To be honest, I’ve been super curious about materials since the semester started. Seeing all the projects people from different backgrounds were building, I noticed they all had a standard and aesthetic. I had none and it was time to find it.

On this materials journey, I took my first ever mold-making class last week at The Compleat Sculptor. In 2 tumultuous hours, I learned so much information that I remembered none of it. =P However, I walked away with some alginate, silicone, and quikrete. Time to explore!

Quikrete (Concrete)

Overall, I found concrete really enjoyable to work with. Cheap, sturdy, and easy. The only real negatives: it’s heavy and the dust gets everywhere.

alt According to Sarah, this is the only concrete that’ll matter to me.

alt Mold release is a thing! (Because you have to remove it, dummy.) Somehow the internet pointed me to the magic of PAM. Perfect, because they have it at the deli and I might want to bake later…

alt Measure once, pour twice. JK but I used Jen’s fancy coffee scale and measured out half the bag.

alt Add 8-ounces water. I’m actually amazed how low ratio of water concrete requires. (And how difficult it is to stir.)

alt I’m in need of an ashtray, so I 3D printed an ashtray negative. Kinda wasteful, but it also let me explore NinjaTek, some flexible 3D filament that I just came across recently and thought would make a great flexible mold.

alt Put the concrete in the thingy.

alt Also, make a tall candle holder using a box and pushing the candle in.

alt And next, a tealight candle holder using an egg carton top.

alt Throw in some spice jars that just so happens to match the dimensions of tealights and hope for the best.


Silicone is expensive but I already love it. It came in a simple 1:1 A/B mixture, has a 15 minute pot time and 40 minute set time, both majorly convenient. It also has the awesome (unless you’re trying to glue it to something which the internet says is a bit of a specialty) property of not adhering to many things. For the most part, silicone best adheres to silicone. Using this fact, I cast the silicone sheet I needed straight into my tray without mold release. fingers_crossed

It’s also friendly in that I don’t see much caution around toxicity or careful usage. Safe is always good, right?

And oh is it clean! No dust, no spills, no messes.

alt SmoothOn “Dragon Skin”. I’m actually exploring silicone for a “sticky” hand interface I’m trying to build and Sarah at Compleat Sculptor pointed me to Dragon Skin for its great elasticity.

alt I really just need a thin sheet of silicone for my interface. So we use a box that’s bigger than my hand.

alt *Mix A. Mix B. Mix A into B. It starts to have the consistency of liquid sugar or something between honey and maple syrup. *

alt Awesome because it pours right out and levels itself once in the tray. NOTE: I removed the plastic cover from the mold because we don’t need it to release the silicone!

alt 40 minutes. OMG.

Liquid Latex

alt Found some liquid latex my roommate had lying around from halloween.

alt Casting it into a circular mold. Thinking it can be an excellent round seat for my ashtray.

All the Things

TODO update in the morning when things set.

In the end, I don’t think I actually completed the assignment fully. However, for now I’m quite satisfied that I was able to explore with new materials.