I only use silicone molds and texture plates to shape my clay. You don’t need to fire the clay in a mold.
I have found that any mold release I have tried quickly broke down and ruined my silicone molds. There is an easier way to capture every tiny bit of detail of your molds.
After filling your mold with colors, put the mold and glass in a freezer until you can easily remove it. By pulling slightly at the edges, you will know if the clay is frozen enough because it will separate from the silicone and the clay won’t be moving in the mold. It will pop out like an ice cube! Put it on the drying plate. Clean up after it is dry.
If you are using texture plates, again freeze it with the clay on it. Gently peel your texture plate from the glass. Put no pressure on the frozen glass clay but peel off the texture plate while gently supporting the glass. Work quickly as you will want to have the glass frozen solidly for this process. Put it directly on the hot plate to dry. It will become hard to handle once it starts to thaw.
Refer to page 28 in the Art Jewelry Times article in the August 20 post for more details. Click on AJT-Aug-2015.
In a classroom situation I use dry ice which is usually available in grocery stores. Teachers, this works great!