Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Paper Mache Gilded pitcher

Hi everyone.

Thank you for all your comments. Someone asked me why I was giving away so much detail, and didn't I want to sell the product?  Well, the truth is that paper mache and gilding is so time consuming, that I would have to sell this pitcher, for instance, for at least $600 in order to make it pay for my time.  It is for sale if you want it.  And we can haggle a little over the price!

The next thing I want to share with you is my paper mache gilded pitcher, which I was talking about.  It is about 14 inches tall. It took 13-15 layers of newspaper to make the structure sturdy enough. (For paper mache I use flour and water.)


I started with a balloon for the lower half. The top was molded over the neck of a clay pitcher. A cardboard handle was added.

The scalloped base was also cut from cardboard covered with about 3 layers of newspaper. Two or three coats of gesso gave it more body. (Instead of gesso you can use latex primer.)

I realize now that for the base I could have used a plastic or cardboard deli container and then cut out the scallops, but it did not occur to me at the time! Live and learn.

Notice that in order to make it flare at the bottom, which is what I wanted, I had to cut it on a bias, and I ended up splitting the scallops to make it happen.

The pitcher decorations were cut out of cardboard from the cleaners, soft enough to cut with scissors but of a nice thickness.  I copied the design for the top from a Dover book, of which I have many.   

 For the bottom, I scored the shapes down the center to make them appear in relief. Had I thought about it sooner, I would have done the same to the top part.  I tend to act and do on impulse, although most of the time I mull the project in my head for months before I actually do it since I always have four of five things going at the same time.

Silver Leafing

After the pitcher was constructed, I covered it with 2 coats of gesso and then a coat of red latex paint. It took 2 coats of silver leaf to cover the whole thing completely. The band around the neck of the pitcher was created using 2 bands of round elastic.

If you are interested, I explained silver leafing and the use of the red paint in my first blog when I described the gilded frame.

Please ask me any questions you have and I will be happy to get back to you.  Email me or write a comment. I will try to post something at least once a week, so please check it out!  Thank you.  Lola

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