Basic Polymer Canes and Patterning Techniques - Virtual Workshop

Course Description

About this course

Build a grounded understanding of working with polymer clay and add a unique design aesthetic onto your jewelry making repertoire in this weekly course with polymer artist Bonnie Bishoff. Students will learn how to make numerous simple design canes and will then build off this knowledge with progressively more complex cane patterns. Color mixing, cane construction, clay conditioning, and record keeping will all be discussed and shown through pre-recorded video and live demonstrations.

Class will be held live via Zoom during the designated time frames. A link to the Zoom meeting will be sent via email. 

Each session will be recorded and you will receive a password protected link to the recordings that will expire after 30 days.

Please read the Materials & Tools tab! 

Meet the Instructor

Bonnie Bishoff

Bonnie Bishoff has worked collaboratively with her artistic partner and husband J. M. Syron since 1987. Starting as furniture makers, they made work that incorporated large panels of polymer veneers for 28 years. Gradually they shifted their focus to explore jewelry and mixed media pieces.They tend to work in series and on several fronts at once. The focus of their jewelry has been creating metal armatures, textured and oxidized metal surfaces, and polymer marquetry surface designs. In addition they have been exploring a series of wall panels or "paintings" in polymer veneers and wire armatured sculptures. 

They have exhibited widely in galleries and fine craft shows including the Smithsonian and the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Museum exhibitions include the Peabody Essex, The Museum of Art and Design, NY and the permanent collection of the Racine Art Museum. Their materials include veneers of polymer clay, silver, bronze, copper, and wood. They aim to create work that projects an expansive notion of art and creative pursuit to be shared by the wearer with the world.

Materials & Tools 

Students will need to have the following materials in preparation for this online workshop. If you do not already have them, a suggested item and/or a vendor from which you can purchase these items has been provided below. Click the vendor name (in red) to be redirected to a page where you can find or choose the item. The quantities you need for each item are listed first. Please be aware that some items may come in larger quantities than needed for this class. Please order these materials as soon as possible due to longer than usual turn-around times. We recommend not opening the packaging until the day of the workshop. 

The instructor recommends any number of the following colors of Premo! Polymer Sculpey Clay, which can be purchased from Polymer Clay Superstore, the Sculpey websiteFire Mountain Gems, or Shades of Clay (in Canada). Color choice are up to you, but black and white will be used heavily. Stay away from glitter options. 

  • 2 x 2oz bar of black #5042
  • 2 x 2oz bar of white #5001
  • 1 x 2oz bar of pearl #5101 (Accents line)
  • 1 x 2oz bar of gold #5303 or 18k gold #5055 (Accents line)
  • 1 x 2oz bar of pomegranate #5026 or fushsia #5504 
  • 1 x 2oz bar of cadmium yellow #5572 or zinc #5072
  • 1 x 2oz bar of green #5323
  • 1 x 2oz bar of purple #5513 or purple pearl #5031 (Accents line)
  • 1 x 2oz bar of cobalt blue #5063 or ultramarine blue #5562
  • 1 x 2oz bar of orange # 5033

Only purchase the suggested items below if you do not already have them. Please ask about substitution, do not assume they will work. 

Students should bring 

In addition to the above items, you will want to have the following common items available: 

  • masking tape
  • waxed paper or "deli sheets" 
  • cleaner (rubbing alcohol, windex, gin, or baby wipes will work)
  • notebook and writing implements 




Bonnie Bishoff


November 16 -20, 2020


10:00 AM -12:00 PM


2 days

All Levels

No Class Dates

November 17

November 18

November 19

Virtual - Eastern Time Zone
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