Sand filling Techniques

How to make a sand bottle is an art, but a simple one.

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Coloring Sand

Choosing the sand - and this is where you start.
Sand comes naturally in different colors, from light to dark.
It's good to use it as is, if it suits your needs. The darker sands are also good to make black sand but they will never be of use to make bright or light colors. You may want to get yourself some children's white play sand, or if you happen to be near the beach where you can find that, you're in the right place. In some places, sand comes in different colors and is ready to be used as is, as that found in Petra, Jordan. You can get all sorts of colors there, even oranges and violets. Collecting the sand can be a very nice adventure for kids as well, to get them involved in the making of their artwork. Besides, it is much more fun than working from a ready made kit put together in a factory, so look around where you live. I'm sure your findings will surprise you if you start to hunt no matter what part of the world you're in.

Now, after getting the sand, sift it to however fine you want it. The sand needs to be dry to go into the sieve. Also, using different sieves gives different results naturally, and it saves you
from coloring course lumps of sand which you'll only dispose of in the end, but you may, if need be, choose to skip this and start coloring straight away.

Coloring sand can be tricky. What sands can we color and what dyes may we use? After you've chosen and sifted the sand, you'll need to dampen it again in order to color it,  so apply some water so that it's just damp enough for the paint or dye to stick. Once that's done, you are ready to color it, so what coloring do we use? There are many  different methods, and there is no wrong way of doing it depending on what you need the  sand for. Do you need permanent colors? If so, use water-based printing ink. If you are  working with children, use ready-mixed children's water-based paints. Make sure it is non-toxic paint so it will not react with the sand and change afterward. If you start non-toxic, you will end non-toxic. Children do have this tendency to want to put things into  their mouths; so do take care to use non-toxic material. And make sure it is water-based.


The best results come with powdered paint with children and it takes a lot less time for the color to set as well. How much do you need to use? That depends how strong you want to color to be. It's a trial and error process, and always remember there's no wrong way to do it. You will notice that doing it. And you will notice that you will need a lot less when you are working with dark colors, as they seem to overpower the sand faster.

Now, how to do it is also very simple. Apply the color with ready-mixed powder or permanent water-based color to your sand and start blending it in. Using gloves is very wise for this process. Mix it. Stir it. Vigorously rub the colors into the sand. Also, if you want to add to the fun, have the kids join you. Most of the paints are washable, so a bit of mess will do no harm, and we all have washing machines. Keep blending until you feel that the color is even throughout. It should
take a good 20 minutes to color 5 KG of sand properly. If you are doing a few colors at one time, it's wise to start with the light ones, as some will stick to your gloves and will show on the
next color you're working on. Once the sand is colored, spread it on a sheet, perhaps of newspaper, under the sun and let it dry naturally.

If you have no sun available, radiators can do the same job. Just leave it next to the radiators and they will dry the sand as well as the sun. Some colors will fade after you dry them, but don't frown. It just means that you must use more dye next time, that's all. And remember: There is no wrong way of doing it. Once sand is dry again, run it through your sieve and it's ready to re-use. I hope you and your little ones all have good fun with it and keep in mind that crafts are all about the fun we have doing them. If this sounds like it's too much work, you can always buy a ready-made kit from craft suppliers near you, or here as well. But, it can be expensive to ship sand, unless it's a small project, in which case buying it would be a reasonable option. In Sand Gallery, we use big mixers and permanent colors that are more expensive than the usual homemade coloring methods, but at the end of the day,  it's not rocket science and if we can do it, so can you.

 

Bottle Seals - Sand Freeze

 

Perhaps a few sand artists won't appreciate my revealing this, as  it's one of our trade secrets, but here you go, as knowledge is for sharing, and I don't believe in keeping  information from anyone who wants to learn.   You can use corks,  but kids will find a way  to remove them and the sand will be all over. 


This is the same problem again.  Or, you can use cement as many did, and it's a lot of  mess again and cheapens your efforts leaving the bottle with clots of cement on top.  So, what's the answer?  Gluing the top is the best way to go.  Yes, simple glue will do the job, will be transparent when you're done, and will give your job a nice finish.  Mixing the PVA with
 water can also work well.  We call the famous mix of water and PVA "Sand Freeze".  Make sure you press and pack the bottle before applying it, as the sand will shift if not pressed.  After you press it, apply the PVA or the glue/water mixture to the top, and leave it to dry.  It will work as a natural cork on top of the bottle made of sand.

 

 

Tools used

Lets face it.  Simplicity always make jobs fun and when you're in  a craft project, fun and creativity is what it's all about, so why not get creative with your tools as well?
 
Sealing Rods - You can buy a sealing rod from us to look posh or
use a thin screwdriver, the thinner the better, as it leaves less air in the bottle to insure the integrity of your work.


Drawing Wires - As to drawing wires, you can bend a paper clip and attach it to a handle, such as a pen or thin wooden dowel and it will do the job.

Funnels - As to the funnel, I think it's the only tool you really must buy.  I searched the market for long-nosed, thin funnels, and couldn't find any, so I made the mould for one, and now I'm ready to supply them.  If you happen to run across a local alternative possibility, just look at the end of the funnel and make sure it's thin, allowing only a very small amount of sand to pour through it.  To draw in sand, you will need a slow flow of sand from your funnel, and, at the same time,
you want the funnel to get as close as possible to the side of the glass to get accurate drawings.  So, you want to make sure the
material in the funnel is thin.

Now, "Off you go!"  That's all you'll need in your Sand Art 101 lesson for today.

 

Information source www.sandgallery.com

 



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