Excited to be joining the Powertex Team as a guest blogger

I am so excited to be joining the Powertex Team as a guest blogger and am really looking forward to sharing my new creative journey with you all.

I am an ex medical scientist now self employed in jewellery and textiles. I also enjoy mixed media and card making too and am on the Design Team of a stamp company and a textile trimmings maker, so regularly blog my projects. I really enjoy helping people along on their own creative journey.

A couple of weeks ago I ventured up to Powertex UK HQ to take my Level 1 training. Tracey, Garry and the lovely team were all so welcoming and made me feel instantly at ease. I met some lovely people on the course and we spent a wonderful couple of days creating in Tracey’s studio. There were many wonderful projects on display from Tracey and the Design Team. Amazing talent and such an inspiration.

I managed to catch a pic of myself and Tracey in the garden. Tracey is the attractive one – tee hee.

 

AW Me & Tracey

 

 

The course was very intensive and we each created a wide range of projects, ranging from mixed media canvases and journal covers right up to a figurine. We were also given masses of useful guidance and information on setting up workshops for ourselves too. I learned so much and we all had a lot of fun and plenty of laughter along the way.

I have had a busy couple of weeks on my return and still have to put the finishing touches to my Level 1 projects. I will share them soon. In the meantime I thought that I would share my first ever ventures into the world of Powertex, following one of Tracey’s shows on Hochanda.

 

AW Powertex Fossil 1

AW Powertex Fossil 2

AW Powertex Fossil 2b

AW Powertex Fossil 2k

AW Powertex Fossil 2g

 

I created a couple of 30 cm square fossil themed canvases and a covered bottle – I hope that you like them. I was really pleased with the natural organic feel. Some of my friends thought that I had used real fossils. Being my first projects I hope that you will see what a beginner can achieve.

 

AW Powertex Fossil Bottle 1

AW Powertex Fossil Bottle 2

AW Powertex Fossil Bottle 5

Below I have included a materials list and the step by step of techniques used to create the canvases, including some hints and tips to get the best results. The embellished bottle was created in the same way.

Happy crafting, Anne x.

 

Materials used:

 

How they were made:

  1. The canvases were already primed with gesso so I first gave them a coat of Powertex to colour and create a good surface for adhesion.
  2. I mixed up some Powertex with sand to make a thick paste. When the canvases were dry to the touch (it doesn’t take long) I applied the paste to the background using a palette knife through the stencil to create fossil textures. I then left them overnight to dry.
  3. I mixed more sand with Poweretex, this time to make a thicker drier clay. I think that the mix was about 50:50. Basically I gradually added sand until I had a workable clay that wasn’t too wet and sticky. I then pushed the clay into the silicone moulds to create the 3D fossils. I left them to dry for several hours until they could easily be released from the moulds without distorting. Some of the bigger ones needed to be left overnight. I then placed them on a drying tray (old kitchen wire grill tray – so air could get all around) and left them overnight to dry and further harden up. I made the clay up in small manageable batches so as not to waste reagents. Any clay that wasn’t being used straight away was wrapped in cling film to stop it drying out.
  4. Next I worked the Powertex into rough strips of hessian, and some pulled threads. I did struggle a bit with this at first as I used far too much Powertex. If you overdo it, like I did, grab another strip of fabric and use it to dab and squeeze out the excess. These were then ruched and applied to the canvas using a little extra Powertex as a glue where needed.
  5. I then applied my fossils using Powertex to glue. In some of the more textured areas I dunked some of the kitchen towel in Powertex to make a 3D glue ‘gel’ in which to embed my fossil embellishments. I also used strips of kitchen paper to create more areas of texture. I found that it was best to separate the paper into a single ply (i.e. split the double layered tissue into 2 sheets) to ensure that it fully coated and soaked up the Powertex more easily.
  6. Next I drizzled Powertex onto the canvas and sprinkled with texture balls and sand, plus a few glass beads. It is best to apply the largest balls first, then work down to the smaller sizes which fill in the gaps between the larger ones. Oh so much fun. I then left them to dry overnight ready for colouring.
  7. My canvas board was a cheap cardboard type and I found that it did warp quite a bit. When dry enough I clamped it down on my rigid art board to help straighten it out while drying. A thicker strong board (MDF type) does work better. It needs to take a lot of wet media. This was obviously not an issue when working on the stretched canvas.
  8. I was then ready to start adding more colour and depth with Bister and coloured varnish. Here is where I did have a slight panic. I first sprayed over my canvases with black Bister. When dry I then used a damp sponge to lift away some of the colour from the top layers. The idea was to emphasis the deep crevices and texture. Eeek – I thought that I had ruined it! The soluble Bister did lift off some areas but it was difficult to remove from others. My texture balls soaked it up and the hessian held onto quite a lot of it too. So where I had planned my colours and light areas got covered in darkness! Oh dear I thought (me swear? Tee hee).
  9. After I had calmed down, it then came to me. I could go over some of the areas using the Powertex as a paint. In addition I had opaque white Powercolor in my stash so I could use that too at the varnish stage. I over painted some of the areas with the coloured Powertex. I also used the Powertex to dry brush over areas giving more highlights. So all was not lost after all. Some of the Bister dissolved back into the Powertex as I worked giving a lovely natural organic look. Ooooh happy again.
  10. When the Powertex was touch dry I then dry brushed with the pigments and varnish. This stage takes a little practice. You need to mix just small amounts of varnish with the pigments (just a drop on your craft mat), remove most of it from the brush (brushing off onto tissue), then apply to the top layers lightly and gradually building up the colour. I mixed a tiny bit of ochre into white pigment (so not a harsh white) to dry brush some areas. Other areas I dry brushed with copper colour.
  11. To fully seal my canvas I mixed a 50:50 mix of varnish and water and sprayed it over the canvas. Spraying enabled me to get it in and around all the crevices and 3D embellishments. I applied several coats (leaving to dry between coats). This then makes the canvas easy to clean as it can simply be run under the tap (where cleaning with a duster or cloth would be tricky). If mounting your piece behind glass this stage would not be needed. Note: Coloured Powertex is weatherproof so complete sealing with varnish is not essential unless you have used Bister (remains soluble so would wash off unless sealed with varnish).
  12. Finally I added a bit of gilding wax around the edges of my canvases (this could be done with coloured varnish).

New colouring pages and stamps launching on Hochanda today from Chocolate Baroque

Woohoo – new colouring pages from Chocolate Baroque featuring on Hochanda today (shows at 6 and 8pm) plus tomorrow (shows 9am, 1pm and 5pm). There is also a bumper kit containing all the new stamps too. Watch on Freeview Channel 85 or via the Hochanda.com website (live or on catch up if you miss a show). Cannot wait to see all the wonderful samples from my fellow Teamies and FAB demos from Lesley Wharton – always inspiring. The new Baroque floral stamps are fabulous too. I will share more of my projects soon.

These are my colouring pages coloured with alcohol ink pens plus a bit of sparkle pen and glaze pen to enhance. These are great for making finished pieces for framing or simply to have fun colouring. The kits also contain a colour wheel and tips for mixing colours and colouring too.

AW Colouring page 2

AW Colouring page 1

Sneak Peek of samples coming to Hochanda TV tomorrow from Chocolate Baroque

 

Good afternoon. I am just sharing a sneaky peek at some of my samples created for Chocolate Baroque. New stamps and something a little different coming on Hochanda TV tomorrow (24th July) at 6 and 8pm, plus Tuesday 9am, 1 and 5pm (Freeview Channel 85 or watch online live or on catchup at Hochanda.com)

 

 

AW Blue Floral Thanks SPAW Colouring page 1 SPAW Colouring page 2 SPAW Corners with love SPAW Golden Baroque SPAW Red White with love CAS SPAW Floral with love CAS SP

Ethereal Winter card created for Chocolate Baroque

AW Ethereal Winter

 

Good morning. Here is another of my recent show samples using the lovely Winter Dawn stamp from Chocolate Baroque. This time I tried a bit of parchment craft. I am still a learner at this technique. I would of liked more time to get the embossing and highlights a little better (it’s always a rush for the posting deadline when making TV show samples). I also ran out of time to snip out the frame so simply straight trimmed around it. However, I was reasonably pleased with the results. I added some subtle sparkle too with fine glitter – difficult to see in the photo.

Materials:

  • Winter Dawn stamp
  • Seasonal Journey and Seasonal Elements stencils
  • A5 card blank, black card, parchment
  • StazOn Inkpad (Opaque White)
  • Pergamano sticky ink, mapping pen and extra fine glitter (crystal)
  • Ribbon and small brads (black)
  • Groovi plate (Claritystamp) to create scalloped frame
  • Embossing tools and foam mat

How it was done:

  1. The image was stamped onto the parchment with white ink.
  2. Working from the back I used an embossing tool and the Seasonal Elements stencil to emboss the twiggy branches. I also used the crescent moon shape, turning the stencil to create a full circle outline for the moon. On a separate piece of parchment I embossed the outline of the sentiment using the Seasonal Journey stencil.
  3. Again working on the back, I added white highlights with embossing tools. Working slowly, gradually stretching the parchment and building up the intensity of the white embossing. It can get a little confusing when doing this as usually you are adding darker shading to images on white paper. Here you are adding the white highlights – the deepest ‘shaded’ areas are left untouched.
  4. I used the Clarity Groovi system to emboss the banner outlines and create a frame around the image. This could be done manually but it is simply so easy using the Groovi plates.
  5. The image and sentiment were mounted onto black card using small brads, then this was glued to the card front. I added a ribbon and bow to ‘anchor’ the design.
  6. Finally …. I just had to do it …. I added some sparkle using sticky ink and extra fine glitter. Parchment doesn’t like getting wet. The Sticky Ink works really well and you can get extra fine detail using a mapping pen – so it doesn’t overpower and spoil the delicate parchment effect.

Autumn Medley Stepper Card created for Chocolate Baroque

AW Autumn Medley Stepper 1

AW Autumn Medley Stepper 2

 

Good afternoon. This is another of my show samples using the Autumn Medley stamp from Chocolate Baroque. This is a variation of a previous project but this time I used some of the new stencils too.

I have used acorn and foliage dies from my stash but elements could be cut out and decoupaged from the stamped image too.

Materials:

  • Autumn Medley and Mackintosh Sentiments stamps
  • Useful Leaves and Seasonal Journey stencils
  • A5 ready made stepper card (Hunkydory), white stamping card, A4 thick cartridge paper and waste shredded paper
  • Ink Spritzers: Reds, oranges, yellows and greens – some with gold mica (Mr Huey’s and Lindy’s Stamp Gang)
  • WOW embossing powders (extra fine Gold Rich, White and Metallic Gold Sparkle)
  • Inkpads: Versamark, Distress Ink (Vintage Photo)
  • Dye based inks: Orange and yellow (Spectrum Noir Aquatints)
  • Watercolour and sparkle pens (reds, oranges, yellows, browns and greens)
  • Fine tipped marker (brown)
  • Paper raffia (yellow)
  • Dies: Acorns (Spellbinders), foliage with berries (Sizzix Tim Holtz), leaves (Sheena Douglass), square and mini tag (Tattered Lace)
  • 3D glue gel

How to make it:

  1. Spritz the cartridge paper with autumnal coloured inks and leave to dry. Trim the background panel. Die cut the tag, foliage and acorns from the remainder.
  2. Add further colouring detail to the foliage and leave to dry. Shape using a ball tool and embossing mat.
  3. To finish the background panel apply Versamark through the leaf and sentiment stencils and heat emboss with sparkly gold powder. Use the fine tipped pen to enhance the lettering (adding a bit of a drop shadow). Blend a little Distress Ink in from the edges to frame, and glue to the card front.
  4. Stamp the sentiment onto the tag with Versamark and heat emboss with white powder (‘with love’ – tricky to see in the photo). Add raffia ribbon and glue to the back step of the card (right hand side).
  5. Stamp the Autumn Medley onto stamping card using Versamark and emboss with detail gold powder. Colour with watercolour and sparkle pens.
  6. Lay the square die onto the image and mark the position of the overhang with pencil and trim around with a craft knife or scissors (i.e. the foliage and hair that extends beyond the die edge). Lay the overhang behind the die cutting edge (so it won’t cut through) and cut out the square. Edge with Distress Ink, blending in from around the edges of the square mat.
  7. Scrunch up a bundle of the waste paper strips and raffia and lay the die cut topper over the top. Put everything together using 3D glue gel.
  8. Finish by adding Glossy Accents to the stamped berries, acorns and some hair strands to give added shine.

Summer Poppy card created for Chocolate Baroque

AW Summer Poppy

 

Good morning. Today I am sharing another of my TV show samples created with the gorgeous Summer Fayre stamp from Chocolate Baroque. This is a variation of one of my earlier cards. I added more colouring using watercolour pencils, and created a leafy background using one of the new stencils.

Materials:

How to make it:

  1. Cut the background mat from stamping card to make a panel to go behind the decorative frame. Create the background by sponging Distress Ink through the leaf stencil. Edge with black marker and glue to the card front.
  2. Cut the decorative frame in black card, placing a white mat behind. Draw faux stitching with white pen and colour some elements with red glitter pen. Glue to the card front with foam pads for added dimension. I also glued down some of the black die waste pieces.
  3. Stamp the image with Versafine and cut out to layer onto the decorative frame mat.
  4. Colour with watercolour pencils, using a damp brush to blend out the colour. Add some areas of sparkle with water based sparkle pens.
  5. Glue on the flower and leaves. I created mine with dies but a ready-made flower embellishment would also work.
  6. Add Glossy Accents to some areas of the foliage and hair strands to give shine.
  7. Finish with PVA pearls.

Quick and Easy Mackintosh Love card created for Chocolate Baroque

Good morning. Today I am sharing a quick and easy card made with the Mackintosh themed stamps recently featured on Hochanda. This one can be made in under 15 minutes.

AW All My Love CAS

 

 

Materials:

 

*I used StazOn to stamp the sentiment on my coated card as I wasn’t sure if Versafine would dry on the slightly shiny surface. If you are using an ‘inkable’ type of card/paper the Versafine will be fine for this.

 

How to make it:

  1. Stamp the heart and flowers onto stamping card and heat emboss with clear powder. Cut out elements and colour with inks and sparkle pen.
  2. Stick the ribbon to card front with double sided tape. Stamp the sentiment. Glue down the stamped embellishments with 3D glue or foam pads for added dimension.