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Topic: polymer clay mermaid bracelets and a question  (Read 576 times)
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Noura-hardy
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it takes alot of dark to make the nighttime bright


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« on: August 01, 2011 06:50:26 AM »

hello, I have posted these pics in the jewelry and trinkets section, as well as here,  I wasn't sure if that is all right.
I don't know if you can see but I like a high gloss. At the moment the varnish I am using is ok, I get the gloss and while it isn't sticky, it has an odd waxy feel which I don't like. i have a spent many hours searching the net for a good varnish available inthe uk for polymer clay, and I haven't found one I like, "future" which was sold here has been discontinued.
Can anybody suggest a good varnish? does anybody know anywhere in the uk where varathane might be bought?
thank you, and I hope I have put my question in the right place.





« Last Edit: August 01, 2011 06:52:36 AM by Noura-hardy » THIS ROCKS   Logged

Antidigger
« Reply #1 on: August 01, 2011 09:28:01 AM »

I like you beads, they're lovely.
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Look twice, buy once. Nooooo
Look twice, decide I can make one instead.
Diane B.
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GlassAttic --polymer clay "encyclopedia"


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« Reply #2 on: August 01, 2011 10:23:42 AM »

.
Pretty beads!

Quote
Can anybody suggest a good varnish? does anybody know anywhere in the uk where varathane might be bought?

There are various ways to get a high-gloss shine on polymer clay.  You can use a number of clear finishes, but you can instead sand then electric-buff (hand-buffing will only take the sanded clay up to a sheen), and some clayers even do alternating steps of both!

For the clear liquid finishes, Varathane (indoor, gloss--one brand of polyurethane--available in many hardware stores in the wood finish aisle, or online) and cyanoacrylate floor polish which is thinner (Future, Klear, etc --called by other names in other countries**) are probably the most popular with clayers.  But some use one of the Sculpey finishes (one is the same thing as Varathane, but more expensive), or clear acrylic fingernail polish for small areas, or they use other clear-drying/curing liquids that aren't quite as tough as those--though they can also have a coat of the tougher options on top to help with that if desired.

You can read about all the different kinds of clear finishes on this page at my site, as well as the names for Future in other countries under the Sources sub-category there**:
http://glassattic.com/polymer/finishes.htm
And coating with 2-part epoxy resins would be here:
http://glassattic.com/polymer/other_materials.htm

And the info about sanding then electric-buffing to a high gloss would be on these pages:
http://glassattic.com/polymer/sanding_tumbling.htm
http://glassattic.com/polymer/buffing.htm
(if using a Dremel rotary tool for buffing or sanding: http://glassattic.com/polymer/tools_Dremels_worksurfaces.htm )

Quote
. . . it isn't sticky, it has an odd waxy feel which I don't like. . .

You can also "re-bake" the dried finish right on the beads to get rid of that.  The heat speeds up the curing of the finish (that's in addition to the drying) and creates a "harder" surface most people like.  More info re that on the Baking page.
OTOH, sanding and buffing creates the absolute most wonderful feel whether it's high-gloss or the very silky sheen that some prefer which results from stopping the electric buffing before it gets to a high gloss.

HTH,
Diane B.
« Last Edit: August 01, 2011 10:35:52 AM by Diane B. » THIS ROCKS   Logged

POLYMER CLAY "ENCYCLOPEDIA" 
http://glassattic.com/polymer/contents.htm
few of my photos
http://s96.photobucket.com/albums/l163/DianeBB
(had to move them from YahooPhotos, so many now without captions)
Noura-hardy
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it takes alot of dark to make the nighttime bright


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« Reply #3 on: August 01, 2011 02:57:05 PM »

 Thankyou, Antidigger, and thankyou Diane b. I have spent many hours at glass attic pouring over the information, thankyou for that valuable resource.
I tried yiour suggestion re cooking, and it does seem to have helped except I put the beads on top of the stove to cool and someone had put the ring on low!  Roll Eyes So I lost some of the beads. charge it up to expereince.
I would very much like to try varathane, I can't seem to find anybody importing it to the uk. Please could you let me know what the sculpey glaze that is like varathane is called?
Thanks again
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Diane B.
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GlassAttic --polymer clay "encyclopedia"


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« Reply #4 on: August 02, 2011 09:41:07 AM »

Quote
I would very much like to try varathane, I can't seem to find anybody importing it to the uk. Please could you let me know what the sculpey glaze that is like varathane is called?

The one "like Varathane" is Studio by Sculpey Glossy Glaze...it should look a little milky in the (plastic) bottle.
http://www.google.com/images?q=Studio+by+Sculpey+Glossy+Glaze
The older version of their plain Sculpey Glaze is less good (thicker and gloppy, etc) and at least used to come in a glass jar; I think it's even being discontinued though you may see older stock still being sold. It's possible that the older named-containers also now have the "new" formulation in them, at least for the newer containers?
http://www.google.com/images?q=Sculpey+Glaze

But don't forget to check out your local hardware or "home improvement" stores for Varathane too, since you'll get a lot more of the finish for your money.  
If none of them have it, you can use any clear indoor (water-based) polyurethane instead, but you may want Gloss version, and best to find one if you can that also has "UV protection" though not essential.  There are many other brands of polyurethane besides Rustoleum's Varathane, but some of them may not be quite as tough (Minwax?), etc.

Quote
I tried yiour suggestion re cooking, and it does seem to have helped except I put the beads on top of the stove to cool and someone had put the ring on low!   So I lost some of the beads. charge it up to expereince.

Do you mean "re-baking"?  If so, that should harden water-based finishes but won't do anything to make the clay less flexible if it's thin unfortunately.

Diane B.
« Last Edit: August 02, 2011 09:49:27 AM by Diane B. » THIS ROCKS   Logged

POLYMER CLAY "ENCYCLOPEDIA" 
http://glassattic.com/polymer/contents.htm
few of my photos
http://s96.photobucket.com/albums/l163/DianeBB
(had to move them from YahooPhotos, so many now without captions)
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