The number of materials for creativity is growing at an unimaginable speed, and most of the new names are hardly familiar to modern man. For example, foamiran or foam, gradually spreading throughout Europe and the CIS countries from Iran or China. Crafts based on it can look so vivid, especially flowers, that it is not immediately possible to determine their artificiality. It is likely that this material will soon be approved for children's creativity, if experts agree on its safety. In the meantime, this is the lot of adult lovers to create something new with their hands.
Foamiran: what is it?
What is so special about Foamiran, and why does it deserve the attention of every lover of manual creativity? Foamiran is a soft material, similar to suede, but, in fact, is foamed rubber. He is able to change shape when heated and after some time harden, thereby remembering it. It is not necessary to have thermal instruments to deform a thin (1-2 mm) sheet: the foamiran has enough warmth of human hands, although the degree of its curvature will be small. For complex modifications, of course, you have to resort to iron, tongs and other objects.
But, what makes this material attractive, products made on its basis practically do not change their appearance with random pressure on them. For example, a foamiran brooch will not bend if you accidentally press it against a cold surface. For the same reason, today you can even find wedding bouquets from foamiran - this is unusual, stylish and very practical, if you want to keep the memory of the happiest day not only on photographs - such flowers will not fade.
In addition, you can be sure that the products made of foamiran will not burn out under the sun's rays, and will not deteriorate with an increase or decrease in humidity, etc., and adverse climatic conditions. Unless, of course, you purposely leave them under the scorching sun and pouring rain for a week or two. But, for example, you can wear foamiran flowers in your hair, without covering your head, without fear.
The thickness of the foamiran sheets depends on what exactly will be made: small objects like the same colors, brooches, hairpins and other accessories certainly need very thin and elegant details, therefore sheets 1-1.5 mm thick are purchased here. If foamiran is necessary for children's creativity as a kind of substrate or for details of application, puzzles, then attention should be paid to sheets from 3 mm thick. In particular, babies are often offered large colored jigsaw puzzles without a pattern, so that the child tries to put them together, juxtapose the details, and make them mostly from dense foamiran.
If you purchase material abroad, it can also be identified by the labels "FoamIran", "FoamEva". Packaging also depends on the country of the manufacturer and the specific brand: foamiran can be found in rolls, which is convenient with frequent use of the material, as well as sets of several sheets of 1 or more colors, and even ready-made elements that can only be combined and / or painted in their own way. discretion. It is worth paying attention to the fact that cuts in foamiran in a roll can be uneven, if it was made in Iran - this is not considered a marriage. Chinese foamiran high class, on the contrary, always has a smooth edge, devoid of any damage. But the heterogeneity of the shade of the sheet is characteristic of any manufacturer, if it is only a slight gradation from light to dark. Some masters even consider it a success - it is not necessary to create artificially paint highlights and shadows on the finished product. Such transitions on flower petals from foamiran are especially beautiful.
How to work with foamiran?
It is very simple to make crafts from foamiran by yourself if you know a few key points about working with him.
- First, the amount of stretching of the material does not exceed 10%. This is enough to slightly deform the sheet - for example, bend it, rounded, or twist, squeeze, give the effect of corrugation. But it is rather difficult to cover the part with the foamiran cut: excessive tension leads to rupture. However, when purchasing foamiran, check it for a degree of quality: good material with a slight crease (after warming up in the hands) will not break.
- Secondly, for fastening parts made of foamed rubber, it is impossible to use PVA glue and other household types of glue, which are used in art. Basically, in order to connect the elements, a glue gun or a glue of a high degree of fixation is used. The method of "dry" fastening, known to most by the algorithm of work in scrapbooking, is practiced a little less often: parts are connected with brads (small nails) or placed on a wire base, which is most relevant for flowers.
Scissors or knives are mainly used to obtain certain figures, but special punchers can be found on store shelves: most of them work only with a very thin foamirane, since the material can simply get stuck between the blades. Professionals, in order to prevent this unpleasant moment, advise top and bottom to overlap a sheet of Foamiran with ordinary printer paper. In addition to simple composters, there are also so-called embossing variants on the market - those that simply leave an embossing on the surface of the material. However, their quality is questionable, because the pattern is fuzzy. If you want to carry out a similar procedure, it is better to resort to “dry” embossing, which requires only a stencil and a wooden sharp stick.
Foamiran peony: master class
- To work with foamiran, in addition to the basic material, a dense cardboard is needed on which patterns are drawn, after transferring to foamiran, as well as scissors or a knife, glue gun or wire. If you did not manage to get the material of the desired color, you should buy acrylic paints - they easily fall on the foamed rubber, quickly harden, do not grow dull with time, some of them are resistant to water.
- In order to collect a peony from foamiran, you will need to make 3 patterns: a classic one with 5 petals, which will lie on the sepals, a more terry, which will be duplicated several times - it will create the volume of the flower, as well as the pattern of leaves, if your peony sits on the stem. If you want to get only the flower itself, which later, for example, will sit on the basis of a brooch, the pattern of leaves can be omitted.
- The main part - terry - is created from a circle with a diameter of 5 cm (arbitrary size), which is divided into 6 sectors of 60 degrees each. The wave-like edge can be made by hand, the more arbitrarily it is executed, the more natural it will look. It is recommended at the junction of sectors to do a small depth (1-1.5 cm), to slightly separate the petals from each other. The detail, which is the lower petals, is a circle with 5 sectors and slightly larger (by 3-5 mm) diameter. The edges of these petals are smooth, rounded, and also divided.
- Depending on how lush a flower you want to create, the amount of detail is chosen. Optimally make 3 terry circles and 1-2 with classic edges. After that, in places of division of sectors, they are cut into separate petals. You can even divide each sector into several parts - this will be only a plus, but make sure that the small single petals are still smaller than the large ones: they will go to the middle of the flower, and the large ones will embrace them.
- It is easiest to heat the foamiran with the help of an ordinary iron: the parts are applied to its surface, and when they are ready for deformation, they will disappear. It only remains to gently crush them with your fingers, twisting or arching, giving roundness, and also slightly pull the outer edge to make it a little thinner. But do not overdo it with stretching!
- The petals are arranged depending on the desired shape of the flower: the half-opened bud usually has inward-lined petals, and in an adult that has already opened, some of them look outward, drooping edge down. Fixation is performed using a glue gun, the assembly of the flower - from the central twisted petals to the external open.
- If you are only interested in the peony bud, this is where the work ends. It will only remain to level the base, and plant the flower on a flat surface, also fixing it with a glue gun. If the stem is needed, it is created with the help of a thin wire, on which the first twisted petal is initially mounted. It is wrapped with paper until the desired thickness is obtained, and then the stem is covered with green paper. Here you can use ordinary PVA glue, but to add a petal of green foamiran you will again have to resort to a glue gun.
- For greater preservation, you can coat the finished product with varnish, although this is not necessary: foamiran is easy to clean and dries quickly, does not deform during use, does not get dirty and does not stick to your hands before and after working with it.
Foamiran is safe and, most likely, will soon be certified for children's creativity. It does not emit toxic substances, and even the unpleasant smell that comes from the roll should not become a hindrance in work - it disappears in a matter of minutes.