Green wax is made from the drippings of all the other tints, and from the yellow unbleached wax, with green tube paint added.
After preparing your cup of melted wax, have ready a plaster mold made on a tea saucer or tea plate. Dip your mold in hot soap suds, for flower molding, and with a small ladle pour over its wet surface the melted wax, trimming off the sides and making even sheets, remelting the clippings and resheeting it.
A wooden spaddle size of ordinary sheet wax is sometimes made, and used instead of the plaster mold, called paddle wax, and a great many teachers use a bottle, dipping the bottle, and forming wax thin at one end, thicker at the other. Either plaster, wood or glass must be dipped in the hot suds between every dipping in hot melted wax.
Wax Fruit is made in molds, and is always used with the paints in preparing the crude wax, and painted afterwards with dry powder paint.
Almost all molds for Wax Fruit should be made in halves -pears in three pieces - and some fruits require the mold in several pieces. Unless the molds are perfect the fruit will be defective, and nothing can make it beautiful when it is once molded wrong.
Your fruit should be perfect, and in making your molds care should be taken that there are no open places or leaks in the molds. Grease your lemon, apple, orange, or whatever is to be molded, well first in every part. Have ready your pasteboard cup, made a trifle larger than your fruit, nearly filling your cup with the plaster, mixed with cold water to the consistency of pound cake unbaked. Your fruit being oiled, he very careful to sink it down just half in the dissolved plaster. If you do not get in half, or if you sink it in more than half, you will have an imperfect mold, and your fruit will be defective. A little care makes it perfect
As soon as the plaster is a little hardened, with a pen knife make four holes in the outer plaster rim, not touching the fruit. These holes, half an inch deep, are to hold the top of your mold ; lock it into the lower half, blow off all loose pieces of plaster, and when completely hardened, oil the top of the fruit and the new half plaster mold, and the holes for the locks; then prepare the second half. Be sure and have your plaster fresh and strong, when thoroughly mixed to the same consistency as the first, pour over the fruit into the pasteboard cup, and even it all over. Leave it standing a good half hour, then remove the pasteboard cup, and if the mold seems hardened, carefully open it, being careful not to break off the locks, for upon the perfection of these consists the perfection of the fruit.
In a basket of fruit, lady apples are beautiful, crab apples, Seckle pears, Bartlett pears, a lemon, an orange or two, California plums, two peaches, and grapes are desirable. Two pounds of wax will make this elegant variety. None of the fruit should be large - all small, high colors, and perfect in painting.
After preparing your set of molds, prepare your wax, as before directed, and there should be twelve gill, or half-pint cups kept ready for this work, with the different tints. A small sharp pouring spout on each cup is a great help. The half-pint cups being generally used for apples, peaches, pears, oranges and lemons; the plums, cherries, and little fruits are made with the gill cups.
All fruit makers, masters, will tell you to be very careful and not get too deep tints; for a lemon use common lemon chrome paint, dry; orange, orange chrome, dry, and after making those two fruits, you make from the same cups your apples, peaches and pears, because the solid, clear color is needed first, and after, you can paint them to their natural tint. 1st, Lemon. Match the color of the wax to the lemon you imitate. Dry patent powdered yellow, gives a splendid lemon tint.
After melting and tinting your wax, two cakes for one lemon, have ready your mold - remember that every mold must be soaked in hot, strong soap suds - have the upper half ready to put on as soon as your lower half is filled with the hot wax. Pour in the even half of the mold with the melted wax first. Never allow any to slop over the edge. Place on the upper half immediately and lock closely together, holding them clasped and turning them gently over and over, keeping every part in a slow, steady motion until the liquid sound has all ceased. About ten minutes is needed to every piece of fruit the size of a lemon or an orange.
Let them stand inside the mold for some time, opening very carefully. If your mold is perfect, very little trimming will be required. With a sharp penknife remove every trace of the rim where the fruit mold joined together, and wash off with benzine, rubbing a little dry powder over the lemon to give it a fresh picked appearance, and painting the stem end with water colors.
Orange is made precisely like the lemon, only orange chrome is used instead of lemon.
Apples are made from the lemon cup or the orange cup, with a little green chrome added to vary the foundation tint, and after molding, trimming and washing off with benzine, paint red with dry carmine, producing a splendid effect.
Peaches molded from the lemon cup, or orange, according to the tint required. The fault with fruit-makers consists in getting too deep a color in the cup, or melted tint, and that always produces the coarse effect of the fruits usually displayed. Peaches should be molded of a very delicate foundation tint, first trimmed while hot from the mold, as little rubbing as possible on them, painted hot, and after the carmine cheeks are robbed on, (dry powdered carmine being used), white flock should be rubbed all over them, to give them the soft, downy effect.
Plums are painted with ultramarine or indigo blue added to the carmine.
Grapes are made over glass globes, blown for the purpose, first stemmed, then dipped in green or purple wax, and bloomed over with corn meal (sifted on them).
The California grapes are easy to imitate, for the green wax, after dipping, simply needs a little carmine painting outside.
No cross, piece of statuary, or vase, can ever be taken from the molds unless the molds are made in a number of pieces. After running the body of a cross, there must be a standard through the upright before it hardens, to support it. Pour the lower part on afterward.
Molds for Leaves, consisting of a great variety of beautiful formations, from almost every tree or shrub in nature's garden,
Among the number you have to select from are: Oak, maple, myrtle, lily of the valley, ivy, willow, currant, cherry, grape, orange, strawberry, blackberry, chestnut, etc., etc.
Wet the molds before placing them in wax, to prevent them from sticking. It will require but a little time for you to become familiar with the method of cutting and molding the leaves and flowers, and by the aid of your good judgment and exquisite taste you may soon be able to arrange in form almost any leaf or flower you may desire to see produced in wax.
Wires. The wire used for making the stems and branches is covered with silk or cotton, and of different colors, and can be had in coils or by the spool, each spool containing from twenty to twenty-five yards. Paper wire comes in bunches. Silver wire on spools or in skeins.
Steel Molding Pins. The molding pins are used for molding and changing the wax leaves and flowers into form desired, before placing them upon the stem. They are made of steel, with glass and porcelain heads. Sizes run from 1 to 8.
Moss can be had by the package, or small sprig, for moss roses.
Miscellaneous Articles. Glass shades, glass balls for imitating currants, grapes, cherries, and other fruit, small sable brushes, and dry or liquid colors for tinting.
The Wax, consisting of a great variety of colors, you can purchase by the sheet. The size of a sheet of wax is 3 1/4 x5 1/4 inches.
Having given those who desire to do wax work an outline of the art, with the materials used, and the method of applying them, I leave the rest with the learner, who requires taste for the art, and perseverance to acquire excellence,