Oriental Mixed Media Canvas with Teneriffe Lace and Powertex

I created this mixed media canvas using acrylic paints and various elements treated with transparent Powertex. Powertex is great for stiffening, gluing down and protecting porous substrates such as fabric, card or wood.

 

AW Oriental lace canvas

The lace elements were my first attempts at making Teneriffe Lace (yes the lace name has 2 f’s – as in the original spelling of the island) using the newly released looms and instructions from Gina-B Silkworks. I struggled a bit with getting my knotting secure at first (until I read the instructions properly – tee hee), plus my weaving and tensioning was pretty uneven too. My technique soon improved but I wasn’t sure what to do with these first experiments. They nearly went into the bin! However, I then thought of Powertex treatment. The lace would be stiffened and sealed so no worry about any of the knotting coming lose.

AW Oriental Lace Canvas 1

AW Oriental Lace Canvas 2

AW Oriental Lace Canvas 3

The variegated blue threads that I used inspired me to create something with an Oriental theme. Incorporating my ‘imperfect’ lace elements into a canvas was perfect.

AW Oriental Lace Canvas 4

AW Oriental Lace Canvas 5

I was really pleased with the results and my lace pieces ended up being showcased very nicely.

Materials:

  • Teneriffe Lace Complete Starter Kit (comes with Looms 1 and 3)
  • Total Trimmings Project Book – Teneriffe Lace (comes with a Heart Loom 11)
  • Strong thread (for the holding threads on loom) and pearl 8 embroidery thread (plain blue and variegated blue) for the lace work
  • Transparent Powertex
  • Card (approx. 230 gsm – white and blue)
  • 12 X 12 inch stretched canvas
  • Gesso (white), acrylic paint (blue) and Starlight Paint (gold metallic)
  • Alcohol marker and PVA pearls (blue) – to colour edges and add centres to flowers
  • Bamboo barbeque sticks
  • Thread wrapped button embellishment, bead and tassel
  • Dies to cut branches and blossoms (mixed brand and Spellbinders)
  • Mandala stencil
  • Rubber stamp (for background texture)
  • Plastic sheeting to protect table and to dry Powertex treated elements
  • 3D glue gel

How it was done:

  1. The butterfly was created on the outer ring of Loom 3. This was a result of a bit of play and trying out the technique. I didn’t use a specific pattern but added darned areas to get a stylised butterfly shape.
  2. The large circular motif was worked on the outer ring of Loom 1 following the design for the Teacup Pincushion Pattern included in the Total Trimmings Book.
  3. The 2 small circular designs were again worked on Loom 1 (small inner ring) using the Lace Button Designs included in the book.
  4. I treated the lace with the transparent Powertex and laid out to dry overnight on plastic sheeting (Powertex doesn’t stick to plastic). I snipped out the butterfly from my circular lace design. I also cut up some of my rough trial pieces to use as extra texture in the background.
  5. The canvas background was painted with white gesso to prime. Rubber stamps were used with acrylic paints to add a little background texture. I also sponged acrylic paint through a mandala stencil to complement the lace elements. Starlight paint (which contains crushed gilding flake) was used to blend in from around the edges.
  6. The branches and blossoms were die cut from card, shaped with an embossing tool, then painted with transparent Powertex. Likewise the fan was created using card and bamboo barbeque sticks. Again I treated this with Powertex.
  7. Flat elements were glued to the canvas with Transparent Powertex. More dimensional elements were stuck down with 3D glue gel.
  8. I also added a thread wrapped button embellishment and tassel. Gina has some wonderful instructional DVD’s and books which are fabulous if you would like to learn these techniques (Making Buttons DVD , Button Workshop Manual, Making Tassels DVD)
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Fantasy Pine Scene Canvas created with Powertex

I had so much fun creating this pine cone scene.

AW Pine Scene Canvas

 

I used some twigs and pine cones from my stash (they must be fully dried out to avoid development of mould), hessian, T shirt fabric, kitchen paper, Sand & Balls and even broken egg shells (fully washed and membranes removed).

 

AW pine cone jewellery 2

 

The background sky was created with Pebeo Fantasy paints (Moon, Prisme and Vitrail).

 

AW Pine Scene Canvas cropped

 

Materials:

Mixed Media Kanzashi Pom Pom Flower using Powertex

Today I am sharing another of my Kanzashi flower show samples created for Gina Barrett. To make the flowers I followed instructions for the Kanzashi Hydrangea (from Gina-B Silkworks). Basically tiny 15mm squares of silk are folded up to create little fabric petals. I used the Kanzashi starch adhesive to help hold the petals until ready to glue on and build the flowers. These little flowers are very fiddly so it’s not really the best project for an absolute beginner. A fair bit of swearing was involved here – tee hee hee.

 

AW Kanzashi Pom Pom 2

I used Powertex to create a mini vase and to coat a polystyrene ball with silk strips. Powertex is a fabric hardener which stiffens, glues, seals and protects natural fabrics and fibres – great for mixed media work.

I pushed a twisted wire (coated with florist tape) into the base of a small polystyrene ball – gluing with a little Powertex. I then covered the ball with strips of Powertex treated silk and dried before adding the tiny silk petals to build the flowers. I used fast grab PVA to glue them on, and Gemtac Glue to add the centre pearls.

AW Kanzashi Pom Pom 4

 

AW Kanzashi Pom Pom 1

I used larger silk squares to make sepals and a leaf on the stem.

The mini vase was made with the inner card tube from a kitchen foil roll. I built out the shape using pads of kitchen foil and wrapped with masking tape. I then coated it with Powertex and with strips of Powertex treated silk, and secured the wire into the top. I stuffed the middle of the tube with cotton wool to give stability and a bit of weight. I dry brushed over the texture using metallic acrylic paint and then covered with tiny flowers and faux gems.

I painted the little flowers on the vase with transparent Powertex using a small brush. The fine silk soaks it up easily. I left the leaf and pom pom flower untreated as I liked the contrast in feel and texture.

Materials:

  • Kanzashi Hydrangea Project Card (Kanzashi Project Card Pack)
  • Kanzashi Starch Adhesive
  • Transparent Powertex
  • Polystyrene ball (approx. 1.5 inch diameter)
  • Twisted copper wire wrapped with florist tape (to make stem)
  • Recycled sari silk strips (variegated vintage greens, pinks, browns)
  • Kitchen foil card inner tube
  • Kitchen foil and masking tape (for building out the pot shape)
  • Cotton wool (stuffing)
  • Faux gems and flat backed pearls (pink, blue, pearl, green)
  • Acrylic paint (metallic pink) and PVA glitter glue (green)
  • PVA glue (fast grab/tacky glue), Gemtac Glue (sticks glass, plastic or metal gems & beads to fabric)

Optional extras:

I used additional tools for making the flowers which are really helpful and make the process easier. They are not essential but you will probably want to get them if you decide that you like this craft.

  • Pack of straight and bent fine tweezers – great for manipulating fiddly items such as the small fabric squares while folding. I would say that tweezers of some sort are pretty essential – especially when making these tiny fiddly flowers.
  • Kanzashi Flower Making Tool Kit – contains a mini turntable, gluing table and spreader plus a small drying table. Great to have.
  • Petal Holders & Medium Drying Table – another useful kit if wanting to make several flowers. Contains 2 sets of petal holders (for small and larger petals) plus a bigger drying table (for more flowers).
  • Kanzashi Hanabira Ruler – another great tool for cutting small fabric squares. It can be used with a rotary cutter or to draw cutting lines if you are not comfortable with using a rotary cutter.
  • Small rotary cutter and self healing cutting mat. If you are new to using these please take great care as the rotary blade is razor sharp! Always engage the blade safety cover between every cut. Never cut towards yourself, and take care where you place your hands and fingers while cutting.

Aphrodite’s Kiss Notebook Covers

I have been having a little play with the gorgeous Cassiopeia and Aphrodite’s Kiss stamps from Anna Howlett (Rosehart Studios – available from Powertex UK). They are stunners.

AW Notebook 1

AW Notebook 2

I stamped and heat embossed in black or gold embossing powder and coloured with various gel pens (Sakura and Pentel – glitter, metallic, glaze).

AW Notebook 3

AW Notebook 4

 

I used them to decorate a couple of small cheap notebooks – love my newly adorned books now.

AW Notebook 5

I did a bit of freehand doodling around the edges with a fine tipped marker.

AW Notebook 7

These are gorgeous stamps simply used in the traditional way. The textures and patterns give scope for so much more too. Great for pressing texture into Powertex clay. Off to have a play x.

Egyptian Canvas Duo created for Powertex UK

I so enjoyed helping out with samples for the Egyptian themed shows recently on Hochanda – and WOW the set looked amazing with so many wonderful creations from the team. I think that we all had a huge amount of fun. It really did look like an archaeological set.

AW Nefertiti Canvas

AW Tutankhamun Canvas

I created this duo of canvases featuring Nefertiti and Tutankhamun to tell a little of their story. Although their likeness was well known to me I really had little idea of their history, so I did a little research. I really enjoyed finding out more about these characters and I had so much fun immersing myself into their mystical world when creating these canvases.

I hope that my creative journey gives you some inspiration for your own ideas. There is a full materials list at the end if you need links to any of the specific products used xxx.

The creative journey:

The canvases were first coated with a layer of Ivory Powertex, and the plaster busts with Bronze Powertex.

 

AW Nefertiti Canvas 4

AW Tutankhamun Canvas 1

The textured embellishments were made with air dry clay and small clay cutters from my stash. The Hiero Heaven and Scarabella stamps were pressed into the rolled out clay to add texture. Additional texture added to some pieces using a texture mat, and I made the little snakes using a mould (both from my stash). Strips from corrugated card were used to create pillars. I laid out all my elements to get a rough idea of placement and to assess space left for adding text.

 

AW Nefertiti Canvas 3

Note: I used an air dry modelling clay that I had in my stash. It is fairly strong when making chunky items but I did find it very brittle when rolled thin. I left it to fully dry overnight and coated it with Ivory Powertex. The Powertex did sink in well (as it remained porous) and considerably strengthened my embellishments. So I was happy to use them on my canvases. However, I would fully recommend using Stone Art Clay if you want hard wearing items, and certainly if you need them to be weather proof (it is designed for this).

Following my bit of historical research I decided on some text to add to my canvases. Nefertiti was the chief wife of the Egyptian Pharaoh Akhenaten who was the father of Tutankhaten (later named Tutankhamun). Originally Akhenaten was named Amenhotep IV but he changed his name when he banned the worship of the old Egyptian gods and instated Aten (Sun Disc – an aspect of the sun god Ra) as the one true god. I therefore depicted the Aten symbol (Sun Disk with rays in gold) on Nefertiti’s canvas.

I used gilding wax around the edges of my canvas and on the Sun Disc (Atan) and gold relief paste to create the Atan rays.

Nefertiti was also known as ‘the beautiful one has come’ (translation of her name) and ‘the lady of the two lands’ – I included this in the gilded text.

Nerfertiti may have ruled for a time as Neferneferuaten, and for a short while alongside Tutankhaten (later named Tutankhamun) but there is some debate on this. She disappeared not long after her husband’s death and it is unsure where her body lays. Although interestingly there is some evidence that she may be in a secret chamber behind the tomb of Tutankhamun. Still a mystery.

Tutankhamun became king when only a boy (‘boy king Tut’) and as mentioned above he was originally named Tutankhaten (‘the living image of Aten’). After the death of his father there was an uprising and the old gods were eventually reinstated. He reinstated Amun-Ra (fusion of the gods Amun ‘the hidden/invisible one’ and Ra the ‘sun god’) and changed his name to Tutankhamun (‘the living image of Amun’). There is a lot of debate around the identity of his mother but it is fairly certain that she would have been a close relation to Akhenaten (sister or cousin, maybe even Nefertiti?).

I hope that I am not boring everyone with history but I found it all fascinating (but also very confusing with all the name changes and the various gods worshipped at the time).

AW Nefertiti Canvas 1

AW Nefertiti Canvas 2

The sentiments were printed on a laser printer (copy paper) and foiled with gold sublimation foil using my laminator. I stamped over the background using Memories Ink and the Hiero Heaven stamp. I then scrunched up the paper and further aged with distress inks.

The background textured paper and sentiments were glued to the canvas using Easy Coat.

AW Nefertiti

AW Nefertiti 2

The card pillars were coated (back and front) with Black Powertex. Bister was used to add depth to my textured embellishments. I also mixed various Powercolor pigments into Ivory Powertex and rubbed over the top of the embellishments to give the effect of faded chalk paints.

AW Tutankhamun

AW Tutankhamun 2

Elements were glued in place using Powertex and a little Easy Structure for some of the more uneven textured pieces. A little Easy Structure paste was also applied with a palette knife for filling and more texture.

A little Ultramarine Powercolor was mixed with Ivory Powertex and painted into the crevices of the pillars. Gold Colortricx pigment mixed with Easy Varnish was dry brushed onto the surface ridges.

The busts were also coloured with gold varnish, applied fairly liberally for an opulent effect. Where I wanted areas of strong colour (blue, red, green) I applied a base of Ivory Powertex first and then painted over with coloured varnish. Black Powertex was painted into the eye area.

AW Nefertiti 3

Materials:

The End–Halloween Mixed Media Canvas created with Powertex

I just love a bit of Halloween Fantasy. Have you seen the FAB new stencil – ‘The End’ – from Powertex? Perfect for Spooky makes.

AW Halloween 1

I used Easy Coat decoupage medium to apply stamped images from the Chocolate Baroque ‘Texture Fragments’ to the background. I also used Easy Structure Paste applied through the stencils and some onto the background and impressed with the stamps for added texture.

AW Halloween 2

AW Halloween 3

AW Halloween 4

No fabric was included in this one but I used a lot of paper cut shapes treated with Transparent Powertex; great for stiffening, gluing and sealing the embellishments.

AW Halloween 6

I hope that you enjoy my spooky scene.

AW Halloween 5

Materials Used:

  • 30 X 22.5cm stretched canvas
  • 30 X 30 cm Stencil (The End)
  • Powertex Hardener (Transparent and Ivory)
  • Easy Coat Mat Medium
  • Easy Structure Paste
  • Bister (Green and Yellow)
  • Chocolate Baroque Stamps (Texture Fragments)
  • Brusho Powders (Lemon and Leaf Green)
  • Alcohol Markers
  • StazOn Inkpad (Jet Black)
  • Gilding wax (gold)
  • Tissue paper, card (white and black)
  • Electronic cutting files were used to cut the bats (Silhouette), spiders (JM Rush Silhouette Store) and ferns (Tattered Lace Brother ScanNCut USB). The skeletons and vines (Sheena Douglass), and Pumpkin (Sizzix) were cut using dies.

Daisy Bowl created with Powertex

This was my first attempt at creating a 3D bowl with Powertex. I was really chuffed with the results.

AW Daisy Bowl 2

AW Daisy Bowl 3

AW Daisy Bowl 4

AW Daisy Bowl 1

I recycled an old cotton scarf and used the lovely Daisy Moulds to create 3D embellishments from Stone Art clay.

 

AW Daisy Bowl 5

AW Daisy Bowl 6

AW Daisy Bowl 7

AW Daisy Bowl 8

I also added some 3D Sand & Balls plus a few glass seed beads for more texture.

AW Daisy Bowl 9

AW Daisy Bowl 10

Materials: