How it's Made

My Process of building the patterns

Before I even start building a pattern I first have to blend the polymer to make my specific color. It usually takes me a day to make colors. This is one of my favorite parts of the design process.  Once I have my colors rolled out into sheets I then start building the canes that can be different shapes depending on the pattern. 

building-cane-1.jpg

Once I have decided on the colors I’m going to use I then build different shapes to make my first of many canes. In this pattern I am working with polka dots of different sizes.

Here I have a two different canes, one with a big dot and the other with four dots.

cane-2.jpg 

Once I have the cane stretched to the desired length I make sure both of the canes are the same size and length. I lay them side by side. Since this is a square shaped cane I need to make sure the edges are square and even. No wrinkles. 

cane-3.jpg

Then I cut the two canes in half and flip them over and stack them so they are reverses of each other. I need to make sure everything is lined up perfectly so the patterns is reveal exactly. 

cane-4.jpg

Then I stretch the whole things again. Carefully. Too much stretching is not good…Too small is not good either, it has to be just right. Every pattern is different.

cane-5.jpg

Once I have stretched enough I will cut it into four equal parts and stack it again. This time I make sure that I stack everything going the same way. I could change the direction, but for this cane I have not. As you can see the pattern is beginning.

cane-6.jpg

I will stretch it one more time and do my final stacking based on the shape that I need. I make sure everything is squared up at this point and there are no air gaps. Then I let the cane sit for several days before I begin to use it to make my final project.

cane-7.jpg

I know I have left some steps out, but this explanation will hopefully give you a general idea of how I make my patterns. The simple answer when asked how I make my patterns is ….“its like making complicated sushi”.  For those who know about milefori glass techniques, my process is similar.