Today Artist and Designer Jana Ewy shares a new spiral blendings technique with us to create beautiful cabachons for various Friendly Plastic Projects.
Spiral Blending Technique
Click on photos to enlarge
AMACO® Materials:Friendly Plastic Designer Sticks 8 colors
Amaco(R) Needle Tool
Other Materials:Griddle (set at 200 to 250 degrees)
Cutters: Round, Large and Small
Disposable Mixing Container
Jewelry Findings: Filigree and Rhinestone Accents
Non-stick Baking Sheet
Sealer: Envirotex Lite
Small Dish of Ice Water
1. Choose eight different colors of Friendly Plastic®, that you think will make a pleasing color combination. Cut three 1 1/2" squares, from four of the color choices and two 1 1/2" squares from the other four color choices.
2. Starting with the first group of color choices that have three squares each. Cut each of the squares in half diagonally, creating two triangles.
3. Next, cut each of the triangles in half, as shown above, creating smaller triangles. Continue, until you have 12 triangles of each color.
4. With the second group of color choices, that you have cut two squares each, continue as you did with the first group. The only difference is you will continue cutting the smaller
triangles in half until you have 12 of each color.
5. Using one triangle of each color, from the first group, arrange them into a square.
Note: I like to have a little REHEARSAL before going to the griddle with my pieces. Especially when it comes to color combinations and the placement of each piece.
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6. Next, using one smaller triangle of each color from the second group. Carefully, center and place them onto the larger triangles.
Note: Take your time and play around with your color placements. Once you are happy it is time to move them to the griddle and get cooking.
7. Place the baking sheet onto the pre-heated griddle. One at a time in the color pattern you have selected, place the larger triangles on the baking sheet and allow to soften. Next, carefully center and position the smaller triangles into place, onto the larger triangles. Allow the smaller triangles to soften and begin to inlay into the larger triangles.
8. Once you have a nice smooth inlay, it is time to start the spiral blending technique. Placing the needle tool straight down into the center of the softened plastic square. VERY IMPORTANT: You want to feel the point of the needle against the baking sheet. While keeping the needle straight and against the pan, slowly start drawing a spiral. Continue outward in an even pattern until you reach the outside of the square.
9. Continue the spiral blending with each of the squares. Allow the spiral lines you just created time to seal back together. This should only take a few minutes.
Another very IMPORTANT TIP: be sure to pull the needle away from the square, before picking it up. This will help keep the plastic from forming a string that could possibly damage one of your other pieces. Remember the softened plastic can act like hot glue…sticky and sometimes stringy.
10. Remove the baking sheet from the griddle. While the plastic is still warm, cut the circles by pressing the cutter into the softened plastic. Dip the cutter back into the
cold water after each cut. This will help keep it from sticking to the plastic.
OPTIONAL: Use a larger circle cutter to cut out a focal piece, for the tin.
Allow the plastic to cool. You may place the pan under cold running water to speed the cooling process along. Use the needle tool to press under the edges of the cooled plastic and remove it from the pan. Pop out the circles. If needed use a craft knife to cut around each one.
11. Mix the Envirotex Lite resin following the manufacturer’s instructions. Apply a thin coat to each of the spiral pieces. Allow to dry.
Note: I like to place my pieces on a non-stick surface. Held in place by double-sided tape. This way if there is any run off, it will be easy to remove later. Pour the Envirotex into a small squeeze bottle. The application will be more precise. Once the resin has been applied, blow softly through a straw over each piece to pop any bubbles that remain. Envirotex cures completely in 24 hours.
12. Position and glue the magnets onto the back of each small spiral piece. Allow the glue to dry.
13. OPTIONAL: Decorate the tin to your liking. Position and glue the larger spiral piece onto the top of the tin.
14. For a bit of added interest, add a filigree accent.
15. For the finishing touch add a bit of sparkle with a rhinestone accent.
16. These make a wonderful gift to give, and a great item to sell.
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Linda Peterson is compensated and endorsed by AMACO. The guests features may or may not have any affiliation with AMACO.