Another Ornament Thursday (once again, it is Thursday Chez Short One, if not Chez Blogger), another week closer to Christmas. Everyone have their Christmas shopping done? No? Are we panicking yet? (Don't answer that.) Well, you'll note that I've violated the four criteria I laid down last week. However, several people pointed out that the non-safe-for-Short-One ornaments could simply be put higher up on the tree (although I still have disaster scenarios where he pulls the whole tree down running in my head). Plus, I found it too hard to resist the call of metal clay and beads this week.
This piece is a collaborative effort between myself and the SO. As you may have noted from older photos featuring his artwork, the SO has an art table with a roll of craft paper attached. We have quite a bit of his original work stored up already, and I'm always on the lookout for different ways to display/use it, other than "refrigerator" art. For one thing, a number of privileged relatives will receive packages wrapped in unique, one-of-a-kind, handmade wrapping paper this year. (Hopefully the crayon won't come off on their hands.) So, I decided that an ornament with a small piece of artwork in it would be perfect for this year and following years. This is simply a ring made with PMC. I cut the artwork to fit inside and then filled the area with resin to fix it in place. Also, since it is a ring, it is double-sided. I have a cute photo of the artist as a young man on the flip side of this one. Oh, and the little Christmas-y dangle is made from faceted red jasper and a faceted rondelle of peridot.
Instructions to make this ornament follow. Photo Ornament
©2007 Melissa J. Lee
PMC3 packet (10g is more than enough)
pin tool (or toothpick)
liver of sulphur
Wenol silver polish
2 photos or artwork etc.
Mod Podge (or other sealer)
resin (I use UV resin from Art Clay World)
resin cleaner (for UV resin)
UV light (for UV resin)
clear packing tape
2 jump rings
1 2" head pin
1 faceted red jasper bead
1 faceted peridot rondelle
scrap of red ribbon
Apply olive oil to work surface, roller and hands to prevent sticking. Roll out PMC3 5 cards thick. (I should add at this juncture that, if you don't own a kiln, you could easily substitute polymer clay and coat the piece with Pearl-Ex powder to give it a metallic look.) Texture on both sides with texture tile of your choice. Using two sizes of biscuit cutters (or a circle template, whichever), cut a ring to whatever size you desire (mine has an outside diameter of 2" before firing). Designate a top and bottom and poke holes in both sides. Either finish the piece while leather hard with a little water and a brush or sand piece once bone dry to finish (if the latter, I highly recommend wearing a mask rated for metal work). Fire in kiln at 1290F for 10 minutes. Remove oxidation with brush. Prepare liver of sulphur solution (I used hot water, since I wanted a dark patina here, but cold is easier to control) and dip brushed piece in the solution. Rinse in water once you attain the patina you desire. Polish with Wenol silver polish to bring out pattern.
Select and print images you would like to place in the pendant. Put PMC ring on top of image and, with pen, trace the inside circle. Do this for both images. Cut images out carefully. Using glue, paste images back-to-back. Finally, images must be sealed before sinking in resin. I apply 2 coats of Mod Podge to each side and dry thoroughly. Don't worry if the Mod Podge leaves a little streakiness - this will not be visible, once the image is coated in resin.
Clean PMC ring thoroughly with alcohol pad and refrain from touching the piece with your bare hands after that (wear your nitrile gloves). Dry thoroughly. Cut length of clear packing tape and place the PMC ring firmly on the packing tape. You must ensure that there are no bubbles or gaps between the ring and the tape - otherwise, the resin will dribble out and you'll end up with a sticky mess. Also, I like to fold down the ends of the tape, so I have non-sticky "handles", if I need to manipulate the piece at all (which I usually do). Prepare resin (whichever type you choose). Apply a thin layer of resin within the ring, enough to barely coat the tape inside the ring. I find that I have more control over resin application if I use a syringe, so I've put that on the list. You don't technically need it, of course. For UV resin, cure this layer by placing under UV light for 3 minutes before proceeding to the next step. Place your double-sided image in the ring. Apply a second layer of resin to cover the image facing upwards. Allow the resin to cure (or cure UV resin by placing under UV light). Once resin is fully cured, you may remove the tape. For UV resin, apply resin cleaner to both sides to finish.
To finish, wire wrap red jasper and peridot beads and attach to pendant with jump ring. Attach second jump ring at the top and thread ribbon through to hang pendant.
If anyone has any questions regarding these instructions, please feel free to leave me a comment. Oh, and one thing I forgot to do was stamp the date on the PMC before firing. I would hope to make one of these each year, so next year I'll definitely add the date.
Thanks for stopping by to look at my ornament this week! But wait, there's more! Please visit these lovely blogs for more ornament goodness:Sara Naumann Lynn Kvigne Candie Cooper Katie Hacker Margot Potter Linda Augsburg Melanie Brooks Lukacs Art Bead Scene Cindy Gimbrone SuzanneHumblebeads Polymer Clay Craft Gossip Debba HaupertElaine Luther Rebecca Peck Jean Yates Michelle McGee Jenny Harada
Jennifer Heynen Hali Chambers Kriss Kramer Brandy Lung Gill
ps. Just to clarify from yesterday - the one day holiday sale in my Etsy store will start at midnight Eastern Standard Time on Friday. I'll have the SO pick the discount rate out of a hat before he goes to bed, but there won't be any special announcement about that on the blog before midnight. I'm going to manually change the prices, so if there's something you like, please wait until the item is marked "Sale" before purchasing. Thanks!