Polymer Clay Canes for Beginners

27 videos, step by step, beginner cane workshop beginner Cane Tutorial What people are saying about this tutorial. jennifer rose Just finished this first workshop on how to make canes, and I must say I learned so much. This is exactly what I have been looking for, someone who could explain cane making in a step by step that process that I could replicate. I watched the videos, went into my studio and began to create all of the canes Alice showed. I finally have results I can be proud of, and I say thank you so much for doing this workshop. My only question now is when do we get more workshops. If you are only going to take one online class let it be this workshop. Thank you Alice for your hard work, and your dedication to helping others learn the joys of polymer clay.

Online Workshops with Alice Stroppel


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Czextruder Mini Review and Tutorial

Czextruder cane tute

I have been using the Czextruder from Lucy Clay for several months now and promised to give a quick review. I’ve been making a few different canes with a couple of the disk and really enjoy using this quirky little canes in my cane mapping. So I thought I’d combine the review with a short tutorial.

You can see this cane used on the wispy ends of the tail on this fish and across the middle.

Polymer Clay FIsh -  Alice Stroppel

If you’ll notice, I don’t care if the curvy parts are lined up perfectly, actually, I want the cane to go this way and that, more organic.

Fish Tail close up

I find the extruder to be very well constructed and it as a large loading tube which I like. It holds more clay than other extruders I’ve used. It’s easy to clean.

The part I find difficult is the loading. The plug is not attached to the plunger and that makes it harder to reinsert, but worth it in the end.

I like that the disks from other extruders and disk makers will fit this extruder. I believe Cynthia Tinapple’s disks fit as well.

Over all I find it an asset to my polymer clay tool box.

You can order yours from Lucy Clay or if you live in the United States Kimberly Idalski represents the company here.

New Girlfriend Bangle

I’ve just posted this new girlfriend bracelet in my Etsy Shop. She’s the third one I made and I can tell you the truth, I’m having a blast. Each bracelet uses a bunch of clay and canes, but it’s worth it in the end because these bracelet just make everyone smile.

On another note………

I want you know that I continue to be amazed at all the incredible polymer pieces that are being created by artists around the world using the Stroppel cane.  From France to Romania the Stroppel cane has taken many shapes and been including in many designs. I’ve have been gathering each one as they come to my attention and “pinning” them to my Pinterest page.

If you make something using a Stroppel cane, please let me know and I’ll added it to my Pinterest board.

If you want to watch the video it’s just to the right at the top of this page.

Creating a Story Board From Old Canes

If you have been playing with clay for awhile, you have to have a box full of bits and pieces of things that are half finished or half burned or just a big question mark. If you’re like me, you can’t even remember doing some of them.

Anyway….I’ve been cleaning and rearranging and wondering if I should just throw some of these older “probably never going to finish” bits away. When I came across this piece that I was messing around with (see it here) and decided that instead of throwing it away or putting it back in the shoebox, I’d combine it with other slices of old canes and make something just for me to hang on the wall.

So here it is, a sample board of canes I’ve made or I like to call it a story board because it’s kind of a story of where I’ve been.

I’ve mounted them on a piece of black foam board that I got from the dollar store and put it in a dollar store frame. So there isn’t much money involved but I’ve rescued some canes and I get to look at them from time to time.

Next….another idea I’ve been working on. See ya’ then.

Covered Dish – Polymer Clay Cane Swap 2001

City-o-Clay Swap 2001

City-o-Clay Swap 2001

All the canes on this dish are from a cane swap in 2001 in what was then know as the MSAT clayart yahoo group.

This post is for luny (Mickie McClain).  She let me know that the face cane I used for my Santa ornament was made by Melanie Taylor .

luny also said she made several canes for this swap and I’m posting this covered dish that I covered with slices of all the canes except the face. I can tell you some of the people that made some of the canes, but not all. I’m hoping that luny will tell me if one of these is hers.

The animal skin canes are from Nora Jean, leader of the group. The Egyptian canes are from Donna Worth, who I was fortunate to meet in Montana. The blue rose is from Jeanette Roberts who I exchanged lots of emails with and I don’t know who made the rest.

I thought I was so clever to save the canes in this way, I just wasn’t clever enough to write down who made what. But I thought this was fun and I keep it on my desk filled with paper clips.

Today was back to work a little for me. I have a project I’m working on for a publication. Nothing giant, just a small part, but fun and flattering. More about it later.

Here’s the other side, if you know who any of these canes belong to, or if they are yours, let me know. I’d love to add your name to the list.

The other side

Cat and Cat Polymer Clay Buddies

Cat and Cat - polymer clay

Cat and Cat - polymer clay

A friend saw my Catbleu she wanted a couple for her sister. So I made these guys and they’re ready for the oven. Cats have always been a popular subject, people love their cats. I couldn’t resist caning these two guys. Very Alice in Wonderlandy.

I want to play around with this technique some more, combining canes with figures. 2d with 3d marry to create interesting possibilities.

Have a happy Sunday and just think Christmas with be over by this time next week. Are you ready?




Just for fun, this little guy was fun and easy. Canes and shapes combined to make this 3D figure. I think I’m going to attach a loop in the top of his head so he can be an ornament, hang from a rearview mirror, become a fan pull or whatever comes to mind.

Pod or Maybe Bud Necklace From Newest Polymer Clay Canes

Pod Necklace - Alice Stroppel

Pod Necklace

I’ve been having the best time over the last few days. I have decided that I am going to do all those things that I have been wanting to do. Okay maybe not all of them. Not enough hours in the day for that.

I’ve wanted to make pod necklaces ever since Kathleen Dustin did her first ones. So this pod necklace, nothing like nor near Kathleen’s fabulous work, never will be, don’t want it to be, but I enjoyed it so much and in the end, that is what matters.

Actually this is more of a bud necklace I guess. Remember, I don’t do jewelry really. At least I didn’t, so I need to work on design, but I smell challenge ahead. Watch out.

Pod Necklace - Alice Stroppel

Pod Necklace

I’ll tell you what was funny, cropping the picture. I don’t have any clothes for my mannequin and I had to be very careful how I cropped it. Okay, I know I could have used something of mine, but I was lazy and just wanted to take the picture. Besides, she is the size I dream of being and all my clothes would swim on her. That would mean pinning and tucking and well….no.

I have another necklace that I made today using the focal bead from the other day and I’ll post that tomorrow.

One Polymer Clay Cane = Three Leaves and One Pod Thingy

Leaf Cane- four ways - Alice Stroppel

Leaf Cane- four ways

Yesterday I worked on colors, today I blended and cut and shaped polymer clay into one main cane. I cut the large cane in half and then cut that half into three pieces.

The first piece I shaped it into the first leaf and you can see how I shaped the other two pieces. I now have three different leaf shapes to use and all from the same cane.

Then I cut another piece from the original cane and cut and formed the bud/pod thingy. Not happy with the white part, but I’ll fix it later.

I love the way the colors make me feel. As I blend, I can feel myself getting excited about the way things are beginning to look. That’s what keeps me coming back for more, the excitement of what’s just around the crank of the pasta machine.

Now on to making more leaves and things to go with these so I can get excited about putting them all together to create something else. Sweet!!

Polymer Clay Face Cane Bracelet Series – Video

I am so relieved. My internet connection is actually working today and I was able to upload the following video featuring my new bracelet.

This New Bracelet video gives my Etsy customers a better look at these new bracelets and a simple explanation of what a cane is. Visit my Etsy Shop for the bracelets that are for sale.