I finished up my mushroom log lamp thing! Here was the tutorial I referenced.
I really like it overall, but it looks a little sloppier than I’d like for a few reasons. Firstly, I had to use an air-drying clay for the mushroom stalks, since the only LED strand I had couldn’t be baked into the polymer clay the way you’re supposed to (I don’t know how to rig up a bare wire LED setup and just went with an Ikea Xmas LED strand that I had on hand, which limited the length of each mushroom stalk (which is why some of them are so short and stubby) but otherwise worked out okay). The air-drying clay was difficult to work with, not the same texture as the polymer clay, and despite careful sanding still looks lumpy. Oh well. I also accidentally burnt the translucent polymer clay mushroom caps in the oven, blackening a lot of the edges, and I was too irritated to redo them so I just trimmed away the worst of the burnt areas. The shapes are a little mussed up because of that, but they look decent enough from a few feet away, and I have enough clay to redo them in the future if I ever feel the need. (for reference, I used a total of one and a half 2oz blocks of Primo translucent white polymer clay.)
For the log, there’s a field near my house that has a ton of chopped manzanita branches all piled up, so I grabbed one with a nice gnarly shape I liked (I also like that it’s a big log with a handle, so I can be silly and pretend it’s Thorin’s shield). :B It started out all gray and cracked and gnarly, but after a lot of sanding and washing and oiling, it’s all nice and smooth deep brown-red the way manzanita is supposed to be. Although with all the glue and clay mess I ended up making, it takes a way from the effect somewhat. I do think I probably need to re-oil the wood (I’m just using butcher block oil, so it’s safe to work with and have around.) To hook up the lights, I drilled holes through the underside of the log and ran the LED string up through the holes, then hot-glued the LEDs in place and wrapped them with the air-drying clay to form the stalks.
It’s not perfect, but it’s cute and goes well with my little dwarf/Tolkein/etc area I’ve got going in this corner of my desk area. :) <3 All in all it wasn’t THAT hard, just time consuming. Honestly I think the hardest part was just sanding and prepping the wood. Someone more experienced (and patient) with delicate clay work could probably do a much nicer job. :)
This is gorgeous!!! I am going to have to give this a try.