Polymer clay is basically plastic in an uncured state. It is made of Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC), pigment, filler and plasticizer. Different combinations of these substances give each brand of clay its distinct qualities.
Various canes made by Toni Ransfield.
Lady bug cane made by Toni Ransfield.
Polymer clay is a brilliantly colored modern modeling material that bakes hard in a home oven. Polymer clay comes in many colors. Mixing different colors will give you even more color combinations. It is also compatible with acrylic paint, embossing powders, glitter, metal leaf and inks. It is an incredibly versatile material that can be used on glass, ceramic, metal and even wood. Once cured it can be carved, cut out and even sewn.
Blue Butterfly cane made by Toni Ransfield.
Green leaf cane made by Toni Ransfield.
Polymer clay must be baked or “cured” in an oven to harden completely. I recommend baking you’re pieces in a toaster oven that will be clay dedicated. Although Polymer clay is labeled non-toxic, it is not to be used in conjunction with food items. Kitchen gadgets and tools can be of great use in polymer clay work, but they must be dedicated to the clay and never used in food preparation again.
Polymer Clay Millefiori
Millefiori, which means “thousand flowers” in Italian, is the process of merging rods of glass into specific patterns, such as floral petals, heating the rods and then stretching them out to form what is called the cane. The cane can be sliced and combined to simulate intricate floral and similar patterns and then used to decorate beads or other glass objects.
Orange Koi goldfish cane made by Toni Ransfield.
Millefiori canework can be replicated using Polymer clay. The canes are logs of clay which are created by layering differently colored and differently shaped clay pieces together (usually lengthwise) to form a pattern or a picture (the image runs all the way through the clay, but shows only at each end). Slices can be cut off the end to be placed elsewhere, yielding many little copies of the same image. The cane can also be carefully compressed from the outside to reduce (lengthening) the image/cane. This will give you a longer cane with a smaller image. The resulting cane can be sliced to form beads or used as a decorative layer for other object
Various canes made by Toni Ransfield.
various canes made by Toni Ransfield.
Millifiori is one of Toni Ransfield’s favorite techniques with polymer clay, so she decided to open a shop to sell my work to pen makers so they to can enjoy the beauty.
Toni Ransfield’s love for clay started at a young age. Before polymer clay Toni was a studio potter. When Toni could no longer fit behind the potters wheel and needed something to do with her hands for creativity, she discovered polymer clay. That was in 1991. Since then Toni has been obsessed with it. Polymer clay gives her the creativity that is loved with the vast range of colors the clay comes in as well as creating her own color palette.
Millefiori means ” thousand flowers” in Italian. Millefiori is Toni Ransfield’s true passion. It was originally an ancient glass making technique but it is now applied to polymer clay with wonderful results! Toni Ransfield loves making large canes with a pattern that runs through the entire cane. Slices are then cut from the cane and applied to practically any project that can be cured in a home oven.
Toni Ransfield takes great pride in her work and each and every piece is unique and one of a kind. It is her hope that you will love her art as much as she loves creating it for you. Toni cuts slices of several different floral canes that she has made and applied them to the pen, her cane slices are thinner than any machine on the market and thinner than most everyone in the polymer clay community. Then Toni carefully smoothes the cane slices onto the pen and baked in the oven till cured, sanded and buffed to a high sheen. For extra protection a very thin coating of gloss is then applied to keep the pen as shiny as it was when it has been purchased..