As promised, here are pictures of the finished ornaments from last month's post on making your own stamps. (They are still warm from the kiln, finished just in the nick of time. ) Here's a link if you missed it. http://beads-of-clay.blogspot.com/search/label/with%20Val
Mix your plaster and pour slowly into the tray covering the originals with a minimum 1/2 inch of plaster.( more is better) Shake it a bit before it sets to get the bubbles to rise, let it cure, and you are finished. When you pull the clay out and take out the originals, hopefully there were no under cuts in the originals. If there were, the original is permanently in the plaster. (Another thing I don't like about plaster !)
OK, here's the "quick and dirty" way, Bisque molds. Perhaps you will not get quite as much fine detail as with plaster, but the advantages outweigh that for me . This method works best if your original is also bisque, Although you can do it with glazed items( corn starch to release), or even sometimes with bone dry items as long as they are very flat and not too delicate.
Place your original on a flat board or bisqued tile, wedge a ball of clay the appropriate size, push the wet clay down over the original. In a minute or so you can pull it off. If it didn't work try again, no loss. Plus, if there was a slight undercut, making removal hard, you can still work on your original to correct the problem. When planning your original remember to consider shrinkage, since your original will shrink, your mold will shrink, and the new piece you pull will shrink.
I suppose it goes without saying how one would use the molds, but just in case there is a real newbie out there, You should have a piece of wet, wedged clay and just firmly press it into the mold. Scrape away the excess clay with any flat tool, scraping from the center outward. When it's ready to come out of the mold, you will see the edges start to pull away from the mold. Turn it over and tap it lightly on the table and WALA !
Happy mold making folks, and I'll see you next month. I am going to experiment with fired paper clay, so hopefully I will have some advice on it by next blog. Enjoy your autumn.
Val in Namibia