September 2001
Volume 2, Issue 9
Inlayed Mokume Gane
by Helen Hughes
print version
Editor's Letter | Letters to the Editor | Beginners' Corner | Montreal Polymer Clay Guild | Book Reviews | Lazertran | Using Cake Cutters | A Better Dremel Polishing Wheel | Inlay Mokume Gane | Surprise Canes | Email Us! | Home I've always loved Mokume Gane and the marbled or watercolor look of blended colors. However, I wanted a more predictable outcome of the design.

This is when I started brainstorming and experimenting, which resulted in a "new" or "modification" of an old or combination of techniques. I call it "Inlayed Mokume Gane."

My first attempt resulted in the following design, "The Hidden Butterfly."

I impressed a miniature cookie cutter into a layered stack of blue and white clay sheets. Then, to emphasize the butterfly design even more, I impressed my tools to emphasize the structure of a butterfly.

I loved the look that I achieved with my first attempt (see blue butterfly, left), but I wanted to go further for a more refined design. This is when I came up with taking two contrasting stacks of clay and inter-mixing them.

Using the same butterfly cutter (you could use any cutter), I cut out one butterfly from a stack of yellow clay sheets and one from a blue stack of clay sheets.

I pressed the blue butterfly into the yellow background and the yellow butterfly into the blue background. I then impressed the additional design features into the clay stacks.

The result was something totally different from anything I had ever seen. I think I'll call it "Helen's Inlayed Mokume Gane."

I love the look of this and the possibilities it holds. I would appreciate any input any of you have on this new technique -- or should I say combination of techniques!

Please e-mail me with any comments on this technique!