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I only use strip mache for a general form, then go back over it with paper clay. Supposedly more paste over the strip mache will smooth it out as well.

Stolloween is a good start for all things paper mache, including a paper clay recipe.

http://www.stolloween.com/

This guy is a wizard too.

http://gourmetpapermache.com/
 

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I only use strip mache for a general form, then go back over it with paper clay. Supposedly more paste over the strip mache will smooth it out as well.

Stolloween is a good start for all things paper mache, including a paper clay recipe.

http://www.stolloween.com/

This guy is a wizard too.

http://gourmetpapermache.com/
Scott Stoll is actually offering online classes for paper mache. He has a new technique that cuts down on the amount of drying time and no more using platic bags filled with newspaper or beach balls. I have taken a few of his classes before and they are good.

I like Joni from Ultimate Paper Mache- I find her recipe for paper clay a little easier to use detail on because it uses toilet paper versus the isulation that Scott uses. However, Jay Olson from Unhinged Props said that if you wet down the insulation before adding it in that it should work the same way that the toilet paper clay works.

They are all on youtube and you can check out the recipes. Check out Scott's classes as they are really good. You can always pick up good techniques. Hope that this helps!
 

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I use paper clay over my strip mache as well, but you could use some kind of paper toweling for your final layer to give it a smoother finish. Viva and some brands of shop towels you can get in the automotive section don't have any patterns and would be good for this. Just remember to tear them and get rid of all the factory cut (straight) edges as this will help your strips/pieces blend together better. :)
 

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Here's a tutorial for how I like to make paper clay:
http://testyourmight.com/threads/im-going-to-show-folks-how-to-make-armor-cheaply.35413/

(Caveat: I use a food processor, to finely chop up the soaked TP before adding the other stuff, otherwise clumps happen.)


The Gourmet Paper Mache guy uses fabric for his final layer, instead of paper:
http://gourmetpapermache.com/ or http://papermacheblog.com/



The paper clay gets sanded, and then you can use the leftover joint compound to fill and smooth. Gesso (or joint compound mixed with some acrylic paint) would also help. A tip from the mache guy if you want smoother strip layers: don't put the strips in the paste, put your hands in the paste and smooth the strips on with your pasty hands. Also, tear the edges so they're ragged, rather than cutting which creates a clean and obvious line.
 

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Rutherford Manor Haunt
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Paper mache can be sanded, and light weight spakeling will fill holes. Gives you a smooth finish.

Love Scott's work, but in Florida critters chow down on paper machete with flour, even with startch added. I use a elmers glue/ water mix.
Yes I was going to suggest the same, I have sanded some of my paper strip projects and they have pretty smooth surface. I also use blue shop towels for the final layer and they provide a nice finish, leathery sort of ?? ;) ;)
 
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