1. Keep molds clean from debris or castings. They can be washed with mild soap and warm water and dried with a towel. Never dry in a conventional oven or microwave oven. Keep away from heat.

    2. Lightly spray Perfect Mold Release or silicone into the molds before each cast when using epoxy or wax. When using stone or plaster, spray a little surfactant or debubblizer into the mold cavities to eliminate bubbles and let the casting form sharp detail. Remove excess spray. Too heavy an application will dull details in the animals or interfere with the surface hardness. Use 'Pam' when casting food.

    3. Plaster, stone, wax and epoxy can be poured into the mold. Do not attempt to cast acrylic, as this will ruin the mold. Certain epoxies can stick to the mold, so best to test cure a mix of epoxy on a small bottom surface area first. If, after curing, it does not affect the mold material or stick to it, it would be ok to use.

    4. Be sure to remove bubbles from material you are casting. Use vibration or vacuum. Material should be 'free-running' in viscosity. Do not pour all animals at one time, and leave spaces to allow for undercuts on removal. Agitate, vibrate or tap the mold vigorously as you pour the plaster to slowly fill the mold cavity. This minimizes bubble formation at the surface and guarantees excellent detail and mold accuracy. Do not pour and fill the mold cavity all at once, but slowly so that all undercuts are filled and not left with voids.

    5. For removal of casts, after the stone has cured/set/hardened, hold mold in both hands, flex mold and at the same time, push up the cast from the bottom of the mold with fingers (thumb) to dislodge figurine. Then simply push cast from mold, while pulling the figurine. Caution, do not push with sharp or pointed objects, including sharp fingernails, as this could puncture the mold.

Molds will cast Plaster of Paris, artificial stone, epoxy, wax (for candles), silicone (Dow Corning RTV from hardware store) (for soft animals) and ceramic slip castings. Epoxy, Wax and Stone/Plaster available from arts and crafts store, dental supply house and hardware stores.

For Hanging Objects: such as Christmas Tree ornaments, make plaster animals and allow them to dry for two or three days. Spray the plaster animal with shellac or varnish and then paint for enamel colors. When paints are dry, drill a hole about 1/4" deep into the highest extremity of the body, usually the head. Thread a thin fish line into the head and put a drop of instant glue into the hole with the fish line. Tie a small hook to the outer end and you can hang it on the branch of a Christmas Tree.

Soap Animals: can be made by heating a high glycerine content soap in a double boiler. When liquefied, pour into mold and allow to cool in a refrigerator. The Soap Animals can then be popped out of the mold according to instructions. This technique is best for larger figurines.

Wax Candles: After the wax has cooled sufficiently to remove from the mold, thread a wick through the tallest extremity of the animal, usually the head, using a thin upholstery strait needle. You may need to heat the needle first, and using a pliers to hold the needle, run it through the wax figurine. Alternatively, thread the wick though the tallest extremity of the animal in the mold, usually the head, and pour hot wax into the mold. Hold the bottom end of the wick straight until the wax begins to chill. Remove the wax and top portion of the wick from the mold. Cut the wick off of the bottom.

Slip Castings: Pour ceramic material into mold and agitate material with a blunt instrument such as a pencil, so that the mold will not trap air bubbles. Poke a toothpick into bottom center of the figurine before setting. Allow at least 24 to 36 hours for the ceramic material to set in the mold. Remove ceramic casting before firing. Place casting in a low heat oven to hasten the dehydrating process.