As regular readers know, one of my goals is to try, test, and review as many sealants, topcoats, and glazes as possible to share how good they are when used for paper quilled jewelry. I make sure to test a product on several types of pieces before reviewing it so that you get the best picture. For almost the past year I have been testing and using Ceramcoat All Purpose Sealer. I love it for quilled jewelry because it really soaks into the paper and stiffens it up. Click here to read that full review.
But I can never be satisfied with just having one product I am happy with. What if someone else does not have easy access to that product? Are there other products out there that work just as well? I have to know! I have been eyeing the DecoArt Americana Multi-Purpose sealer for awhile. A couple months ago I was making an order from Amazon and I decided to go ahead and add it to my order. It is sometimes expensive to ship things here to Malaysia, but luckily the weight of the bottle didn’t add enough to the package to tip it into the next shipping tier, so basically I was getting shipping for free. Whew! I was so excited!! So I’ve been testing it out.
- soaks into the paper to make it stiff (especially if you thin it with water first)
- easy to dip your piece into (if you thin it with water)
- quite affordable
- does not seem to darken the color of the paper as much as other sealers
- you have to thin it with water to be able to easily use it as a sealer with paper
- doesn’t give quite as high level of water resistance that topcoats and glazes do
Is it waterproof?
This is a question that is asked about all sealers, topcoats, glazes, etc. I cannot find information about how water resistant this product is. However, it does say that it is for outdoor or indoor use, and does recommend mixing it with paint for a final surface on projects. So I would guess that it does have some water resistant properties! Plus, I have tested it in one (so far!) water resistance test and it did quite well! See below for more info on that.
Here is their official discription, you can read more on their website:
- Adhesive, smooth and durable
- For outdoor surfaces, can be mixed into paint with no varnishing necessary
So you could technically use just this to protect your jewelry without any other topcoat, but if you do that make sure you put several layers. I would suggest using it mixed with water as a base coat, and then using it without water a couple layers for a topcoat. Or you could, as I do, use another product over top of this one. This sealer will give you a much sturdier piece of jewelry in the end, so that is why I always use it underneath a topcoat or glaze.
As I mentioned, I did a test recently for the water resistant properties of different sealers, glazes, etc. You can see the full results of the test in this post. In summary what I did was use many different products to coat little rounds of paper quilling. The one labeled DA is the DecoArt Sealer. The one that is labeled DAW is DecoArt Sealer mixed with water. After ten minutes in water the one with pure DecoArt Sealer is perfectly fine. The one that had it mixed with water has a spot where the water soaked through. The one with the DA mixed with water was more stiff, but not quite as water resistant. Hence my suggestion to use it mixed with water as a sealer, but then without water if you want to use it as the topcoat as well.
Does it soak into the paper? When looking to protect my paper quilled jewelry, I like to have two types of protection:
- To make the paper stiff to help protect against it being smashed
- To make the paper water resistant to protect against dirt, moisture, rain, etc.
I don’t know of any product that does both things perfectly. That is why my usual method involves using a liquid sealer as a base coat which soaks into the paper and makes it quite stiff. When that dries I add a glaze or topcoat for extra protection. A sealer by itself may not last forever and might not be as water resistant, and a glaze by itself won’t make the piece as stable as possible because it won’t soak into the paper. DecoArt Americana Multi-Purpose Sealer is meant to be used on quite a variety of surface types, and therefore was made thicker than some sealers (but not as thick as glue or most topcoats). But not to worry, you can just mix it with a little water to make it thinner and then it will very easily absorb into paper. You can also use it as is, but then it is more gloppy and therefore more difficult to use for quilled jewelry. Click here to read a post about mixing water with sealants and glazes and applying it. This talks specifically about topcoats, but the exact same method is used to thin the DecoArt Americana Sealer. Basically what you will do is squeeze a bit of the DecoArt Sealer into a container (I use a little empty cap) and mix in a few drops of water until it is as thin as you’d like. Then either dip your piece in (as shown in the post that I mentioned) or use a small stiff paintbrush to paint it on. If your piece is quite solid, use the dipping method. If it is delicate and has open scrolls, use the painting method, and paint on very light coats! Click here and here for posts about putting sealant onto open coil designs. Here is a post about how to apply sealant and topcoat to larger solid designs: It talks more about the topcoat, but the same principal applies to applying the base sealant.
Where Can You Find it?
Here are some places where you can find DecoArt Multi-Purpose Sealer. If you have a Michael’s or Joanne’s Fabric and Crafts nearby you can easily pick this up there, it is also in their online stores. You can even find it at Walmart in the craft section (they have it in the online store as well). In fact, this seems to be a very widespread product in the US, so if you have another art and craft store near you, it is probably there!
If you love Amazon, it can easily be bought there as well, and for a good price.
Amazon in Canada seems to have it as well, if you are based there.
Amazon in the UK also has it.
Other than that, I don’t really see it being sold outside of the US. If you know of a place, do let me know so I can update this post. But even if you are outside of the US you can still order it from Amazon or another online store and get it shipped to you, as I did.
If you cannot find DecoArt Americana Multi-Purpose Sealer where you live, what can you use? When I first started making quilled jewelry I used to use a liquid matte sealer that I found here in Malaysia. It worked really well. I used to sell this product, but since I stopped selling quilling supplies now someone else does. Click here to find the links where to buy liquid matte sealant (and also glossy topcoat) in Malaysia. The only reason I went on to find other products is because I know it’s hard for others outside of Malaysia to get this liquid matte sealer unless they order from here.
The next sealer that I found that worked just as well as the liquid matte sealer, was Ceramcoat All Purpose Sealer. I love it and still use it as well. Click here for the full review and info about that. You can find it on Amazon and at most craft stores in the US.
If you cannot get any of these products, take a look at your local craft shop. Look for a product that is a liquid and is meant to seal a porous surface. Often they are used for paper crafts or painting crafts (often you put a sealer on a porous surface before painting it so that you don’t have to use as many layers of paint). So you can find them in different aisles in the craft shop. There are more products like this that I want to try, but one that I DID try and DID NOT work was Aleene’s Stiffen Quik. Here in this post I show how it worked for me and why it did not work. So if you see that one in the shop, don’t bother to get it for this purpose. I’m sure it works fine for its original purpose, I think it is more for cloth, but it does not stiffen paper enough.
How Does it Compare
How does DecoArt Americana Sealer compare to Ceramcoat Sealer? This chart shows that they are pretty similar. The DecoArt is thicker, so it needs to be thinned if you want it to really soak in to make the paper stiff. The other difference is that Ceramcoat Sealer will give a stiffer finish. If you soak a tight roll in Ceramcoat sealer and another in the DecoArt sealer, the Ceramcoat one will be super hard. The DecoArt one will be hard, but just slightly flexible.
- Soaks into paper
- Stiffens paper (FIVE STARS)
- Seals and Protects
- Is thin and easily applied
- Soaks into paper (does this better if it is thinned with water first)
- Stiffens paper (FOUR STARS)
- Seals and Protects
- Is a bit thicker, so you can thin it to easily use a sealant, or use thicker as more of a topcoat
I hope that you found this review helpful. Let me know if you have any questions about DecoArt Americana Multi-Purpose Sealer and I’ll do my best to answer! I have many more products to review, so stay tuned!
- Click here to see all posts that are about sealants, topcoats, and glazes.
- Click here to view free paper quilling tutorials!
- Click here to view paper quilling tips and tricks!
- Click here to view a list of places to buy quilling supplies around the world!
- Click here to view some of my own quilling projects, with tips so you can make your own if you’d like!
*All products and supplies mentioned in this post I purchased and/or made on my own.
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