Sunday, December 4, 2016

Toadstool Ornaments - Paper Mache How-To

Well, the 2016 Ornament Swap hosted by Val at Yarnigras is wrapped up and boxes full of handmade ornaments are en route all over the country.

I cannot wait to receive my package and see what my fellow swappers / crafters have dreamed up for this year's theme of "Holiday Toadstools".

As for myself, I had a couple ideas started and scrapped.... and finally decided on paper mache (I cannot type the words paper mache without hearing Woody Harrelson saying "PAY-pee-err MAshay" on Will & Grace - - anyone else remember that episode?)


I was so pleased with how they turned out -- just a little rustic with some bling -- like me!

And here is how I created them:

You will need:
  • Tin Foil
  • Toothpicks
  • Flour
  • Water
  • Old book pages or newspaper, torn into strips
  • a decopauge or gel medium for sealing (I used Omni Gel that I picked up at Michael's -- highly recommend!)
  • Paint Brushes
  • Round Stencil Dauber
  • Eye Screw (for hanging)
  • Baker's Twine
  • Hemp Twine
and here's how to do it....

First you need to make your paper mache form..
  • tear off a piece of tin foil about 12 - 14", place a toothpick in one corner (this will give your stem support) and start rolling inward.  After a few rolls, fold and crunch and slightly tear foil to create your stem and then crunch foil into toadstool cap shapes - your form should be one continuous piece - - there is no perfect toadstool!  Every toadstool form I made is completely different! Thick caps, flat caps, misshapen caps - they will ALL look good!

Once your forms are ready, it's time to mix your paper mache medium.
  • Mix 1 Cup Flour and 1 Cup Water with an immersion blender to create a thin watery paste.  This amount was enough to create 12 toadstools which each measured 4 - 5" tall with caps measuring from 2" to the size of my palm.
**crafter's note:  wash your immersion blender IMMEDIATELY  once this paste hardens, it is like cement!!
  • Dip your torn pages into paper mache batter and start covering your tin foil form.  I used about 3 layers to cover. (and again, wash your bowl immediately when finished!!)

**crafter's note:  I wear latex gloves for this process - - you should have a box of latex gloves in your kitchen and craft room!!  They are so cheap and are really a crafter's best friend!!

  • Let your pieces dry thoroughly.  WOW - - 24 hours later, my pieces were still SOPPING WET!  I didn't have time for this non-sense!  I put the dryer rack in my front loading dryer and placed my pieces on top - - 2 cycles of 40 minutes on high - - cement hard shapes!

  • Now we start painting!  For my base, I used Delta Chalky White Acrylic Paint - - this is my "go to" white paint for crafting projects. 
**crafter's tip:  For my next paper mache project, I will use a lighter coat of white and let the printing on the book pages show through
  • Now paint the caps a bright, crimson red.  After the red paint is dry, use a round stencil dauber to add white dots to your toadstool cap.  
  • Let dry
  • Brush entire toadstool with Omni Gel Medium (or other gloss/matte medium of your choice) and let dry 
  • Once dry, brush another coat of Omni Gel Medium on toadstool cap.
  • Immediately pour an iridescent glitter all over cap of toadstool (I used Heidi Swapp Marquee Love Chunky Glitter -- best glitter I have EVER used!  LOVE IT!!!)
  • The Omni Gel medium really tones down the color of the paint and makes a great adhesive for the glitter.
  • Once glitter has dried, twist an eye screw into top of toadstool and use a combo of bakers twine and hemp twine as a hanger.
Thanks so much for checking out my project today!

XOXO
Shelly




1 comment:

Michelle Wells said...

These are amazing. Love the dryer technique.