Sunday, October 27, 2013

Canvas #2 - VIntage with a whole lot of rust :) (Pic Heavy)

My favorite color is rust.  I absolutely love it. (Orange is not far behind :) )  For this canvas that centers around the vintage theme, I wanted to go for an aged rustic vibe versus grandma wallpaper with ribbons, lace and pearls.

I was working on two other canvases when I realized, that rusted accents would be nice to have for them, but I was all out of rusted pieces.  Yesterday I spent a good part of day with the rusting process, but it was so worth it.  Once done, I was inspired to do a vintage piece with some of my freshly rusted goodies.  So I put the other two aside and started on this one.

Here is the finished piece:

I started to do the base of the canvas in my favorite paint technique.  It is fast, easy, quick and can be used in a variety of styles.  At the time I started the canvas, I wasn't going to use any paper so I did the treatment to the entire front and sides.

CANVAS: Wax resist paint technique
1. Paint the canvas with a base color.  I chose chocolate brown.  Let complete dry.
2.  Use a candle (I just broke a taper into two to make it easier to use) and go in the areas that you want the brown to show through.  Personally I go around all the edges and make some swipes across the front.
3. Paint with another color over the top.  I had a difficult time choosing at first.  I had put this aside and did another step.  When I chose a color for the tint, I knew that this was the color I wanted. I decided to go with Peeled Paint Distress Paint.  Normally my preference is to use cheap acrylic paint as it works best.  Never having used this paint before for this technique...I was nervous.  It worked though.  It is important to let it completely dry before moving onto the next step. 
4.  Sand.  The top coat of paint will be removed where the wax was revealing the bottom coat.  I like to sand a little more to age the surface as well.  This isn't a great picture, but it gives you the idea.
5. I go over the paint with some distress ink to age a little further.  I used aged burlap to tone the peel paint to an aged color.  I then sprayed with Lindy's sprays in Burnished Brass and Copper.  I then lay a paper towel to absorb some of the extra spray.  I don't swipe...just lay and pull up.  I love that it leaves behind the shimmer but still looks nice and aged.

1.  I cut my paper just a little smaller than the dimensions of the canvas.
2.  Using the Invild Bolme distress tool I distressed around the edges.  I also created little knicks in the paper along the way - this is important for the next couple of steps.
3.  I spritzed the edges with water (not to wet, but enough to loosen the fibers.  I rolled the edges and used the knicks in the paper to roll further in some ares.  I didn't want it to be uniform.  By using the water it not only helps with the process, but when it dries the rolled edges will stay in place - no glue needed. 
4. I scratched the surface of the tool that looks like a grater.
5.  I went over the edges with Prima Rusty Keys and Rusty Bucket chalk edgers. 

1.  Select and prep items to rust.  I collected a wide variety of items to rust.  I chose from buttons to die cuts.  On non-porous items, treat with gesso first so that the iron paint will stick.
2.  These are really stinky so use in a well ventilated area.
3.  I use Metal Effects Iron Paint and Rust Activator. 
4.  Shake the iron paint, then when opened mix it.  You want to make sure the iron flakes are distributed throughout the paint and not settled to the bottom.
5.  Paint on 1 coat of the iron paint and let dry for at least 1/2 hour.  It may not be a perfect coat depending on the surface and that's okay.  The next coat will adhere much better.
6.  Paint on the second coat.  You want it to be a thick coat but not to thick.  Just nice and covered.  It is important to give a lot of dry time.  I wait about an hour and a half before the next step.
7.  The Rust Activator is super stinky - even more than the Iron Paint - so be prepared.  Apply the rust activator to the pieces.  I add more in some areas than other.  I let it pool up in spots. It is my preference that the rust doesn't look all even and perfect.  I like it to look "naturally" aged.
8.  Wait 5 minutes and then add another coat of activator. 
9.  Wait for the magic to happen.  It will rust starting after a little while, but you will get the full extent of the rust within hours.
10. Due to the time, I rust in batches for items to use in future projects.  I alter them as I need them.

1.  I cut a piece of rusted canvas.  OMG...I got all giddy when I saw this.  After trimming the edges were all neat and perfect....not what I wanted.  The fibers were tight because it had been painted over.  I love handy dandy tools.  I used my time holds scratchy tool, but I could have used my prima one.  There is a scratch tool in the end.  Just wet the edges of the fabric.  Start how deep you want your fray to be and pull outwards.  this is very quick and easy.
2.  Next I sprayed a piece of burlap with Lindy's Copper spray.  And layered it over the rust. 
3.  I took a die cut clock that I had rusted and added TH Rock Candy Distress crackle over the top. 

A friend of mine sent me as a rack a bag full of vintage photographs and post cards.  I have been hoarding those suckers.  Not all of them are in the best of shape, but they are perfect that way. 
1. For the photo - I used the TH Tinting Technique from Chem 102 using Peeled Paint and Walnut Stain.  I then edged it using the Rusty Bucket chalk edger again.
2. For the photo mat- I cut down a tag to the size I wanted.  I distressed the edges and inked in the Rusty Bucket.
3.  The color was a little bright so I sprayed a little with the lindy's copper spray and magic happened.  I loved it. 

1. In my rusty treasures I found the number two.  I cleaned it up and defined the edges with the Rusty Bucket chalk edger. It gave it some dimension.  I thought that it would work well since there were two children in the picture and decided to do a play on words.  Digging through my stash I found the other two pieces to make a phrase: Live 2 capture life's moments. 
2.  I used aged chunky embossing powder and embossed the live randomly.  I finished it off with some and dyed twine.  I just take natural twine and run it across my ink pad - I used Distress Ink Rusty Hinge.  Fir the capture the life's moments I rand over the entire thing with rusty bucket and rusty keys chalk ink edgers then just pressed the top over my DI Spiced Marmelade to give it a blotchy look.
3. Before adding the two, I tucked in a piece of tool behind the picture to have the 2 stand out from the clock piece.
4.  I wasn't going to add any flowers to this piece, but I had made a rusted one and fell in love.  I just couldn't resist.  It had to be done :). 
5.  The clock hands were glued behind the picture.  I did add Rock Candy crackly paint to that as well. 
6.  I like the picture, but it just didn't seem like it was carrying enough punch for me.  I added some rusty keys chalk edger and rubbed in around the edges and into the white space to age.  I kept it light, but wow what a difference.  I added the word bar to the bottom with dyed twine and a garment pin.  It gave it some great weight visually, but it still needed something else.
7.  Digging through my freshly rusted Items I had the perfect piece.  I added some Rocky Candy to the top.  Once dry, I added some Rusty Hinge distress stain and then swiped.  I brushed off some of the crackle as I wanted it to have an aged pitted look. 
8.  For the final piece, I wanted to put something on top, but wasn't sure.  I tried a rusted button and it looked good; however, in a sea of rust it just blended in.  I had some Jolee's French General embellies that I had pulled out for my last canvas, but didn't use.  It was all white and pearly.  I took the rusty bucked chalk edger to it and was perfect for what I needed.  I added it to the top and the canvas is complete.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Gumball Machines

I have been wanting to alter a gumball machine for quite some time.  Practicing on small ones seemed like a good idea before taking on a full-sized one.  I wanted to try out a variety of textures to see what I liked best.  I started off with these little plastic bubble gum machine favors.  They are just plain plastic, but the little handle does work and the candy comes out at the bottom.  Love these.  To start off, I primed the bubble gum machines with gesso.  This gave the base some tooth for the texture mediums and paint to stick to.  Otherwise the paint would just slide and/or chip off and it wouldn't do well for the look I was going for.                  
 I have made 4 in total so far.  I used different texture mediums and paint to see what I liked best.  I did completely alter one to give as a gift.  The other three I decided to put metal embellies in and use as a functioning decoration on my desk until I knew who I was going to make them for.  Then I will customize each one for the recipient.  Until then, I will enjoy them.  I think they are cute as they are functional. 

These are the three that are on my desk.  The first one was painted with Artist's Loft Coarse Texture Gel.  It gives it a really nice coarse texture. The second one I used Texture Magic dimensional paint by Delta, but you can use modeling paste to achieve the same thicker texture.  On the third one I used Deco Art Traditions Texture Medium.  The one I used for a gift I used paint mixed with sand.  This gives you pretty much the exact same effect as the first one with the coarse texture gel.   I used different multi-layer painting techniques on each as well.

 Close up of Machine #1

Here are some close ups of the textures...... Here is machine #2

Machine #3

 Now here is the one that I embellished and made for a friend.  Only bummer part was that I didn't get the world's best pics of it.  I really need to take a photography class...  I did figure out my phone takes way better pictures than my camera....or at least I (pictures above with camera phone...these with the my camera).


Friday, October 25, 2013


I love texture.  I love when you can achieve texture from unexpected sources.  I was looking at a roll of white streamers.  I bought them in a two pack at the dollar store a while back.  Not sure why I bought them at the time, but the never got used.  I was putting the roll in a different spot when I was cleaning and noticed the texture of it.  It has a gorgeous texture.  It just needed a chance to shine.

I don't have much time to craft during the week, but I pulled out a couple of Heidi Swapp Color Shine sprays.  I misted them and let dry.  I tried on piece to use the heat gun - nope didn't work. Shriveled in spots.  So you need to air dry.  The paper is stiff enough even after misted (when dry) to cut into thinner strips in the paper cutter if you want a ribbon like feel.  You can add more layers to these by stamping, layering, inking.  You can use these to make rosettes and other embellies, layer in a background, etc. You could tear and use in a collage...the possibilities are endless so to speak :)

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Steampunk purse

I made a steampunk metal purse for a co-worker that is leaving.  I got the idea of using a metal lunch pail from Kim Wylie who made a metal steampunk purse a while back for a swap.  It was terrific inspiration.  I did my own take with the requests from my co-worker.  She loves clocks, gears, riveted metal.  I had experimented with different textures and decided I liked this one the best. 

Another take on shabby chic

Last month I made a shabby chic altered book box as a gift.  I used the Prima Romance Novel as a gift.  I better show some projects soon of other styles, or people are going to start thinking I like pink.  (Nope - not gonna happen). :)  It is actually a mauvish color. 

The cover has lace around the trim.  I used a window die cut I received as a RAK and sprayed it with Lindy's stamp gang.  I stamped over the top with a script stamp.  The TH little door knockers are perfect as handles for the window.  I backed the doors with the same paper as on the binding.  I also used a floral paper behind the window.  I highlighted a few areas with some gesso to give it a softer feel and added a little bling to the top. 

I used two layers of paper on the front so I could roll corners and rip edges.  I added black punched trim to the end.  I softened it by dry brushing on gesso.  I dry brushed gesso all over the box in places at the end to soften the feel.  I also dry brushed on some blue as well.

The flowers below the window started as a little spray that was really old and had funky flowers on it.  Loved the spray but the flowers were just beat up.  I pulled the flowers off and added some two tone roses in its place.  I died some rose buds mauve and then wrapped the wire around the handle of a paint brush to spiral it.  I added those to the spray.  I fussy cut some images and added some next to each side of the window.  The resin bird was painted blue. 

The handle was clear.  I gessoed then inked brown and stamped over the top.  Added pearl trim around the box to finish the front.
For the binding of the box.  I stamped randomly with a script stamp and dry brushed with gesso in spots.  I added eyelets and laced the ribbon through.   For the back I covered in the mauve paper and added the dry brushed black punched trim piece.  I then tore pieces of coordinating paper and inked before applying.  I dry brushed in the gesso and blue in random spots.  Then finished it off by randomly stamping in some areas with the script stamp.  The inside of the boxed is lined as well.  Just didn't get a picture of that. 

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Canvas #1 - Shabby Chic with a Vintage Vibe

Shabby Chic is a softer style that usually incorporates a soft color palette with an aged appearance.  The layers can include lace, trims, pearl, floral, and silver elements among others.  It lends itself to the vintage side, but can have more modern touches.  

For my first canvas, I went with a more vintage feel.  Many of the items and techniques I used can be adapted for other styles.  Let's start with the finished canvas - then I will break down how I completed it - step by step.  (For more info on styles and the canvas I used - please see previous post)


I used a pressboard canvas as my base.  You can easily use a regular canvas or even chipboard cut to size.  If you use chipboard - coat with gesso first.

Step 1.  Select two colors of paint.  For this style I like to use contrasting colors.  I chose chocolate brown and titanium white.  I really wanted a softer white but didn't have it so I had 4 options:  buy more paint, live with it, tint it before and using spray ink, distress reinker, or another color of paint, or tint it after.  I chose after.  Brand of paint doesn't matter in this technique - I used the cheap brand for the base coat and Americana for the top because it was what I had on hand.

Step 2. Paint your first coat of paint.  Make sure your entire area is covered.  Although it isn't necessary, I like to do two coats. 

Step 3.  Let it Dry.  Do not move onto the next step until it is completely dry.  This important with any paint techniques that require more than one color.  If you don't wait - your top coat will take on some of the color of the bottom coat.  black and white - you may end up with grey.

Step 4:  Apply the crackle medium.  Thickness and direction do matter.  If you paint it on with vertical strokes - the  crackles will be more vertical - same with painting it with horizontal strokes. The thicker you put on the medium the larger the cracks.  Personal preference I put the  crackle medium on to where it ends up being thicker in some spots and a little thinner (more of a medium coat) in others.  I like the variation as it looks more natural. 

Step 5:  Let it dry until tacky.  Varies on the type of product you use.  If you are using a white glue based product then wait until it turns clear.  I used Weathered Wood by Delta and it took about 20 minutes.

Step 6.  Paint the top coat.  I prefer to use a foam brush for this step.  It is important to get enough paint on the brush. Make single strokes and try not to go over the same are more than one (twice at most).

Step 7. Sit back and watch it crackle.  It happens almost instantaneously and it is awesome to watch.  Okay I am easily amused. 

Step 8.  Tint if you would like to.  I did so by just taking my Frayed Burlap Distress Ink paid and rubbing it all over the surface.  Then taking a slightly wet paper towel piece I rubbed over the entire canvas, wiping off most of the ink.  The amount you wipe off is going to determine how much it will be tinted.  I still wanted my canvas to be white, just not bright white.  So it has an aged look.  I did after the fact add a little spun sugar distress stain in a few spots and then wiped leaving me a very light tint.

Step 9: Optional (I did not do) Seal - you can seal with a varnish or other sealant.  I don't usually seal mine but some people like to.

Money Saving Tips:

Canvas - find bases on sale or things from your stash that you can use as a canvas.  I have some cool dollar store small kitchen platters that have a metal finish that would be cool for this.  Chipboard works well too.

Tinting paint saves money use products you already have.

If you don't have crackle medium, you can use white glue such as Elmer's, generic Elmer's, Aleen's tacky glue.   - Just make sure it dry's clear before adding your top coat.  Here are examples of using the other two brands.  On the Aileen's I should have added more paint for my top coat (had more on the brush)...On the Cheap Elmer's knockoff...would have done a thinner layer.  All in all they will work well.


First let me start with I have tried this technique using different techniques. Sadly, not always with great success...some worked better than others.  I tried something different than this...and if I could...I would do a backflip.   It work absolutely flawlessly.  I will not do it differently again.  I am in love with how it worked out.

Step 1.  Cut an image out of paper.  I used an image from the Graphic 45 Le' Romantique collection.
Step 2.  Cut a piece of canvas the same size as your image - doesn't have to be exact.  (I am die cutting it later).  I used Claudine Helmuth sticky back canvas because I had a piece close by.
Step 3.  Slather your image in Modge Podge Matte.  Don't be skimpy in your coat.  I have tried other mediums...this worked best for me.
Step 4.  Place your image on to the canvas face side down.
Step 5.  IMPORTANT - make sure you rub on the paper so that it you get a good seal with the canvas.  I used a clean brayer to roll over the top and it worked terrifically.  This step is where something could go wrong...if you have a little spot that doesn't get a good seal the transfer in that spot may not come out as well. 
Step 6.  Let dry completely  Steps 1 - 5 take just a few I do before I go to bed then it is ready for me in the morning.
Step 7.  I just use a spray bottle or mini mister, you can use droplets of water.  Spray the back of the paper and start rubbing of the paper.  As you go through the layers spritz some more water.  Let dry and see if you have spritz and rub some more. 
Step 8.  Once you have removed the will still have a little fuzz and the image may appear to be a little faded...this is how it is supposed to look - don't panic.  Step 12 will fix all of that.
Step 9.  I cut the image out using the Tim Holtz oval die.  I also cut a piece of patterned paper the same size. 
Step 10. Distressed the edges on both pieces and inked the edges.  Then I cut little nicks in the edges here and there of the image so that it gave it a more worn look. The picture below doesn't show the full color because of the lighting - it is still as shown above under step 8.
Step 11.  I removed the backing and placed it on the pattern paper.  Just tiny little peaks of the pattern are visible. 
Step 12.  This is where the magic happens.  Paint a coat of Glossy medium - whether it is modge podge glossy, Aleens Glossy Modge Podge, or Claudine Helmuth's multi-medium glossy.  The point is it has to be glossy for this to work.  It is will brighten your image without making it "bright" - you will still have that vintage look.  It will eliminate the look of the fuzz left behind.
Step 13.  I added trim around the edges.  I used double sided tape on the back. 
Step 14.  I added a silver shabby charm to her hat.
Step 15.  I dry brushed a very little bit of white gesso in just a few spots to lighten the image.  (Dry Brushing - add a little paint to a coarse paint brush. White most of it off with a a paper towel so that there is very little paint on the brush (almost dry) then just swipe some on back and forth.  

The over all effect looks like the image had been painted or printed directly on the canvas.  The texture shows through.  I found by using the modge podge and having a good seal I could rub the paper off without worrying about the image coming off as well. 


To be honest I didn't get a ton of pictures of this step.  I was starting of with a Tim technique from chem 102 so out of respect, I wasn't going to show that part.  I ended up not liking the result and did my own thing in the end.  So as you create...don't be married to an idea....if it doesn't work - tweak it until you do like it.

Step 1.  Die cut a shape for your base.  I used the cameo base die.  I love the shape of it.
Step 2.  I primarily used distress paint to do his technique.  Since I changed it after the fact you really could use regular acrylic.  Base coat the die in a darker color - very little of this will show through - I used a dark brown (vintage photo).  (This coat has to be completely DRY...before moving onto next step. - Don't forget to paint your edges.
Step 3.  I covered up the technique - so I will move on to the next step. 
Step 4.  Brush on a lighter color. I used Spun sugar.
Step 5.  Before it completely dries....wipe some of it off revealing little peeks of the brown. 
Step 6.  Dry brush on a little bit of white paint here and there. 
Step 7.  Using a versa mark pad or other embossing pad go around the edges of the die.  I tilt the pad so that I get around the inside edges of the front of the die as well.  I don't like it to be perfectly even so this works well.
Step 8.  Add embossing powder - I used Shabby Pink Embossing enamel by Stampendous.  It has glitter in it as well so you get bits of sparkle in it. Since it is chunkier than regular embossing powder, you get great texture as well.
Step 9.  Ink edges in brown.
Step 10.  Add lace in the middle. (Adhered the edges to the back of the die with double sided tape so I didn't have to mess with glue and lace.
Step 11.  Sprayed with Glimmer Mist - Crème de Cocoa.  Very very little color but lots of vintage shimmer.  Subtle but beautiful.
Step 12  Add image to the top.


Step 1. Die cut doily from MFT from textured cardstock. Then cut in half.
Step 2. Cut a partial circle from patterned paper (same I used to back the image).
Step 3. Distressed edges of circle.
Step 4.  Inked edges of both the die cut and the circle.
Step 5.  Inked the edges of the inside of the doily cuts with a pen. 
(Side Note:  I believe inked edges give projects a more finished and complete look. Ink color and how much ink use can create different effects).
Step 6.  Painted on a coat of Ranger's distress Rock Candy stickles paint that comes in a jar.
Step 7.  While wet ....added Ranger's distress Rock Candy dry glitter.  Don't pack it on just pour on and dump of the excess.  This glitter is going no where and not messy at all.  I couldn't believe it - I usually get glitter everywhere.


Step 1.  Layer the image piece over the edge of the doily.

Step 2.  Add embellishments.  I tend to select embellishments based on scale of what I am working on.  I had some larger elements that I picked out for this piece...but as a personal preference I didn't like how they looked on such a small surface.  Choose what you like best.
I added a white skeleton leaf first.  Then layered on two pearl bead sprays and two pink gem sprays.  to cover the stems I added three roses from I am Roses.  I liked the color of the two brown ones, but not the third flower.  It was originally white with a pink center.  I painted on a little bit of spun sugar distress stain and it came out beautifully.  I finished off the embellishments with a triple bow made from dyed snug hug in spun sugar distress stain.   I took a Tim Holtz pearl drop and glued the edge underneath the bow.

Step 3.  Dry brushed a little bit of gesso over the flowers (already had done the image).  Usually I do a little more of this step all over, but felt like since that the base of the canvas was white, it really didn't need very much.

Step 4.  This is my pet peeve step.  I am so picky about this step. Okay, you took the time to make a beautiful piece...why not finish it.    Imagine them taking it out of the box and examining it you want them to see the back like the first picture or the second?  It just took an extra minute to cut a piece of coordinating paper.  I usually use a piece from the stack that I know I probably wouldn't use.  Ink the edges and presto.  Big difference.  You never know if they are going to hang it on a wall or put it on a plate hanger or tiny easel where the back would be visible.   It just gives a more complete and finished look.


 If you have any questions, put them in the comments section and I will reply to them.  I would love to see your take on a shabby chic canvas.  Please put a link to your creation in the comments section so we can all check it out.