Nan is author of the very first book about polymer clay entitled “The New Clay” published by Flower Valley Press. Hers was the first book to compile all the available information about polymer clay as well as provide techniques and project ideas. As a scientist, Nan has kept herself informed of the changes in the polymer clay formulas along the way as well. Her focus has been on faux metal working and fiber techniques, extruded clay, and Japanese kashi gata. She has taught nationally and as always, is bringing her knowledge and wit to CFCF for the 3rd year running.
Braids, Plaits, and Chains: Exploring Extruded Clay
Along with the ability to extrude polymer clay into cords, comes a world of fiber-like techniques that is vast. This workshop will focus on just of few of these techniques: braiding, plaiting and chaining. Working with polymer clay gives us possibilities that fiber cording would not: the ability to shape plaits and braids and then fix them with baking. We will learn how to extrude polymer clay using a clay gun as extruder and a caulking gun for pressure. Finishing techniques using rubber cording and drilling will also be taught.
Braiding can be very simple but can also be much more complex by using multiple strands. Simple braids can be grouped for elegance, and more complex braids can have round or square shapes. We will explore several types of braids and create one braided piece in this class.
Plaiting is a form of braiding that is done with multiple strands but is usually flat in appearance. The number of strands and the color order of the strands are some of the variables possible with this technique. We will complete a simple plaited neckpiece.
Chaining is a technique that comes from the metalworking world. It uses cords that have been made into loops. The loops are interconnected in a sequence to give a chain structure. We will learn the simplest form of this technique with demonstrations of other more complex structures.