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Shown below is an easy paper mache recipe, along with several creative craft ideas and activities.
Paper mache (actually spelled "PAPIER MACHE") is a pasty substance that hardens when it dries and holds paper together.
This kind of material has been used for everything from craft projects (like the box, ball, and house shown here), to sculptures and floats (like the gigantic cow shown here), to housewares (like maybe a lampshade, a vase, or a fruit bowl).
Paper Mache can even be used to build lightweight structures such as boats and household furniture.
The paper strips are sometimes placed on a skeleton of wire mesh over a structural frame.
You can also layer the paper over an object to create a cast in the shape of the object. For example, you can cover a balloon with paper mache. Then when the paper covering is dry, pop the balloon. The resulting hollow shape can be used to create a mask or a bowl or a vase or whatever else you can imagine.
Once dried, the shape can be cut, sanded, painted, or even waterproofed with a suitable water repellant shellac.
Other lightweight objects suitable for this technique are light bulbs and cardboard boxes.
In 1874, a man named Nathaniel Holmes Bishop traveled all the way from New York to Florida in a waterproofed paper canoe.
Papier-mâché panels were also used in the late 1800s to produce special lightweight domes for observatories.
These domes were constructed over a wooden or iron framework. The lightweight material could easily be rotated to position the telescope opening in any direction.
Above photo credit: papermacheblog.com
Photo Credit: stevesack.tumblr.com
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