06/09/2012

La Patisserie Press mini tutorials part I

I have wanted a La Patisserie press by Kati was here! from the very first moment I saw it back in 2010. It was tool lust at first sight, I resisted temptation because I am rubbish with presses! Quite quite poor at judging the amount of glass needed and too impatient to try over and over to get the knack of it. Just recently I made some citrus slice murrini for the Mini Mo' Club and they have been whispering to me about how much they want to be decorating chocolate beads and so I gave in......and I'm really glad I did, it is really quite a forgiving press when it comes to glass quantities and I've never enjoyed a press so much before.

It arrived this morning and I have been playing about with the different shapes and trying to figure out the best way to add glass the make them work for me. Here is a quick how to guide of what I have come up with so far, Cookie Cutter, Square and Heart, part 2 to follow soon.

Cookie Cutter

This is what the cookie cutter cavity looks like, you can see the waves of the texture plate at the bottom of this press (the base is reversible, the bottom of your beads can be plain too if you like).
Step 1 Wrap your mandrel and roll out the glass on a graphite paddle to just short of the width of the cavity
Step 2 Wrap a second layer of glass over your barrel and then press gently in to the top part of the press (the part with the handle) then flip it over and press again, repeat until the press is filled except for the frills
Step 3 Put a large dot of your glass in top and bottom and heat well
Step 4 heat your bead through and place your bead in the base and press between both halves of the press. This will fill the frills and press glass down onto the texture plate
 Step 5 gently flame kiss out the chill marks from the non textured side of your choc bead
Step 6 I am going to decorate this choc bead with pixie dust (mica). The colour I am using is Bright Gold Sparkle.

First a few notes on working with mica, wear a dust mask when handling and using mica in the same way you would when working with enamels and frits. Never use a shaker to apply the mica to your beads as this will cause the fine particles to become air born and never dip a hot bead in to a plastic container. A little mica goes a long way so pick up just a very small amount on a tea spoon to apply it.
Warm up your bead until it is glowing but not molten and dip the hot surface of your bead on to a small amount of mica then flash the bead back and fourth in the top of flame to get the pixie dust to stick.
Step 7 Sparkle Pixie dust can take quite a bit of heat without being burnt off so it is possible to add further decoration on top of the mica. I have decorated this chocolate with twistie cane leaves and an encased stringer rose.







Square

This is what the square cavity looks like, in this pic you can also see the twistie cane that I used in the previous bead to make the leaves.
Step 1 Wrap your mandrel and roll out the glass on a graphite paddle to just short of the width of the cavity (I find it easier to do this against the handle part rather than the base part)
Step 2 Wrap a second layer of glass over your barrel
Step 3 Press gently in to the top part of the press (the part with the handle) then flip your bead over and press again to flatten out
Step 4 add generous dots to the four corners of your bead to pad out the empty spaces in the cavity
Step 5 heat the dots in and press in the square cavity again, flip the bead over and press again
Step 6 add four small dots on the corners on both sides and melt in thoroughly to bulk out the top and bottom
Step 7 place your bead in the base and press between both halves of the press. This will fill the corners properly and press glass down onto the texture plate
Step 8 gently flame kiss out the chill marks from the non textured side of your choc bead
Step 9 decorate your bead, this one has twistie cane leaves and Gorgeous Grapefruit murrini









Heart

This is what the heart cavity looks like with the wave texture plate underneath
Step 1 Wrap your mandrel and roll out the glass on a graphite paddle to just short of the width of the cavity
Step 2 wrap more glass on one side of the barrel only. Next gently press into the top part of the press (the part with the handle) then flip your bead over and press again to flatten out the other side too
Step 3 place generous dots of glass on your bead where the "lobes" will be
Step 4 melt in well then press each gently in the heart cavity in the handle
Step 5 place small dots of glass to bulk out the lobes further
Step 6 melt in well then press each side gently in the heart cavity in the handle part of the press
Step 7 swipe on extra glass top and bottom in a V shape to bulk out the depth of your bead
Step 8 place your bead in the base cavity and press between both halves of the press. This will fill the whole cavity fully and push glass down onto the texture plate to give you chocolate bead wavy lines on the bottom
Step 9 gently flame kiss out the chill marks from the non textured side of your choc bead ready to decorate
Step 10 I have decided to add texture to the top on this bead with another texture plate, this one is a grid from the Zoozie texture tool. Heat you bead til glowing but not molten and press on to the texture plate gently
I'm going to decorate the grid textured surface with fine silver leaf which is fairly commonly found in books as loose sheets
Step 11 pick up a small amount of silver leaf with tweezers and burnish on
Step 12 burn off excess silver to partially reveal the textured surface.

I hope you have enjoyed these mini tuts on how I have been using my new press today and the fun ideas for chocolate decorations!



Jolene x

Frit N Chips lampwork supplies and Kitzbitz Art Beads

4 comments:

  1. Brilliant as ever, Jo!

    Now you've given me press-lust, too - they are delicious beads!

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  2. Hi Jolene, what color glass do you use for your chocolates? I've been wanting that press too. Thanks to your tutorials, I'm going to have to get one soon :)

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    1. Hi ya Brendah, I use several different colours for my chocs, generally bog standard Effetre browns, mostly 444 and 448. It's a super press so if you do go for one I think you'll really enjoy it.

      Jo x

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