Friday, March 28, 2014

Let's Play With Shellac!

Shellac: Ye olde sealer made by dissolving the "resin excretions" of this freaky bug, Kerria lacca, in ethanol.

Thanks, Wikipedia...

Has your gag reflex calmed down yet? Good, because shellac is AWESOME.

You'll find shellac at hardware stores; expect to pay between $15-$22 per quart. Standard colors for shellac are amber and clear.

Awesome Fact #1: Shellac can be tinted. Buy tubes of colorant from a store like Wallauer's (NOT Home Depot, not only because I don't like HD, but because they don't carry tints) and GO TO TOWN with luminescent color effects.

Awesome Fact #2: Shellac goes on like water, seeping into every tiny crack, nook, and cranny. Then it dries ROCK hard. (yeah, I am using a lot of caps today--I'm impressed!)

Awesome Fact #3: Shellac may be the wonder sealant that you, Crafty Reader, have been looking for.
It can make floppy 16 mm films into porcelain-hard vases, even if you bend them into cornucopias.

(Thanks to Wendy Russell, Canadian craft maven, for this idea. If you search US cable for a station called "Ion" you too can enjoy her funny, clever HGTV Canada show, "She's Crafty.")

A cornucopia of awesomeness...?
Red-tinted shellac and a bit of imagination resulted
in this rectangular bowl with a 1-inch lip. 

Thin square. That golden hue is natural to the film.
I need to come up with a good interior base. Naturally, I'm selling these and more:


Warning about Shellac: Be sure you want to turn something into a glassy, rock hard object before you lay on the shellac. Once you shellac, you can't go back...literally.

Copyright 2014, Tanya Monier

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