Yep, that’s one catchy post title, huh? 😛
Well, anyway, this is just me trying to finish last night’s post, so a catchy title is hardly necessary.
Okay, so where I left off, I was still talking about headbands, so I think I’ll finish up with that. (Yes, there was more.) Specifically, about the smaller headband size. Because I’ve started to work on making the replacement headband to go with this outfit. I made molds off the two wings, and cast them in opaque resin. One of them was unfortunately ruined by poorly placed air bubbles and will need to be re-cast, but the other is good to go. While I was doing that, I also tried to make the headband itself. Because I knew there was a good chance a painted headband would get wrecked up, I wanted to make the resin itself blue.
And it so happens that I now have a lot of resin pigment on hand. Because the first time I wore one of my homemade resin barrettes in front of my mother, she noticed it (it was a bright red, sparkly lightning bolt; it would have been hard to miss), and asked me about it, and after I explained, she offered to give me all the resin supplies she had left over from when she had tried using resin to make jewelry. I had no idea she’d ever dabbled in resin, but I wasn’t about to pass up free resin stuff! The resin itself is different than the stuff I use, and I’m not sure if it’s still good or what, but the colors! She had to have bought at least twenty colors of pigments, including a bunch of metallic ones. I am so looking forward to playing with those!
Anyway, I had planned on waiting until I used up my current resin, in case the pigment only works with the same type of resin. (This was perhaps silly of me.) But I decided “what the heck” and dug out the blue that seemed the closest in color to the headband’s blue, and after I cast the wings, I mixed some of it into the rest of the white resin to make blue resin.
Unfortunately, the opaque resin has a working time of maybe ten minutes (and more like five) so this was not a good plan.
As you can see by the disastrous mess on top of the mold, I had trouble getting the resin into the mold because it was already starting to harden. And this photo was taken hours later, btw. All that resin still in the cup hardened like that. 😦 I have no idea what to do with it. It feels like a waste to leave it there, but…among other things, it’s stuck to the cup. (Not to mention, what am I supposed to do with it, anyway?) That stick up near the match (which was the one I used in lighting the candle to heat up the glue sticks to remove Pyrrha’s stock eyechips, btw) shows you the color of the actual pigment I put in the resin. Pretty different from how it turned out!
As you can see in this picture, the cast headband is almost complete. There’s just this big ol’ gap there where no resin got in. I haven’t decided if I’m going to just toss this in the scrap heap (or rather the scrap jar, as I’ve been saving up all my resin scraps in the hopes I’ll come up with a use for them) or what. In any case, you can also see that the pigment didn’t actually come out being anywhere near the color of the original headband…even though in the jar, the pigment was almost exactly that color. I guess the natural white color of the resin paled it. I need to try using the pigment in some clear resin and see how that works. (The clear might be less likely to stretch, too.) The wing turned out okay, though! (I was obviously planning on painting it all along, since it was going to have to be two colors anyway.)
Okay, so that’s about all I have to say about the headbands. Now I want to show you a couple of experiments before I move on to yet more eyechips for Pyrrha. (Someday I’m actually going to have to decide on which ones to use…and that’ll probably be the day when I’ll order my next factory girl. 😛 Turns out this whole eyechip-making thing is just tons of fun.)
Okay, as is, that may look a little macabre, so I”ll explain. I was wondering how resin affects paper, and particularly paper with things printed on it. (Because I thought printing some interesting graphic out and putting it in that rectangular mold shape (the green one in this picture) might be good for future barrettes.) I didn’t want to specially print out anything new, so I thought I’d just use one of the sets of eyes from the paper eyes I’d gotten for Pyrrha, specifically one of the sets I knew I’d never use, and this set definitely fit the bill. (The 8-bit heart thing was just a mold I had handy that I wasn’t planning on using any time soon and that was big enough to easily accommodate the paper eyes.) I handled them both differently, too. The one with the seal on it I just placed on top of the resin and left alone. The demon eye, on the other hand, I put some resin in, put in the eye, and then put in more resin. Though it doesn’t look like it in the photo, due to an angle thing, it worked much better for the demon eye than for the seal eye. (I don’t get these eyes, though. Why would Ciel have demon eyes? Just how badly did the anime screw up the story? I am so glad I was turned off by the first episode. I’ll just stick with the manga.)
This one really doesn’t look like much, and to be honest it wasn’t really supposed to. I had made too much clear resin while I was doing the experiment above and making a bunch of eyechips and other things that needed clear resin (the top coats on some of the barrettes for me, and the adhesive coat on the dolly barrettes), so I poured it into this empty gem-shaped mold (which is too small for a barrette, but had proven not to work for those clip-things), and then stuck a small piece of old, glitter-filled resin in it. I wanted to see how that would react, how it would work out, if the old resin would maintain its cohesion. What I’ve found (and in both this and the other shot I took of this, it’s hard to see it well) is that the glitter maintained its cohesion quite well, but as the new and old resin bonded, a lot of air bubbles were produced. (Compare the number of air bubbles here to the ones in the experiment immediately preceding it, after all; they were the same batch of resin, and had the same level of air bubbleage when I poured them into the molds!) The main reason I wanted to test this is that I have this vague fantasy of somehow, someday managing to create molds to make my own original resin BJD, and I was thinking it might be interesting to make a special, clear one, where the clear resin has been filled with these scraps, making for a…actually, I have no idea how that would look. But what I now know is that it would mostly look like an air bubble festival. 😛 Not necessarily a bad thing if used in some other context, but not ideal for a doll. (And, let’s face it, I was never going to be able to model my own doll anyway; my skills are not sufficient for that, not in sculpting or in mold-making. But it’s a fun dream none the less.)
Anyway, now that that’s finally over with, I can move on to the eyechips! And some of them are from a brand new mold that’s very different from the old one!
But I’ll start with the ones from the old mold, first.
Technically, you’ve already seen these chips, just not at this close-up level. They’re still not perfect, given the air bubbles, but I think they’ll do.
These, on the other hand, will not. Pale pink glitter, like white glitter, is too pale to work as the background for an eyechip. At least, I think so. (Even if it would work, these particular ones wouldn’t work, because the beads put in to be the pupils are off center.)
More of the same, really. Except that the darker pink hearts — which look really nice contrasted against this same pale pink glitter in my barrette — really don’t work as pupils, in addition to the background being too pale.
I got the big stars in a pack of Mardi Gras confetti I found on clearance at the grocery store (of all places!) for 50¢. (Unfortunately, there’s a lot in it that I can’t really use. Unless I want to cut up the ones that say “Mardi Gras” in order to use the individual letters. But I don’t want letter-shaped pupils in my dolly eyes!) I went through all my colors of glitter to find the one that most closely matched Pyrrha’s eyes for the background of these eyes. The color match isn’t great, but it’s not too bad, either, and I like the star-shaped pupils, so these are (tentatively) planned to be one of her keeper sets.
In this case, the little gold stars that were intended to be the pupils were entirely subsumed by the pink behind them. You can barely even tell they’re there at all. 😦
And ditto with the little gold circles in these…
These green ones are hard to see in front of the blue, but they’re actually mismatched — one is a circle and one is a star. I was running out of spaces to put pupils in, and decided to get crazy with it. 😛 They’re also very off-center, but at least I finally know why the pupils always go off-center in these things: my workspace is actually not level. I had all these pupils in shallow clear resin, and then added the glitter resin after it had dried, right? Well, every time I looked back at it, I saw that the pupils (particularly the small ones, like these) had drifted away from the center again. Eventually, I realized that was because it wasn’t level. So in future I’ll have them drying somewhere else, somewhere that’s actually level. That’ll have to help.
The little purple circles are slightly more visible than the little green stars, enough so that I seem not to have added them to my “reject” jar, and have instead put them in my much smaller “acceptable eye chips” container. (For some reason, all my finished resin projects are now being kept in an assortment of plastic gelato containers. Some of them are in the hard plastic screw-top jars, and others in the softer plastic pop-off top containers. I’m not sure exactly how this happened. I guess it’s just because I had a lot of them sitting around the house, ’cause they seemed too useful to recycle.)
As with the gold-on-mauve pair, these large purple star-pupiled chips work pretty well, in my opinion. Pyrrha’s not keeping them — she’s already got a pair of blue glitter eyechips — but they’re not going in the reject bin, either.
And now we finally move on to the new eyechip mold! Every single one of these is an unfinished chip, because they’re all going to require painting…
Check it out! They’re basically shaped like genuine Blythe chips! I put a little too much resin in all of them, so they have a bit too high and too flat of a surface, but it’s not a big deal. The pupil area is much wider than on Pyrrha’s original chips, so I was worried they weren’t going to fit, but they did fit just fine. Looking at them, though, I wonder if they’re actually molded off of Pullip eyechips. Because the pupil-to-iris ratio looks more Pullip than Blythe to me. I need to get Selina’s stock eyechips out so I can test these to see if they fit her. (I’m not sure how to go about that, though. Is it just the same procedure as for a Blythe? With the glue sticks and all?)
Anyway, I did several plain ones like these, but I also did a number with the Mardi Gras confetti. To save time in photography, I decided to show these in mismatched pairs, only showing one of each set.
In this eyechip shape, the small bits of confetti would only be highlights against the pupil, instead of the pupil itself, so I think the small ones will probably work just fine once I’ve painted the chips.
On these, the question will be if I want to put black behind the big stars so that these, too, are just highlights, or if I want to make these the actual pupils, and paint behind them in the same color as the iris will be. Maybe I should color on a piece of paper and hold these over that to see how it looks? Yeah, that seems like a good idea; I’ll try that first before I do anything rash with the paint brush…
Okay, so that was the last of the eyechips. But I still have one more eyechip observation. The “keeper” pair turned out to be too thick, so I’m going to have to sand down the backs when Pyrrha’s new eye mechanism gets here. (If I ever get around to ordering it…) But in discovering that, I realized something:
This cross-bar is the actual part where I have to worry about clearance, and it was probably the chips pushing against this thing that caused the damage in the first place. And because of the way it’s shaped, some chips that will clear in the front-facing slots will clog up the works in a side-glance slot. I probably didn’t actually need to tell anyone that, but…I felt like mentioning it. The important thing, however, is that now that I know that, I can safely and carefully test chips for the new mechanism without risking damaging it.
Now, one last set of photos to share. These being largely irrelevant, but I thought this was kind of pretty, so I wanted to show it to people.
This glittery, pink and blue, Yin/Yang-looking thing is the excess resin from that batch of pink and blue backed eyechips. I loved the way the pink merged (or not) with the blue. However, just from looking at this, you may not be able to tell what it is…
So I thought I’d flip the mold over and show you. It’s my TARDIS mold! 😀 Yup. I’m gonna have a pink, blue and who-knows-what-else colored, glittery TARDIS.
Not sure why, exactly. But it seemed a more useful application of the excess resin than making more Space Invaders aliens.
Okay, now I am finally finished with this post! The gallery for both these posts is here.
This should be the last “testing out eyechips” post, btw, because I promised Pyrrha I wasn’t going to take her apart again until her new eye mechanism arrives. (This may have been a premature promise, but…yeah, I better order that eye mechanism pronto, huh?)