PC challenge 2016 Week 7: Mokume gane coasters

This week, I’m combining my two clay challenges (a finished piece each week and recycling something each week) into one. Although I talked about using baked beads every week, I also have an abundance of raw clay veneers sitting in various stages everywhere. And chances are, if I can’t think of something to make them into when I make them, I won’t get any brainwaves when they’re out of sight, tucked away in a dusty box somewhere.

So I pulled out some of those dusty boxes a while back and looked through all my veneers. There were some in there that were over two years old! Nothing really caught my fancy until I came across the giant paisley veneers I made after Carol Simmons’ workshop. And a light bulb went off, coasters!!

So I burnished the veneers down on a thick sheet of scrap clay, cut them out carefully and baked them. Once baked, I covered them with some Clearcast 7050 resin, which I believe is good for coasters. I can’t say it’s my favorite resin to work with. The ratio for mixing is 2:1 instead of equal parts like most resin brands. But I hope it’s better suited for coasters that can take hot drinks. I have a couple that I made using Famowood resin, and hot mugs stick to the coasters.

Mokume gane coasters

Mokume gane coasters

After the resin cured, I attached some sticky cork to the back so the coasters can be placed on any surface without harming it. At this point the sides of the coasters still showed off the ugly scrap colors, so I went over that with a leafing pen.

Coasters side view

Coasters side view

I had exactly four veneers, so that worked nicely for a set of coasters. I really like this idea! It’s a great way to use large patterned sheets, and the resin really sets off the mica clay. I’d initially planned on adding one of these to my work desk, but my mom really liked them, so the set will go to her.

Mokume gane coaster set

The full set of coasters

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