Making a belly cast is very easy, you do not need to be an established/professional artist to make one. If you are on a tight budget and decide to go it alone without purchasing a DIY Kit then this guide is for you. Just one thing PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE buy the right plaster before you start. Using the wrong plaster gauze might save you a couple of bucks but the scars from the third degree burns will stay forever!! (College of Saint Benedict | Saint John's University). Buy your plaster from a chemist. If you are at the local art store check the packaging of the gauze you are considering purchasing before parting with your money. Some plasters cause burns and the packaging should be telling you this!! The plaster reacts with the water and heats up, Medical Grade Gauze is safe it still heats up but it is the stuff the doctors used to plaster broken arms and legs with so you know it has been tried and tested.
To make a belly cast you will need medical grade plaster gauze, barrier creme to smother on to stop the plaster ripping your nipples & body hair off, scissors, a tub of 23oC water and a dropsheet because it will get messy. Have a drink of water and something to eat before you start and take the phone off the hook. Sit on a comfy chair. Do not stand as you can faint from the weight. Do not lay down as your breasts and belly will flatten out.
- Cut the plaster into strips that measure across the entire belly then cut half of those strips in half (the smaller strips are for plastering over the breasts
- Smear the creme on the skin where the plaster is going tummy, breasts, decollete etc (make this the new Dad's job and you will find he'll be a bit more helpful)
- Dip each strip individually into the water. You can start from the top and work down or start from under the belly and work your way up over the breasts to the underarms or the neckline. Layer each strip over the one before, ensure the outer edges, across the top of the chest, under the breasts and curve of the belly have ample layers for additional support.
- For a really smooth cast don't squeeze the excess water out of the strips as you layer them over the pregnant belly. The cast will take a little longer to dry but it's worth it and you wont have to cover over with extra plasters for the smooth finish.
- After around 20mins the belly cast should start to pull away from the skin as it dries. Slowly peel the cast off and air dry for 24 - 48hrs
- After the cast is completely dry add a coat of Gesso primer this will seal, further strengthen the finished belly cast and act as a great smooth base for you to start decorating over!!
All kits from the Belly of Love range include detailed instructions with lots of hints and tips. Our CD Rom also includes how to decorate your finished bellycast using techniques such as decoupage, mosaic and making your belly cast into a nightlight!! We are the only Australian belly casting company that uses enviro friendly medical grade plaster gauze and a 100% pure & natural barrier creme made from certified organic shea & cocoa butter.
About the Author: Allison Tyson is an established Belly caster & Lifecaster running her online business Belly of Love and ebay shop 'www-bellyoflove-com'