stay wrapped so I used the little inside pieces as well but they are really small. I put them on white beads and let them stand up on the bead and not roll them in to give a layered effect.

    I am doing more right now using Studio by Sculpey clay but can’t get it conditioned enough so the first attempt came out with just the outside which I am using to make beads. The second time I put a little Premo pearl in each color and that worked great. I’ll post them on my blog when I get them done.

  6. Lupe Meter, 24 March, 2010

    @Bonnie: Love your gold counters and buttons Bonnie!

  7. Elizabeth S., 24 March, 2010

    Thanks for the info, Bonnie. I LOVE these and may have to try some myself, thanks to your generosity in sharing how to do them. I will definitely keep checking your blog. Visiting there is becoming almost as regular for me as this site. Your stuff is so cool!!

  8. carolyn, 24 March, 2010

    Bonnie – Your work is absolutely outstanding. Your expertise sure shows up in this spot. You take Cindy’s tutorials to a higher level. Such creativity and superb workmanship. I’ll be using some of your ideas on the buttons that I make for my granddaughters’ bracelets. Thanks for allowing us to see these wonderful creations!

  9. Silverleaf, 24 March, 2010

    Cool, I love the black and white beads! Isn’t the extruder flower can fun?? ;)

  10. Lisa Whitham, 24 March, 2010

    @Bonnie – Fantastic work! I love your buttons!! How clever to make golf counters, I peeked at your blog and they’re all beautiful..!!! I’ll be peeking at your blog more often, I love your stuff…!

    ~Lisa :)

  11. Bonnie, 24 March, 2010

    Thanks everyone for your wonderful comments and support, couldn’t do this without you and your ideas and Cindy and all the great things she does. It’s a real energy shot.

    Last Saturday at out clay guild meeting Lupe brought her stash in that she won from Cindy, I was jealous but I got over it. Everything was beautiful. Lupe did a demo at the guild and she was awesome. She brought some pieces to show and everyone was ooooing and ahhhhhhhing. Please check her website and see what she did. She said was nervous but she didn’t act like it. There are quite a few Cindy followers that belong to our clay guild and we talk about her all the time.

    Thanks again for all the nice comments, I really appreciate it.

  12. Phaedrakat, 24 March, 2010

    @Bonnie: Lovely buttons & golf counters, Bonnie! I, too, seem to be luvin’ the buttons 2nd from the top. The textured ones without the gold clay do look like some kind of faux stone. I’m surprised that’s the GITD, did you add ink, also? Or maybe you antiqued them? Anyway, they’re all really beautiful. I also love your stroke counters — how clever to use them for counting your laps when walking. Sounds like you’re getting lots of sales!

    I’m so envious that you have people to clay with, both close friends and the Guild. How fun to meet up with people from this site, too. Plus, you got to see “The Beads!” Did Lupe have to guard them carefully? LOL Thanks for sharing your gorgeous work, Bonnie, both here & at your blog!

  13. DJ, 24 March, 2010

    Very cool shapes and patterns on your extruder cane beads! Your buttons are all lovely Bonnie…I really like the gold ones 2nd from the top.

  14. Bonnie, 24 March, 2010

    Thanks DJ, the ones that are second from the top are all glow in the dark. I made glow in the dark butterflies and took some gold clay and ran it through the pasta machine with a texture sheet and then put the butterfly on it and put Saran wrap on them and then cut them out with a circle cutter. The other ones I just ran the glow in the dark through the pasta machine with a different texture sheet and laid it on the gold and cut them out. It was funny, when I turned the lights off in my studio it reminded me of when I was a kid and put all the glow in dark stars on the ceiling. I found an old button that was the same size as the button I was making so I put it on top and poked the hole there so the holes would be in the right place.

    Toooooooo much information?????????????

  15. carolyn, 24 March, 2010

    @Bonnie: Great info – definitely NOT too much! Any tips or tricks that you share with us are always most welcome. I’m jealous that there are so many clayers around you. My nearest group is about 75 miles away … much too far. But then I have to drive over 30 miles just to do my monthly shopping. Lake Tahoe is a wonderful place to live, but most everything around here is geared for tourists rather than permanent residents. I’m off the topic … please continue to share your ways of doing polymer clay. We love it!

  16. Jill, 24 March, 2010

    These are all gorgeous. The textures and colors are something I will try to emulate.

  17. Mary, 24 March, 2010

    Hi Guys, just wanted to share this: a way of wrapping a rose cane with one sheet of water-soluble clay (Play-Doh) before packing with any-old-colour polyclay. Cane is reduced, packing removed, w/s clay removed with water and a brush, leaving rose design alone. Pretty cool; at least I’d never seen it before and it looked good, but then I’m just learning. Artists are Idit Zoota and Yonat Dascalu, on YouTube under Polymer Clay Cane No Background. Interesting? XX Mary

  18. Phaedrakat, 24 March, 2010

    @Mary: Definitely interesting, Mary! I have seen this before, but haven’t tried it yet. I think it’s awesome! To not have to have trans or background clay on every flower cane is wonderful, especially with millefiore. I think it can be a bit messy getting the play-doh off, but I think it would be worth it on certain canes. You also have to be careful slicing the cane afterwards, since it’s easy to smoosh your cane without background clay. I’ve seen tips where you take a log of scrap clay, shape it into a triangle or something that fits between the petals of your cane. Then you rest your cane on it to take your slices. I actually bought some Play-doh for this, just haven’t felt well enough to get to all my projects. Thanks for reminding me, Mary!

  19. Maria, 25 March, 2010

    Beautiful work Bonnie!
    I have to say I tried the play-doh technique once and don’t think I did it right. I can’t seem to wash the doh off my clay – so the canes are just sitting there- a squishy mess for now, until I get the inclination to try working on them again…

  20. Bonnie, 25 March, 2010

    Thank Maria, someone was telling me that they make flower canes but they only make one petal and cut the petals one at a time and place them on your work.

  21. Linda K., 25 March, 2010

    @Bonnie: Those buttons look good enough to eat! Seriously, some of them look like candy. You do beautiful work!

    I love these golf-stroke counters. Very clever and very pretty. I started golfing last year, so I’m going to make one of these for myself…but I’ll need at least 15 beads on mine, LOL.

  22. Bonnie, 25 March, 2010

    Thanks Linda, some of my buttons did look like Oreos when they came out of the oven so I antiqued them with white paint and didn’t like that so I covered the white paint with blue alcohol ink and then antiqued that with burnt umber. These buttons were a real test of my patience.

    You will love the golf stroke counter. Wish my sister would have used one today when we were golfing. She has selective memory. I’ve sold a lot of them so you should make some and hang them on your bag and sell them. By the way, you can’t take more than 10 strokes. That’s my rules. LOl

  23. Bonnie, 25 March, 2010

    Linda, do you teach one stroke painting? Donna Dewberry was just here and I didn’t take her class but my friends did. They made vegetables. They thought they were going to do flowers but said they loved Donna.

  24. Linda K., 02 April, 2010

    @Bonnie: Thanks for giving me permission to use your idea to make golf-stroke counters and sell them. That’s a great idea about hanging them on my golf bag. I play in a Ladies League and I’m sure I could make some sales there.

    Yes, I teach One-Stroke painting. When I went for my certification, Donna Dewberry taught the first day. She is one of the loveliest people I’ve ever met!

  25. Bonnie, 02 April, 2010

    @Linda K.: Linda, I just ordered some swivel lobster claw clasps from Tantalizing Stitches at Artfire and she is also at bagnsupplies.com. They are the best I’ve seen for golf stroke counters. Let me know if you need anything else.

  26. carolyn, 02 April, 2010

    @Bonnie: Bonnie, Though I don’t golf, one of the world class courses is here at Lake Tahoe – Edgewood. I would bet that I could get the gift shop to carry these – if you wouldn’t mind. I have one question: Is it just friction that keeps the beads in place until they are moved when someone takes a stroke? I understand the principle, but I’m not quite sure I understand how they work. AND do you think guys would be interested, if they were done with manly beads?

  27. Bonnie, 02 April, 2010

    @carolyn: Men never use golf stroke counters no matter how bad they are. I’ve been golfing for 30 years and I’ve golfed with guys with selective memory. They usually count how many clubs they’ve used. I bet you could sell them at the golf course for the women though. I’ve had a couple men buy them for their wives.

    I use Amy Craft cord doubled and put the beads on them. They should stay up until you pull them down. I usually make the hole in the bead 1/8th inch and that fits the cord, you have to be careful of the premade beads though, sometimes the hole is bigger and the bead slides down. Let me know how you do. I did post some new ones on my blog a few days ago. If you have any other questions let me know, will be more than glad to help.

  28. carolyn, 02 April, 2010

    @Bonnie: Thanks so much, Bonnie. I am always looking for ways to supplement my income. Since Don died things got pretty tight and I am still trying to figure out how to make it on the reduced income. I must say though that God has blessed me. So far the ends have always met! It would be nice to have some ‘clay’ money though.

  29. Linda K., 02 April, 2010

    @Bonnie: Thanks so much for those details. I’m going to try to some this week, if I can get the right sized cord.

  30. Bonnie, 02 April, 2010

    @Linda K.: Linda and Carolyn, the cord I use is Called Amy’s Craft Cord and I got it at Hobby Lobby. It’s 2mm and comes in different colors. On the ends I glue metal ribbon ends and string beads on head pins and attach them. I’ll put some more that I did on my blog tonight so that you can see if. If you click on the pictures it will enlarge so you get a close up.

    I’m sure Joann’s and/or Michael’s have that cord. It was in the macrame cord section at Hobby Lobby. Give me some time and then click on my name by this link and it will take you to my blog.

  31. carolyn, 02 April, 2010

    @Bonnie: I found some on line – $1.59 for 25 yds. at macramesuperstore.com. Bonnie, is this a decent price?

  32. Bonnie, 02 April, 2010

    @carolyn: That’s a great price. I got it at Hobby Lobby for $1.99. I tried ordering from that place the other night but I kept getting a screen saying there was a problem with their website so I got out of it as fast as I could. I am really afraid of computer problems when I get that message. I’ll have pictures on my blog for you and Linda in a couple minutes.

  33. Linda K., 02 April, 2010

    @ Bonnie: Don’t make yourself crazy getting this on your blog tonight. I can wait until tomorrow, LOL. It’s getting late here on the east coast, so I’m off to bed.

    @ Carolyn: Thanks for asking the right questions and for finding that cord online. We only have a Michaels nearby and I’ll check there tomorrow. If they don’t have it, I’ll order from the macramesuperstore.

  34. Bonnie, 02 April, 2010

    @Linda K.: It’s done. I had to put a couple other things on there but it’s done.

  35. Linda K., 03 April, 2010

    @Bonnie: You are the best!!! Thank you for putting all that work into documenting the golf-stroke counter details, both here and on your blog. I’m on my way to Michaels today to get the cord.

  36. Bonnie, 03 April, 2010

    @Linda K.: Linda, send me a picture when you get some done. I would love to see them.

  37. Linda K., 03 April, 2010

    @ Bonnie: I certainly will. The Michaels and JoAnnes in my area don’t sell macrame supplies and there isn’t another craft store within 2 hours. I bought some woven cord that was 3.1 mm, so I’ll have to adjust the bead holes, shouldn’t be too hard. I think the cord is rough enough to supply the friction needed to keep the beads in place.

  38. Bonnie, 03 April, 2010

    @Linda K.: Thanks for the nice comment on my blog. Did you see the note from Carolyn about macramesupercord.com, she ordered some from there. I’ll get the information about the scarves and get it to you. Is your email on your blog? I’m going to add your blog to my list of blogs that I follow.

  39. Phaedrakat, 06 July, 2010

    @Linda K., Bonnie, Carolyn: Walmart had some cord that looks very similar to the Amy’s Craft cord Bonnie showed on her blog. I can’t remember the exact price, but it was very reasonable. You might want to check it out next time you go to Walmart(it was in the now pared-down fabric/ribbon section.) :D

  40. Linda K., 07 July, 2010

    @Phaedrakat: Thanks, Kat! I’ll see if I can find it in my local Wal-Mart store. I’ve checked Michaels here in VT as well as a local fiber (yarn) store; also checked AC Moore in NH. It seems that none of them have any macrame supplies anymore.

    Speaking of golf stuff, last year I kept losing my golf ball markers and couldn’t seem to aquire new ones anywhere. When I went out the first time this year, I had none left. Then I had this “aha” moment. Why not make them out of clay? So I did. I made them in pinks, light purples, and mint greens, that would stand out on the greens. Some of them I made from one color and used a texture sheet on them. For others I mixed the colors and made lentil beads…when I was through rolling, I squished them flat. They were perfect and if I lose them, who cares? Much better than losing quarters all over the golf course, LOL.

  41. Phaedrakat, 08 July, 2010

    @Linda K.: Smart! You could personalize a set of markers for a golfing friend, too; or if you’re selling the stroke counters, make some matching markers to go with them. You never know—it’s hard to resist buying something cute and useful!

  42. Linda K., 14 April, 2010

    @Bonnie: Sorry to take so long to reply. I did see Carolyn’s note about the macrame cord and I’ll keep that in mind. Thanks, Carolyn. I have to travel to my sister’s in MA in another couple of weeks, so I’ll be able to check the AC Moore on the way. I’m pretty sure I’ve seen macrame cord there.

    No rush on the scarves. I have a very full plate right now. If you click on my name it will bring you to my website where you can find my email address. Thanks so much.

  43. Jocelyn, 08 July, 2010

    These golf counters can really target a population and give great cash results for minimal work.

    Check with your local pro shop or course. Many have a golf craft day (or suggest one) where tables are set up inside and folks can purchase your wares. Ask a few different types of crafts people to participate, and if you can show demos, all the better.

    Golf counters simply fly out the door, everyone wants one. Also popular is the woman who brings one deluxe embroidery machine, she stays jammed all day long.

    Cindy’s pocketbook flag or token is another popular item to distinquish all those Walmart golf bags, one from another. Using her ghost cane letter technique you could have a ton of letter beads all lined up ready for name, event, or initials strung together.

    Great fundraiser too. Good luck and happy golfing.

  44. Bonnie Kreger, 08 July, 2010

    @Jocelyn: Looks like my golf stroke counters have made a big hit every where. Let me know how you guys do at selling them.
    My sister sold a bunch for me at her golf league. I have to get busy and make more for our craft fair in November.

  45. Phaedrakat, 08 July, 2010

    @Jocelyn: What token or flag of Cindy’s were you talking about? I didn’t understand that part, or maybe I just haven’t come across that article yet? (I try to read as much of the old stuff as I can, but I know I’ve missed some things…)

    BTW, you have TONS of ideas. Have you been involved in these craft sales before? It sure sounds like it, and it seems like they would be VERY profitable… :D

  46. Linda K., 08 July, 2010

    Kat, the golf markers are about the size of a quarter, so it’s hard to personalize them. Believe me, I’ve thought about it. I’m new to the golf world, but I don’t think people actually buy the golf markers…they’re given away at tournaments and such. I’ve decided to bring a whole bunch of markers to give away at the Ladies League next week. I’m also donating one of the necklaces I’ve made to the Komen Golf for the Cure Day at the Ladies League the following week.

    Kat, this morning I found some gold woven cord, 2.4mm, exactly where you told me to look. Yippee! I had looked there a few weeks ago and they didn’t have the cord then.

    Jocelyn, I’m not a member at any particular golf course, so I’d feel a little funny asking to sell my things there. I think that the places I play can be a little stuffy, so they might be shocked at such an idea, LOL. I’ll just make up a bunch of golf-stroke counters and hang them on my bag. That should spark some interest.

  47. Phaedrakat, 08 July, 2010

    @Linda K.: I’m so happy I had the right stuff! I thought it looked the same—I hope you got it at a good price, too!

    Wow, what an amazing array of ideas here! I understand what you mean about how certain people at these clubs might look down their noses at the “selling crafts” idea. I remember what it’s like from when my husband used to take me golfing (I mean TRY to take me—I hated it because I was AWFUL!)

    I agree with Jocelyn, that a lot of it is in the approach. If you can get to the right person, asking about organizing a craft day could work wonderfully! I totally see Linda’s view, too—it’s quite different if you’re golfing there, than if you’re just popping in to sell something. It’s a matter of facing the people again after asking them to buy your wares! Displaying your items while using them during play is a great idea. Plus, you don’t have to “put yourself out there” and ask someone to buy…

    Yep, the day Bonnie showed her golf stroke counters on her blog, was another huge step in the use of polymer clay beads! It inspired lots of people to make them, use them, and sell them! She shared her idea & inspiration, the same way that Cindy has done here. We should always remember to thank the “inspirer” for that inspiration, whether they were the first person to make the item in question or not! Thanks, Bonnie—you really got people going with your golf stroke counters! I’m glad that your sales are going so well! I’m also happy that others are able to sell them in their own parts of the country. After all, there are lots of golf courses & golfers to go around!

  48. Jocelyn, 08 July, 2010

    Easy to personalize if you just imprint one letter per bead. Golfers, as a rule, seem to be more fond of initials than spelling out their name.

    Could do a nautical theme, making cane sea/water flags for beads too.

    Yep, that crowd is stuffy here too, but, don’t let it stop you. They have discretionary income and we are trying to get some, lol.

    Just leave some out displayed at the restaurant, bar, and pro shop. Take orders, then deliver them all on one day. Setting up tables outside, so long as you take the time to make it a classy set up, has never been refused by the local links here, and we have folks that sew towels, shirts, make clay tees (!!!), etc.

    Very popular idea.

  49. Jocelyn, 08 July, 2010

    Dang, think of what you could make in one afternoon setting up a table at the local nautical hang outs, beaches, events, even downtown on the green. See some folks make a successful living selling art out of their vans or mobile homes.

    A lot of it is the way it’s displayed, priced, themed, and advertised.

    I like the kamikaze approach best, descend upon target, display wares, and get in and out as fast as possible. But always be polite, thankful and professional. Works a treat.

  50. Jocelyn, 08 July, 2010

    Bonnie, great idea. Saw similar stuff loomed or made with seed beads awhile ago too. Seed beaded balls, placed on string or metal make great counters too.

  51. Jocelyn, 09 July, 2010

    Kat, since disabled, worked very hard to establish “kamikaze” craft outlets booths in town. Lucky to have a couple of on the ball girlfriends, who work these venues, give free balloons out to the kiddies, and consign my work for me.

    So long as you take the time to set up a classy display….skirting, tablecloth, multiple viewing heights, etc., no one ever seems to have a problem. In fact, they want you back as many times as you can schedule it.

    Best of luck to all of you exploiting every opportunity to sell your crafts. Or fundraising, if that’s your kick.

    Here’s the link to Carolyn’s purse charm project.

    Cindy and Carolyn refer to them as purse charms. Don’t know why I can’t remember the term, lol. These are extremely popular, especially if you set up a personalized, make your own, charm center. Let folks pick the beads, feathers, and fetishes, and sell their idea for you! Hint, punch holes in a business card and stick them to the charm.

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