Hope you are all having a good week. We are almost through it - only two more days till the weekend! As some of you know, I posted a tutorial on how to make polymer clay candy back in April. If you missed it, you can go to my labels in the right column of this blog and click on Tutorials and find it there. It is also on Pinterest if you follow my boards. Click on the tutorial board.
Anyway, this is Part 2 of my candy tutorial. Same concept, but in Part 2, I will be making different candies and candycanes too. If you are just joining in, you will want to review the first tutorial before you start this one, as I might refer to it here and there.
Let's get started! As before, all my explanations will be below the picture so you can follow along. :)
I am going to be making these miniature lollipops! In my first tutorial (Part 1) we made larger lollipops, with three colors of polymer clay. Now let's do the same thing with four colors! Above are the four colors I will be using. (Remember, you can make your candies any size you want - just use more clay.) Before you start, make sure your work area and hands are clean. I am using a floor tile to roll my clay out. Make sure you use a flat, clean surface. If your surface has grooves or bumps, so will your clay. Not good! :(
Now that my work area is clean and ready. Once again, we will need a center cylinder color. That is my pink color above. We will be building our stripes around that center cylinder. So whatever color you are using for your center, make sure it is twice the amount as your other colors. You will notice in the above picture, that I have twice as much pink clay as the others. The orange, green and yellow will be my stripes - they are half the amount of clay as my pink.
Now, it is time to condition the clay. Heat of the clay in your hands by kneading it until it is pliable. Note: Before you move to a different color, use your baby wipes to wipe off your hands (or wash them with soap and water). The color on the clay can leave color on your hands. If you don't clean your hands first, the color can transfer to your next color. Baby wipes are the best to use - less getting up and down to go to the sink.
Here you can see that I have rolled up my pink clay into a thick cylinder (about an 1" thick). The other colors I have rolled out into skinny ropes. I am trying to get these around the same size - if one is a little thicker, no worries. Just go with it! :)
Let's start building our clay cane by adding the stripes of color to it. Above, I have taken my orange and placed it on the pink cylinder. Pinch off the excess. Keep adding your stripes to the pink center cylinder interchanging the colors and leaving space in between them. See the below picture. IMPORTANT - Make sure your stripes do not touch another stripe. Keep a separation between them.
Your clay cane should now look like this! Gently push your striped into the center (pink) clay. Make sure you don't mush them too much. (FYI - if your stripes are touching each other, next time roll out the stripes a little thinner.) See Part One of the tutorial - I explain why.
Now the fun part! Gentle roll your clay with a light pressure to set your stripes in place. Keep rolling lightly until your cylinder starts getting longer, but still even in thickness.
This is how it should look now. The stripes are looking good - not touching each other.
Since I am making tiny lollipops, I will be rolling this rope out much thinner than in the first tutorial. In the above picture it is time to pick up the rope and give it a few twists to make the stripes twisty. Pick up the rope and twist in one direction with your left hand while keeping your right hand (holding the other end of the rope) still. Hope this makes sense. I'm left handed - change if you are right handed.
This is starting to look good. Looks like candycane. I'm getting hungry! Once you get your rope the thickness you want we are ready for the next step.
Before you roll up your clay - remember to make a nice clean end. Cut off one end with a knife or rib cutter tool on the stripe line. (This is in my part one of this tutorial - see pictures there.)
Here I show you my rib cutter tool and how I have finished rolling up my tiny lollipop. When you get the size you want, cut on the stripe line like in the above picture. Where you cut it off is where the lollipop stick will be inserted. (A SWEET IDEA - Wouldn't these make darling buttons!! Oh yeah! If you want buttons, poke two holes all the way through the center and bake that way. I'm lovin' it!)
Next, I take some ordinary toothpicks and trim off the pointy ends. These are going to be our lollipop sticks.
I see a little chunk of clay missing in my lollipop. Do you see it? If this happens to you, be gentle and push the clay together. Guess I didn't see it when I was making it. LOL! Now my stick is ready to be inserted.
Next, I take my ice pick (or needle tool or toothpick) and poke a hole where I cut off the clay. Be very gentle and try not to touch your clay too much. Stripes can shift and mush if your hands are too hot or if you use too much pressure to make a hole. Try to make the hole right down the center of each rope about 1/4" in.
Insert your stick. We will be baking this with the stick in place. No worries, the stick will be fine. YAY! It is sooo cute. Ok ... set this sweet confection to the side and let's make another.
With your left over rope let's make the twisty rope lollipops.
Take a toothpick (leaving the point on) and wrap the end of your rope to the tip. Try not to squish it on, but carefully poke the end of the toothpick into the end of the clay and coil it up on to the toothpick.
Coil up your clay about half way down. Once your clay is on, trim off the excess (on the stripe) and snip the end of the toothpick off.
Ta da! Super cute. Make these bigger with more clay and use a wooden dowel or actual lollipop stick. You can find lollipop sticks at Michael's in the baking section of the store. Ok, now set this sweet, little lolly with the other one and let's make candycanes.
To make candycanes, we will basically use the same techniques. In this case, use twice as much white clay as red clay. If you want to add another color (say green) use the same amount as the red. The white clay should be your center cylinder. (Notice that in the sample candycane, one stripe of red is thicker, if you want this look, when you roll out your stripes, make one thicker than the others.
Again, knead the clay, form a center cylinder and roll out your red stripes. I am rolling out 4 ropes of red clay. FYI --- Red clay will definitely leave color on your hands -- baby wipes are really needed here as you can change your white clay into pink very easily. Keep your hands clean.
Place each red rope evenly around the cylinder from end to end, cutting off the extra length. Again, make sure your stripes do not touch each other- leave some white in between them. Press your stripes into the white cylinder without mushing the clay.
Gently start rolling out your clay to lengthen it! Try and keep it uniform in thickness.
Looking good, but still too thick for candycanes. Let's give it a few twists and roll it out more.
Ok! I am liking this look. Looks uniform and the thickness is just about right. I want to make candycanes that are the actual size of one I might eat. Keep rolling out the clay if you want smaller ones.
Once you get your rope the thickness you want, cut off the ends to make a clean edge.
Now just shape into a candycane and cut the excess rope off. NOTE: You have a decision to make here --- If you want ornaments, poke a hole through the top of the candycane all the way through the rope so that you can insert a ribbon, wire or fishing line to hang it by. If not, it is ready for baking!
Here is my baking tray. I have filled it up with lots of candy. I have lined my baking pan with foil and placed a layer of fiberfill batting on the bottom. If you place your polymer clay directly onto the foil, after baking, the side that was directly on the foil tends to be (in my opinion) a little shiny and not even looking. Batting is great and your entire piece will be baked to perfection. Promise!
Now, place a thin layer of batting over the top of your lovely confections! This protects the candy from possible burning.
I use a toaster oven to cook all my polymer clay in. It runs a little hotter than a normal house oven, so I am going to bake these candies at 250 degrees for 25 minutes. That should do it! If you are baking in your home oven, please see my instructions in part one of this tutorial - under my blog label "Tutorial". You will also need to clean your oven after with baking soda and water to remove any residue before you cook real food again. Good to know!
Once your candies are out of the oven and cooled completely, you can decorate. They might seem a little dull in color after baking. Use 3-D Crystal Lacquer to bring back that gorgeous candy shine to them. Paint on a few coats of this and sprinkle with fine glitter (glass glitter, too) when it is still wet. Let them dry completely and repeat a coat if necessary. If your lollipop sticks are loose, you might have to glue them in. Don't forget to paint your toothpicks white! Again, I covered this in the first tutorial.
Here are my finished candycanes and lollipops! These are made into ornaments for a Christmas tree. You can also turn them into magnets - decorate a top of a package - or put them into a pretty candy jar like in an old candy store. Whatever you can come up with! Make these for different occasions too ... birthdays, Halloween, Valentine's Day - just change the color of your clay to suit the reason or season. I added some ribbon and embellishments and they are yummy enough to eat. Maybe not, but they do look yummy!
I would love to hear if you liked this tutorial and if you have any different ideas on how you would use these candies. If you have any questions, please feel free to just ask. This tutorial is for you and I am here to help.
Give it a try! It is really fun once you get going. Make these up with your kids and make memories at the same time. Life is sweet with a little candy! Enjoy!