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Pewter Heart and Frame

Gloria Bastos is joined by Elize Roodt of Pewter Art Academy and she’ll be showing us how to move a step up using this medium. First they make a head shot design and then later a heart design to add some character to a mould piece.

Pewter Art Academy
Elize Roodt 082 566 6838

Pewter Heart

Requirements

  • Wooden heart
  • Template to fit size and shape of heart.
  • Pewter sheet
  • Tools: Paper pens (paper compressed like a pen) and Teflon point
  • Cutting tool (sharp needle point) or sharp crafters knife
  • Old newspaper & disposable gloves.
  • Patina
  • Batting, cotton wool & soft cloth
  • Tissue paper
  • Metal polish (eg. Brasso)
  • Pewter glue / contact adhesive
  • Clear lacquer

Instructions

  • Step 1: Select a wooden heart that you like and choose which template will fit in the center or you can make your own design. Cut pewter to fit chosen heart and secure the template on the pewter with masking tape.
  • Step 2: Turn pewter around with template underneath on a hard smooth surface. Rub over it with a large paper pen across the pewter to transfer the design. Then use the smaller paper pen to go into each cut of the template followed by the Teflon point to define each outline inside the shapes of the template. No filling is needed, turn pewter around and remove template. Redefine the shapes with Teflon point to achieve a neat finish.
  • Step 3: Place on old piece of newspaper on to the table. Apply the patina with batting while wearing gloves and in a well ventilated room. As the patina reacts with the pewter it will turn black, this is a normal reaction so don’t panic. Blot the excess with a tissue and leave it to dry.
  • Step 4: Remove some of the black patina by rubbing with metal polish on cotton wool, it depends on personal taste as to how much you remove or leave behind.
  • Step 5: Wipe off the excess polish with clean cotton wool and start buffing with a clean cotton wool ball until it’s nice and shiny.
  • Step 6: Varnish your pewter with clear lacquer to preserve the look, allow it to dry completely before moving onto the next step.
  • Step 7: Place your pewter piece on a glass top surface, use a cutting tool or crafters knife to neaten up your project. The glass will create a clean cut.
  • Step 8: Apply glue on the back of the pewter and position in centre of the wooden heart, press down gently to stick the two together but be careful not to damage your pewter piece. Once the glue has dried your decoration is ready to be used.

Pewter Frame

Requirements

  • Photo frame of your choice available at Home stores
  • Pewter sheet
  • Tracing paper
  • Pad/felt
  • X-tra small ball/tracer
  • Teflon point
  • Paper pens (paper compressed into a pen shape)
  • Wax filler, container to melt it, syringe/glass dropper.
  • Old newspaper
  • Disposable gloves
  • Patina
  • Batting, cotton wool & soft cloth
  • Tissue paper
  • Metal polish
  • Clear lacquer
  • Pewter glue/contact adhesive

Instructions

  • Step 1: Transfer the design onto tracing paper, either by tracing or photocopy on 90g tracing paper.
  • Step 2: Cut the pewter slightly bigger than the design to allow space for the frame. Pewter can be cut with scissors, but a crafters knife is recommended for neat edge.
  • Step 3: Place the pewter on a pad/felt to allow softness to transfer clear lines. Position the traced design on the front side (face up) of the pewter and secure with prestik or masking tape to prevent sliding while you are tracing the design onto the pewter. Trace design with x-tra small ball or tracer tool.  Make sure to transfer all the lines on the pewter.
  • Step 4: Remove tracing paper and keep the pewter on the pad/felt, turn the pewter around (face down).
  • Step 5: Use the paper pen to go around the inner side of the main lines of your design to start shaping the face etc. Then use the larger paper pen to carry on, hold it at a low angle starting from the middle and go outwards. Use your finger for smoother effect where possible. (Be cautious if you have long nails) Never push out too much at a time, the depth should be build up gradually in several steps. Remove the felt pad and turn the pewter around (face up) on a hard smooth surface, glass is ideal.
  • Step 6:Flatten the areas surrounding the whole design on the hard, clean, smooth surface with paper pen held at a low angle. You can use a lubricant at any stage to make the movements smoother. Use a Teflon point tool to gently retrace the lines of her hands, dress, shape of face and hair, without pressing it right down. This is to maintain the definition. Steps 5 & 6 must be repeated several times until you have achieved the a suitable depth.
  • Step 7: From the back (face down) you can start to shape the nose, lips and eyes with a small paper pen.  The eyes must be pushed out very little around the eye as eyelids. Shape the lips with a suitable size ball tool, teflon or paper pen and a gentle curve for the nose.
  • Step 8: Turn pewter around (face up) and go over the lines around mouth, eyes and bottom of the nose with Teflon for clear definition. Very little pressure should be applied to prevent too deep lines! Now for the hair, make sure the strands of hair are pushed out from the back and then shaped and refined from the front. Any details that need to stand out on the dress can be done from the back (face down) at this stage, dots, flowers etc.
  • Step 9: The glass heart between the hands of the lady as shown was specially made to fit this design. The heart can be shaped in the pewter and coloured red with normal glass paint. Clean both sides with methylated spirits to remove any oiliness.
  • Step 10: Once the design is deep enough and well defined it needs to be filled from the back to support the design, otherwise it will collapse or dent. Melt the bees wax or embossing wax over a low temperature on the stove. Never leave it unattended. As soon as it is melted, remove from the heat.
  • Step 11: Transfer the wax to the cavities at the back of your design with a syringe or glass dropper. Leave it to set until cold. The wax can be levelled out with a hot spatula or knife, any excess wax around the edges can be removed with turpentine.
  • Step 12: Place the pewter (face up) on old newspaper and apply patina wearing gloves and in a well  ventilated room. Apply patina using batting, this allows the patina to flow into the lines more easily than with cotton wool , but it does make the pewter very wet so remember to blot with tissue paper to absorb the excess  patina. As the patina reacts with pewter it will turn black, don’t get a fright just leave it to dry.
  • Step 13: Once the patina is dry use a metal polish (eg. Brasso) on cotton wool and start rubbing across your design to remove some of the black, but not all of it. Wipe off excess polish and buff with cotton wool or soft cloth until shiny. If it is too dark, remove more with polish and buff again. It is your choice and personal taste that determines how dark you want it to be.
  • Step 14: Now varnish your piece with clear lacquer, to protect it.
  • Step 15: Apply pewter glue or contact adhesive to the back of the pewter and stick it on the hardboard backing of the frame, apply a little pressure so it adheres well and then place it back into the frame. Your frame is now complete and ready to be used.