Thursday, 8 March 2018

Mothers Day Tags

With mothers day in the UK arriving this Sunday I needed to get my craft on and create something for my mum, I am also on double duty as my Sister had a little sprog just over a year ago and till said sprog is able to head to the shops and select a card i have decided to cover all the important occasions for her.
I used an MDF tag from That Craft Place and picked out a design paper for my back ground.
The Tim Holtz stamp platform really comes into its own for me with this technique, and is the reason I picked one up. I was initially skeptical on how the platform would work with a thick substrate, (the mdf is 4mm thick) and i was worried about how accurate the over stamping would be, I needn't have worried, By placing the tag towards the outside edge of the platform I had no trouble getting my image to stamp and it lined up perfectly when I cam back to over stamp.
( I will do a proper little step by step soon )
The Image was stamped using black archival ink and the image was painted using Decoart Media Fluids, you can be quite bold with the paint and it doesn't matter if you paint up to or onto the black ink lines. Once all the painting is done, carefully place the tag back on the stamp platform using the magnets as position guides, re ink the stamp and stamp over the top of the painted image, as the platform is so accurate the lines match up and there is no double image, it really tidies up the painted image and makes using acrylic paints much easier to work with stamped images.

My second tag has been turned into a tag card and I have gone for a more clean and simple look using a faux chalk board finish and this time the Gypsy Rose image has been stamped using a versamark ink pad, some Stamp n Bond from Stampendous (basically a glue that works like an embossing powder) this stuff is great, no more mess with wet glues like the flitter/flutter stuff that is just to sticky and messy. once the stamp n bond has been heated up and turned clear the silver leaf flakes were added for a little bling ;)

Hopefully my Mum ad Sister will like them.

You can find the Gypsy Rose Stamp as well as my other stamps in the Shop section at the top of the page or on the Chocolate Baroque web page under Mark Gould.

Stay Tuned for the new Mark Gould/Speshink DT that will be hitting this blog very soon.

Simon Says Stamps Monday challenge this week is Whatever The Weather and they are asking us to use any Tim Holtz Product, I have used the Tim Holtz Stamp Platform for my Painted Gypsy Rose.

Wednesday, 21 February 2018

Shabby Chic Apothecary Cabinet

To Gunge or not to Grunge.
I have just finished my new workshop sample for a shabby chic 8 inch apothecary cabinet. 
I have taken an Mdf Kit from That Craft Place and using Paints and mediums from Decoart given the kit a grungy shabby chic finish.

The clean shabby chic version.

In the class you will have the option of leaving the kit with a clean shabby chic finish or going all in with the ageing process, we will cover several shabby chic techniques including resist and image transfer using some of Andy Skinner's Vintage Downloads.
We will also be painting mini glass bottles that fit on the inside shelf of the cabinet.
there will be a choice of colours available in the workshop so you can finish the cabinet to your own taste xxx.

I will be teaching this class at the following venues this year. 

17 March      The Forget me Not Craft Cabin in Essex 
24 March       Lets Be Creative in Petersfield near Guildford
16 June          Amelia's Creative Crafts  near Birmingham
23 June          Rowan Tree Crafts    Carnforth 
27 October    The Stamp Addict   San Diego California

Simon Says Stamp are having a Grunge It Up Challenge and I would like to enter, you can find them HERE

Tuesday, 13 February 2018

Mixed Media Revolution

The Revolution begins,
 I am over the moon to announce Andy Skinner and myself will be kicking of the Revolution in Holland with Art Chick Studio on the 11/12 May and in June the revolution will continue in California at It's All About The Scrapbook

Both workshops will focus around the Decoart Paints and Mediums and I will be using some lovely Papers from the fantastic 7 Gypsies.

This is my project for the retreat, it's an 8 inch wall hanging with a shabby chic and vintage vibe, we will be creating a faux patina effect on 3d stars that have been cast in resin from Molds I made.
I have created two samples to show some different colour options as well as showing of some of the different design papers from 7 Gypsies.

Wednesday, 8 November 2017

ATC Background Tutorial post

Afternoon all, today I am sharing a simple background tutorial on the Andy Skinner blog, Head on over and you can see how I made the back grounds for these Atc's and I have used lots of Andy's Stampendous stamps and the Decoart Media Fluids with Atc blanks from That Craft Place.

The Atc's below use the background technique but stamps from Tim Holtz and Carabelle Studio.

Friday, 27 October 2017

Happy Halloween Stampendous Style

Morning all, And a slightly premature Happy Halloween to you.
This is just a quick post today with a couple of ways to use some of the newer Stampendous Halloween Stamps. I have used Freda Cat and Pirate Cove.
I started by creating a couple of Atc's using mdf blanks from That Craft Place.
The images were stamped with Memento ink on some 240gsm  card and coloured with Copic markers. Once coloured they were glued to the Atc blanks and trimmed to fit.
They have been finished with a couple of coats of Clear ultra thick embossing powder, also from Stampendous.

 I decided to add a little extra and turn them into tags. I had some old grey boards knocking about and decided to use them up.
The boards were given a couple of coats of Decoarts Tinting base to provide a nice white base. The images were stamped with Archival ink and colour washes were added to give an aged and worn look. Finally the boards were given a coat of Decoart Matte Medium to seal the surface. This was important as I was using their One Step Crackle Glaze which needs to be applied over a sealed surface for the best results.
Once dry the Atc's were overlaid  and glued to the boards. xx

If you head over to the Stampendous Blog you will find lots more Halloween makes this month xx.

Friday, 20 October 2017

My Very Own Stamps - Chocolate Baroque

Welcome x.
It's a very happy day today for me as I am extremely happy to announce I have my very first set of stamps released today with the fantastic Chocolate Baroque
I can not thank Chocolate Baroque enough for the opportunity to design some stamps with them and I am over the moon with how they have turned out. The stamp quality is amazing and I love the size (A6).

I have had the idea of what I have wanted in a stamp design for some time and I have been heavily influenced by the tattoo, comic book and Steampunk style of art that I love.
It took me a while but I managed to find a local tattoo artist (Lance Steele) that I could work with to make my ideas a reality. He managed to take my ideas and reference material and come up just what I wanted and I hope you all like ;)
The vintage look to the Neo Traditional style of tattoo is what inspired this release of stamps. I like to work with one focal point image when getting crafty with the back grounds being more layered and aged effects so the focal point doesn't get to cluttered and faces work really well for this.
Links for each stamp can be found below xx.

She has been stamped onto a large Acylic tag and painted with Decoart Media Fluids. The background was made using papers from the Authentique Hero's range. The gaps were painted using blue and silver to make it look a little like the sky.

He has been stamped onto some 240gsm card stock and coloured with Copic markers in a sepia tone. He was fussy cut out and glued to a tag that had been covered with design paper from 7Gypsies
The Tim Holtz word tag was added and some Decoart Media antiquing cream was added to bring out the words. This was tied to the tag with some rusty wire which I picked up from my crafty friend Hannah Oxberry who has a lovely online store.
The m Aviator at the top of the page was also done this way.

She was stamped onto an Mdf tag from That Craft Place and I then carfully painted each section careful not to go over the lines.
The back ground was painted using a sun burst stencil and Decoart media fluids, the script was also stenciled over the top. 
Some aging was done using colour washes and the circles were stamped with paint using an old bottle cap.
She was finished off with a coat of Satin varnish.

I used an off cut of wood and used the Decoar Acrylic Media Misters to create the cosmic looking background.
The Gent was then stamped over the top and carefully painted over the top.
Once dry a shabby checker stencil was used to create a little more background interest.
The edges were distressed with black archival ink and the whole piece was given a Satin Varnish.

This tag was covered with some paper from 7Gypsies and as above the image was carefully stamped and painted on top. The wreath was coloured with copics to give a more translucent look and the Tim Holtz stars were added.

Thank you so much for stopping by, it's a;ways very much appreciated.xx
I hope you like the stamps and I am looking forward to seeing what will be created with them xx.

Tuesday, 22 August 2017

Decoart Tutorial. Baroque Gothic Wall Hanging

Morning all, Today I am sharing a little step by step on the Decoart Media Blog where I have created a gothic baroque style wall hanging creating texture with Modeling paste and crackle glaze.
If you have time it would be lovely to see you over there xx. 

Sunday, 13 August 2017

Silicon Mould Making and Resin Casting

So how is everyone?
I've been planning a new class for a retreat I have coming up soon and I am planning on using some cast resin pieces as part of the kit.
This was all very good in principle but having never attempted casting anything before it left me with a little bit of a challenge.

This weekend I finally got round to having my first attempt so I thought I would share with you what I did and how it turned out.
I started a few weeks ago by doing an internet search for silicon mould making to see what products were out there for me to use. After reading a different company websites I decided on an Irish company MB Fiberglass  and gave them a call,  I explained what I wanted to achieve and that I had never tried anything like this, they were extremely helpful in explaining the different products, cure times etc and what should be done to get the required results.

I decided on getting their 1.1kg Polycraft GP-3481F Silicone kit  £20ish for making my mould 
and their 1kg Polycraft SG 2000 Fast Cure PU Resin System £15ish for making the resin embelishments.
When handling and using these products it's recommended you use a pair of rubber gloves and some eye protection.  
The Silicon mould making kit comes as a two bottle kit, a 1kg bottle of what I assume to be a liquid silicone  and a 100g bottle of liquid that will cause the silicone to set to a flexible mould. (i am sure there is more to it than that, the science isn't important ;) )

I wanted to cast a 3d metal star I have and its about 5 inches across.
you need to create a space to pour the silicon. I have used an old biscuit tin as it was just about the right size, If anything it's a little bigger than it needed to be. You could use a flat surface with your craft sheet as the base and modeling clay to build a wall. I was told a 10mm thickness of silicon around what you are casting is enough to make the mould viable anything beyond that is technically a waste of product. Depending on what you are casting though it's just easier to find a suitable container and pour.

The star I have is made from thin sheet metal so is hollow on the reverse. to stop the silicon from seeping under in the mould making process I decided to place a sheet of cling film over the star and to line the whole tin including the sides. This created a sealed barrier between the star and the silicon, it would also create extra texture on the stars surface.
I could also have set the edges of the star into some modeling clay and cleaned the edges with a craft knife to get a smooth clean edge to the star. 

I picked up a couple of cheep plastic measuring jugs large enough to contain the 1.1kg load of product.
I should have done some maths to figure out exactly how much product I needed but as I only had a max of the 1.1kg bottles I thought I would need all of it if not a little more.
Mix bot parts together in the measuring jug making sure its mixed together properly. The 1kg bottle is the silicon and is very thick and white in colour. The 100g bottle contains the setting agent and Is red in colour. Imagine mixing food colouring into dough. Once its a uniform colour you are ready to pour the liquid into the container. Do this slowly as you don't want to trap any air bubbles in the mould. Leave it to sit for 6-8 hours or over night.
If you don't need to use the complete 1kg tub you will have to do a little maths to figure out how much of each product is needed.

Giving a gentle pull on the clingfilm the silicon mould released nice and easy and came out of the tin without any trouble, Once flipped round I could place the mould back in the tin which will help with storage and keeping it safe, It has also added a little extra stability to the base as I only just had enough product for the mould, the point of the star is a little thin (not the 10mm recommended thickness). I have since picked up a couple of 6 inch round cake tins that will be perfect for my next attempt.
Using the cling film was great for adding extra texture but in a couple of places it has slightly rounded my edges, Next time I will make sure to pour slowly and work the clingfilm down around the edge of the star.

Using the Polycraft SG 2000 Resin I worked out I needed about 100ml of liquid to fill the star shape.
The resin kit is also a 2 part system and is a 1:1 ratio.  So I would need 50ml of one bottle mixed with 50ml of the second bottle.
The product works by creating a chemical reaction that causes the two liquids to set, at this point once you mix you want to pour fairly quickly as it starts to set pretty fast, so have everything ready to go before you start the mixing process.
Carefully pour the liquid into your mould and leave to set, the stars set in about an hour and were ready to be popped out of the mould.

You can just about see towards the base of the star where I lost the definition of my edges but also the extra texture created by the clingfilm.
I think I will be able to get about 10 stars from the resin kit I bought which means each 5 inch star is costing £1.50 which I think is pretty good value and the silicon mould will last for 100's of pours if looked after.

I also found the best way to clean up the plastic measuring jugs was to leave the dregs of the product to dry completely. The silicon just peels away in a very satisfying manner ;)
With the resin it might be an idea to leave something like a wooden lollipop stick poking out so you have something to grab, it still pulls away from the jug fairly easily and cleanly. 

All in all I was very impressed with how easy it was to make the mould and create the resin stars.
I made the mould at lunch time and by the time I went to bed I had three stars made.
Lots learnt and I am no longer wary about giving it another go and with a few tweeks I will get the results I am after all ready in time for the new workshop.

As always a huge thank you for stopping by. Hopefully the post wasn't to wordy for you and sorry the pics were not a little more exciting ;) xx

Thursday, 13 July 2017

Alice in Wonderland Fat Book class

Just a quick little post to share with you my new class sample for an Alice in Wonderland themed mixed media Fat book.
I know things have been quiet here in blog land but I promise to be back with an update post of some recent trips and classes.

I have just finished the new Alice book and this will be a new class ill be rolling out in the Autumn.
class details will be at the bottom of the page.
This is a new kit I have put together with Tando-Creative and the class will cover several different techniques including image transfer and painting and working on acrylic,mdf and grey board using the Decoart Media Line.

If you would like any info or to book me for a class please feel free to contact me via Facebook or email. x

30 sep/1 oct     lets Be Creative      south east uk near Guildford

21/22 oct    Beautiful Things        Brentwood Essex

A full list of dates, classes and projects can be found by clicking the classes tab at the top of the page. xx

Simon Says Stamp are having a Distress It Challenge on their blog this week.  Ive gone for a more colourfull but still distressed style for my Alice book x.

Friday, 9 June 2017

7 Gypsies Guest Designer

I am over the moon about today's little post, I have been asked to be a guest designer for the
  7 Gypsies  blog this month.
I was asked to play with the brilliant new Architextures range and have created a couple of vintage and shabby wall hangings.
If you head over to the 7 Gypsies blog you can find more pics and a little write up of how and what I did. 
Hope to see you over there x

Monday, 15 May 2017

Andy Skinner Design Team Grungy Chic Wine Crate

A little tease piece today as I share my first make as part of the New Andy Skinner Design Team.
We will be focussing on Andy's range of products, Stamps, Stencils etc as well as the Decoart range of paints and mediums.
To see the full project with a little info on what I did to achieve the grungy finish just follow the link HERE.
Keep heading back as well so you can see all the new inspiration from the new DT.

Tuesday, 11 April 2017

Decoart Graffiti Tutorial Happy Easter

Morning all, thanks for stopping by, It's been a busy few weeks here and I am just back from Andy Skinner's Ministry Of Mixology retreat where Kate Crane and France Papillon taught a weekend of fantastic classes and I was there to lend a hand and teach one o the make and takes on the Saturday eve.
Such a fun weekend catching up with so many crafty friends and so much creativity under one roof always leads to a good weekend away.

Today though I am sharing a Graffiti style step by step tutorial on the Decoart Media Blog, I have used lots of Decoart Media products and the new Chalky Finish White Cream Wax along with various stencils. The main focus stencils are from a new Stencil book I picked up recently after seeing a FaceBook friend post about it, Details can be found on the Decoart post.
I hope to see some of you over there. For those of you that don't know about the media blog, you will be introduced to some amazing mixed media artists sharing their tutorial posts using the Decoart Products.

As always a huge thank you for stopping by.
If you would like to follow me on FaceBook you can find me HERE.

Simon Says Stamp Monday challenge are having a Hip Hop challenge ;) x Now I know my entry is a little tongue in cheek but I have tried to keep it festive with my Jesus Graffiti and the links between hip hop culture and the Graffiti street scene lol x.