Sept. 12, 2012
These gumdrops were my nemesis for a few days. I had an idea of how they would work in my head and it really didn’t. But instead of hurling them across the room, like I really, really wanted to, I just kept fussing with them.
The last two were actually not that hard, a little time consuming, but not that hard. I had read online about how to make the gumdrops, how to paper mache, how to make an armature…yep armature, that’s what I said. I thought if I made a mold, I could reuse it and the gumdrops would be hollow so I could stack them. Easier storage is always good in the CraftyHouse, where all party supplies come to live…forever. I really need to work on throwing things away, but I digress.
Gumdrops, nemesis, oh yes…so I read online that to make colored gumdrops you can paper mache with tissue paper. They lie. Unless maybe you use 9,000 layers of tissue paper, or paint the surface white first, neither of which was in the instructions. I also read about making a reusable mold online. They also lie.
Unless your mold is not meant to be reused and instead stays stuck inside your gumdrop forever, then they totally nailed it. I’m going to assume that possibly steps were accidentally left out of these instructions, not on purpose just to make people like me want to hurl gumdrops across the room, because, well that would just be mean.
Here is what I did. Not that it is the right way or the best way, more a cobbled together version of something that worked.
To make the shape of the gumdrop I use two Pyrex bowls, one slightly smaller than the other. I lined the bowl with aluminum foil and filled with newspaper. Then I wrapped the remaining aluminum foil around the newspaper. You can put a small paper plate in the bowl before you wrap the remaining aluminum foil to give you a flatter bottom. The mouth of the bowl will be the bottom of your gumdrop. I’m sure you can use one dish to make these I just didn’t have anything gumdrop shaped so I used what I had.
- Aluminum Foil
- Masking Tape
When I was finished I had two newspaper/aluminum packages like this. I taped them together with blue painter’s tape because that is what I had, but masking tape will work too. Try not to press too hard when taping them together because you can really make them lumpy (see light blue gumdrop) but It was necessary to tape them together to make the paper mache part easier.
I mixed water with Elmer’s school glue that I had from previous school years. Yes I really never throw things away. You’d think my house would be packed to the rafters and a complete mess but I also like to organize and use! I’d like to think I am MacGyver when it comes to crafting, give me aluminum foil, glue, newspaper and tape and I can make you a bomb…er a gumdrop.
I applied the thinned glue to my mold and layered on thin strips of newspaper, overlapping enough to make several layers of paper over the whole piece. I didn’t press them into the sides so the shape would be smoother.
After the paper mache had dried (several hours or overnight) we applied two layers of paint, letting the gumdrops dry between coats. Notice the difference between my lumpy blue gumdrop and the smoother yellow one. The lumpy blue one was our first attempt. We pressed too hard on the tape and then tried to paper mache with tissue paper, after a lot of layers we gave up and painted it instead. The yellow was my first newspaper paper mache attempt; we allowed the newspaper to hang over the side. It was still sturdy but much, much smoother.
To get the “sugar” coating I broke a Styrofoam disc in half and rubbed the two pieces together. It created quite a mess so I would recommend having a bowl handy to catch the snow you create. After the paint had dried, I coated the gumdrops in the glue mixture and sprinkled the Styrofoam bits over the top. They sparkle nicely and really look like a sugar coating.