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Paperclay Help Please


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Has anyone made their own paperclay? It's expensive and I once saw a teacher's website where someone gave the recipe for making it.

Can you do paperclay in quadrants on a wall, or do you have to do the entire wall at one time?

If I want to cover a house with fieldstone, how do you build some dimension to the stone?

Do you paint with watercolors and what's the benefit to painting while wet?

Thank you.

Minis Over The Hill :unsure:

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The homade paperclay recipies I've seen were just plain paper mache mash. I've made paper mache that way before, and doesn't have nearly the same qualities as Paperclay.

Celluclay, which is a lot cheaper than Paperclay, and which you mix with water, is also a paper mache product, but is a bit more like Paperclay, but not quite. It isn't as smooth, but it can be worked into stones, or in my case, bark.

You can Paperclay, paper mache or Celluclay one section at a time, but you shouldn't let section one go totally dry before you add section 2. If you're working on a project for a period of days, keep it moist by covering it with a damp cloth.

The size of fieldstones can best be figured by taking a look at a real fieldstone wall. Some walls have bigger sized stones, some smaller. It's easier to work with the bigger size, less apt to look like a mishmosh when you're done. The thing is, don't make the stones too big or it'll look like your house was built with boulders. Stones less than 1"x1" are the best bet.

The benefit of painting wet on wet is that it lets you blend colors. Or are you asking about painting while the clay is still wet? I wouldn't paint damp clay, too much moisture and it's apt to crack.

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Well, this was my first attempt using Paperclay because I've had a pkg around for about a year. I was totally scared it would dry out right away, so felt rushed to roll it out and make the stones. I used a pencil to create the stones. The big problem was getting the clay out of the cut area, so I tried using a wide brush. That helped a bit. One pkg covered about 3/4 of the side of the house. I may try Celluclay on the other side to see the difference. Do you have to glue every inch? I just drizzled white glue here and there. All help is really appreciated! By the way, how do you "stipple a brush?"

Joane

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You could stipple with the brush, perhaps? If you add a bit of plaster of Paris to your papermache mixture, I wonder how the finished texture would work out? I carve damp spackling compound into stonework.

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To stipple with a brush you just sort of bounce it up and down over the surface, leaving tiny pockmarks. Personally, I don't think I'd do that for fieldstones. I think something like a crumpled cloth or waxed paper might be more satisfactory, though I'm talking off the top of my head here. Once some indentations were left, I'd smooth any sharper ones with my dampened fingertips of soft rag or paper towel, whichever seemed to work best.

Stone houses can be of several styles in so far as the stones go. I grew up in eastern PA, in and around Philadelphia in neighborhoods full of stone houses and they were mostly either perfectly cut,smooth stones, or a bit on the rough side, surfacewise. In other rural parts of the country, stones can get a lot smaller and rougher. They didn't devote much time to cutting them, or often all they had were small stones that other stonebuilding areas might have been used for rubble.

I don't know how the plaster of paris mixture would work. I think it might result in something a bit crumbly when it dried, but I'm just guessing. I mixed some wrong once when I was doing a papier mache project once, took forever to dry, and once it did it crumbled very easily.

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All the papermache recipes I've seen over the years included adding hefty amounts of white tacky glue, I always thought to forestall the crumbling when it dries. I was just wondering about the plaster powder for texture & hardness, to give the mix more clay-like properties.

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Joane, you could move over to DAS. It is the same as Paper Clay. It is about 4 times the clay for the same price! I used it on the stone on the base of my Mystery House. If you want to see, go to my gallery. There are some photos of it as I was working on it. With that you can add on after it is dry too. You just dampen the area that you want to add on to a little and go to work.. They carry it at Michael's here. It comes in white and terra cotta. It can be sculpted and painted the same as PaperClay.

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Casey, the Mystery House is fantastic and the foundation is exactly what I'm hoping to achieve for my Pierce. What do you mean when you say you started with a "stencil and gritty paint?"

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I've used joint compound to make stones for chimneys etc. Spread it on and then use a toothpick to draw the stones and paint it once it is dry.

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Kathleen, The house was a pickup at a garage sale and had the foundation already made with one of those stencil and gritty paint kits. I just worked over that and kind of used the lines that followed the stencil......Not completely but that gave me a place to start. If I had not had that, I would have gone and found a photo of stone that I liked and used that as a guide. I think that you could print off some stone that you liked and simply lay it over the wet DAS and indent it with a pen or pencil. Then you could deepen the lines after removing it. I did do the pouncing that the others were talking about. I used a small stiff stencil brush to do it.

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In Tracy's tutorial for the paperclay fireplace, she suggested cutting the bristles of the paintbrush to use for pouncing. Works really well.

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I have a package of Celluclay and I've been terrified to even open it - for some reason this whole paperclay thing makes me feel really unsure of myself. :wave: You've all been able to simplify it here so it's not quite so scary. Thanks, Joane, for starting this topic and to everyone for their great answers!

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I have a package of Celluclay and I've been terrified to even open it - for some reason this whole paperclay thing makes me feel really unsure of myself. :wave:

Kathy,

All you have to do is wait until you're really frustrated with one of your dollhouse projects, I mean REALLY frustrated. You'll rip open that clay and have no fear, at least that's how I got started. Friday was the worst paint day I ever had. The Arthur got painted over seven times and now it looks like the blue w white trim Arthur in the Greenleaf ad, little personality. So i went at that paperclay with a vengeance. Anger can be a positive stimulus sometimes.

Joane

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Joane, I have felt frustration, and it nearly conquered me. The Pierce staircase represents the worst month in my life (slight exaggeration, but not very much :wave: ) I wish I'd had my clay at that point, 'cause I would have embedded the staircase in a block of it & turned it into a crypt.

So I have great empathy for you & the 7-times-painted Arthur. This too shall pass, I guess. Meanwhile I'm going to go for it with my clay and hope I can get even marginally close to Casey's fantastic work.

BTW, I think your Arthur looks darling, and I love that little Adirondack chair in front (at least that's what it looks like to these old eyes.)

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Joane, this is just one woman's opinion. I am not a fan of celluclay. It is meant for regular crafts and is more course than paper clay or DAS. It is really hard to get it the right consistancy. Too wet or too dry and it is hard to work with. I used it years ago for regular sized crafts and was never happy with the lumpy finish I got. Maybe it would be ok for rocks tho. :wave: You might want to experiment with it on a sample of some kind first. Good luck! Let us know how it turns out.

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So funny that this topic came up when it did. I finally dove into paper clay yesterday, before this topic got started. I have had a package of Celluclay and 2 bags of Sculptamold forever and decided I need to just stop being chicken and try it! So yesterday, after much research on those brands, I tried the Celluclay. It is o.k., but why-oh-why didn't I ask you guys first? It is exactly as Grazhina and Casey have described it. It seems like it would be great for rocks or landscaping, or bumpy things, but I wanted a smoother finish. I'm still debating over whether to leave it as a base and cover it with something else smoother, or just start over. No big loss, I got it at a yard sale so really just my time spent. But for those considering it, it doesn't give a smooth finish. I may have to look into the DAS, that sounds neat.

Thanks everyone, good to know it wasn't just me doing it wrong! :wave:

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The DAS sounds neat to me also and if I never open the Celluclay it will be no loss, but I'm hoping my Michael's carries it. I'm SO glad I didn't try it for a kitchen floor like I was tempted to - one super frustration per house is enough thank you very much. :wave:

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Well, this was my first attempt using Paperclay because I've had a pkg around for about a year. I was totally scared it would dry out right away, so felt rushed to roll it out and make the stones. I used a pencil to create the stones. The big problem was getting the clay out of the cut area, so I tried using a wide brush. That helped a bit. One pkg covered about 3/4 of the side of the house. I may try Celluclay on the other side to see the difference. Do you have to glue every inch? I just drizzled white glue here and there. All help is really appreciated! By the way, how do you "stipple a brush?"

Joane

Sory i meant with. And every one awnsered that. sory. :wave:

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Everything was closed today cuz Easter, so couldn't buy and try the DAS or Celluclay. They really should keep Michael's & AC Moore open 24 hours a day or longer. I guess you just have to try all the different products to see their properties and what you like. The fieldstone around where I live is fairly rough, so the Celluclay may work well. Hope you paperclay newbies show your stuff when you get it done, it would be neat to show and tell.

Joane

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I have a package of DAS, and I played around with it a little back in December. It doesn't have quite the feel of Paperclay, but it's smoother than Celluclay and should be fine for stone work. Actually, Celluclay would make good stonework too, depending on what kind of look you were going for.

You really need to play around with things to see just how they work in your hands or with assorted tools or techniques.

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Just a hint on this -- DAS and Paperclay are not the same thing. Paperclay contains cellulose (hence the 'paper' part). DAS is clay but not as wet as Mexican clay is. I use DAS exclusively because I don't have as much shrinkage or cracking as I do with Paperclay and it's cheaper (cheaper counts A LOT for me :wave: ) Which you use is really a matter of preference since the finished product pretty much looks the same and the application method is the same for both.

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I use paper clay for many things other than to make rocks. For example, last week I was putting in a chair rail, and cut it much too short ( don't you hate when that happens) It was my last piece, so I had to piece it together. The gap was tiny, but it bothered me. I was out of wood filler, so I took the tiniest bit of paper clay and smoothed it into the gap and touched it up with paint, and the patch was invisible. It got me to thinking, and next I used it on my window trim, where the mitered corners met. They were pretty good, but still a slight gap, and once again the clay blended wonderfully. I even used it to fill the tab and slot on a dollhouse and didn't have to sand it hardly at all. It was for a 4 year old, and she plays with it a lot, and no problem with it comming out, or shrinking.

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