I've never worked with cold porcelain before, so when I saw that Veronica Yoshida of Southern Gold Leaf Cakes had posted about her experiments with it, I asked her if she'd be willing to share some of her information. She graciously agreed, so here are her tips:
After working with cold porcelain the last couple of weeks there are a few things I’ve noticed that I would pass along. I am not a professional and haven’t worked with this long so I’m sure there are many other pointers but these are the ones I’ve found the most helpful in a short amount of time.
3. No glue or water, just mineral oil. It’s super sticky on its own. Even in making roses you can work with the petals while everything is soft and it sticks to itself very easily. For pieces that need to be added after dry time, a tiny dab (and I mean teeny tiny) of mineral oil will do just fine. CP melts from exposure to water or heat so try to avoid it as it could cause your piece to become unstable in those particular places. Sealing the piece using a sealer that can be brushed or dipped is best. For toppers I would still place parchment or cardboard under the figurine base so that it’s not in direct contact - but that’s just me.
1. It doesn’t need to be refrigerated just sealed.
2. It smells better.
3. It cooks faster.
¾ cup white glue (Elmer’s is recommended)
½ cup water
1 teaspoon cold cream (Ponds or Nivea is best because they are non-oily)
1 teaspoon glycerin
1 cup cornstarch
**the saucepan you use should not be used for food after this**
Mix wet ingredients until smooth over a medium to med-low heat - continue to cook for a minute or two stirring constantly. Add the cornstarch a little at a time and mix well as you add. It will start to form very quickly at this point. By the time the last of the cornstarch is added you should have a formed ball of dough.
Move your dough to a work area where you can knead it as you would gum paste or fondant. If it’s too sticky add more cornstarch. If it’s too dry you can add a drop of glycerin or add mineral oil to your hands. Wrap in a layer of plastic wrap and then place in an air tight container. Do not refrigerate. Kept air tight it will keep for months.
Thanks, Veronica! If you want to read the other two articles about Veronica's experiences working with this medium, go to her blog at http://southerngoldleafcakes.blogspot.com/2011/03/cold-porcelain.html and http://southerngoldleafcakes.blogspot.com/2011/03/cold-porcelain-part-ii.html