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Paper Mache Recipes and Techniques

 

Paper Mache is an amazing tool for doing all kinds of projects. And there are a lot of different ways you can make it. It all depends on the needs of your project and the materials you have on hand.

Here I have a bunch of different recipes, tips and techniques on making paper mache.

I have lots more paper mache stuff including lots of projects you can make. It's all on the main paper mache page here.

 

Liquid Starch

Liquid Starch

Liquid starch is a great paper mache technique. You just pour it in a bowl and use it to dip strips of newspaper, paper towels or cloth. It makes a wonderful hard shell that is very uniform and smooth. It does take quite a while to dry though. So you have to plan for that.

The picture shows a paper mache that I did using liquid starch. I simply placed it onto a balloon to get the shell shape.

 

Flour and water

Mix flour and water

This is the most common way of making up paper mache. It is easy and uses around the house materials. You just mix equal amounts of white unbleached flour and water. Typically 2 cups flour, 2 cups water. Mix it up until smooth and you are ready to go.

A Note

2 cups and 2 cups makes a semi thick paper mache which is great for strength. Typically I do the first coat with this. Then after that coat dries I mix a second coat that is 2 cups flour and 3 cups water. This makes a smoother paper mache which will make your project smoother. The picture here shows a paper mache helmet that I made. You can see that project along with a video right here: The Iron Helmet from Skyrim

 

CellluClay

Celluclay

Celluclay 1 Lb

Celluclay is an excellent quality paper mache material. Is kind kind of like very finely whipped newspaper. You just add water to it and it becomes clay like. You can vary the amount of water to change the consistency.

 

Celluclay

This picture shows what celluclay looks like. I will add water to it and its ready to use.

Celluclay

Here the celluclay is being applied to the castle. I mixed it up pretty thick so it would give me a castle wall look. You can mix it in all kinds of consistencies by adjusting the amount of water to add.

 

Castle

This picture shows the celluclay after it has dried. You can also see how I got diffferent consistencies with it.

 

Tips and Techniques

Making the Flour Water Mix - I talked about this already but it is quite ok to tinker with the mixture of flour and water. You can get different consistencies and different strengths.

Adding Salt - When making flour and water you should add a tablespoon of salt to the mixture. This will prohibit mold growth. With humidity and time it is possible for your project to get moldy. This is because you are using flour. Adding salt will help prohibit that.

Spraying/sealing your project - Once your project is done, painted and dried it is a good idea to spray seal it with some kind of fixative. It will preserve it and the colors of it. There are a lot of products you can use for this.

Rustoleum

This Crystal clear enamel is what I use. It works really well and gives a light shine to the projects. You can get it on amazon. It is also available in any hardware store. Rust-Oleum Spray, Gloss Crystal Clear

 

Use a fan

Tip: Use a fan on your paper mache. It will help it dry a whole lot faster. Rather than waiting overnight for it to dry this will speed it up to only an hour or two.

Cardboard Frames

Cardboard frame

One of the biggest things about paper mache projects is making up the frame to put the mache on. You have a whole lot of options when it comes to this and here are a few pictures. I typically use strips of cereal box cardboard to make a frame. You can use all kinds of things including a balloon. Once the mache is dry just stick a pin in it to pop the balloon!

 

Cardboard frame

 

Balloon

 

 


Books On Paper Mache

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