Polymer beshert

Joey Barnes explains "beshert" and her timely donation on PolymerClayDaily.com

How did Texas’ Joey Barnes happen to have a spare Lucy clay roller that she donated to the women at the Ohio Reformatory? She explains that “When these machines came out several years ago, lots of customers were having difficulty understanding the machine’s roughly translated Czech/English instructions.”

Joey offered to improve them. That led to her translating their teachers’ contracts and operators’ manuals. When she refused payment, Lucy Tools sent Joey their biggest “Elephant.”

But the Elephant was too big for Joey’s workspace so she set it aside waiting for the right use.

When she saw that the ORW students needed a second Lucy Elephant, she thought, “Beshert!” That’s the Yiddish word for “meant to be.” The funds raised on PCD will go to other needs of the prison program.

Ever the collaborator, Joey credits Carol Simmons, Ivy Niles and Corrie Beth Hogg for giving her inspiration for her flower box (shown here) and garden series.

Thanks to you…

Amy Giacomelli shows you how to give thanks on PolymerClayDaily.com

Colorado’s Amy Giacomelli (SkyeArt) uses only polymer, paint and grapevine twigs to give us the message of the day. Her mini pumpkins measure 1 1/4″ x 1 3/4″.

Amy specializes in well-chosen words stamped into pears, pumpkins, peas, and other polymer shapes. They’re personal and popular gifts.

Thanks to you, a second industrial-strength pasta machine is within reach for polymer students at the Ohio Reformatory for Women. That you consider them worthy of support makes a great difference in how these women see themselves. That’s the real treasure.

Kindway polymer wares are sold by volunteers in bazaars and craft shows all over Ohio. The sales pay it forward to women returning to their communities. You can help in this win/win cycle:

Let’s get this rolling

Michigan’s Georgeann Galante helped launch polymer lessons at the Ohio Reformatory for Women with her donation of 14 Atlas pasta machines several years ago. Those machines did not fare well when they were screwed down tightly to the tables. They eventually worked themselves apart.

We added a Lucy machine when we won the bid on it at the IPCA Synergy 4 auction. That machine is designed to be bolted down and continues to work well.

But one lone machine shared among the whole group slows production. So we’re raising money to buy another prison-approved roller to be used by the students in the Kindway polymer program.

Buy Helen Breil's newest tutorial and support the ORW prison program on PolymerClayDaily.com

You can help by buying Helen Breil’s newest In the Loop tutorial (a portion goes to the ORW program) or by donating to the program directly.

PCD will tell you more about the prison program as we sail through the holidays. Click in the right column to keep us rolling along.

The wishing well

ORW on PolymerClayDaily.com

Your messages on my birthday burst onto my computer screen as I packed up for a class yesterday. Thank you!

And the surprise party where I was named Polymer Prison Princess for the day was so memorable that I have to share the scene.

ORW decorations on PolymerClayDaily.com

 The polymer wishing well filled with good wishes was a special gift from students at the Ohio Reformatory for Women.

The workroom was festooned with hand-colored toilet paper streamers that ended in rosettes. The table was strewn with confetti made from colored paper scraps interspersed with glints of silver from small pieces of saved pop tart wrappers. The wishing well was wrapped in a potato chip bag turned inside out to camouflage the label.

Students commissioned a couple of songs written and sung by a talented inmate. Cards were hand-lettered. The birthday cookie bar was cleverly made from commissary items (Meghan said I could share her special recipe).

I’ve never been to a more festive party. You couldn’t find more resilient, creative and generous women and I felt truly honored. They follow your work (via printouts of PCD posts), read all the donated books and magazines. You can be proud to have them as members of our community.