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Tuesday Tips - Natalie Pappas & Two Part Molds


Hi, I am away and a little too giddy with excitement over my son's wedding to post anything of my own on Tuesday Tips. But Natalie Pappas had stepped up and kindly offered up her demo of a two part mold she made from a sunflower button. I first ran across this demo her blog a while ago. I 've never done this but love this idea. I even have a couple of designs that I'm thinking I might remake using this technique. Natalie makes pendants with this particular design. But I have visions dancing in my head of two sided tablet beads. 

So here's what Natalie does.


I made the sunflower mold by pressing a button into two pieces of porcelain clay. (this mold was then bisqued for use in making her pendants).


I took a small ball of Taos red clay and gently pressed together the two molds. This is quick and easy, but it took a bit of practice to get just the right amount of clay each time. There are some variations in each pendant, but if it is twisted while pressing, or smashed too quickly, the details get distorted. I am careful to apply just the correct amount of pressure.



Voila. A lovely sunflower is uncapped. Next, I lift it out and smooth any rough edges.



Next it is time to attach a wire to the pendant. This is a high fire wire (also known as High Temperature Wire) which is fired along with the pendant.



But first I have to make a loop and snip it off. Next I insert the wire into the pendant.


Thanks, Natalie, for sharing this with us!

You can see more of Natalie's beads at her Etsy Shop. Natalie also has pottery and wonderful clay whistles that are made to be strung on cord like a large bead at her second Etsy Shop.

4 comments:

  1. Great molding idea Natalie. Also I like the way you make your high temp loops. What gauge high temp wire do you use?

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  2. I love learning new tricks, and Natalie has lots of them!
    Thank you for sharing.

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  3. Thanks, Mary and Yolanda!

    Mary, I'm thinking it was 17 gauge that I used in those pictures. Here's a link:

    http://www.bigceramicstore.com/Supplies/KilnFurniture/KilnFurnitureIndex.htm

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  4. I've been making molds out of polymer clay....one sided...why did it never occur to me to create a bottom mold too?? This is a great tip! And I have so much salvaged clay...it's time to use that for my molds...Thanks Natalie!

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