October 2001
Volume 2, Issue 10
American Flag Pins
Using Transfer Paper
By Maura Muir Wilson

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I am offering you this image document and these instructions in hopes that some of you can help raise money for any of the organizations that are out there to help the victims, families and heroes of the attack on our great nation!

Supply List:
  • T-shirt transfer paper (most office supply stores)
  • White or pearl polymer clay
  • Liquid Sculpey
  • Exacto knife
  • Pasta maker or deck of cards
  • Acrylic rod or brayer
  • Parchment or tracing paper
  • " pin backs or tie tacks
  • Epoxy (unless embedding or re-baking findings into the clay)
  • Flecto Varathane or other glaze
Preparing transfer paper:

Click on the image to the left to download and/or print the American flag document on transfer paper.

Use "best quality" print option for the brightest transfer results.

Flipping or reversing the document is not necessary since the image is already reversed.

Copies could also be made on the transfer paper at a copier center (remember to take the paper with you).

Cut each flag out, leaving about a millimeter border if you choose.

Preparing Clay:

Roll a sheet of clay through the pasta maker on the #1 setting.

If a pasta maker isn't available, use a deck of playing cards. Put two stacks of 10 cards each on the work surface with 4 to 6 inches between the stacks. Place the clay between the stacks of cards; use an acrylic rod, brayer, PVC pipe or rolling pin to roll out the clay.

Put the sheet of clay on parchment or tracing paper.

Transferring Image:

Paint a thin, even layer of Liquid Sculpey onto the flag image.

Place the flag, image side down, onto the clay. Smooth out the paper with a light touch of your finger.

Using the edges of the paper as your guidelines, cut your flag shape out of the clay.

Place the flag(s) on a baking surface and bake according to manufacturer's instructions.

While the clay is still warm, slowly and carefully peel away the paper. Let cool.

Attach Findings:

Gluing: I recommend epoxy for securing findings. However, there are some must do's with epoxy:

Both the clay piece and the finding must be free of "dirt". Rubbing alcohol and a cotton swab will do the trick. Epoxy resin and hardener must be equal amounts and mixed thoroughly.

Re-bake method: On the back of the pin, brush a few strokes of Liquid Sculpey. Position the pin back or tie tack in place.

Place a patch of clay over the finding and press to complete the bond.

Use parchment or tracing paper when re-baking. Since the pin(s) would be bake face down, there is a chance the image would peel or flake away if baked again directly on a glass or ceramic surface.

Embedded Method: A delicate touch is required since this method is done after applying the image to the clay but before baking.

A small area -- the size of the finding -- can be carved out using a block cutter with a u-shape gouge bit. Place the finding in the gouge and back-fill with clay. Smooth.

Glazing:

I recommended Flecto Varathane because it is water-based, non-yellowing and does not stick to itself. However, any glaze that you have had success with will work fine.

Please email me with any questions or comments.