Polymer Clay Tutorial | Blue Morpho Butterfly Wing Cane [Video]

Polymer Clay Butterfly Wing CaneVid #162:
“Cindy, you always
make a cane that looks
complicated,  so easy to
put together. My vote is
YES!” ~Linda-B

Don’t you just love the delicate shimmer of butterfly wings! Now you can make your own butterfly jewelry using this pretty Blue Morpho Butterfly Wing Cane.

On Friday, July 2nd at the Polymer Clay Library (Volume-026-1), the member video tutorial will teach you how to make a Butterfly Wing Cane. This project was discussed recently over at this Gallery post: Resin Coated Polymer Clay Wing Pendant

Oh happy days, that is how the pics in this gallery make me feel. Love the combination of blue colors, so bright and cheerful. They go so well with the design. A tut would be wonderful. Happy claying everyone. ~Joyce-M

Love it! I would definitely want the butterfly wing tute. Making butterflies has been on my personal list for a long time. This cane is a big step in that direction! I never thought about making just one wing, but it’s gorgeous! The resin is perfect, protecting a thin little slice, making it look even more like a delicate wing! This necklace is lovely. ~Phaedrakat

I love the blues and would love to learn your butterfly cane. Cindy, you always make a cane that looks complicated, so easy to put together. My vote is YES! ~Linda-B

While I’m not much of a cane person, I really like this one. Bring it on! :D ~Sue-F

I vote yes, yes, yes, I would assume that once the technique is learned you could make the smaller lower half, and then create a sculpture. I can see it, a large rose made from your Rose video, and a complete butterfly made from this in a sculpture reminiciant of Capo di Monte. ~Ken-H

Oh Cindy how beautiful your butterfly wing is. I am so glad I didn’t miss this. You know I have asked for a butterfly cane. Even the word butterfly sounds of beauty to me. Please tell me they don’t really make a piece of jewelry from a real butterfly’s wing. How tragic when you can use pc and get this much beauty from it. Ken you are so great for suggesting how to make a full butterfly from this one wing. Cindy I have to admit a full butterfly is what I was wanting but this wing will more than make up for the other missing parts. I agree with Ken after making some wings give the rest of it a try. You can always go back to the single most gorgeous wing. Thank you Cindy for the creation and Doug for the presentation. YES, PLEASE YES. The sooner the better for me. Love and Uuuuuugggggs. ~Peggy-B

Cindy, Gorgeous butterfly wing pendant and I especially appreciate your mention of it not causing the death of one of these lovely, fragile creatures. (Those real wings encased in resin or something give me the shudders.) But this clay one of yours, all glossed up, is beautiful and I’d love a tutorial on making it. Adore those stunning colours too. ~Mary-U

What a beautiful butterfly wing. It really made me happy. You’ve captured the color and the delicate wing perfectly. I just have to own this pendant. I’m going to buy it. It will be wonderful to wear and treasure – a signature piece from the best polymer clay artist and tutor. And yes, I would love a tutorial. — @Ken – As soon as I saw the photo of the wing, I had exactly the same idea as you – a 3D rose with a 3D butterfly – it would make a beautiful sculpture piece. ~Cheryl-H

Love this one Cindy and I would love to learn how to do a butterfly cane the color on yours is amazing. ~Ritzs

Cindy.. I keep stairing at this wing trying to pick it apart as to how you got those colors to do that.. I am looking forward to this tut. ~Brenda-M

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-026-1 Butterfly Wing Cane:

  • Premo Clay in the following colors: Pearl, Blue Pearl, Green Pearl, Black and White. You will only need about one section of each color to make this cane.
  • Knowledge of how to make a Teardrop Blend or Skinner Blend.
  • Pasta Machine.
  • Clay Blade

The full version of the Vid-026-1 Butterfly Wing Cane video will be posted in the Polymer Clay Members Library on Friday July 2nd, 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 “Butterfly Wing Cane” preview video shown above, is now available for purchase at the Polymer Clay Library in the Vol-026 Back Issue Package.

Customer Feedback About Membership Value:

For me, the best thing about this site has been that it’s provoked me to “start over” and relearn skills and tasks. The tutorials and sites here have been incredibly informative and well worth the cost. Taking the bead making course from scratch, then, forcing myself to use the new methods Cindy demonstrates and not revert back has been a challenge and has dramatically increased my enjoyment of the process as well as seeing a lot of progress in my capabilities. So many times we can get “locked in” to where we are, and forget that lot’s of life is about the achievement of positive change.  My Dad grew tired of my petulance in childhood, and began responding simply, “then, change it.” (or shut UP, lol). It instilled a deep “can do” attitude, that I think Cindy exemplifies perfectly. ~Jocelyn-C

What more can I add? I love being a part of Cindy and Doug’s extended family and to keep up with the daily hijinks of the group. Any time I’ve had troubles, Cindy and all were able to answer my questions right away. I also feel I have grown as an “artist” and my friends and family see a definite change in my work. All this for less than the price of 2-3 lattes? What a deal!!! ~Maria-C

The following topics are included in this week’s Butterfly Wing Cane video tutorial:

  • See examples of several jewelry pieces utilizing the butterfly wing cane including earring, pendants, bracelets and beads.
  • Discussion of the amounts of clay and colors needed to create this stunning cane.
  • Learn how to build the individual canes that are then combined to create the more complex cane design.
  • Find out how easy it is to make several different canes from this one wing cane by cutting and combining to make more complicated designs such as a butterfly in flight cane or a full butterfly cane.

The full version of the “Butterfly Wing Cane” preview video shown above, is now available for purchase at the Polymer Clay Library in the Vol-026 Back Issue Package.

  1. Melinda Herron, 29 June, 2010

    Pretty butterfly! Can’t wait.

  2. carolyn, 29 June, 2010

    Ooooooh! This is going to be a great cane to do when I get my hands back on my clay! I will be heading home early this evening … arriving back in Reno shortly before midnight. I’ll spend the night in Reno and then shuttle home to Lake Tahoe the following morning. Bottom line, I’ll miss my little Philly family – and my new Philly friend, Ken H. – but it will be good to get back home where I like the weather a lot better (not so horribly hot and humid) and where I can once again be creative with clay! Thanks for presenting such a fantastic cane for this week, Cindy! And I do love how you gave one wing a body. Did you all know that the butterfly is a symbol of resurrection? The caterpillar has to die before it can become the beautiful butterfly.

  3. Ken H, 29 June, 2010

    @carolyn: Safe journey Carolyn!

    I love the look of the butterfly cane and can’t wait to attempt it. This will also give me the push to try the sculpted rose again too.

  4. Ken H, 29 June, 2010

    @carolyn: Also this year has been freakishly hot and humid for June, this is August’s weather and I really don’t want to think about what August will be like.

  5. Maria, 29 June, 2010

    @Ken H: How different our climates are! Today is the second day that we are actually feeling some warmth on the northern Calif coast. I’ve been walking around in sweaters and sweatshirts in 52 degree weather and not seeing the sun. Today is just perfect – 62 degrees and sunny. You heard the saying by Mark Twain: “the coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Francisco”. So true!

  6. carolyn, 29 June, 2010

    @Maria: Where in N. CA to you live? I grew up in Berkeley. Don and I almost bought some property in Anchor Bay … years ago before settling at Lake Tahoe, NV. One of our last trips before he passed on to glory was to Fort Bragg. I just love it there … especially the ‘garbage’ beach. It is much more picked over now. I first went there about 50 years ago … I still have a box of ‘stuff’ that I scooped up way back then! In fact a few of my wire wrap pieces have pottery from that beach.

  7. Maria, 30 June, 2010

    @carolyn: I live in the San Francisco Bay Area. As you remember Carolyn, we have microclimates here – essentially every 10 miles out from the ocean, the temp can be almost 10 degrees hotter during the summer. So if the ocean coast area is a cool 55-60 degree F with fog pouring over the Golden Gate Bridge, inland, say in the town of Livermore, can be over 100 degrees. It’s hard to know what to wear sometimes – you drive and literally shed clothing as you go : )

  8. carolyn, 01 July, 2010

    @Maria: Let me know if you are ever coming up to Lake Tahoe … it would be great to meet.

  9. Maria, 02 July, 2010

    @carolyn: I’d love to! : ) We can definitely stay in touch through this wonderful blog until then.

  10. Arlene Harrison, 29 June, 2010

    @Ken H:
    If you want hot, try Mississippi in the summer!!! In addition to the heat, add humidity that feels like you are walking into a literal wall of heat. But central air keeps my studio nice and comfy so the only time I have to brave the elements is when I go out to my workshop to use the drill press or buffer. Plus my day job is in a modern high rise so it’s nice and cool most days.

  11. Phaedrakat, 30 June, 2010

    @Arlene Harrison: Ahh, Mississippi! I lived there for 7 months (summer & beyond) in the 80’s, and oh, boy is it humid. The Air Force had sent me to Biloxi for my Technical Training. Beautiful state, with great, friendly people. But I grew up in S. Calif., so the hot stickiness was quite shocking. I couldn’t wait to leave. Then I got my orders — to another Southern state! Yep, more humidity. I spent 4 years there, but never got used to it. I hated “sweating” all the time, even though I was really physically active & fit. Stayed indoors alot, with my best friend AC. It’s good to hear you’ve got nice central air for your studio & at work!

    @brenda: Judging from how quickly you knock out these tutes, you’ll have a butterfly completed by Friday afternoon! LOL, I’m only teasing because I’m jealous of how well you get it all done! I’m just really wanting to get my clay out. Enjoy the tute & the weekend!

  12. Brenda, 30 June, 2010

    @Phaedrakat: I have already started playing with my clay trying to make it. I wanted to see how close I could get to Cindy’s. It turned out pretty close. My girls are freaking over it. They want me to make a dragonfly.. I will be home Friday and will be taking my laptop with me so that when I get to Ky. I might go pick me up some clay :) I am sure cindy’s way is easier. I do have to say though ,I am getting the hang of this cane stuff. Having fun doing it !

  13. Ken H, 30 June, 2010

    @Arlene Harrison: Oh we know humidity, we get what is called a Bermuda High over the Atlantic and it just funnels the heat and humidiy right up the east coast, there was a time where mathematically, figuring the Temp which at the time was 103 and Humidity which was in the high 90% it was supposed to feel like 130F (I personally don’t put much stock in the “heat index”). That’s the time when you pull the shades, close the curtains and crank the air as far as it will go, and don’t stick your nose out till dark. :)

  14. pollyanna, 29 June, 2010

    Love it!!! Can’t wait.

  15. pattw, 29 June, 2010

    Cindy -you must be a mind reader -I was just looking for a butterfly cane.
    Waiting eagerly, with Pollyanna and the rest of the gang !! So happy I joined -this is too much fun………….Patt

  16. Sandy T, 29 June, 2010

    It blows my mind how you can keep coming up with ideas! God Bless You and your family. Best videos on the web, hands down.

  17. Lawrence, 29 June, 2010

    Really looking forward to this video as I love butterflies. They really seem to be attracted to my garden, along with the dragonflies and humming birds I can’t wait to try the cane in different colours for the wings.

  18. Catalina, 29 June, 2010

    This looks great! I bet these will look great on a pen!

    @ Carolyn, have a safe trip home.

  19. Linda B., 29 June, 2010

    I can’t wait for Friday. And surprise to me, I already have the colors. It’s been over 90 almost every day in June and the humidity so high you could cut it with a knife. It was 84 today and we thought we were going to have to get out our jackets……….

    Linda B.

  20. brenda, 29 June, 2010

    OMGOODNESS!!! I am going out of town this weekend!!!!!!! I’ve been waiting for this one….. I guess I will just have to take tools with me. LOL* Just kidding. This is such a beautiful cane. I wont be leaving until Saturday so… maybe I will make it before I leave :)

  21. Peggy Barnes, 29 June, 2010

    The meaning behind the butterfly and its symbol of resurrection is a big part of my attraction to the butterfly and its beauty. The story behind the butterfly is amazing. I can’t wait to see what can be done with this tute. As so many other tutes Cindy and Doug bring us with so many endless possibilities. All in the mind of the artist. I am so thankful for all you have taught me Cindy. You have inspired me to try things I never thought possible before. I might not be a great artist but there is an artist in me and thanks to all you do for us a part of it comes out with each tute. The dream team has done it once again.
    Many Uuuuugggggs to the both of you, Peggy

    I live in SE Iowa and many days in the summer the temps reach 100 plus then add the heat index (humidity) this is 5 degrees plus or more sometimes. I have to admit the heat is very hard on me as the cold in the winter. But Iowa is still my home and I love the change of the 4 seasons. It brings a different combination of beauty in each season. So I thank God everyday for my home in good ol Iowa. Heat, Cold and all the in between.
    Uuuuuugggggggs to all and wishing everyone a safe and healthy day,

  22. Phaedrakat, 30 June, 2010

    What a gorgeous butterfly cane! I can’t wait to make this — it’s stunning! Your pieces shown in the intro video all look really beautiful; the mica clays really make the wings shimmery and even more lovely. This should be a really fun tute!

    I love the symbolism that Carolyn & Peggy mentioned. That will give the wearer an extra-special feeling, and mean a lot as a gift. I’d better start with a big cane for this project, that way more people can enjoy amazing butterfly wings! Thanks, Cindy!

  23. Jocelyn C, 30 June, 2010

    Be still my heart, I love this cane, and cannot wait for the tut. Would love to try the same concept in a monarch, I so love them in the summer. The more earth bound I become, the more I worship flight.

  24. Pearl, the Beading Gem, 30 June, 2010

    You know how much I like butterflies, so this polymer clay design is just awesome!

  25. carolyn, 30 June, 2010

    Hi, All! I’m home again … and loving the cooler temps. and the dryness! Haven’t unpacked yet … had to check out the blog first!

  26. Peggy Barnes, 01 July, 2010

    @carolyn: Welcome back dear friend and just in time for Cindy’s wonderful butterfly tute. You have great timing. You are quite the lady driving that motor home all over all by yourself. This is something I would of done 6 years ago but unfortunately I don’t drive anymore due to my fatigue, medication and the good ol brain fog my Fibro brings me everyday. I think driving is one of the things I miss most. It was like loosing part of my independence. I need to remind myself of all the blessings I do have. I tend to get a little greedy at times and ask for too much. It is in God’s hands and he has given more than I should ever ask for. I am so very blessed starting with the blessing I have found right here. Cindy’s tutes and blog help keep me going. All the friends I have made here part of this great clay family. Yes I am very blessed and very thankful. So again welcome home Carolyn it is going to be so good to read all your daily comments again and receive all your wonderful advice. You are a very big asset to this family we have all become a part of thanks to Cindy and Doug.

    Many Uuuuuggggs, Peggy

  27. carolyn, 01 July, 2010

    @Peggy Barnes: Thank you so much for your very kind words. It humbles me to think that I might be helping someone else when I need so much help myself. And this blog is such a blessing to me also. Cindy has done and continues to do so much to help me cope with grief. Being back home is difficult since Don is no longer here with me. I look around me and think ‘if Don were still alive he would …’ This almost paralyzes me at times. I think that’s when I run here to Cindy’s blog and escape for a time.

  28. Brenda, 01 July, 2010

    @carolyn: Ah’ Your message is so touching. It brought tears to my eye’s. Sending you a big hug X……

    I am proud to see that you are a strong woman and able to move forward. Don would have wanted that for you. I was looking at your photo’s with Ken, It looks like had so much fun. I know we all would worry if we didn’t see your smiling face on Cindy’s blog.

  29. Phaedrakat, 02 July, 2010

    @Peggy Barnes: Please don’t ever say that you’re greedy by wishing you could have things like being able to drive. I doubt that you’re throwing hissy fits about it, or praying that the Lord take care of your ability to drive before feeding the hungry. Don’t be hard on yourself. We should all count our blessings, of course. Every one of us could have it much worse than we do. But we are allowed to wish things were better, to ask for less pain in our lives. I hope that these wishes come true for everyone here, and especially you, Peggy. You’re such a positive person, trying to make good things happen for everyone! I wish for those good things FOR YOU!

  30. Peggy Barnes, 02 July, 2010

    @Phaedrakat: Thank you so much for your kind words. You are the best and I was so hoping and praying you would be doing much better by now. Hopefully this weekend will bring you some relief from your pain so you can celebrate our wonderful Independence Day.

    Just a comment for all the members. Since Cindy is no longer posting on the weekends I was wondering if we could take the time with in the next couple of weekends for everyone to post a comment about themselves. Where you live, age if you want, family just a small write up.
    Peggy Sue Barnes, 52, live in Fort Madison, Iowa – USA, Married to a wonderful man for 33 years. 2 step daughters, 1 daughter, 9 grandchildren. A strong loving Mother and 3 sisters and 1 lovable puppy dog. I am a religious woman who loves my Lord and excepts Jesus as my saviour. I love my family they are the world to me. Of course my favorite hobby PC and love spending time on this wonderful blog with all of you. I hope to learn a little about each one of you. I send Uuuuuugggggs instead of hugs because my grandchildren and I just throw an Uuuuuggg to each other when I am in too much pain for a real Hug. My 7 yr. old granddaughter came up with this 3 yrs ago. She calls it the painless hug.
    So many Uuuuuugggggs to all of you, Peggy

  31. Phaedrakat, 03 July, 2010

    @Peggy Barnes: I enjoyed reading your small, I mean, medium, write up & bio. I think it’s a great idea! I’ll do one of my own later this weekend. I need to get to bed. I’m just trying to clear some of these posts I’ve marked that I wanted to answer. There’s so many of them! This place is getting even more popular! I’m so happy to hear about all of your lovely family, Peggy. Sounds like you have lots of loved ones, even sweet grandkids who know how to give Grandma a “painless hug.” Kids are the best!

  32. Susan B, 01 July, 2010

    @carolyn: Welcome home Carolyn. What an impressive lady you are to drive around in your motorhome. It is lovely to have you here again just in time for this beautiful tutorial.

  33. Elizabeth S., 02 July, 2010

    Cindy & Doug,

    Another wonderful tut for this wannabe clay artist! I’m being taught by the master, that’s for sure. As always, thank you both so much.

  34. carolyn, 02 July, 2010

    @Elizabeth S.: Why do you call yourself a ‘wannabe clay artist’? Your pieces are fabulous! I just looked at your gallery. I am in awe of your work!

  35. Phaedrakat, 03 July, 2010

    @Elizabeth S.: Yep, just searching for compliments, aren’t you? *wink, wink* Your work is beautiful, Elizabeth! You are absolutely “an artist”. No doubt about it!

  36. Peggy Barnes, 02 July, 2010

    Absolutely love, love, love it. You slammed another one right out of the ball park and the bases were loaded. Thank you so much Cindy and of coarse as always Doug’s wonderful filming. The dream team gives us way more than we have paid for once again. I am so thankful for finding the best clay family there is. We have it all here. All the talent, dedication and so much compassion not just for our art but for each other. It just doesn’t get any better than this. I am always so excited the first time I watch your tutes that I have to go back and watch again so I can really understand what you have brought us. It just keeps getting better and better every tute you do. Never a boring moment and always a growing moment. I have grown so much with all I can do with my PC now. When I forget something I just go back to the tute and watch it again picking up something new every time. I still refer to the basics course. Yep the one I didn’t think I would use but am still using many many times.

    Thank you so very much Cindy and Doug. I hope you have yet another very nice weekend.

    Happy 4th of July weekend to all of the USA patriotic citizens and visitors. Thanks to all of those who fought for our independence. This is a wonderful country and we all need to remember just how hard those fought to get us here and those still fighting to keep us here safe and free. God Bless America, God Bless all of us.

    Many Uuuuuuugggggs to everyone, Peggy

  37. Phaedrakat, 02 July, 2010

    @Peggy Barnes: Peggy, you are the sweetest thing! You break my heart with the story of the loss of your independence (driving, etc.) — I’m learning what that’s like. You’re a strong lady, and I pray for you, and for you to have more and more good days. You seem so selfless, always praising others. I’m so sorry about your fibro. That’s a really difficult thing to have to deal with. Please remember my prayers are with you. I guess I’ll go watch the video now, since you’ve given it such rave reviews! I’ll come back and give one of my own after (I’m still trying to catch up on the last two days’ posts, since I”ve been having my own pain issues…) See ya later–Uuuuugggss to you!

  38. Catalina, 03 July, 2010

    @Peggy Barnes: Love your description: “You slammed another one right out of the ballpark and the bases were loaded.” I think Cindy is headed to the World Series!!! I hope to try this one tonight.

    Happy 4th of July, everyone! Let Freedom ring!!

  39. Peggy Barnes, 02 July, 2010

    OK maybe not a small write up. We can call it a medium write-up!!
    Uuuuugggggs again, Peggy

  40. Tanya L, 02 July, 2010

    These are beautiful! A big thank you Cindy, to you and your husband. I made some torn clay watercolor beads last night. My goal was to make them and some roses yesterday, but I didn’t even finish the beads until 11! That was just making them- they still aren’t baked. Figured I’d make the roses today, but I forgot it was Friday! How could I forget? I’ve been counting the days!

    @Peggy Barnes: Peggy, I love your idea. I’m new here, and I see names over and over but it took me awhile to make my first post. I guess I felt like I was maybe intruding? You all seem to have such an awesome relationship! Phaedrakat really made me feel at home and invited me to “come in”, so to speak. That gave me the courage to start posting. You all give each other so much encouragement and support, not only in claying, but in life. You said it, Peggy. “We have it all here. All the talent, dedication and so much compassion not just for our art but for each other. It just doesn’t get any better than this.” I look forward to (trying) to keep up with the posts, to learn all I can about clay but to learn about you all, too. My hubby probably wonders what’s going on- all of a sudden I’m running off to the computer every chance I get, where before I wouldn’t touch it for days! He keeps calling for me, to ask where I am and what I’m doing! LOL!! Anyway, now that I’ve rambled on I’ll get to the point. By doing this hopefully we won’t just be names on the screen anymore. Of course with my memory (you know, fibro-fog), I better bookmark the page so I can keep seeing who’s who! :) And gentle hugs to you, Peggy! (I love the story of your “Uuuuuuggggggss”. I was wondering where that came from!)

    Tanya M Leach- 49- Adamstown, PA, USA. Married for 19 yrs, have a son, a daughter, 2 step-sons and a grandson, 2 dogs and a grand-dog. :) I’m a christian and a loving wife and mother, daughter and the big sister of a mentally challenged woman. I’ve been making jewelry for awhile now, and just recently discovered PC. And this website. I’m hooked!

    Happy 4th of July to every one in the US. Everyone else, have a great weekend! Tanya

  41. Elizabeth K., 02 July, 2010

    Hi Cindy and all
    just watched the Butterfly tut. Think it is georgeous, and as usual looks intricate but you make it so interesting to put together Cindy. I hope to get onto it at the week end.
    Seems so many here are fighting such painful trying times, I feel Id like to give you all a big Uuuuuuuuugggg as Peggy says.
    I’d really like to give you some of my good health, as I know what this Fibro myalgia is, as I have one D with that ,and one D with Rheumetiod arthritis, both in their 50s and both very talentd ladies artwise BTY.
    Just know that I am thinking of you and feel blessed to be a part of this lovely site.
    When I found it and decided to join, did not realise how interesting and heartwarming , and caring it would become, apart from learning so much from Cindy.
    My Angels were with me that day, it has become a great part of my life to come in read all the comments see what has been made from the tuts, and just enjoy being here.
    What a lovely way to spend time creating and being friendly to such nice people. I never find time lagging and always have projects ahead of me.
    Seem to think there are a lot of ladies here in the grandma group so I feel at home. Think that is a great idea to relate about ones self at the week end and will do that soon, altho I do have a blog when I go there and you can see me there.
    Anyway, just sitting here on my not too lonesome, talking to you all and feeling very close, seeing all that I see here about others lives. so interesting. From all over the U.S. Very interesting.
    So God Bless, and Happy July 4th. I once was there on a July 4th, so have some understanding of it.
    Elizabeth K.

  42. pollyanna, 02 July, 2010

    Great Tute!!! I’m going to try it later. Cindy, you do make them ….well…doable…..lol. Thanks so much.

  43. Katie, 02 July, 2010

    Hoping I find time to try this today… if I ever finish rolling these wallpaper beads. I have a sneaking suspicion that my older puppy got kennel cough from her sister so another vet visit may be in order. Dang it!

    I’m 20, live near Hilton Head, SC, and starting my senior year in college as an interior design major. (The wallpaper came from discarded sample books. They were too pretty to toss.) My puppies like to run off with my tools (and clothes… and, well, everything else) but when they’re behaving, they are very good company. In fact, Piper tried to watch videos with me one day.

  44. Catalina, 02 July, 2010

    @Katie: Hi, so, I’m not the only one with a little trouble maker under foot:) My puppy is learning how to climb the little steps up to the couch. He better learn fast because after my gallbladder and cyst surgery I won’t be able to pick him up. Only, four weeks till surgery – I’m hanging in there!!

  45. carolyn, 02 July, 2010

    @Catalina: Please remind me, what is the actual date of your surgery? I want to write it on my prayer calendar. I’ll hold you up extra much in prayer that day.

    Speaking of puppies, has anyone tried the litter box method with a puppy? I’m thinking that might be a good way to go if I do get a puppy, especially since we’ll spend a fair amount of time on the road in the motorhome. A litter box could be used here at home and then just put in the rig when we head out. I’ve heard of using a litter box but I don’t know anyone who has tried it.

    We sure do get off the topic of PC, don’t we! Thanks, Cindy, for allowing all this other stuff. You are the greatest!

  46. Catalina, 03 July, 2010

    @carolyn: I have it some what scheduled for Aug 2. But I can’t confirm this date with the one of the surgeons. Even my doctor can’t seem to get in contact with him!! They are the best and my doc says it will be well worth the wait. The only thing can I wait? I hope so.
    I may GIVE you my puppy!! He is a cry baby!! (Well, maybe not!) He is crying sooo much when going to bed and now throughout the night. My hubby says he can’t sleep in our room, in his crate, and moved him to the dinning room. he hates that even more! But he was banging his head on the crate door so hard. In the dinning room, he can move around since he will be contained. Are you sure you want a puppy? Maybe a hamster would be easier!!!!! (If you all didn’t know, I love hamsters, too!!!

  47. carolyn, 03 July, 2010

    @Catalina: Uhhhhh! No thanks … I hope the crying stops soon. This is one of the things that I am trying to weigh out when it comes to getting a puppy. I don’t like crying, whining or pesky barking. Maybe I don’t really want a dog … I just don’t know.

  48. Catalina, 03 July, 2010

    @carolyn: I think you should look for one that is a year old or older. Out of the puppy stage and young enough to train and be playful. Cats are probably easier to travel with. You could train the cat to take to a leash so you wouldn’t have to worry about it running off. And they don’t bark! :)

  49. carolyn, 03 July, 2010

    @Catalina: But cats tend to be so very independent. And they can cry and whine even if they don’t bark. I imagine that it will be quite a while before I get any companion. There is so much I have to do around the house and shop and I’ll be traveling again soon. It will be fall before I get around to organizing the house and I’d want that done before I bring another body in … especially a small one that I would step on or trip over as I was hauling stuff from one room to another. A young dog does sound like a good idea. More food for thought. Thanks, my friend!

  50. Linda K., 06 July, 2010

    @Catalina: Cataline, you are in my prayers for a successful surgery and very quick recovery.

    Have you thought about putting an article of your clothing into the puppy’s bed at night? He might just be lonesome and that often does the trick. I guess Princess Daisy still isn’t letting him cuddle up with her.

  51. Catalina, 06 July, 2010

    @Linda K.: I thought about that. I thought we should have brought something from his momma’s house with her scent on it. I think he misses sleeping with someone. He is sleeping in his crate right now! But it is right next to me on the couch!!

  52. Linda K., 06 July, 2010

    @Catalina: Yes, he probably misses him Momma and cuddling up to his littermates to sleep. I think he’d probably love to cuddle up to you when he sleeps at night, but if you let him in your bed, he’s there for good!

  53. Catalina, 06 July, 2010

    @Linda K.: I know! That is why he hasn’t slept with us yet. Plus, our bed is too high and we would crush him! He is going to sleep with Daisy tonight. (and, no, I didn’t tell Daisy that yet, either!) I’ll keep you posted on the results. Cross your fingers for me.

  54. Catalina, 07 July, 2010

    @Linda K.: Well, guess what happen last night! Bubby slept next to Daisy and never made a peep! He got up in the morning and went potty and was very happy! Daisy was having a good time with him, too! she did give up her bed and slept beside the bed, but they got along great! I’m going to make the bed bigger so both can sleep and Daisy won’t feel crowded. Thanks for all the advice I think we got a solution that works for everyone!!

  55. Linda K., 07 July, 2010

    @Catalina: Oh, this makes me smile! Just like my vet told me, the older female will eventually accept and mother the male puppy. I’ll bet Bubby had his first good night’s sleep cuddled up with Daisy…no wonder he was happy! And how sweet of Daisy to give up her bed instead of pushing him out.

  56. Phaedrakat, 08 July, 2010

    @Catalina: How cute! I love the thought of your sweeties sleeping together…

  57. Phaedrakat, 03 July, 2010

    @Catalina: Sister Cat, I’m still praying for you. I know you’ve got weeks to go, but I’m hoping that you’ll have minimal pain during that time. Enjoy your Bubbie—he’s gonna have a rude awakening after you get home from the hospital and find out he’s no longer the most important creature around! Actually, he will have grown up a lot in a month—our babies grow so quickly! Do let us know, like Carolyn said, what the exact dates are so we can mark our calendars. I’m glad to hear you’re hangin’ in there. Hugs, Kat

  58. carolyn, 04 July, 2010

    @Katie: I see from your site that you also do wire knitting. I do also and have had much fun with it. Before He passed away my husband made quite a few knitting spools and even some draw plates. I have them for sale on my website … along with basic instructions. In case anyone is interested, they are shown in the section: Other Treasures listed on the left of my main page.

  59. Maria, 02 July, 2010

    Cindy, just as you said, this technique is “very freeing”. I’ve made a few butterfly canes and it just amazes me how cool they come out and how fun it is to make them! I have made some beads mixing my floral canes with the butterflies. I call them my “Gardener’s dreams series”

  60. Brenda, 02 July, 2010

    Ok, My butterfly wing is made and published on my blog. Take a looksy and let me know what you think.. I will be heading out in Early in the morning to go on vacation. But I will be taking my laptop so I won’t miss all my friends :)

  61. carolyn, 02 July, 2010

    @Brenda: Brenda, you are phenomenal! Not only are you a quick study, but the work you do is superb! I also saw your fabulous heavy wire bangle with the beads on the ends – great idea! I also liked how you wrapped the wire at the top of your large hole pendant on another post. There is just no stopping you … and who’d ever want to … you just keep claying along and producing such beautiful pieces!

  62. Elizabeth S., 02 July, 2010

    What a beautiful butterfly wing!! Talk about mastering a tut!! You really do lovely, lovely work. Have a wonderful vacation.

  63. Tanya L, 02 July, 2010

    @Brenda: Beatiful wings, Brenda! All of your jewelry is amazing. My first attempt at the wings didn’t turn out too well. I’m trying it again. It’s my first cane, so I don’t know.. But, ya never know til you try, right? ~ Tanya

  64. Phaedrakat, 03 July, 2010

    @Tanya L: Absolutely right, Tanya, about getting in there and trying it. If you have questions about the video, or any problems you ran into on your first try, feel free to ask. We try not to “give away Cindy’s secrets” to non-members, but I’m sure Cindy also wants to be sure that everyone can do the tute! I guess you already figured out how to make skinner and/or teardrop blends? The blends are what make the colors so realistic in canes like these. Good luck with your butterfly! ~Kat

  65. Phaedrakat, 03 July, 2010

    @Brenda: Okay, you are slightly twisted. In a good way, ya know? An addict with OCD, that’s all. No problem or anything—LOL! You amaze me, I can’t believe how quickly you jump into these tutes! I can see that you surely do enjoy cane-making. It’s really fun, so I certainly can’t blame you! I’m just teasing, of course. I think it’s awesome that you’re making all this great polymer clay jewelry! Hope you’re enjoying your trip this weekend! (Step away from the clay for a second and remember family—OK, second’s over!) Have fun, and happy 4th!

  66. Sue C, 02 July, 2010


    The butterfly pieces are beautiful. They are a little advanced for me but I will look forward to giving them a try. Good job Cindy.

  67. Sue C, 02 July, 2010

    A small bio on myself. I live in Tacoma WA which is a town about 30 miles south of Seattle. I am a widow of 4 1/2 years and had been married to great man for 41 years. I have two daughters and one grandson. My oldest daughter lives in Puyallup WA with her husband and son. My grandson is 15 years old and is one delightful person. His mother is a stay-at-home mom and wife and has a service dog for her chronic fibromyalgia. My other daughter lives in Seattle and is a Naturopathic Physician. We are all close and get together often. I just started with working with clay so I am looking forward to see how fun it will be creating some of Cindy’s projects.
    Wishing you all a happy July 4, 2010!

  68. carolyn, 02 July, 2010

    @Sue C: Hmmm! I may just be traveling through your area this fall. We might be able to meet up. I, too, am a widow – just a little over a year. Don and I were married for 43. The rest about me will be in a bio as suggested by our very own Peggy. That was a really good idea and I’ve set up a file so I can keep all the bios.

  69. carolyn, 17 August, 2010

    @Sue C: Just to put a cap on this … I won’t be traveling through Washington this year, so we won’t be able to meet up.

  70. Phaedrakat, 02 July, 2010

    Awesome tutorial! Thanks, Cindy—you made one of my “most wanteds!” I just love it, and I can’t wait to get my hands on some clay and make these beautiful butterflies. I’ll gonna start with a somewhat bigger cane so I can make some wing pendants, as well as complete butterflies.

    Really gorgeous—Cindy, you’ve done it again! :~D

  71. Jocelyn C, 03 July, 2010

    Happy 4th Weekend to all! Hope you all have a wonderful holiday.

    Cindy, it stuns me how you can make something as complex as that butterfly cane, break it down into such easy steps, then share tons of ideas for using it.

    Love the curling tail flower app.

    Do you see these butterflies where you live?

  72. Cindy Lietz, 03 July, 2010

    @Jocelyn: Just in my studio! LOL

    Wow thank you everyone for the fabulous comments! I can’t believe how quickly Brenda gets to making the tutorials and then posting her work. Incredible!

    Catalina I hope the surgery goes well. You deserve to be pain free.

    Thanks goes to everyone who supports one another with illnesses, new pets, computer help, clay help and just plain old friendship. Peggy that was a great idea to share your Bio’s with each other. The more you get to know one another, the more you’ll feel ‘at home’ here!

    A shout out goes to Silverleaf… Hope you’re on holidays and are not ill, since we haven’t heard from you in a bit. Pop in and say hi, so we don’t worry about you.

  73. Elizabeth S., 03 July, 2010

    @Cindy Lietz from Butterfly Wing Cane Tutorial Now Playing in Library:Wow,
    Like minds or something–I have been thinking about Silverleaf all day as she hasn’t posted in some time. My plan was, if there was nothing from her today, to scroll back to see how long it has really been when I came upon your post also expressing concern about how long it’s been since we have heard from her. So, Silverleaf, let me add a shout out to Cindy’s with a request that you pop in when you can. We miss you and hope all is well and that you are having a fabulous holiday somewhere.

    Elizabeth S.

  74. carolyn, 04 July, 2010

    @Elizabeth S.: How long has it been now since we’ve heard from Silverleaf? I miss her and just pray that all is well.

  75. Elizabeth S., 05 July, 2010


    The last post from Silverleaf was on June 14. Sure miss her.

  76. carolyn, 03 July, 2010

    @Jocelyn: From all the postings I see that you are catching up on some of the tutorials. I’m going to have to do that one of these days. Today I did work on the butterfly wing with a body and I was so pleased … and then the white darkened in the oven. I think I know why … I had the piece on fiberfill which raised the piece higher in the oven, hence closer to the element. When I use fiberfill I should switch my rack to the lower position. Ho hum … I’m really bummed.

  77. Jocelyn, 04 July, 2010

    @carolyn: Bingo! Was finally able to get Adobe Flash reloaded Firefox, and have been using that browser to catch up. Overwhelmed after seeing the last three vid tuts in a row, I can tell you. Cindy is the best teacher out there for my money.

    Also, hit the link to your site. How wonderful!!! Love that you create serving the highest purpose, it must double your enjoyment! Also, you are a very talented polymer clay artist. So glad you are feeling better and back amongst us!

  78. carolyn, 04 July, 2010

    @Jocelyn: Thank you, Jocelyn, for your kind words after visiting my site. I feel like such an amateur when I see what many of Cindy’s ‘students’ are producing. I have a long way to go to catch up. I’m still at loose ends and days are gone with nothing accomplished. Today after church I did get in some gardening and then took a long nap.

  79. Jocelyn, 05 July, 2010

    @carolyn: Carolyn, long ago, I started looking at burnt clay as an opportunity, LOL! When thrown in the Lortone and glossed with Future, you’d be surprised at the color variations and texture.

    Darkening in the oven is my biggest obstacle right now, think it might be because I am using old supplies of transparent clay.

    Always try to throw a dab of white in most stuff because it makes colors pop. Cindy posted a comment about soaking pieces in bleach. Tried it, and was thrilled with the results….even the darkened transparent ghost canes came out just as I intended in the first place. Love tips like that, saves me money.

    Also read somewhere that folks bake stuff again, the whole time, then rebuff and send their products in the mail once purchased. Like this idea. Might help stuff get there without mishap as plastic is plastic.

    Hope it works for you.

  80. carolyn, 05 July, 2010

    @Jocelyn: Thanks … I missed the bleach trick … I’ll try that first on one of the beads that darkened. If it doesn’t work, the butterfly doesn’t look all that bad. I could pretend that the off white is the color I started with ;-}

  81. Phaedrakat, 03 July, 2010

    I sent a FB message to Silverleaf. It doesn’t look like she’s posted at all lately, so she must be busy with something. I don’t think anything “bad” has happened to her, or people would have posted “get well” or other type things to her wall. Hopefully it’s a great vacation or trip! That’s what I’m praying for…

  82. Jocelyn, 04 July, 2010

    @Phaedrakat: Kat, she may have run into computer problems, too. Miss her as well.

  83. carolyn, 04 July, 2010

    Carolyn’s bio: For those of you who are newer and don’t know me … I am a Christian and my love for Jesus is evident in most of the products I create. I try to share the Gospel message through my art. I live at Lake Tahoe, Nevada. There is a lovely stream on the border of my property and many trees: aspen, mountain alder and several types of pine. I live alone since my dear husband, Don, passed away in April 2009. We had been married for 43 years and he was always my greatest supporter and always encouraged me in my various endeavors. I miss him dreadfully but know that the Lord has a reason for my remaining on this planet. I have a Pleasure Way Plateau motorhome and enjoy traveling wherever the Lord leads. Don and I were blessed with two wonderful children. Our daughter, Michelle, is 10 years older than her brother, Jonathan. Michelle is married and she and Robert live not far from me. Robert is the asst. mgr. of the local Ace Hardware and Michelle is the Senior Secretary for the Sheriff’s Dept. Jonathan and his wife, Katherine, live in Philadelphia and are both on the faculty of the University of Penn. Jonathan has two daughters, Taylor (10) and Katie (soon to be 7). I had a great time with all of them recently. I also had the opportunity to meet Ken Hamilton (fellow clayer) while in Philly. I have a background in education … taught 4th grade in my younger years, then went into social and educational research. In that capacity I did a lot of traveling and taught adults how to conduct research projects. I’ve always been interested in arts and crafts. For over 25 years Don and I participated in craft shows and even organized some ourselves. Age caught up with us and we bowed out of that scene. My main product over all those years was our beanbag Carefree Frogs. I still make and sell these on my website, in my shop here in the house, and at church sales. Periodically throughout the year I hold sales of my jewelry (and frogs) at my church, donating all the money directly to the church. My wire art jewelry is sold at our local jewelry store. I’m trying to get the local golf course to carry my golf stroke counters – based on those made by our own Bonnie Kreger. The KOA in Las Vegas, NM, will be carrying my jewelry in their gift shop – once I get there to deliver it. I was supposed to be there by the end of April but ended up 3 1/2 weeks in the hospital instead. Now I am beginning to think about my major motorhome trip for this year. I expect to hit the road sometime this month … but I’ll have my computer so I can keep up with Cindy’s tutorials and also keep up with all of you, my clay friends! She is a great tutor, mentor and a lovely person. I sure wouldn’t want to be cut off from her. It was bad enough when I was in the hospital. God bless you all and may you thoroughly enjoy and grow through this wonderful site set up by Cindy. As she says, ‘Bye for now…’

  84. Jocelyn, 05 July, 2010

    @ Peggie

    Peggie, you have such a unique and wonderful way of communicating. I seriously think you should write for a living. Do you already? If not, I’d surely encourage you to try it. Such fun reading your stuff.


  85. Linda K., 05 July, 2010

    I’ll be adding my bio info soon, when I have a few minutes. A word of caution…we should be careful about what we post, such as vacations and other living arrangements, as this site is open to anyone.

  86. Judy E, 05 July, 2010


    I just watched the butterfly wing cane video. How wonderful! I cannot tell you how much I appreciate your teaching style. I felt like we were at the same kitchen table. I’m looking forward to learning much from you.

    Big Smiles, Judy

  87. Silverleaf, 05 July, 2010

    Hi everyone… sorry I’ve been so quiet recently! It’s so sweet that you guys missed me, thank you so much for caring. :)

    I haven’t been well – I’d been feeling fine, better than I’d felt for a while, and I decided to take advantage of it and get some work done in the house. So my dad helped me put a new wooden floor down in my living room (we bought the floor ages ago but hadn’t got round to doing anything about it) which I really enjoyed. And I organised a camping and birdwatching trip to East Anglia in 3 days (first time camping for my boyfriend). We had a great time, rushing around cramming in as much as possible into two days and seeing lots of fantastic birds. And we had friends over for the weekend.

    I guess I did too much, because I “crashed” after that – I’ve spent a while feeling a bit sorry for myself and being too tired to do very much, and I haven’t been able to get near my clay stuff because the house is still all at sixes and sevens with furniture in the way as the edging for the floor isn’t finished yet. I really haven’t felt like being social or spending time online. I guess this is the thing I hate most about fibromyalgia – apart from the fact that it’s stealing my life – when I do feel well I have to restrict what I do otherwise I end up paying for it later, with interest.

    Anyway I’m starting to feel better, and I’m gradually catching up with online stuff. So I’ll reply to Facebook messages and so on over the next few days.

    I know I should have popped by and let people know that I wouldn’t be around for a while, so I apologise for that, but I really haven’t been thinking straight.

    Oh and I managed to actually move my clay stuff from the dining room table (it was still there from when I had friends round to play with clay a month or so ago) back into my studio, and reorganised the room too so now I have my clay room back, and I can get creating again! :)

  88. Silverleaf, 05 July, 2010

    I like this bio idea… here’s mine.

    I’m Anna (also known as Annie), 30 years old, lived in Chesterfield, England my whole life. I’ve been with my boyfriend for 7 years. No children, and I don’t plan on having any (just no desire to have kids). I have a gorgeous black Lab called Summer, a tiny but feisty Netherland Dwarf rabbit called Neo, and I rescue and rehabilitate injured and sick wild European hedgehogs.

    I’m passionate about nature, love birdwatching and feeding the wild birds and foxes and creating “wildlife areas” in my garden. I grow organic veggies and I love cooking from scratch, especially baking.

    I spend Friday evenings playing roleplaying games (like Dungeons and Dragons, etc.), and two nights a week during term time rehearsing with my 3 choirs where I’m a proud member of the alto section. I love singing, and used to do karaoke every week until my favourite place shut down.

    As you’ve probably gathered by now, I have fibromyalgia (diagnosed at 16), and have battled with major depression and sleep disorders. I think I’m a stronger person now because of my experiences, but I’m still trying to come to terms with the fact that I will probably never be able to finish my psychology degree or have a regular job or career.

    I’m an atheist and don’t believe in anything supernatural at all, including astrology, fairies, ghosts, etc, although I’m happy to perform religious music and even sit through church services if I’m singing in them. I do believe that the mind is a very powerful tool and that positive thinking can have a real effect on your health and your life.

    This is probably way too long, but I’m rubbish at editing myself! ;)

  89. Catalina, 05 July, 2010

    @Silverleaf: Glad you are ok! I thought maybe you were over doing it. We all missed you and we started to worry. So many of us are not in perfect health and we worry when we don’t hear from everyone on a regular basis. It is all I can do right now. I mean, to post every once in while. I played a little bit with the butterfly cane (had to it was so inviting!) but just trying to be patient as I wait for the surgeries. I wish I could make something to enter the contest. But, I might just just sit this one out. Sending s big hug and take care of you!

  90. Silverleaf, 05 July, 2010

    @Catalina: I didn’t mean to make you guys worry! I’m really touched that you missed me, it means a lot.

    It really shows how much of supportive community this blog has become, and I’m honoured to be part of that. Thanks everyone!

    I guess I’ve missed a lot and will need to catch up on what’s going on with everyone – I really hope your surgeries go well and you’re left pain-free, and that everyone who’s suffering at the moment can find relief too. It’s so horrible that so many people here are restricted by illnesses and injuries, and if I had the power to take it all away I’d do it in a heartbeat.

  91. carolyn, 05 July, 2010

    @Catalina: No one said that it had to be something new for the contest. Dig back in those old photo files … that’s what I’ve done for a couple items.

  92. Catalina, 06 July, 2010

    @carolyn: I didn’t think of that! I will try to see what I come up with! thanks!!

  93. carolyn, 05 July, 2010

    @Silverleaf: It amazes me how many of us have fibromyalgia.

  94. Silverleaf, 06 July, 2010

    @carolyn: Yes, I heard that it’s 5% of the world population (maybe 8-10% of women) who have fibro, but there sure does seem to be a good proportion of us on here.

    I wonder if it’s because clay is one of those “quick win” activities which doesn’t necessarily require much physical or mental effort but gives you the satisfaction of being able to create something pretty that you can be proud of, so people with fatigue or chronic pain or other illnesses kind of gravitate towards it.

    I’d guess that if you compared the “sick” population to the “healthy” population, you’d see a significantly larger proportion of crafters in the “sick” population. It would be interesting to see if anyone’s done any research into this.

  95. carolyn, 06 July, 2010

    @Silverleaf: Maybe there is a connection between susceptibility and which side of the brain we art/crafters use the most …

  96. Silverleaf, 07 July, 2010

    @carolyn: Interesting idea… while there are definitely some specific brain functions that are usually lateralized in a specific area of the brain (such as grammar and vocabulary, linear reasoning and some mathematical ability in the left hemisphere, and artistic ability, estimation of numbers, and intonation of language in the right), there’s a lot of pseudoscience out there about right- or left-brain dominance, mostly stemming from companies who try to sell you products to “balance” your brain. Most higher functions such as creativity are located in both hemispheres.

    Actually when I first started seriously studying the brain at university it surprised me how flexible the brain is, because often if there’s an injury or tumour or something, the surrounding areas kind of “take up the slack” and learn to do the job that the damaged part used to do. Like when stroke patients lose their speech centres – it can take weeks or years and a lot of work but it’s possible to get the speech back even though that bit of the brain’s been destroyed. And the kids that have all of one side of her brain removed to cure severe epilepsy go on the function perfectly normally.

    Now look what you’ve done, you’ve started me on the geeky brain science stuff, you’ll never get me to shut up! ;)

  97. Judy M, 07 July, 2010

    Sorry to hear about your illness. It is a horrible thing. No, I haven’t had it, but I know a man who has….
    Annie…Have you considered finishing your degree with the OU? You can transfer credits from previous learning. I’ve just completed my BA (Hons) in Humanities with Creative Writing, 33 years after taking my Cert. Ed. (I’m a First School Teacher) and was able to transfer points. If you are taking Level 1 courses you can even use Tesco points. I did almost my entire degree courtesy of Mr Tesco, although they’ve stopped with the Level 2 and 3 now.
    Judy (aka WellingtonsMum) and yes, he’s a black labrador, along with our girlie, Flora.

  98. Catalina, 07 July, 2010

    @Silverleaf: Wow! I knew you were a brain!! It is pretty fascinating stuff. You should be a brain doc! Maybe you can tell me why I get these freezing headaches.

  99. Linda K., 06 July, 2010

    So good to see you back, Silverleaf. I hope you’re feeling well enough to get back to your claying.

  100. Linda K., 06 July, 2010

    OK, here is my bio…

    I’m 59 years old and have one sibling, a sister, Kathi, who is 16 months younger. My earliest memory of loving any kind of art was in kindergarten. As I grew older I learned to sew and the fabric store and stationary store were my favorite places until I found my first CRAFT STORE!!! I wanted to go to art school and become an art teacher, but things didn’t work out and I became I high-school business teacher instead. I did a lot of sewing and dabbled in embroidery, needlepoint, stained glass, decoupage, jewelry-making and various other crafts. It wasn’t until much later that I discovered decorative painting and, as most of you know, I found polymer clay last year.

    I never had children, which is one of my biggest regrets. I do have a niece and nephew whom I love like they were my own…and now my niece has 3 darling little girls, 6, 3, and 2 years old. I can’t get enough of them!

    I was married for my first time to Richard six years ago at the age of 53. Richard and I met 13 years ago in the base lodge of the local ski area. It was a tricky relationship because I lived in Massachusetts and he lived in New York City. Our jobs kept us from moving, so we met on weekends and eventually bought our retirement home in Vermont. We were actually married for two years before I could retire and move the the house in VT.

    I retired four years ago and moved from MA to VT, where I love to ski, play tennis, and I’m learning to golf…sort of. Richard built me a wonderful painting and claying studio in the “barn”…which was actually a fairly new building where the previous owner kept his motor home.

    We adopted our precious Daffney, a 12-pound Yorkie, four years ago. She’s eight years old now. We also have Seamus, my 20-year old cockatiel, who has a repetoire of about six silly phrases and loves to whistle along with any music or telephone ringing. Sometimes he makes it hard to hear the TV, but I love him anyway. I’ve raised him since he was a sweet, fat, little chick.

    I discovered that I have fibromyalgia about ten years ago, although I don’t have it as bad as many others here. I’ve learned that if I baby myself I get very stiff and it hurts to do almost everything. I also found that if I move around doing things that I enjoy, I can work through the stiffness and pain, so that’s what I try to do. Last week I played 2 hours of tennis and then played 9 holes of golf. Silly me…I was in bad shape for a couple of days…but it was worth it.

    Oh, yes, I am a cancer survivor…almost 30 years now!

  101. Ken H, 06 July, 2010

    If he’s real young it might be he’s missing his mother, I remember someone in my family saying (a looong time ago) that wrapping a hot water bottle in something fuzzy (like a terrycloth towel) and placing a wind up clock in it’s bed simulates the mother’s warmth (hot water bottle) fuzzy (coat) and clock (heartbeat) and calms them down. Don’t remember if we tried this or not. Who knows might be crazy enough to work.

  102. Linda K., 06 July, 2010

    @Ken H: Ken, you’re absolutely right. When we got our first puppy I was 12. We put a small ticking clock and my sister’s bathrobe in the bed with the puppy and she calmed right down. Of course, it was only a few nights before the dog was sleeping in the bed with me!

  103. Catalina, 06 July, 2010

    @Ken H: Hi, Ken! Someone at work just told me about that! I think you may be right. It is sure worth at try!

  104. Cheryl V., 07 July, 2010

    Hello my Poly Clay family! I’ve been playing with ceramic clay since June 14 and I hardly have time to think of anything else these days. I love this new bio thing you have going. So here is mine….

    My name is Cheryl (duh) and I am 52. I live and breathe to serve and love my Lord Jesus Christ! I live in Gilroy, CA, where I have been since 1968. I am an Elementary School Librarian for Morgan Hill Unified and because of the budget crisis in CA I run 2 Elementary School Libraries. My husband, Ed, and I will be celebrating our 24th anniversary on July 20. I have a son, Aaron, from a previous marriage and he is 28 and married to Julie. Ed and I have 2 children together, Meghan – 23 and Ian – 22. I pray for grandchildren all the time but Aaron says that he Julie are still not ready, even after 7 years of marriage. Someday……
    My first creative love is pottery (sorry, please forgive me) and I started learning it after my Mom died in 2004. I specialize in the art of Raku firing and also Majolica. I paint Scripture and inspirational quotes onto my pottery. I just finished a bowl that I glazed to look like a half a watermelon. It came out amazing! I make jewelry and last year I taught myself to knit cause I needed a hobby that I could do while riding in the car.
    My soul needs to be creating ALL the time so I’m always creating something. I have dabbled in poly clay off and on since our daughter was born but never really got serious with it till now. To be honest, I find ceramic clay so much easier to work with than pc but I love the amazing colors that are available with poly clay. I also love that it is almost instant gratification, unlike ceramic clay that has to dry, bisque, glaze, fire again – it’s a long process. I’m thinking that if I dedicated lots of time to poly clay like I have to ceramic clay, I just might get good at it. Right now I just have a lot of failed projects with my poly clay and I don’t do well with failed projects because I am a perfectionist with OCD. I love to sing and am the Music Director at my church. I love the ocean and anything having to do with water.
    I love, love, love this amazing family community that we have going here and I feel so unbelievably blessed to have found all of you and Cindy, of course. I’m hoping I can make you all proud of me one of these days by actually being successful with a poly clay project. You’ll be the first to know when I’ve achieved that. Thank you for the support and encouragement you have given me since I joined the family. You are all wonderful sisters and brothers.

  105. Jocelyn, 09 July, 2010

    Peggy, when I gave up my car and driving, I thought it would be the end of me. So loved throwing a few bucks in the tank and heading for the nearest fun thing to look at, and here in scenic Rockfall, CT, I found plenty to keep me entertained.

    Sadly tears caused an accident on the one year anniversity of my Mom’s death, and after evaluating the cost vs. how little the car was actually used, I gave it up, and never replaced it. Brought lots of money back into the budget.

    Here, we are fortunate. We do not have the Middletown Transporation System offering buses any longer, but, the Red Cross stepped in and provides rides to medical appts and other necessities, for $3.00 round trip. Yep, you are on the short bus, but, up higher than everyone else, therefore able to see scenery better, lol.

    For a more substantial amount, the local taxi/livery service will send a brand new leather lined exec limo for your comfort and pleasure. Sometimes, it’s worth it!

    Our town was granted a town bus, which on certain days, can be used for far afield medical appointments, so that puts Hartford Hospital and Yale within my reach for care.

    Volunteer organizations abound, lots of folks will take you most places you need to go, including the local library, but you need to find your local networks and get yourself connected.

    Really look forward to long walks now, the ground seems more fascinating. As does the occasional ride for thrills from friends, one, refers to me as “the lab….”

  106. Cheryl Hodges, 10 July, 2010

    Cindy, I’m going to be making the blue morpho butterfly cane. I looked at your pendant again and I find it has a slight curve to it. Did you put it on a curved object to bake. How do you get the ultradome resin on without it flowing down?

  107. Cindy Lietz, 10 July, 2010

    @Cheryl Hodges: I baked it flat and put the resin on normally, but because it was quite thin and I only put the resin on one side, it curved slightly after the resin cured.

  108. Desiree J, 10 July, 2010

    Hi all, I’m a bit of a newbie and had a question. I thought I would put it out to all of you to see if anyone could help before I bothered Cindy. :)
    So I just purchased some back issues (if there are any other newbies out there – seriously consider doing this – just when I think I know when the video is going Cindy does something completely different than I thought she would and it’s sooo much easier and it’s like – well duh) any way sorry for the tangent on to my question. In the basic leaf cane tutorial she mentions saving larger pieces of the cane to use later when you have another idea, etc. How do you soften that up? I was under the impression you really had to soften clay with rolling or the pasta machine but if you do this with a cane, there would be a problem. Anyone got any answers. Sorry if this is stupid but I did mention I’m a newbie, right? :)

  109. carolyn, 11 July, 2010

    @Desiree: You originally condition the clay … that doesn’t just mean softening it. You knead it or run repeatedly through a pasta machine to get all the plasticizers lined up. [This is kind of a scientific thing so I don’t understand it, but that is what happens.] After the clay is conditioned and you form it into a cane, it just needs ‘warming up’ to use it later. Naturally you can’t run it through the pasta machine ’cause, like you said, you’d lose the design. I’ve heard of some people putting it in their armpit for a while … nice warm spot. You wouldn’t want to put it in an oven ’cause that could cause it to cure. Hope this helps.

  110. Desiree, 11 July, 2010

    @carolyn: and @Phaedrakat: Thank you both for your responses. They were helpful and I think I have handle on how to proceed. You guys are great, Cindy’s right this is a really wonderful group of people; all willing to help others. Thanks again!

  111. Phaedrakat, 11 July, 2010

    @Desiree: Hi Desiree, you can also check out this article on Old Polymer Clay Canes.

    It has some tips that may help you. You can also search for more information on conditioning and canes by typing words into the search box at the top of the page, like “soften old canes.” You’ll get a list of articles on the topic(s). Be sure to read the comments under the articles as well, as they often have even more info that the post itself. Good luck! ~Kat

  112. Tanya L, 22 July, 2010

    @Desiree: Hi Desiree! I’m going back over posts to try to catch up and just saw yours. I’m pretty new to pc too and was wondering the same thing but kept forgetting to look it up, so thank you for bringing that up, and thank you Carolyn for your answer and suggestion! And Desiree, I have those “DUH!” moments a lot when watching Cindy’s videos. Makes me feel pretty stupid when I worked piece rate jobs for years and was really good at figuring out the easiest and fastest way of doing things. I’m hoping that once I know what I’m doing those moments will be far and few between! LOL! Of course, we ARE learning from the pc guru and so many wonderfully experienced and knowledgable people here who are willing to share so hopefully we can just “know” and create!
    PS. I learned already that no question is stupid here. There’s so much information it’s gonna take me forever to read every thing! Everyone here is so willing to answer any questions you may have and they’ll point you to the articles you should read. Either someone else has already asked the question you may have, or someone else is wondering the same thing. Have fun “claying” around!

  113. Cindy Lietz, 22 July, 2010

    @Tanya L: Great input Tanya. Thanks for taking the time to write that. The only thing I would add is to remember to use the search the search box at the top of the site. It’s the best way to find where topics have already been previously discussed here at the blog.

    @carolyn: Thanks for answering Cheryl’s question. Especially with Phaedrakat being offline for a few days I am really having a hard time keeping up with everything and everybody. So anytime you guys can help each other out with answers / suggestions / support, that is so very much appreciated.

  114. Cheryl Hodges, 21 July, 2010

    @ Cindy

    – I have my butterfly cane ready . How thin should I go for the pendant or earrings? I’ll have to bake between a tile sandwich right?

  115. carolyn, 21 July, 2010

    @Cheryl Hodges: If you want to make sure that the pendant and earrings stay flat, you should use the tile sandwich. You actually can make them as thin or as thick as you want … whatever is comfortable for you.

  116. Cheryl Hodges, 29 July, 2010

    @ Cindy – I did the butterfly cane but I think I have more white (pearl). I have to bake them yet. The skinner blend is something that i really need more practice. I have a question, when doing the skinner blend, what thinness do you need to get to? i think I should have done a bit more.

  117. Phaedrakat, 03 August, 2010

    @Cheryl Hodges: I saw your question here earlier, but I didn’t understand it exactly. Then I read where you asked it again at the “5th Friday” post, and the extra bits of info helped me understand — at least I think! I’ll put the answer back over there, too, since I’m not sure where you’ll be looking.

    In the video, Cindy tells us the thicknesses she uses for her teardrop/skinner blend. She does use the thickest setting for the blend portion throughout. The strip isn’t very long (at least, not as long as some of the other canes she’s done in the past!) Of course, the length of the strip depends on how much clay you used for your blend. Did you follow the recommended amounts she uses in the video, or something different? I’m also wondering why you think that you did something wrong—did your cane not turn out right?

    Please let me know if I misunderstood, or if you need more info. Good luck with your butterfly project! ~Kat

  118. Cheryl Hodges, 03 August, 2010

    @ kat – I watched cindy’s video and she said one section of pearl, one section blue and half section green. I think she meant one section of the small regular premo blocks that are around $2.99. I found when using the tear drop method , it stayed very short whereas in the video Cindy’s looks like a longer ‘sheet’ I did not get enough of blend and there is too much white. but since my sheet was short, it kept getting wider and would not fit in the pasta machine and so I couldn’t blend it any more.

    I know some of you have done the butterfly morpho cane- could you help? thanks

  119. carolyn, 03 August, 2010

    @Cheryl Hodges: Watch Cindy’s hand as she feeds her Lietz Teardrop Blend into her pasta machine. The way she holds the clay keeps it from getting wide and short. This was such an ah-ha! moment for me!

  120. Cheryl Hodges, 03 August, 2010

    @ Carolyn – I did that too, but the whole thing seemed too short and wide to get any more blend. Cindy’s looked way longer sio i must have done something not quite right?

  121. Jocelyn, 04 August, 2010

    @Cheryl Hodges: My blends seem to run uneven too. Then I watched a video where the person just folded the clay up on itself (like pleats) to condense colors and the length of the sheet. Think I let out a huge sigh of relief, could not figure out out to correct that little problem, lol!

    If you can’t master the hand position over the pasta machine, look for something heavy and rectangular to close up part of the opening on the machine…I found an old heavy magnet works great, and I can adjust it to make the strip as wide or narrow as I wish.

  122. Tanya L, 04 August, 2010

    @Jocelyn: Jocelyn & Cheryl – I’ve seen magnets for the pasta machines at Walmart, believe it or not, just a couple weeks ago. I was tempted to pick them up because I have major problems with the width and even with keeping my clay feeding in straight sometimes. Sometimes it just kind of sucks over to the side.

  123. Jocelyn, 04 August, 2010

    Side suckering and “ears” are the fault of the pasta machine.

    Something about how the two presses come together, like that gray marker that shows on some pasta machine’s clay strips.

    Feel better? I sure did. Ahahaha.

  124. Tanya L, 04 August, 2010

    @Jocelyn: I DO feel better now that I know the technical term (side suckering!), and that you’re psychedelic and just KNEW that I get ears and gray marks too! LOL! Made me laugh again Jocelyn! My kid probably thinks I’m losing it… absolutely no sound coming from upstairs and all of a sudden mom laughs outloud. Time for the men in white coats!

  125. Jocelyn, 04 August, 2010

    It’s true though. LOL! Think Judith Skinner covered the issue in her video series on blends. Lordy, thank you Cindy. Judith is a genius and I love her contribs to the clay world, but, on camera….whew, a little “stiff.” Cindy, you opened up a brave new world for me with the videos and images you and Doug capture.

    To me, you two should win awards for the way you teach.

  126. Cheryl Hodges, 04 August, 2010

    @ Tanya and Jocelyn – I get what your saying and even though I did do what cindy recommended, it probably went a bit wider. However, the length of the sheet ended up being very short and when i look at Cindy’s video it looks way longe. That’s why i was wondering if it needed to be put through a thinner setting. I think I had the quantity right – one section pearl, one blue pearl and half green Will post a picture soon but I’m not too happy with it.

  127. Phaedrakat, 05 August, 2010

    @Cheryl Hodges: Shhhh, I was trying not to let out the secret information out to non-members! ;D *wink, wink*. I was just asking if you used the right ratios of color; sounds like you got it right! Your blend just got a bit out-of-control width-wise. The more you practice, the more you’ll learn to tame it and keep it the width you want.

    To get your blend more narrow & long, try rolling it up (colors running vertically—pearl, blue, and green colors all touching the edge you’re starting the roll with.) Then gently push the ends in towards each other a little to make it less wide. Next, flatten it a bit with the roller, keeping it in the same direction (stripes vertical, running away from you.) Put through the pasta machine, using the finger trick Carolyn mentioned so it doesn’t get any wider (stripes still up & down going into PM.) This will narrow the blend a little (or a lot, depending how much you pushed the blend together.) Do this a couple more times, making it a little narrower each time. As the blend gets narrower, it naturally becomes longer—even on the thickest setting.

    You also mentioned there’s too much pearl or white showing—sounds like you didn’t blend it into the blue enough. You can fold some of it over the blue and start the color-blending process again, which will take a little while. It will become thicker (and therefore longer) where they blend—you will have to “ease” and “adjust” that area so the blend isn’t too uneven on that side. That’s the cool thing about the teardrop blend, though; it’s easy to adjust a bit here and there. It doesn’t have to be so precise. You might want to fold the white into the blue first, before you start doing the “narrowing” mentioned above. That’s because when you push the ends in, it mixes or blends the colors a bit, anyway. So it will do some of the work for you…

    So anyway, I think your blend just got a bit wide during the creation stage—next time, keep an eye on it while doing your teardrop blend and don’t let it crawl past the width of your pasta machine. If it starts to get wide, roll it up, and push the ends together to make it narrower.

    Best of luck with this, although now I’m starting to think you’ve already completed the project (???) Hmmmm….let me know if you have any questions.  :D   ~Kat

  128. Cheryl Hodges, 05 August, 2010

    @ Kat – Thanks for all the help. I think I followed all that but it just somehow got out of hand and got shorter and wider. I did do a few slices etc and even though they have a bit more white/pearl in the center they don’t look too bad, still pretty (whichis the great thing about pc – no waste) However, I am going to practice and perfect that tear drop blend.

  129. Jocelyn, 06 August, 2010

    Cheryl, one thing I noticed about the teardrop blend is that it seems to work better for me if I start out with brand new clay, work each bit to the same level of conditioning, form the teardrops (always bigger than what I first think), then make an effort to touch the whole piece with equal firmness. Have hot hands, so if I stay too long in one place it makes that section more fluid and expand more.

    Also found using gloves and a couple of those acrylic bases for the stick on stamps to manipulate the blend (size the acrylic block to the work) help a lot.

    Struggle with this to this day, but, it’s a nice challenge to have. If I can now “lentil” I will master the blend.

  130. Cindy Lietz, 18 August, 2010

    JUST POSTED… Member project photos that relate to the theme of this page… Butterfly Wing Canes.

    Polymer Clay Projects

    You can view the larger images by clicking on the link by my name.

    BTW: Thanks to everyone above, who took the time to comment in this thread. Your feedback, support and engaging conversations are always such a wonderful part of my day. Although I don’t get a chance to address everyone individually, please know that I do read everything. ~Cindy

  131. Kimberly Tracy, 08 September, 2010

    This is fabulous! I missed the issue of Polymer Clay Cafe Mag where they did the butterfly canes, and now back issues are not available on it. I actually use butterflies in a lot of my work and am opening up an online gallery.

  132. Catalina, 09 September, 2010

    @Hi Kimberly! This tute is sooo cool! I love it! I hope you will will share you work with us. We love cheering each other on! Where will your online gallery be?

  133. Dixie Ann Scott, 20 August, 2011

    Hi Cindy, I just finished making the butterfly cane, your tutorial was excellent and I can’t wait to get it cooled down so I can cut into it. I have two questions in regards to any cane. How thick should I slice it for a pendant? How do I apply the UV resin without it coming off the sides. I purchased and watched the UV resin video but the wing is more tapered on
    the sides. Can you help me with this? I’ve not worked with resin before.
    thanks so much….Dixie

  134. Cindy Lietz, 20 August, 2011

    @Dixie Ann Scott: I am so glad to hear you are enjoying the tutorials Dixie! As far as how thick to slice the wings, that depends on if you’re covering in resin or not. Without resin I wouldn’t go thinner than 2 or 3mm thick on a pendant or it may break. Especially if you need to drill it and use a jump ring for hanging. If you’re using resin, you can go thinner because the resin gives it strength.

    When it comes to coating a piece with resin, the straighter the edges the easier it is to add the resin without it spilling over the edge. So if you plan to coat in resin, don’t taper the edges, like you would on a piece without resin.

    Hope that helps. If you do have more questions, do ask.

  135. Sandra, 22 August, 2011

    I had the opposite problem of the resin pooling in the middle. The edges I thought were straight, but the resin came in from the sides rather over the edge. any thoughts on what i did wrong?

  136. Phaedrakat, 31 August, 2011

    @Sandra: What kind of resin did you use, Sandra? Magic Glos is “infamous” for pulling away from the sides… (If that’s what you used, the workaround most people use is: put Magic Glos around the edges only, then cure. Then, add resin to the edges again PLUS the center, then cure.) Also, did you watch Cindy’s resin video?

    For more resin info, use the search box above. Type “resin pull away from sides” or something similar. There are several resin threads with tons of info & tips on this problem… Good luck! :D

  137. Cindy Peterson, 26 September, 2012

    Cindy – I am having fun making the zebra canes. Also tried the butterfly wing cane yesterday and it is very pretty. Have started baking for an hour and using the tent method. Experiencing more with your colors. Thank you for providing such great videos.

  138. Joyce R, 27 October, 2012

    I made the butterfly cane for the first time today. When I sliced into it, I yelled because I was amazed it was so pretty. My hubby came in to see what I was yelling about, LOL.

    I cut my cane in half and was trying to reduce part of it, but it just got squishy and I quit. Any suggestions on reducing this one? The piece I cut is about 1 inch.

  139. Cindy Lietz, 07 November, 2012

    Hi Joyce, a couple of tips for reducing canes…

    – if the cane is getting too squishy when you’re reducing it, let it rest for awhile. The clay is getting too warm on the outside and will more likely to distort.

    – try and use a firmer clay when making your canes. I use Premo which is a little on the soft side, but I am careful to make sure the clay is all of the same consistency and I try and reduce the cane slowly so as to avoid distorting the cane too much. Kato clay is better for making canes since it is firmer. Sculpey III is really soft and most people have trouble making canes with it.

    – the shorter the cane starts, the harder it is to reduce. Try and work with canes that are at least 1 1/2 inches long and longer if you are new to cane making.

    Hope that helps!

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