From Cast Paper

Handmade paper shaped into usable objects

New Line of Decorative Bowls Added to ChirpHop Studio’s Etsy Shop

Medium-sized textured, white, oval "snowball" bowl from cast paper
Medium-sized textured, white, oval "snowball" bowl from cast paper

So many posts about the new papier maché clay recipe and only undecorated bowls to show for it... until now.

Nine one-of-a-kind handmade bowls, in a variety of sizes, shapes, linings and finishes have been added to ChirpHop Studio's Etsy shop. (and more to come soon). A few are made from cast paper and the rest are made of papier maché clay.

All of the bowls are made with recycled household scrap paper and some are finished with repurposed gift wrap tissue paper or foil.

They can be used as a stand-alone decorative pieces, for holding dried botanical arrangements or other small household items or as storage for home, craft or office supplies.

Check out the slide show above for a quick peek at part of the collection.

Because they're finished with acrylic paint and/or varnishes, they're water-resistant. You can wipe them with a damp cloth, but it's probably not a good idea to submerge them. The finishes aren't considered food-safe, but could certainly be an option for wrapped food.

Hop on by and give them a look. If you like what you see, feel free to favorite them, pin them or use whatever your favorite is to share them.

ChirpHop bird imageThanks for visiting.

Some Decorative Drawing Materials For Black Papier Maché Clay

Test sheet for black papier maché smooth finish with pastels, colored pencil, oil pastel and chalk
Test sheet for black papier maché smooth finish with pastels, colored pencil, oil pastel and chalk

After making and putting a smooth finish on bowls from the black papier maché clay recipe, the next thoughts turned to “How will I decorate these?”.

One of the ideas involved making a series of black and white bowls, with chalk or chalk-like designs on the outside. That (such a surprise) begged other questions…

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Finish Coat for Black Papier Maché Clay

Black papier maché clay bowl with smooth finish coat applied
Black papier maché clay bowl with smooth finish coat applied

Why Add a Finish Coat?

I was very happy with the look of the black papier maché clay when it dried. But of course, more possibilities for it came in to the picture.

It’s nice to have the option of either the handmade paper look, with all its nooks and crannies or a super smooth finish. This coating acts as something of a spackle, filling in the low points.

It also minimizes sanding, which is not my favorite part of any project.

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Spray Finishes for Papier Maché Clay: The Sequel

Krylon Crystal Clear - satin spray finish
Krylon Crystal Clear – satin spray finish

Well, I finally got around to trying out the last hopeful contestant that I had around the house, in the search for a clear spray finish for my papier maché bowls.

I tried out Krylon’s “Crystal Clear” finish, using the same kind of coverage as I had in the previous experiment.

The results were disappointing, to say the least. I had thought the polyurethane and Rustoleum sprays were yellow. This was slightly more yellow than the Rustoleum, and not much less so than the polyurethane.

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Papier Maché Clay – Testing “Clear” Spray Finishes

Papier maché clay testers for "clear" spray finishes
Papier maché clay testers for “clear” spray finishes

There have been shelves full of decorative papier maché clay bowls just waiting for the weather to be warm enough to spray a finish on them. The time has finally come!

To make sure any finish worked well before I use it on the bowl that I’ve put time and effort into, some testing seemed like a reasonable idea.

The spray finishes were some I already had from other projects and wanted to make sure wouldn’t do something funky to the surface, like discolor it or react strangely (bubbles, stickiness, etc.)

I also have a few bowls with a white painted surface, so I wanted to make sure they’d stay white.

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Patching Cast Paper Bowls with Papier Maché Clay

Cast paper bowl gessoed and sanded
Cast paper bowl gessoed and sanded

Cast paper can be pretty lumpy, depending on the type of paper you use and how well you “puree” it. The papier maché clay recipe I altered for my bowls makes a smooth, sandable, easy to apply patch material to fill in the ruts.

I recently used it on a couple of different bowls – one made from cast paper and one made from the same maché clay.

Cast Paper Bowl Surface Finishing

The bowl in the photo above has been around for awhile. I love the finish on the other side, but the craters on the outside didn’t seem to “go” with it.

I sanded and sanded with a multi-function tool and only got so far. The results weren’t very satisfying after a lot of work.

Enter maché clay…

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New Papier Maché Clay Recipe for Making Bowls

bowls made from the new papier maché clay recipe
Bowls made from the new papier maché clay recipe

Cast paper bowls are fun to make and I’m a self-confessed container and paper lover. I’ve been making them for a few years, but was sometimes disappointed in the strength of the finished product, especially with larger bowls.

Then one day, I came across ultimatepapermache.com, which has a wealth of wonderful information. Jonni Good offers recipes, clear, helpful videos and the site has an active forum full of even more ideas.  It’s obvious that she’s always coming up with ways to improve her techniques.

For my purposes, the recipe needed some tweaking, but it transformed how I make my bowls (and how satisfied I am with them).

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