How to Contrive Soft, Non Waterproof Artificial Stones

How to create soft, non-waterproof fake stones, which can be polished and shaped easily, with some baby powder, chalk, paper clay and acrylic paint.

Steps

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    Unless you have access to powdered chalk, you would probably need to grind your own chalk. Using any flat object with a suitably sharp edge (such as a metal ruler), rub the chalk across the edge to produce a fine grained powder. Break a piece of chalk off and cleave it into small pieces.
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    Top up the chalk with baby powder to an amount desired, while trying to keep the ratio of chalk to baby powder roughly around 2:3. More chalk would make the resultant rock harder and brittle, while more baby powder would make the rock softer.
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    Pinch off a ball of paper clay approximately a sixth of the chalk-baby powder mix. Convert it to slip by dissolving it in water. Now you should have obtained a thick milky white liquid.
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    Dissolve the desired colour acrylic paint into the slip thoroughly. Remember that the colour of the stone would lighten dramatically when dry.
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    Mix the chalk and baby powder with a portion of the coloured slip you have. Knead the mixture. If the mixture is crumbly, add more slip. If its too watery, leave the mixture to dry for some time.
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    Mould the mixture to the desired shape and set it to dry in a warm place. Avoid direct sunlight and extreme heat as it would cause the mixture to crack.
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    Shape the rock by chiseling, grinding etc.
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    Polish the stone if desired by rubbing it onto paper. Initially, the rock would be worn downed and powder would be produced. However, as time passes, the powder would be compacted into the paper's pores to form a smooth, shiny surface. At around the same time, the rock's surface would start to darken and shine too.
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    You can also paint the finished rock to look like granite by applying a series of light misting layers of paint in complimentary colors. Ideally you will water down the paint with water at a ratio of three parts water to one part pain and apply the mixture with a spray bottle. Light layers of different colors with time to dry between each layer will create an exact likeness to real granite.

Tips

  • If baby powder is not available, any other powder containing talc can be used.
  • The reason why the rock can be polished is due to the presence of the baby powder. Hence, adding more baby powder increases the shine of the stone when polished.
  • It is possible to create a rock without any paper clay. Simply dissolve more acrylic paint in water and proceed as before.

Warnings

  • Do not breathe in the dust produced by grinding the chalk.

Things You'll Need

  • A mixing bowl
  • Water
  • Acrylic paint
  • Baby powder
  • Chalk
  • A metal ruler

Sources and Citations

Article Info

Categories: Clay Projects