Lavender Blue – Ooozed Heart Pendant Tutorial Using Friendly Plastic
It is one of my favourite things to do with Friendly Plastic. It is a technique I developed a few years ago now, and was the result of stamping too vigorously with some thick lace: the lace got stuck in the the Friendly Plastic, so it seemed like a good idea to make a virtue out of a mistake and see just how far I could make the warm Friendly Plastic extrude, or ooze through the holes in the lace. It did not just stop at lace, I experimented with nets, sequin waste (Laser Mesh), metal mesh, punched paper shapes and Laser Cuts; in fact just about anything with holes in including Angelina and Crystalina fibre sheets. The results were surprising, delicious, textural delights, that were unique to my new technique.
The Lovely Linda Peterson has picked up from the Art Of Friendly Plastic Blog, that a number of you would like a tutorial on how to do this. So just for you, I am reworking an article I wrote for a now defunct jewellery making magazine which showcased my Oooze technique. I will spread the tutorials over a couple of posts, because the methods used to create the jewellery are a little different from each other.
So here is my Lavenders Blue (Dilly Dilly) pendant using the Partial Ooooze method.
Tools and Equipment
Heat gun – the gentle Heat It Up tool is the easiest to use with Friendly Plastic (It is also really good with Jewel Enamels too). Some heat guns can be very fierce, so take care not to overheat the plastic.
Needle tool to help manipulate and manoeuvre the plastic
Aluminium foil – good quality thick stuff.
Cold water pot
Oil or vaseline to prevent fingers and tools from sticking
Scissors, good strong ones.
Bamboo kebab stick
5 – 6 cm of Bubble Mesh Ribbon
Half a stick of Lavender Friendly Plastic
Gleams metallic wax (purple from the Moroccan pack)
To make up the pendant completely, you will also need:
5mm silver plated jump ring
Tubular silver plated texture bail bead
Toning 3mm chiffon ribbon or similar.
2 Crimp covers Silver plated
2 Cord end crimps
12cm silver chain
2 Oval silver plated jump rings
How To Do It
Cut a 5-6cm strip of Bubble Mesh Ribbon, then cut this in half lengthwise to make two narrow strips. Use a heat gun to heat a 4cm piece of Lavender Friendly Plastic on aluminium foil until it is soft (Bend Test – should be ble to bend the warm FP smoothly over your finger. Beware, the FP can get quite hot if you heat it too long)
Position the strip of Bubble Mesh Ribbon onto the warm plastic, then place the heart cutter over the top and push firmly downwards.
Use the end of a bamboo kebab stick to help push the ribbon into the plastic without actually touching the plastic, this makes sure the edges become embedded. Then pick up the foil and hold the cutter in place with your thumbs and gently but firmly push up from underneath to Oooze the Friendly Plastic further through the holes in the ribbon, and to slightly dome the heart.
Make sure to rub your fingers on the bottom of the heart cutter to make certain that the plastic has been cut through, then press down firmly again on the work surface. This is what it should look like if the cut is a good one.
Plunge into cold water to cool and harden. Carefully remove the cutter, then cut out the heart shape using scissors.
The cutter will have cut the plastic, but not the ribbon. Sometimes it is easier to see your cut line by looking at it from the reverse side.
Make another heart as above, then take your wire and bend 10cm of one end into a scroll shape using round nosed pliers.
Bend the other end into a narrower scroll with a loop for hanging, but leave a space that is unbent in the middle to fit into the heart. Bash the wire with a hammer to flatten it and give texture. Apply Gleams gilding wax to tone the wire with the heart if you want.
Heat a left over scrap of Friendly Plastic
Roll it into a ball and place it inside one of the hearts.
While it is still warm, lay the wire on top and pinch the plastic over it to hold it in place.
Place both hearts onto a non stick surface and heat briefly with a heat gun (no more than 4 or 5 seconds) or until the edges of the hearts are just glossy. Do not overheat or the heats will distort. Swiftly lay one heart on top of the other, sandwiching the wire in the middle.
Carefully pick up the hearts, only the edges should be soft, so you can very gently apply pressure to seal the two sides together. Take care to align the wire so it sticks out at the point of the heart and in the middle at the top, and allow to cool.
Apply Gleams metallic wax to the edges to give a neater, more professional finish, and seal the heart and wire with a brush on acrylic varnish.
When dry fix a jump ring to the top, and attach it to tubular bail through which three strands of 3mm chiffon ribbon have been threaded. I chose to finish the pendant off with cord ends and an adjustable chain to which I added a small Friendly Plastic bead drop, but an alternative would be to simply tie them together. To make the bead drop, heat a 1cm sq of Friendly Plastic upside down on a non stick surface, when soft, gather in all the edges and roll into a bead. Push the end of a head pin in to the warm plastic and reshape the bead around the head pin. Cool in cold water to quickly harden the bead. Seal as before. The hook is made from 0.9mm wire bent with pliers.
Use the same idea of Ooozed shapes to create an unusual bangle – embed the shapes in strip of dry heated Friendly Plastic on top of a Teflon Project Sheet and bend around a suitably sized mug, glass or bottle. Cool and varnish.
This bangle is made from two sticks of Friendly Plastic back to back, and the “beaded” circles are actually Friendly Plastic Ooozed through Laser Mesh to give the regular neat “beads”. Laser Mesh is a great choice for all you Neatnicks out there. If you like the more organic look, go for a fused sheet of Angelina and Crystalina fibres which is what created the gorgeous texture of the heart pendant below.
The second Oooze Tutorial will show you how to use metal leaf motifs to create a partially Ooozed necklace. If I can, I will post that later on in the week. In the meantime, have fun experimenting Oooze with all the things you can find in your stash that have holes in. Feel free to let me know how you get on, or if you have any questions. Images are always welcomed, and they might even make it on to the blog too.
One minor word of caution: Don’t try to use Snappers for this technique, it will be too frustrating for words.
Check out the Art of Friendly Plastic blog as Linda is showcasing my Oooze technique this weekend – thank you Linda!
You will also find out more about this technique on my DVDs Bend It Shape It and Bend It Make It Cards