I have issues. I have crafting ADD. I like to create every type of arts and craft. I like to craft using different materials; paper, wood, clay, glass, wire, you name it. I also like different styles; shabby chic, grunge, cute, Steampunk and other undefined styles. Lately, I've been curious about weaving (not sure if basket, wire, or fiber), just like the idea. I might just create something using weaving. As long as it involves creating, I'm there...is my point. I also love classic fine art like paintings and sculptures. Oh, about this piece. I made two Steampunk bottles using a wine and classic Coke bottles. I had so much fun making them because I got to play with Polymer clay.
How it's made
I started out by cleaning the bottles. I then ran black Soft FIMO Polymer clay through the Pasta Machine. I made a whole bunch of sheets, which I cut into different square and rectangle sizes. I did not measure, it's best this way, makes the piece more artsy, if they are random sizes. I laid out the clay on the bottle, leaving an opening for the gears. The screws are made by rolling little balls of clay the same size. To make that semi flat look, push down softly with your finger. Tools do not work for this, they will make a harsh shape. On the Coke bottle I made a slot screw style and on the wine bottle I made a bolt style screw or rivet look. To make the slot screw style, simply take the non-sharp side of the Exacto Knife, or another tool like it and make the indentation down the center, going halfway down. To make it look organic, vary the angle of the indentation.
The gears are made of metal and I have altered them by painting them with gesso then rubbing Gilders Paste; using Copper, Inca Gold, Patina and Silver. The gears are baked into the clay.
I baked the bottle, using the clay manufacturer's baking directions. Don't worry, it will not melt the glass, the heat is not high enough to melt. Some of the gears did come off, it's normal for metal not to stick permanently on Polymer clay. I used E-6000 glue to secure them in place.
The stopper is made of Apoxy clay, a ceramic hard clay that air dries. I made the stopper after baking the bottle. This clay will harden to a rock consistency under three hours, but takes a day to completely cure. I embedded gear washers, nuts and screws. What I like about the making the stopper out of this clay, it's very strong, way more than Polymer clay, you can even pick up the bottle by the stopper and it won't break off. For other altered bottle projects, I have used wooden, cork and metal stoppers, which I glued to the bottle. With these type of stoppers, you can't pick up the bottle by the stopper, because it will break, so you have to told by the neck.... I know, I have tested this before. I tied hemp string on the neck...I always feel that that gap always needs something like ribbon or string.
I finished the piece by rubbing Inca Gold and Patina Gilders Paste all over the bottle, using my fingers. I find this to work best, versus using a cloth. The paste come off easily with baby wipes, sometimes it works better than soap, of course after wiping your hands, do wash with soap. If you leave fingerprints, simply buff it out with a cotton cloth and it you find you still can't get it off, lightly sand it, then add paste again. If you want the whole even shinier, then buff the whole bottle with a cotton cloth.