Saturday, March 1, 2014

Caning with Sarah Shriver, Kaleidoscope Diva

I'm so glad Sarah Shriver battled storm and airplane cancellations to make it to CFCF.  Despite the fact that she had to spend 2 nights in Charlotte, NC waiting for a plane to finally leave, she jumped right into our first workshop with her usual grace and good humor.  I was fortunate to spend day and a half with Sarah, and, as always, came away with some great ideas and a renewed appreciation for caning.  Sarah is a master of the craft, and is particularly famous for her personal approach to kaleidoscope canes. It's not just her method of making blends and canes that is special, it's also the seeming ease with which she whips up a perfect bead from a cane, while the rest of us sit spellbound.  She inspires me to try different color variations and combinations, and I was pleased with the results.

Here are the various kaleidoscope canes I made from my
basic cane block following her techniques.  Can't wait to actually get some pieces made from these!

The full-day workshop with Sarah covered something I haven't done before:  packing a cane with intricate sections.  Sarah introduced us to her fish bone cane, and had us all laughing at her stories of peoples' reactions to the jewelry she makes from this cane.  The cane is cute and it was really interesting to learn the ins and outs of keeping a cane image properly protected or "packed" to allow consistent reduction.  Of course, learning to reduce is also a skill that requires both good technique and lots of practice.  Sarah made it look easy.

My fish has a bit of a prehistoric, cave-drawing look about him, and that look has got me thinking of other things I could make with the whole cane-packing approach.  Gotta get some clay time!

I worked rather quickly on my cane because I was eager to try Sarah's approach to making this slip-on bracelet.  She shared her technique for a basically knot-less elastic band.  Very slick!

I also loved her idea of super-reduction and combination of the fish cane to make these cute earrings.  Making a cane and saving pieces in different reduction sizes opens all sorts of possibilities.

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