Polymer Clay Skinner Blend Instructions

Stepped Graduated Color BlendVideo #356: Combining triangles geometrically so that your colors blend into smooth gradients.

Topics Covered In This Video:

  • How to make a Skinner Blend – A polymer clay color blend that gradually shifts from one color to another.
  • You can make a 2 color Skinner Blend from white to black for example. Or you can have a multi-color blend that more like a rainbow.
  • In a previous video I demonstrated the old school way of making a Stepped Graduated Color Blend, where you mix individual colors by hand in stepped proportions from one pure color to another pure color, with multiple hand mixed shades in between.
  • A few years ago (20yrs? or so), a polymer clay artist by the name of Judith Skinner, developed a technique that made blending from one color to another, much faster and simpler.
  • In this video I show you how to make a two color Skinner Blend. You will see the biggest effect if you use two colors of polymer clay that have high contract.
  • I then demonstrate how to make an Off-Set Skinner Blend.
  • In a future video I will show you how I developed an even faster way to make color blends… the Lietz Teardrop Method.

Question of the Day:

Have you ever made one of these Skinner Blends? And do you have an challenges making them?

By the way, if you have a polymer clay question or challenge you’d like me to address in an upcoming video vlog, do post it in the comments below. I’d love to help you find quicker and easier ways to bring up the professionalism in your polymer clay art.

Oh and don’t forget to give these videos a Thumbs Up click at YouTube if you are enjoying them. The more Likes a video gets, the higher it rises in the searches. And that means even more people will be able to join in on this polymer clay journey of a lifetime.

Also, by subscribing to our YouTube Channel directly, you will receive notifications as soon as new videos are uploaded. To subscribe, click here… How To Make A Polymer Clay Skinner Blend. The Subscribe Button is right near the top of that YouTube page.

Looking forward to hearing from you!

Cindy Lietz SignaturePolymer Clay Tutor
  1. Freda K, 07 November, 2013

    I watched the Skinner blend being made many times years ago on the Carol Duvall show but never realized why they offset the cut. Good thing I watched something I thought I already knew.

  2. Sandra J, 07 November, 2013

    Used it a lot especially in a kalidascope tecnique by Sarah shriver. My only problem was the clay getting too wide but u have already addressed that. I intend to make the clay wedges to stop that happening. I much prefer the “Lietz” blend as it doesn’t have to be too precise.

  3. Anna Sabina, 07 November, 2013

    I make all my skinner blends offset because I like having the original colors in the blends. I cut my triangles evenly and then lay them on the tile offset and cut the points off.

  4. Doreen G, 08 November, 2013

    Yes I have made “one” so far. It did not turn out as neat or blended as yours. I will give it another try. This time I will hold the sides in, fold it straighter and be prepared to run it through the pasta machine many times. Thanks for the help. You make it look easy.

  5. Andrea Paradiso, 08 November, 2013

    I use Skinner Blend ever since I started with polymer clay. When I first read about it, I learned that the offset was the original way Skinner created it and the reason why. I always use the offset method and make Skinner plugs and all sorts of things with them. I have no difficulty using this method at all and love to experiment with it all the time. It always comes out great.

  6. Andrea Paradiso, 08 November, 2013

    Hi, Cindy and Doug!

    Don’t know if I’m doing something wrong but you have a link in the newsletter to the free Skinner Blend Video #356 and when I click on it I end up on your YouTube Channel Video. I tried twice. Thought I’d let you know in case there is confusion.

  7. Polymer Clay Tutor Doug Lietz, 08 November, 2013

    You are not doing anything wrong Andrea… it was I that put the wrong link in the original newsletter email… oops!

    Thank you for the pointing this out and… apologies for any confusion it has caused.

    I will broadcast an addendum email shortly, with the correct link to help minimize confusion for others.


    Now… since we ended up having to send out two emails today… I figured we may as well provide some advance notice about the next video post scheduled for Monday (Nov 11).

    Many of you will be at home on Nov 11, since it is a national holiday in many countries, honoring those who have served in the armed forces.

    Up here in Canada, we call it Remembrance Day. Many of us wear red poppy pins to show respect.

    If on Monday (because of the national holiday) you are spending some of your day at home (and in your studio)… then this special announcement may be of interest…

    Due to a steady stream of requests over the last few years, we have finally decided to post a public version of Cindy’s Teardrop Blend Video for everyone’s benefit.

    Based on feedback received, this Teardrop Technique has had a very positive impact on the way many clayers are now doing their color gradients.

    Lietz Teardrop Blend

    “Cindy, your Teardrop technique has brought a wonderful and sudden change in my way of working with color blends.” ~Debbie-G
    Super quick and easy color blending technique — No Geometry Required :-)

    So… coming up on Monday (Nov 11, 2013), be sure to come back here to the PolymerClayTutor blog… where the latest post will include a step by step video on how to do the quickest (& easiest) color blend ever.

    In the mean time, here is a link to where 100’s of comments have already been posted about the Teardrop Blend Technique, when it was first published way back on Feb 17, 2009.

  8. connie tyler, 08 November, 2013

    Hi Cindy, I think I will stick with the teardrop blend that you showed us a long time ago. It’s been working beautifully for me.

  9. Ruth Berger, 08 November, 2013

    thanks loved it,, now i have it down pat!!!!

  10. Erin K, 10 November, 2013

    You tutorials are awesome for a complete newbie like me. :)

  11. Faith M, 10 November, 2013

    Your work table looks fabulous. Would love to just see all the unique tools you use I love all of your tutorials!

  12. Carolyn Fiene, 11 November, 2013

    I have done the complex Skinner Blend. As I recall each try, after laying out the triangles, the blend just became too wide.I like your way of stacking and even the offset is good. I would have liked to see you do the rainbow Skinner. When the Lietz blend came along, I once again started making rainbow blends. As always, cf

  13. Theresa Tatum, 24 January, 2014

    When I did the teardrop blend using three colors how do I keep from making my blend so wide.

  14. Theresa Tatum, 24 January, 2014

    How do I keep a skinner blend from becoming too wide using multiple colors

  15. Cindy Lietz, 24 January, 2014

    Hi Theresa, you’ll find your answer in this post and video called…
    Is your Skinner Blend or Teardrop Blend Too Wide?

  16. Carol Strang, 28 February, 2020

    Where did you purchase your roller?

    Does it have a certain name?

    Thank you

  17. Cindy Lietz, 02 March, 2020

    Hi Carol, my roller is called a pasta machine. There are many brands ranging in quality. Here is a link to a good one one… https://amzn.to/2wlbDLO (my Amazon affiliate link)

  18. Chris Behne, 17 October, 2022

    Can you tell me if the skinner blend technique can be used to form a gradient between granite clay and a solid color? Thank you!

  19. Cindy Lietz, 18 October, 2022

    Hi Chris, you can essentially make a blend from any clay to any clay… the thing about granite clay is that it has a lot of translucent in it, so the blend may not be as obvious as you are expecting. Do a test blend of a small amount of clay (this is easiest using the teardrop blend method). You should be able to see what I mean once you do that. One thing you can do is add a small amount of an opaque clay (white, gray or black, etc. depending on the color of granite you’re using) into your granite clay and the blend will show up better. Have fun experimenting!

Copyright © Polymer Clay Tutor Bead and Jewelry Making Tutorials