Friday, February 28, 2014


Several years ago I taught a class where we used black glue sticks in a glue gun to create embellishments on atc's.  Type in "faux wax" in the search box down on the right hand side to see these earlier samples.  I'm doing this class again as I have new students who have never used black glue sticks.  To prevent my older students who have been with me for quite a few years don't get bored with doing the same thing again, I've thrown in a little twist to keep it interesting.  You can use clear glue sticks to make little embellishments and when they are cool, simply paint them with black acrylic paint and then rub over with a little Gilding Wax or Treasure Gold or Rub'n'buff to pick up the highlights!  
Just to clarify, I'm talking about glue sticks that go in a glue gun,
 not glue sticks that you stick paper to other paper.
Of course, the dribbling method around the border of an atc can only be done with a black glue stick but the mini embellishments using stamps can be made with the clear glue gun stick.  A hint here though, always ink up your stamp with *clear embossing ink before stamping into the melted glue and let it dry COMPLETELY before trying to remove the stamp.  I can't stress how important this is, you'll ruin your stamps if you don't do this step and I wouldn't recommend using clear stamps, the good ol' red rubber ones work best, oh and don't press hard or you'll push the stamp right through to the bottom, just rest it on the glue and the weight of it will make a nice impression.
"Dramatic"... (the black glue is the leaf shapes)

"Ravish"... (clear glue with metal screws
placed in hot glue and left to cool
before painting black and
rubbing silver gilding wax on them)

"Imagination"... (clear glue puddle melted on
non-stick craft sheet and *inked stamp placed on
top, left to cool, then painted black and
rubbed over with gold gilding wax)
"Pursuit"... (same method as above with clear glue stick)
"Alcohol & Calculus"... (black glue dribbled down sides
then rubbed with silver gilding wax)
"Twilight"... (black glue stick dribbling again, but with
copper and gold gilding wax on top)
Here's the last sample from my eggshell mosaic class from last fortnight.
"Love & Stuff"...
 When I originally started playing around with this eggshell mosaic technique, I found the brown eggs didn't take the lighter colours of alcohol inks very well so I painted the eggshells white and that solved that problem.  This sample below originally was very dark as it was the brown eggshells with a couple of green and blue colours of alcohol inks on it, I think Stream and Pesto.  So in the spirit of "no such thing as a mistake", I rubbed over gold and silver gilding wax to hide the darkness of it.  Even though you can still see some of the green through the centre sections of the eggshells, in real life it's very metallic looking and shimmery.  Good save!!!

Sunday, February 9, 2014


Using eggshells as a mosaic technique is another style that has been around for many years.  This technique works well in mixed media when used on solid chipboard shapes or as a background.  I found when playing with this technique that it makes a difference to the overall look of the finished product what colour your base that you stick your eggshells to is.... plain chipboard doesn't look so good but a white base or a black base makes a huge difference.  I used alcohol inks to colour the eggshells when they had dried and found spraying a bit of water on the eggshells before using the alcohol inks on them helped the alcohol ink to disperse and blend.  A good coating of Glossy Accents or Dimensional Magic just finishes it off with a wonderful glossy surface and protects the eggshells as well as the alcohol ink colours.
"Fracture, fragment"...

"Through this door"...


"Flight of a bird"...

These last two are from my previous class  -  Tri-colour Brayering. 
Rock Star is on plain paper and Math Geek is done on gloss paper.
"Rock Star"...
"Math geek"...