Matte varnish on polymer clay, lesson learned!
Today I want to share one of my precious experiences with matte varnish! 😛
The image above is the photo of one of my recent polymer creations, which was originally made to become an angel doll. Don’t know when I’ll manage to make her wings though, I’m gathering info on how to make them, and probably will publish a tutorial about it whenever I create the wings.
When the coloring of this doll was done, I brushed her with the same matte varnish I had used for the princess doll (you can see the princess doll in the first post of my blog, matte varnish on her just worked great).
I just got a sticky shiny horrible polymer clay doll!!! OMG! That couldn’t be! It was absolutely horrible, and worse of all I couldn’t figure out why my nice precious matte varnish which took more than a month to reach me from US was reacting like that!
I waited about a week hoping for it to change, thinking maybe I had put too much varnish to get such shiny glossy look, and it would dry and get a matte look finally, but there were no changes.
Not even after 2 weeks!
So I tried it on 2 of my small size polymer clay sculptures to see whether the problem was the surface of the angel doll. Again the varnish resulted hyper-glossy!
I was desperate. Thinking maybe I shouldn’t have put my brush in the varnish bottle directly while I was varnishing the princess, maybe that way my brush had put some acrylic color particles into the varnish bottle and caused some chemical interactions, even though the colors of the doll were totally dried and 72 hours were passed as the text on the varnish bottle indicated, so it seemed somehow improbable.
Hours and hours I searched desperately on internet, on any blog or any forum with some posts about “Liquitex matte varnish” (this is the product I chose as my polymer clay varnish after many searches on internet), but all in vain.
Some days ago while Googling I encountered a forum post in which they said that Matte Varnish can become glossy when the content of the bottle reaches 1/3. The reason is that the agents which create the matte effect become too dense as they normally sink, so if the bottle is not regularly shaken when the content reaches the 1/3 of the container there would be just too much matte agents and this unexpectedly creates a glossy effect instead of matte!
This made me think a bit… My bottle was still 3/3 full, but… I haven’t shaken the bottle for weeks! To varnish my creations I just put the brush into the surface of the liquid, if matting agents sink by time, so on the upper part of the varnish liquid there would be few matting agents! Eureka!!!
It may be a long post to say a very simple and short fact: Shake your matte varnish bottle before using it! 😛 But I had to say all this to let you know how this discovery could be precious to someone who is learning only by experiencing and by Googling!
Actually I was afraid to shake the bottle, ’cause on some polymer clay relating products I had seen the warning “do not shake”, so this message was just carved on my brain!
So I hope that you find this post useful, and that it could save you all those precious hours I lost to discover what was wrong!