The leaf, as early as convenient after being gathered, is to be laid on fine grained moist sand, in a perfectly natural position, with that surface uppermost which is to form the cast, and ,to be banked up by sand, in order that it may be perfectly supported. It is then, by means of a broad camel-hair brush, to be co-vered over with a th:n coating of wax and Burgundy pitch, rendered fluid by heat. The leaf is now to be removed from the 3and, and dipped 'in cold water, the wax beeomes hard, and sufficiently tough to allow the leaf tobe ripped off, without altering its form. This being done, the wax mould is placed in moist sand, and banked up as the leaf itself was previously ; it is then covered with plaster of Pa. ris, made thin, due care being taken that the plaster be nicely pressed into all the intersti ces ot the mould, by means of a camelhair brush. As soon as the plaster has set, the warmth thus produced softens the wax, which in consequence of the moisture of the plaster, is prevented from adhering to it, and with a 1 little dexterity it may be rolled up, parting completely trom the cast, without injuring it in the least. Casts obtained in the manner thus described are very perfect, possessing a high relief, and form excellent models, either for the draughts. man or for the moulder of architectural orna ments.
This article was originally published with the title "Plaster Casts of Leaves and Flowers" in Scientific American 8, 23, 177 (February 1853)