Become a Member! Some of the Many Reasons to Join MDPAG

About MDPAG… History of the Guild

Retreat pin presentationThe Metropolitan Detroit Polymer Art Guild began in 1993 by a small group of polymer clay artists under the direction of Marie Johannes. Twenty nine years later, our group has grown to over 50, with members from not only the metro Detroit Area, but from all over Michigan, as well as several from out-of-state.

We are an enthusiastic group of clayers, ranging from the beginner to the seasoned veteran. Besides polymer clay, our members are diverse in their skills and interests, including doll making, jewelry, sculpting, book making, painting, stamping and mixed media. Together, all this talent creates a rich and exciting setting to cultivate and spark creativity!

Some of our membership have taught workshops all over the country, written articles for craft magazines, and many have their work featured in polymer and other craft books. And from the beginning, our annual retreat has attracted clayers from all parts of the country.

We would love to have you join us at our meetings and become an active member of our guild. We are always interested in meeting other clayers and making new friends. See you there!

MDPAG Calendar

All of MDPAG’s events are listed here! Check this calendar often, something is always going on.

Monthly Saturday Meetings

Members usually arrive around 10 am, meetings start at 11 am, with a Clay Day to follow

  • May 21 — Election of Officers of the Board
  • June 18
  • July 16
  • August 20
  • September 17
  • October 15
  • November 19
Happy Denise
Just call her Sue
MDPAG Membership Perks


Yearly Membership Dues

$35.00 Local/$20 Long Distance Member per year January 1, 2022 to December 31, 2022
It’s very easy to join online, just click the button below.


Definition: Membership in good standing

Saturday Meetings! – MDPAG meets on the third Saturday of the month for a combined meeting and Clay Day. Meetings are held at the Holy Trinity Lutheran Church in Livonia, MI. Meetings start at 10:00 am, but there’s time to mingle, see what your old friends have been up to and make a few new ones too. Plan on making a day of it, stick around for the Clay Day afterward!

Members are encouraged to bring in their clay projects to ‘show & tell’, as well as share information about techniques, new books, magazine articles, as well as products and tools! On occasion, our members do demonstrations, if time permits. Come in early and check out our extensive, and ever growing library of polymer clay books and videos.

We hope you stop by!

Our meetings and Clay Day location:
Holy Trinity Lutheran Church
39020 5 Mile Rd.
Livonia, MI 48154
Get Directions

MDPAG has a long history of sponsoring educational opportunities for our members.
Some of our past instructors and/or retreat guest artists include:

Kathleen Amt
Judy Belcher
Kathy Bingaman *
Carol Blackburn
Leslie Blackford
Kim Cavender
City Zen Cane (Steven Ford and David Forlano)
Jean Comport *
Grant Diffendaffer
Dayle Doroshow
Marla Frankenberg
Christi Friesen
Lynda Gilcher *
Linda Goff
Donna Greenberg
Dorothy Greynolds *
Deb Hart
Lindly Haunani

Victoria “Tory” Hughes
Doreen Kassel
Donna Kato
Karen Lewis (Klew)
Maggie Maggio
Claire Maunsell
Layl McDill
Barbara McGuire
Carissa Nichols
Julie Picarello
Kris Richards *
Nan Roche
Marie Segal
Sarah Shriver
Lynda Struble *
Pier Voulkos
Melanie West
Karen Williams *

* Indicates MDPAG member instructors

We usually bring in one or two nationally recognized polymer clay instructors each year. In addition, we offer ‘Members Only’ classes taught by our own talented members.

Another perk of being a member in good standing is the opportunity to take a class through our Trina’s Way Program. This program, established in 2007 is in memory of Trina Kern, a longtime guild member and past President of MDPAG. Read more about Trina’s Way here.

We are always seeking new and fresh approaches to polymer clay and welcome class proposals from polymer clay instructors.

To learn more, contact our Education Coordinator Susan Kaplan.

Every Spring, MDPAG holds a 4-day clay fest at the Columbiere Center in Clarkston, Michigan. Here we gather for a long weekend of uninterrupted claying, away from our normal routine and other daily distractions. Meals are prepared and served cafeteria style, so no dishes to do either!

MDPAG Retreat is a wonderful chance to explore new ideas and gather inspiration as well as create lasting friendships with other clayers from near and far. There are demos with the featured Guest Artist, as well as our own skilled members, sharing their techniques and years of experience. Our Board puts together fabulous Goodie Bags for everyone, often with new products to try. If you love polymer clay art like we do, our Silent Auction is a great place to add to your collection. All in all, in it’s an experience like no other.

Although MDPAG members like to have fun and exchange claying information at our meetings, at clay days, and at Retreat, we also share a concern for our communities. Most of our meetings are conducted in the metro Detroit area, but our members come from far and wide – from Michigan and beyond. We are establishing a formal Outreach arm of the guild to help “spread the word” about polymer clay among the uninitiated. Spreading the word is even better when we can help others in the process.

In the past we have done such things as creating themed polymer decorations for holiday trees to be auctioned to benefit Children’s Hospital and making Bottles of Hope to help provide some emotional support to people who have cancer. Future outreach activities include displaying our art in public venues such as libraries, hospitals, and citizens’ clubs. And, if you have a location that could use a polymer clay exhibit, please contact Outreach Chair Kathie Harroun or any Board Member.

After every Saturday meeting we stay for a Clay Day. It’s a great opportunity for members to learn and share with other guild members. Clay Days after 1:00 pm are open to the public.

Clay Days are usually held at:

Holy Trinity Lutheran Church
39020 5 Mile Rd.
Livonia, MI 48154

MDPAG members enjoy the privilege of access to our extensive book and video library. Our Librarian makes sure our selections stay fresh and updated. This material offers a fun and affordable way to continually learn new techniques and be inspired by new and established artists in the polymer clay world.

For the past several years, many MDPAG members have participated in organized swaps of their artwork. Each year the group has selected a theme, established guidelines, and worked to produce swap items.

In addition to participating in the annual swaps, members may contribute whenever they want to an ever-growing strand of beads. Some members have several beads on the strand while others have not yet donated a bead. We even have some beads donated from visiting instructors. The beads provide members an opportunity to share their work in new areas of interest or in areas of their expertise while using relatively little clay.

MDPAG is on Facebook. You can also chat with other members on our Yahoo Members Only Group.

Check back here often to see fellow members work in the Gallery section (Our Work), the calendar of events, member benefits, and links to other polymer clay sites around the web. Don’t see one of your favorite websites here? Get the information to Webmaster Linda Vilas-Helton.

Upcoming Events

Election 2022

April and May are very important months for our Guild. We will be accepting nominations for officers of the Board in April and the Election by electronic ballet will follow in May.

Here is a rundown of the positions and their duties:


The President may authorize individual expenditures not already in the budget up to $200.00 and may be a signer on any check along with one other executive Board member. In addition, the President shall:

  1. Be responsible for the administration of the Guild;
  2. Set the agenda for all Board meetings and for all business to be brought up at Guild meetings;
  3. Preside over all Board and Guild meetings to be sure that the agenda is followed;
  4. Be personally familiar with the status of all committee work to assure that the committees adhere to the Guild’s policies and purposes and that the programs are being carried forward effectively;
  5. Be a member ex-officio of all committees (except the Nominating Committee);
  6. Appoint a parliamentarian to aid in the running of meetings and related matters if desired; and
  7. Approve bills for payment.

Vice President

The Vice President may be a signer on any check along with one other executive Board member. In addition, the Vice President shall:

  1. Assist the President in the accomplishment of his/her duties;
  2. Assume the President’s responsibilities in his/her absence;
  3. Book meeting locations, dates and times for Clay Play Days and all general meeting as determined by the Board;
  4. Inform the treasurer of payments needed for meeting room rentals and any other expenses;
  5. Be responsible for planning all of the programs held at Guild meetings; and
  6. Post the annual meeting schedule to the Members-Only Internet news group and send the information to the Web Site Coordinator for the website


The Treasurer may be a signer on any check along with one other executive Board member. In addition, the Treasurer shall:

  1. Administer and keep accurate records of the Guild’s finances;
  2. Deposit the Guild’s funds in a bank designated by the Board;
  3. Pay bills on behalf of the Guild and have the power to approve bills for payment;
  4. Prepare monthly financial statements for presentation at Guild meetings and post those statements to the Board internet group immediately after the meeting each month;
  5. Prepare an annual financial report for presentation at the Annual meeting held in June of each year;
  6. Prepare the budget for presentation at the first Fall meeting each year; and
  7. Prepare interim reports upon the direction of the Board.


The Secretary may be a signer on any check along with one other executive Board member. In addition, the Secretary shall:

  1. Keep copies of the Bylaws and keep them current;
  2. Record minutes from all Board and Guild meetings;
  3. Prepare a synopsis of Board activities, drawn from the Board minutes, for distribution to Guild membership through the Guild’s newsletter or internet sites, if requested to do so by the Board;
  4. Assist the President in developing and distributing the agenda for Board Meetings and Guild meetings; and
  5. Handle outgoing correspondence, thank-you notes, etc. on behalf of the Guild at the Board’s direction.

Meet the Board

Beverly Currie

Beverly Currie

Co-Vice President

Suzanne Stiles

Co-Vice President

Dorothy Greynolds

& Newsletter

Kathy Weinberg

Treasurer, Retreat Coordinator, &

Susan Kaplan


Lori Kozlowski


Charmaine Lipa


Kathie Harroun


Linda Vilas-Helton

Linda Vilas-Helton

Past President
& Webmaster

Favorite Links

A listing of our members’ favorite polymer clay related websites