Sunday, November 17, 2013

Sanding Creative Paperclay® Using Tools - Diane's Tips

Good morning! How are you all doing this fine day?
The design team  has had some wonderful tutorials and  fantastic tips, don't you think?
Today,  I would like to share some of my sanding tips using tools. Over the years sanding tools have helped  while finishing my clay creations.

Sanding is an important process in your design.  Some pieces may require more sanding than others depending on the look "you" as an artist want for your piece. A sculpt you would want very smooth will require more sanding. A Rustic look will require far less sanding.

A few years back, I struggled with the sanding process, especially the nooks and cranny's of smaller pieces.
 I observed my hubby who is a woodcarver, and noticed how he would use tools to sand his carvings... Ding! The light bulb turned on and it has been smooth sailing sanding ever since.
Here is what I've learned while on my creative journey.

The tools I use for sanding.
 The sanding tools I use are nothing more then household items as pictured above.
  My favorite is the cuticle stick, it has a beveled edge that can really get into those crevices,
  like wrinkles and such.
  Have fun experimenting with different items and you will soon find what will become your favorite tools.

Sandpaper. I keep two kinds of sandpaper in my finishing kit. A fine grit (tan)
and a wet/dry 330 grit carbide sandpaper (black). I like my sandpaper that i use on the Creative Paperclay® to be slightly worn. The reason for this, is because it is more pliable and easier to work with.

The steps I take to sand and finish a sculpt.

1. When the sculpt is dry, I give it a quick sanding using a fine grit sandpaper (tan).
      With this sandpaper you can sand down larger blemishes or bumps.

Now, a second  sanding using ( as pictured above in the first pic ) wet/dry 330 grit carbide sandpaper (black).  I love this stuff !   Using the wet/dry sandpaper you will start smoothing out your sculpt to a soft smooth finish. Though, this is a wet/dry sandpaper, you do not want to get the black side of the sandpaper wet and use on your sculpt, as it will remove your detail work.

3. For the detail sanding. Now getting to those wrinkles, crevices and tight areas. Using the wet/dry carbide sandpaper (black), with my finger I lightly moistened the back of the sandpaper with water,being careful not to get the front of the sandpaper wet. The reason for dampening the backside of the sandpaper is to make it pliable. Now that the paper is pliable, I wrap it around my desired tool, as shown above.

4. The sanding begins, and getting into those tight areas is much easier with the tools.
      Here in the pic above, with a light touch, I am sanding in the crevices of the wrinkles.

5.  I run my fingers over the sculpt making sure it is smooth. When I feel good about my sanding,
I then dust off  the sculpt using a soft brush to remove any loose dust. A soft, fluffy makeup brush works great.

6. To finish my sanding I buff it out.  I take a small piece of pantyhose, wrap it around my finger and lightly go over the Sculpt. Another, dusting using the soft brush and we are now ready to paint.

NOTE: Creative Paperclay® is an amazing clay to work with and the strength of this clay is very impressive, but at the same time the surface can be delicate before it is finished with paint and sealer.  When sanding your Creative Paperclay® creation, a light touch is all that is needed. Sanding to firmly, can leave unwanted divets, scratches, or it can sand away some of your delicate detail.

To a beginner this may sound like a big process. Don't be alarmed! Creative Paperclay® is by far the easiest clay I have ever had the pleasure to sand and the process goes very quickly.
I hope this will be a helpful tip  that you can take with you on your Creative Paperclay® journey.

Please, feel free to leave any questions or comments on this post and I will be sure to get back with you.
Oh, and your welcome to visit me anytime over at my

Many wishes for a wonderful Thanksgiving.
Happy Creating !


Susan Owenby said...

Very useful info!! I love finding tools in unexpected places. :)

Charmed Confections said...

Great tips Diane! Never heard of using pantyhose, but gonna give it a whirl. Thanks! LeeAnn

Diane said...

Thank you Susan and LeeAnn.
The pantyhose comes from my ceramic years. After cleaning and sanding the piece our instructor had us buff it with scraps of pantyhose. lol.. funny, i know but it just gives that extra smooth buff. I generally only do this step on my Santa's.

Chela Lucia said...

These are great tips! I actually glued a tiny piece of fine grit sandpaper around one of my awl tips to get into crevices. Works great, but I have to replace it often. I really like your tip for using pantyhose-- I was thinking there must be something even finer to help smooth out the finish, but just couldn't put my finger on it.

Diane said...

Thank you Chela.
I had never thought of glueing a piece of sandpaper to my orange stick. what a great idea.