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We all want to have unique ways to sign our work, and with polymer clay there is a quick and easy solution - make a Name Cane! How do you make a name cane? Hmmmm... the first part is to visualize how it will come together...

A computer image can show you something face on, and then it will turn slightly and the picture appears 3 dimensional. You can see the image streaming out behind itself. This the the mental picture you need to build yourself a name cane.

I start out by rolling lots of sheets of clay about 1/2" wide on the widest setting of my pasta macine. Using both black and white, I make lots of sheets of both.

Let's make a cane that is the initials of Polymer Clay Central. We'll start with the P (right). There is a long back piece, a foot and a semicircle.

Let's begin with the long back piece. Take a sheet of black clay , and place a sheet of white clay on top and set it aside. This is your back piece (Fig. 1, left).

Now, to make the semicircle, roll a snake of white clay and wrap a sheet of black clay around it. Looking down from the top, cut off 1/3 of the circle (Fig. 2, right), and press against the sheet of black clay on the back piece. Position it so it makes the curved part of the P. Now, cut off a 1/4 section of the back piece and turn it 90 degrees to make a foot for the P (Fig. 3,left). To finish the "P", stack white clay around the letter and form a block.

To make the C's, roll a snake of white clay as large around as the letter P is tall. Wrap the snake with black clay, and stand this on end. Cut it in half lengthwise to make two half circles. Turn the right hand semicircle around and you will see two C's. Cut a 1/4 inch slice of black from the sheet of clay and center it on the top line on the C.

Stack sheets of white clay around these to form blocks (below, left).

Press your blocks of clay together and you have a name cane (above, right), which can be reduced further to "sign" your pieces. To prevent the white clay from getting dirty, it might be best to wrap the finished block with black clay before reducing.

There you have it... now you can build your own name cane!

Byrd Tetzlaff
©1999 Text and Photos

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