Submitted by Maria Mercedes
However you spell it, paper mache is easy to make and fun to work with. Here's a frugal way to make beautiful decorative bowls for your home, or to give as gifts.
Bowl (for molding)
All purpose flour
Plastic wrap or aluminum foil
Gesso or white paint
Paint colors: burnt umber, red, green
Brushes: small, medium and a fine one for details
Elmer’s glue (optional)
Miscellaneous materials: paper towels, pencil, sand paper, container (for mixing paste)
1. Cover working space before making paper mache. Wrap bowl with plastic wrap and tape.
2. Mix flour and water into a creamy paste. Also, add a little bit of salt (teaspoon). I also like to add a little bit of Elmer's glue to the paste but it is not mandatory.
3. Once the paste is mixed, proceed by ripping strips of newspaper along its grain, dip them into paste, wipe excess and apply to bowl. Make sure you overlap strips of paper. Sometimes it’s easier if you the strips of newspaper are cut before you begin.
4. Once the bowl has dried, sand slightly. Then apply gesso or white paint. Let dry.
5. Transfer leaf pattern randomly to bowl.
6. Paint leaves green, the bowl burnt umber and red or any other color of your choice. Once everything is dry, with a fine brush, paint the veins of the leaves.
7. Varnish if desired.
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