January 19, 2011

Friendly Plastic Masterclass ~ Day Three

day 3 ~ more ways to play with the pattern and surface texture

Welcome to our third day of Friendly Plastic fun. Today we will look at more techniques for making patterns and playing with the texture of FP. We will also put this into practice making a cover for a mini~book.

Technique five ~ creating pattern with rubber stamps

Those of you who are paying attention will remember that we used rubber stamps yesterday with warm FP to make indentations in the surface texture, but this is not all we can use rubber stamps for. We can also stamp onto the cold FP to add pattern and interest, even text, which is perfect for little messages, gift tags, and scrapbooking too.

In the photo the piece on the left has been stamped with Stazon and the piece on the right has been embossed with black embossing powder. The stamp {just in case you were wondering} is one by the fabulously talented Tim of Holtz.

To stamp onto cold FP it is best to work on a piece that has been flattened smooth and you will need to use a permanent inkpad like Stazon. Simply stamp as you would on a piece of cardstock and leave for a few moments to dry. Just like when stamping onto any shiny surface...be careful not to slide your stamp around and ruin your image.

You might be suprised to know that you can also heat emboss onto cold FP which gives a lovely finish, different to that on cardstock, almost sinking into the surface of the piece . Embossing onto FP takes a few more seconds with your heat gun than you are used to, but is really versatile as you can vary how much the pattern sinks by varying how long you heat the piece for. Cool, huh?

Technique six ~ creating pattern and texture with embossing folders

I love to use my crafty tools in as many ways as possible...value for money and all that...and embossing folders cross over from paper~crafting to FP~crafting perfectly. Cold, slightly squished FP sheets can be popped through the Big Shot {or other die~cutter} and with a little extra ooomph they emboss just like cardstock. {The weedy weeklings out there will need assistance like i do, getting my DH to turn the handle for me!}

If you don’t happen to have a big, strong man to hand, all is not lost however as you can gently warm your FP and place it into the embossing folder whilst warm enough to bend and flex but not so hot that you can’t pick it up. You will need to lightly spritz the inside of your folder with water to act as a release agent, and be careful of your fingers as the edges of hot FP can be a bit like molten sugar and super sticky. When the temperature is right a little cold water on your hands should allow you to manoeuvre it into place. All you need to do then is simply squash the folder by pressing gently on it...and leave it to cool. This technique is a little bit trickier, but with minimal practice you’ll soon get the hang of it. :0)

The photo shows a warm piece of FP {complete with sticky edges so i could remember which was which} on the left and a cold embossed piece on the right.

Technique seven ~ creating texture with through extrusion!

Extrusion is a posh way of saying *pushing it through a mesh* and this is one of my favourite fun things to do with warm FP. With very minimal effort you can achieve a stunning effect.

This technique is achieved by warming the FP thoroughly on a non~stick craft mat and then laying a mesh~like material over it. You can then lift the mat and pull it over the edge of your desk in a curvy motion to ease the plastic through the holes, or you can push with your fingers from behind the mat. As always play around with this and do whichever suits you best.

In this photo you can see that i’ve extruded the FP through sequin waste and bits of left over lace trim, but the number of things you could use is huge...try hessian for example, or the plastic packaging the oranges sometimes come in...again...if you think of anything that works really well...please pop back and share it with us all!

Technique eight ~ creating further interest by embedding items

Our final technique for today is another simple one. By pressing small items into warm FP you can trap them in the plastic making for an interesting surface texture. To trap items it is necessary to push them in far enough that the FP comes up around them slightly in order that it can hold them when its cold. Alternatively, as i’ve done with the small mirror here, you can push the item into the warm FP to make an indentation and then when its cold, glue it in to place.

I have no idea how many tiny things you could try this with, i’ve used glitter, tiny beads, chips of sea glass, buttons...this really is a case of look around you and see what you have that might be worth a try! With the purple and silver piece in the centre of the picture here, i have dropped tiny chips of glass called *Byzantia* into the FP and then flattened it with an acrylic block to make the surface smooth. I love this effect!

Now, to start to put all these techniques together, i've created a little mini~book with a cover made entirely from FP. Do you think you could do this yet?

Of course you could! Simply cut 12 strips of FP and melt to fuse them, squashing with an acrylic block. When this is cool pop it into your BIA machine to make the binding holes {or use a hole punch}, then gently spot heat areas of the cover you wish to embellish with more FP pieces and press them into place {simple heat will join them together there is no need for glue}. Add a bling swirl and bind to create your first FP mini~book!
I do hope you've enjoyed all i've shared so far. Thanks for the lovely comments and do speak up if you have any questions and queries...i'll always do my best to answer them for you!
ok, enough for today...its nearly time for tea! enjoy the journey...xxx


Anonymous said...

Intriguing. I always wondered about FP but I think my issue has been with the too-bright neon colours, and yet you've used them very effectively in your "mixing" I may feel the need to experiment..... :)

Mary Anne

Hazel said...

I will have a nosey for some fp next time im in a craft shop as your mini book cover is gorgeous. Looking forward to tomorrows installments,
H xx

alexa said...

I love technique 6 - the embossing folders one. :) Great sharpness, and could see myself trying this. Brilliant tutorial - must have taken you ages. You could run a fortnight-long online class with all this material, you know!

misteejay said...

Some great creations there Alix - thanks for sharing.

Toni :o)

Amaco said...

Thanks so much for using AMACO's Friendly Plastic and sharing your techniques! I have featured on our Facebook page and linked to your blog.

Anonymous said...

So glad you like my Oooze technique, it really is wonderful for creating all sorts of textures. You can see more on my DVDs. Just visit me on my blog or at Rarebird Ltd, or catch me on Create and Craft.

Sue said...

Wow that book cover is amazing!