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problems with clay varnish

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  • problems with clay varnish

    I am using polymer clay varnish but I am having problems. The varnish seems to bubble up and/or peel.
    Can someone tell me what I am doing wrong? Also is there an easy way of giving them a nice soft shine without braking the bank (electric buffers....etc)?

    Thanks,

    Caprizzosa

  • #2
    Hi I wonder if you are putting too much varnish on. high gloss??? try elbow grease and a soft cloth..much arm ache involved..
    Handmade jewellery, to buy gifts or just to treat yourself visit my website, commissions welcome or join me on facebook for a chat

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    • #3
      I have found that if i have too much varnish on the brush it goes a bit bubbly, try just using a tiny amount at a time.

      Some people who make beads use an electric drill with a buffer attachment to make them shiny, I think it works really well from what they have said, but not a cheap option! Try googling it if you're intereested - i heard about it on a jewellery forum but cant remember which one!

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      • #4
        It maybe the brand you are using that is the problem. I recommend Studio by Sculpey (Satin). Stir not shake before use, also I apply with a flat water colour brush sparingly to the surface. I find it does bubble a bit if applied quickly but it always dries evenly. It can be applied before or after baking, I use it after. There is a gloss in the range which I haven't tried yet. You can get it at hobbeycraft its pretty cheap!

        Hope this helps,

        Anita
        www.raw-elements.co.uk

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        • #5
          Great ideas and suggestions! I am going to try applying less and also have a look at that satin one, it sound really good!!
          Caprizzosa

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          • #6
            so often it is problems in the application rather than the varnish (or in other words, you can get good or bad results with any of them, depending on how they are used)

            Using different brushes can make a difference, experiment with different types of bristle. Usually the softer the better. Some people even prefer to use their finger for varnishing.

            Try to dip the brush carefully to not trap bubbles. When painting the bead with the varnish, try to keep the brush in contact with the bead and do everything in one smooth, continuos movement.

            Try dipping the bead into the varnish and then wicking off the excess with a paintbrush (you need a thin varnish like the Fimo waterbased gloss, but gives good results with this method)

            For a good finish, you also need a good surface to start with - ideally, wet-sanded and wiped clean, so there is no dust or other debris on the bead and the bead allowed to dry thoroughly before varnishing.

            Several thinner coats are also better than one thicker coat. I like to apply a very thin coat with my finger, allow that to dry and then rub the bead with a rough tissue like kitchen roll or similar. Then apply the next coat etc.

            I think varnishing is like pretty much all things polymer clay - the longer you spend on it, the more attention to detail and the less you rush things, the better the results.
            Emma
            www.ejrbeads.co.uk - unique art beads & more
            www.ejrbeads.co.uk/shop - beads, polymer clay, glitters and inks oh my
            www.facebook.com/EJRBeads - Like me at Facebook!

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            • #7
              I have to say I'm not a fan of varnish or gloss. I Know you are worried about cost but I found a small bench grinder in the bargain bin at a hardware store for £18.00. I took off the grinder wheel and bought a felt wheel from Ebay for a few pounds and put that on. Honestly - this polisher has paid for itself about a hundred times over and as long as you sand properly - the clay comes up like glass. Well worth it and no hassle of faffing about with brushes and waiting for things to dry. Give it a go!
              Jayne
              http://www.folksy.com/shops/Jaykay

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              • #8
                Originally posted by krielj View Post
                I have to say I'm not a fan of varnish or gloss. I Know you are worried about cost but I found a small bench grinder in the bargain bin at a hardware store for £18.00. I took off the grinder wheel and bought a felt wheel from Ebay for a few pounds and put that on. Honestly - this polisher has paid for itself about a hundred times over and as long as you sand properly - the clay comes up like glass. Well worth it and no hassle of faffing about with brushes and waiting for things to dry. Give it a go!

                I got one of those too as Fimo stopped manufacturing the varnish I used-it dired fast and smelled like solvent, but wasnt-looked like glass when finished and waterproof.
                I bouught a buffing wheel from eBay when one finally came up-cost me a fortune but its paid for itself already, my lentil beads are stunning, although Ive noticed solid black colours tend to look a little grey, when I varnish over the buffed surface it looks amazing and dimensional

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