Preparing for the overhaul...

Friday, March 18, 2011

But Where Can I Find This Stuff?

I've written a number of tutorials, many of which mention pretty strange materials--like lead tape.  Where the heck does one find this stuff?  These aren't exactly every day things.  Most of the alternative techniques I've developed, and materials I've found have been the result of desperation.  Hobby-specific supplies often aren't that great--or, conversely, they're fantastic but ridiculously expensive.  I don't know about you, but I have a limited amount of money to spend on miniatures and a family to support.  Nobody would fancy it much if I spent the week's grocery budget on minis.

Making matters more complicated, I'm in the US and most of you, my readers, aren't.  It's just not that easy to find suppliers who ship internationally.  Specifically, many of the materials used in my lead paned window tutorial are pretty obscure.  The good news is, you can get everything you need from one of my favorite sources: Amazon.  Amazon UK sells lead golf tape for £5.99.  You can also get DecoArt Triple Thick Brush-On Glaze for £4.99.  All of the windows I use are available from Hobby Builders Supply, which ships internationally.

Many things, like Americana craft paint, aren't readily available outside the US and Canada.  The good news is, other brands of acrylic craft paint are.  I happen to like Americana, but I by no means use it exclusively.  With the exception of a few very bargain basement brands, which are usually pretty easily identifiable by their misspelled labels (and other obvious flaws), all acrylic craft paint is pretty much interchangeable.  You might not be able to find the exact same paint in the exact same color, but you can pretty much eyeball it.

If I'm searching for a new color, I tend to splurge on five or six containers at once.  As they cost about 99 cents (USD), that's not too bad.  Also, too, I find that, for one thing or another, I use every color for something eventually.  I try them all out on a piece of scrap wood, wait for them to dry, and decide what I like the most.  It's important to let the paint dry completely before making any decisions; some burnt umber-type colors tend to be very ashy and purple when they dry.  I personally prefer a richer, warmer hue.

I hope these pointers were helpful.  If anyone has a particular product they're looking for, let me know!  I'd be happy to help.


Michelle said...

It's always a dilemma blogging when stating where one buys supplies! lol Most of the supplies I buy from do ship internationally so I know my followers can at least buy it too. I also think collectors and miniaturists alike have become used to looking and sourcing supplies that it almost becomes second nature to 'Google' a make or brand! lol

This hobby isn't cheap, but some things can be.

I do use a good quality brand for most of my acrylic paints though as I find you do get what you pay for.

Fabulous blog and so happy you're here in Blogsphere CJ!

Michelle :o))

Daydreamer said...

Thank you , again CJ! I will now be able to quickly find the materials I need!!!! You are a Gem! I can't wait to try this method!

C.J. said...

You're welcome! It takes a little getting used to, but it really does work. Also, don't get discouraged, because the learning curve is very steep. My first few efforts were pretty pitiful. Eventually, once I got a feel for the materials, things really took off.

Sometime I'm going to make a post entirely devoted to my failures...some of which have really been quite spectacular :-)

Tabitha Corsica said...

I believe it was Thomas Edison who said, "It didn;t fail...I just found another way it doesn't work.." or something like that :-)

Just discovered your blog via my friend Victoia. Very informative, very clear instructions for your tutorials. Thank you for sharing all your knowledge and your techniques. I remember when I was looking for lead tape. I was complaining to my husband about how obscure this items seemed to day he brought it home from the golf shop. heheh.