Textured Book Covers using the Tangled Birch from Chocolate Baroque

I hope that you like my texture project for the blog today. I got the idea from one of Lesley Wharton’s demos on The Craft Channel where she used Brushos to make lovely background papers and book covers.

AW Texture book covers 4

AW Texture book covers 1

AW Texture book covers 2

AW Texture book covers 3


  • Tangled Birch stamp
  • A6 (approx. 10.5 X 15cm) hard backed note books, scrap acetate, kitchen towel and cartridge paper
  • Brusho’s and Ink Sprays (pinks and blues, some with mica)
  • Starlight paints (with crushed gilding flakes) or metallic acrylic (gold and pink)
  • White Gesso
  • Mod Podge (Matte finish)
  • Tacky acrylic glue
  • Glitter glue (pink and gold)
  • Alcohol marker (black or dark grey)
  • StazOn Inkpad (Black)
  • Microbeads (pink and turquoise mixes)

Summary of techniques:

  1. The blue textured paper was created from waste kitchen towel initially used to mop up waste diluted Brushos from my craft mat. I spritzed on a bit more colour. When dry the towel was scrunched up and the layers separated.
  2. The pink textured paper was created with thin cartridge sketching paper and ink spritzers, some with mica.
  3. The papers were applied to the book covers using Matte Mod Podge. The wrinkles created a lovely texture. I sealed the blue tissue with Mod Podge on the outside too, and used both layers as it was quite translucent with just one layer. I left the pink textured paper unsealed.
  4. When dry I rubbed over the surface with metallic acrylics to pick up and highlight the textures (using a little on my finger).
  5. The Tangled Birch was stamped onto acetate with StazOn Ink. The back was then coloured with metallic acrylics.
  6. When dry I added a layer of white Gesso. This made the translucent acrylic more solid and opaque. The image was cut out and glued to the book front with tacky glue.
  7. Glitter glue was added to the image front. I used Pinflair glitter wands which work well on acetate. You may want to test this as some glitter glues may not stick well to acetate.
  8. Microbeads were dropped into a thick layer of tacky glue for added texture.

My project using the free digital paper from Chocolate Baroque

What a beautiful digital paper we have to play with this month. I decided to create a framed decoupage piece with mine.

Available from the Chocolate Baroque Challenge Blog.

AW Digital 20 Framed


  • Cacti Postcard Digital Paper printed onto A4 paper
  • 31cm square mount board in cream and dark green, plus backing card
  • Crafters Workshop 6X6 stencil (Cell Theory) and swirly branches stencils
  • Pearlescent acrylic modelling paste
  • Acrylic paints (blue and pearlescent pale aqua)
  • Polychromos Pencils (blue/grey and grey)
  • Stickles glitter glue (Diamond)
  • Pearlescent spray varnish
  • PVA glue and 3D glue gel

How it was done:

  1. Printed the image six times and cut around the cacti and flower image building up layers onto the background. Shaped and glued with 3D gel. Note: Keep the leftovers for other projects, they will be great for cutting out with punches or dies.
  2. When dry I added a little shading using the pencils.
  3. Mixed some blue acrylic with the modelling paste and applied through the Cell Theory stencil with a pallet knife to create a border around the image.
  4. I cut an approx. 20cm aperture from the cream mount board. The dark green was cut approx. 4mm smaller and glued behind the cream frame.
  5. Stencilled pearlescent pale aqua paint through swirly branches stencil to create added texture to the frame.
  6. Glued together, backing with thick card. Sprayed with varnish to protect.
  7. It could be further mounted into a 3D box frame, behind glass, for added durability.
  8. Tip: If you want to create a long lasting home décor project it is very important to use acid free paper, card and glues. I have a printer with archival pigment inks which are much more fade resistant than dye based standard inks.

MDF Bookstand Decorated for Chocolate Baroque Challenge 20

I had so much fun using this month’s hot colours to decorate this book stand for my desk. The colours just said ‘Indian Theme’ to me. I used acrylic paints and mixed and matched stamps from several different stamp sets. The design could easily be adapted to create a wall hanging or small canvas.

AW Colour Challenge 20


AW Colour Challenge 20 side view

Good luck everyone with the Challenge – some wonderful projects on there already this month.

Anne xxx.


· Words of Inspiration, Indian Elephant, Exquisite Edges, Punky Flowers, and Gothic Fragments stamp sets

· MDF book stand (Creative Expressions Kit)

· White gesso and acrylic paints (pink, pearl pink, dark red, orange and yellow)

· StazOn Inkpad (Jet Black)

· Zig 2 Way Glue Pen

· Fine tipped alcohol markers (black, pink, dark red and orange)

· Polychromos pencils (pink, dark red, orange and yellow)

· Cut-N-Dry Foam

· Gold gilding wax (Pebeo Renaissance Gold)

· Iridescent spray varnish (Crafters Companion Pearl Diamond)

· Scrap paper for planning and masking plus dye based black inkpad

Step By Step:

I first sealed and primed the MDF stand with white gesso. Tip: When painting MDF items it is often best to paint them after constructing as the MDF can expand slightly making it difficult to fit the joints together afterwards.

The sides were painted with pink acrylic. The back and front panels were painted using orange and yellow acrylics. I painted from the outside edges working inward and blending the orange into the yellow in the centre.

The sides were randomly stamped with the paisley motif (Indian Elephant set) using StazOn. A bit of colouring was added using pencils.

I cut a piece of scrap paper the same size as the front panel in order to plan out the stamping. I have included a picture of my sketchbook page. I then worked out the order of stamping and which images needed masking. You will need to protect (mask) the foreground stamped images while building up the scene.

AW Colour Challenge 20 Rough Plan

I stamped the lettering, elephants and border (Exquisite Edges set) with dye ink onto copy paper and cut around them to create masks. I added a few dots of Zig 2 Way Glue to the back and left to fully dry. This then acts as a temporary tacky adhesive to hold the masks in place while stamping.

It is tricky to stamp some areas on a ready-made item. The stamps need to be positioned on the stamping block to enable stamping into corners etc. It is also easy to slip when you are stamping at an angle on a 3D item. Tip: You could paint a piece of card to fit the area, stamp onto that instead, and then glue this onto your project afterwards.

I first stamped the sentiment, elephants and lower border with StazOn Ink. I then covered with the masks as shown in the picture.

AW Colour Challenge 20 masking

Next I stamped the background arches (Gothic Fragments set) with a mix of pearl pink and red acrylic paints using Cut-N-Dry Foam to apply the paint to the stamps. Tip: Squeeze some acrylic paint directly onto the sponge and work it into the surface using a palette knife. This saves washing up of palettes and it wastes less paint. Place the coloured sponges face down on a craft mat and the paint stays workable without drying out for ages. Apply to your stamp with a dabbing motion. Clean your stamps quickly after use with warm water. A soft toothbrush can be useful to remove paint from the stamp crevices.

Next the tall stylised flower (Punky Flowers set) was stamped with dark red acrylic. The top of the stamp was then stamped with StazOn along the base. Masks were then removed.

A bit of colouring was added using marker pens and pencils. The pencils gave a nice textured effect to the elephants. I then outlined elements of the tall floral stamp using a fine tipped black marker. This brought the images further forward and created a nice frame up the sides of the scene.

I then sprayed with pearlescent varnish to protect and finished by adding gold gilding wax to the edges.

Mixed Media Canvas using acrylic and special paints, die cuts and stamps


make honey

I created this canvas last summer and was delighted when it sold straight away (approx size 40cm square).

  • The background was created using acrylic paints and grass modelling paste (Viva Decor) for added texture.
  • Stencils were used to create the lacy border along the bottom and swirl textures in the background (Martha Stewart).
  • Further texture was added to the background with a hessian stamp (Heartfelt Creations).
  • The hexagons were cut from varying thicknesses of card and mount board using a hexagon quilting die (Sissix BigZ). White gesso was used to seal and prime them ready for painting.
  • Raised metallic outline elements were created using Mixtion Relief Paste and Metal Leaf (Pebeo).
  • Metallic gold acrylic paint, and specialist paints were then used to colour the hexagons and to create the ‘honey drizzles’ : ceramic and glass paints, Moon and Prisme (all from Pebeo).
  • Sentiments were printed from the computer and applied with Mod Podge.
  • Bees were stamped onto tissue paper and coloured with alcohol inks, and applied with Mod Podge.
  • Butterflies were cut from commercially printed papers (Heartfelt Creations).
  • Floral gears and leaves were cut using dies (Heartfelt Creations) and coloured with acrylic paints.
  • Additional flowers and swirls were cut using dies (Sissix BigZ) and coloured with Versamark and a mix of Gold and Verdigris embossing powders (WOW).
  • I created the larger interlocking gears using Silhouette software. They were cut from thick card, layered up and coloured with Versamark and a mix of Gold and Verdigris embossing powders.

I had such fun creating this one. I hope that you like it and that it inspires you to have a play with mixed media.

Happy Crafting, Anne xxx.

Recycled Brush Tin using the Floral Weave stamp from Chocolate Baroque

AW Brush tin

I created this sample for the recent TV shows from Chocolate Baroque on The Craft Channel. Lesley Wharton was fantastic and gave some wonderful demos. Simply a natural on the TV.

I used waste coloured paper which had been used underneath an alcohol ink colouring project (Spectrum Noir Pens). I kept it in my stash as I loved the random dots of colour. I used the Floral Weave stamp and black acrylic paint. The bold silhouette style is perfect for stamping over patterned papers. I then added a little blue glitter glue to the flower centres. Now I have a pretty tin for storing my brushes on my work desk.

Happy stamping, Anne x.

Oriental Box created with the Floral Weave and Studded Lattice stamps from Chocolate Baroque

I created this sample for the recent TV shows from Chocolate Baroque on The Craft Channel. Lesley Wharton was fantastic and gave some wonderful demos using the new background stamps. They are so versatile for so many projects and styles.

AW Oriental Box 1

I have had this box in my stash for some time. I used the lovely Floral Weave and Studded Lattice stamps to give it a complete make over in an Oriental style.

AW Oriental Box 2


How it was made:

  1. Paint the box with black gesso.
  2. Stamp the lid with the Floral Weave stamp and emboss with the gold powder.
  3. Stamp the box edges with the Studded Lattice and emboss with gold powder. Then rub edges with a little gilding wax.
  4. Finally glue on the 3D elements to the lid top and rub over with a little gilding wax.
  5. My box already had the button and cord closure. You could add these yourself to a plain box to achieve a similar result. Take care when heat embossing if your button or cord is not heat tolerant.

Chocolate Baroque are on TV this weekend

New stamps from Chocolate Baroque exclusive to The Craft Channel this weekend – Yay!  The stamps are fabulous and demos from Lesley are bound to be brilliant.

First show this evening – check website www.thecraftchannel.tv for TV show times this weekend or to watch online (the show is called ‘the weekend wonder’).


Haunted House Using the New Halloween Stamp Sets from Chocolate Baroque

I couldn’t resist making a spooky decoration with the FAB new stamp sets this month – perfect for a Halloween party. I used both the ‘Put A  Spell On You’ and ‘Hocus Pocus’ stamp sets and the little Wood House Shaped Shelving which is on sale at the moment.

AW Haunted House 1

  • The house was first painted with black and white gesso to seal and prime the bare wood.
  • Recycled corrugated cardboard was used to cover the roof, make the chimney and extend the bottom sides. I used a punch to create the scalloped roof edging from black card. Highlights were added using gilding wax. The ceilings and some walls were painted with orange acrylic.
  • The sparkly clouds and wispy spider webs were created using Angelina fibre. A fine mesh of fibre was laid out and ironed between two sheets of baking parchment. The fibre melts and bonds to itself creating a fine ‘fabric’.
  • The 3D embellishments, including cogs, flowers, toadstools, lettering etc. were created with silicone moulds and air dry paper clay. I created the broomstick from a cocktail stick and fringed trim.
  • The main images were stamped onto white card using Tuxedo Black Memento Ink and coloured with alcohol ink pens. I used a mix of Mowed Lawn and Broken China Distress Inks to ink the edges.
  • The witch coming out of the chimney, bats in the clouds and the spell book in the roof space were stamped onto acetate using Staz-On Ink.
  • I used punches to create the butterflies and black flowers. The leaves were created using a stamp from the Autumn Hedgerow stamp set. I also used the Mini Scripts set to stamp text on the walls and tomb stones, the Butterfly Poppy Collage for creating one of the wallpapers, and the Abstract Fragments set to add texture to the floors.

I had so much fun creating this and I hope that you like it.

Exploding Travel Box created with Heartfelt Creations Arianna Blooms Paper Collection

Travel Box FINAL 1

Travel Box FINAL 4

Travel Box FINAL 6

The Idea:

This exploding gift box was created to give to someone special going on a journey. I wanted to make a box where 3 sides drop down and the back remains upright. I also wanted to include a place where a gift card or money could be inserted (very useful for an extended trip). In keeping with this theme I created the suitcase, made a little travel guide and map for the journey.


Products from Heartfelt Creations:

  • Arianna Blooms Collection 12 X 12 inch Pad.
  • Luggage Die set with Tags (HCD 745)
  • Arianna Lace Die set (HCD 747).
  • Arianna Blooms Die set (HCD 748)
  • Arianna Blooms Stamp set (HCPC 3608)
  • Sun Kissed Fleur Die set – (HCD 734).
  • Cut Mat Create Die sets 1A, 1B  and 2A (HCD 749, 750 and 751).

Other Materials:

  • Cosmic Shimmer PVA for flower construction, Collall all purpose for gluing flat card layers, hot melt glue for fast grab and 3D elements.
  • Heavy plain manila card for box construction.
  • Flower shaping tools and foam mat from Creata.
  • Craft knife, metal edged ruler, glass work mat.
  • Memento dye ink pad (Tuxedo Black) for stamping the flower elements, Distress inks (Antique Linen and Tea Dye), Spectrum Noir alcohol ink pens (DR7 dark red, LG5 green, GB3 golden yellow).
  • Dovecraft glitter glue (crystal) and Cosmic Shimmer PVA (Vintage Pink) for decoration.
  • Computer printed sentiments.
  • Recycled old French dictionary and Atlas page, lace fragment, small piece pink raffia, glass pearls and chain.


The suitcase was constructed following directions on the Heartfelt Creations YouTube Channel; cut from craft card, lined with patterned paper, handles and straps coloured with DR7 alcohol ink. I wanted the case to sit opened upright at right angles to hold the back of the box up when opened – so I constructed a block with card and glued (piece 7 x 4cm scored and glued to make block).

Travel Box 1

Travel Box 2

The suitcase now will form part of the box construction holding up the back panel.

Cut patterned card for book cover using Cut Mat Create A oblong, and book pages with B die – created mini travel guide.

Cut old Atlas page with medium A oblong die. Scrunched and distressed to create old map.

Cut box sections from manila card – two 11cm squares for sides, two 15 X 11cm for outer base and front flap, one 15 X 22cm for back and inside base (scored at 11cm and folded up).

Travel Box 3



Cut one 19.5 x 15.5cm and scored 2cm in around each edge, snipped into corners, folded and glued to create the box lid.

Then covered all panels with decorative papers adding sentiments etc. Hinges for the box were created by cutting the decorative papers longer at the base of each side panel and wrapping them under the base panel. A second base panel was then glued to the outside base, covering the workings. The map, book, suitcase goodies etc. where then glued in place with hot melt glue. A die cut tag was included on the lid so that the sender could write a message.

Flowers were stamped and cut out, coloured with Spectrum Noir pens and shaped (see Heartfelt Creations YouTube Channel). Decoration was completed with Lace die cuts and sprigs from the Cut Mat Create Die sets, finished with PVA pearl dots and glitter glue.