Friday, March 25, 2016

Choose Happy

Hi Everyone! I have seen so much activity using the Distress Crayons lately that I feel like I'm falling behind if I'm not using them everyday!

Well here at my house, I'm still exploring Crazing Medium (see last post) - this time I'm using a Dina Wakley Media Board.  Dina's boards come in a large pack (two 9 x 12" boards) or a mixed pack that you can see here.  One thing I really like about Dina's Media Boards is that they are pre-gessoed so that saves me a step plus drying time. So right from the bag I can use it!
I'm using the 5 x 7" size for today's project as well as Distress Crayons Set 1 (the bright set).
A palette knife was used to spread the Distress Collage Medium Crazing over the Mini Stencil from Set 7.  If you haven't seen the Mini Stencils yet, they are the 3 1/8 x 6 1/4" or the size of a #8 tag (and they are "mini cute").
I picked a few random places to add the crazing medium over the stencil, then left it to dry completely.  Remember to wash the palette knife and stencil right away.
After drying - the crazing appears in the circles (just like it's suppose to).  What I like about using the stencil is that it controls how much of the medium you can put on with the knife, so it never gets too thick.
I scribbled some Twisted Citron over the crazing and rubbed it with my finger. 
It moved a little bit but not like on a slick surface.  A damp wet wipe is the answer here...I found that it spreads the color into a nice light background wash.
So I just started adding colors, working back and forth between scribbling, rubbing, and wet wipe.
I went back over places that I felt were too light giving a beautiful mix of colors.
Mustard Seed...
Picked Raspberry...
 Love how the damp wet wipe (yes a wet wipe can be too wet) really helps get the color of the crayon into the crazing.
I used another Mini Stencil and Ranger Pearl Metallic Paint to create a fun layer over the Crayon.  I just put the pearl paint on the craft mat and used a clean mini blending tool to pounce the paint over the stencil.
The pearl paint leaves a nice sheen over the crayon.  They work together beautifully!
Now what to do with it?
I've decided on a white 5 x 7" frame and a little message.  I use the chambray Textile Surface mounted on chipboard (remember, it's self adhesive? so it's super easy).  I used the Sizzix Block Talk Alphabet die to cut the letters I needed for the sentiment.
Big Chat, which is larger than Chit Chat serves as part of the sentiment also.  I added it with crazing medium (under and over) to secure to the sticker and give it a slick finish.  That allows me to use the crayons and wet wipe with ease.  If you look really close you can see a bit of crazing in the corner of the sticker.

It's a simple sentiment and I like that it didn't cover up the beautiful color of the canvas board.  Dina's Media Boards are going to be a staple in my craft room right along side the Distress Crayons.  They work together beautifully!  I hope to do more exploring and learning because I know I'm just scratching the surface.
(lilacs from my garden)
Choose Happy!  and have a great holiday weekend!
I'm running off on a little adventure - I'll post next week and show you where I end up!
now carry on,

Monday, March 21, 2016

Crazing 101

Hi everyone! Glad to be here today sharing a fun project using a Vignette Box.  The package comes with 4 nested boxes.  I chose to use the largest of the boxes so I could add the Vignette Panel inside.  Follow along and I'll show you what I made.
I picked a specific paper from the Dapper Paper Stash that is strips of pattern.  This paper was designed so it could be cut into strips to go on the edges of the Vignette Boxes or other assemblage pieces.  So that's just what I did. I used my trusty rotary cutter to cut two strips from the paper.
I folded the strips and adhered them to the edges with Collage Medium. 
I wanted the strips to look "real", so I layered the strips (ripping the ends) then sanded and inked.
What I haven't mentioned is that I added another Dapper paper to the back of the box and then coated it with a layer of Distress Collage Medium Crazing (waiting for it to dry). 
Just a note before I move on...The Distress Brush works perfectly to add the Medium to the paper.
If you are not going to wash your brush right away, just keep it wrapped in a wet wipe until you get to a sink.  Now I'm going to fess up and tell you that I walked away from my work table one day and left my brush wrapped in the wet wipe.  Duh, what a dork.  Well the next day my friend Richele suggested I try putting the brush in cup of hot water.  I did just that...and after about 24 hours I pulled the brush out it was good as new.  Happy day.
Time has past (about an 1 1/2 hours to be honest) and I've colored the crazing with a small amount of Distress Crayon and a clean Mini Blending Tool (more on that later in the post).
So lets move on to the inside.  I covered a Vignette Panel with a piece of linen from the Textile Surfaces pack.  Each sheet is self adhesive so its easy to adhere to the panel and no wet glue to contend with!
 I added a bit of Distress ink (Ground Espresso) with my Mini Blending Tool.  I chose some rubs from the Special Deliver Remnant Rubs Sheet.  Easy to add to the linen Textile Surface with the Remnant Rub Tool.
After gathering a few idea-ology trinkets to test out, I decided on a Photobooth picture, and the knife from the Adornments Silverware set (alcohol ink added).  The Red Cross pin is vintage.
I also filled one of the Decorative Domes with scraps from the dish on my desk...pearls, tatting, pink velvet ribbon, etc.  I don't plan on hanging the Decorative Dome but I added the Swivel Clasp at the top anyway.
The Vignette Panel was mounted on foam squares and placed into the Vignette Box for added depth.   The Decorative Dome was secured with a just a dollop of Multi Medium, which works great to secure 3-D objects.  The yellow vintage velvet flowers are my very, very favorite (sadly I'm running out of the small supply I once had).

 I will mention I did use Ground Espresso Distress Paint on the outside of the Vignette Box before I added the Cigar Strips.  I painted it on, then wiped much of it off - leaving just enough to darken the wood the box is made of.  You can see the difference between the inside of the box (that I left alone) and the outside that has been darkened with paint.

Crazing 101
Crazing is creating tiny little lines in the surface - like you might find in vintage china.  I am not an authority on crazing but I have done some experimenting so I thought I could at least pass on this small amount of information to get you thinking.

I think it works best with light colored paper, but I have been successful with other colors.

You do not have to cover an entire surface with crazing medium. It can be hit and miss which will add to the vintage look.

It can work as a glue and as a sealer.

You can add the crazing medium to the surface with a brush.
But my favorite is to use my fingertip, spreading it in a thin coat...more like butter than peanut butter.
You can see that the medium is there...but it is not obscuring the pattern in any way.
This is an example of TOO MUCH crazing medium.  Will it still work? yes, but it will take much longer to dry.  Remember, it's NOT crackle - you do not have to put it on thick to get the desired result.
You can even add it with a crosshatch pattern.  It's perfectly fine to go back over the same area unlike the old crackle medium.
After about 1 1/2 hours to be fully dry (I'm in coastal CA with no humidity) it will look like this...just tiny little cracks in the surface.
You can use Distress Ink to color the crazing but since everyone seems to be using the new Crayons I decided to show how they would work.

I scribbled a bit of Crayon on the surface, then dipped my Mini Blending Tool into a some water on my craft mat.
*just a you can see, I did not start with a clean blending foam so that added to the depth of color)
Sample one - I used my fingertip to put the Crazing Medium on this surface - then colored with Vintage Photo Crayon.
I wiped some of the color away with a wet wipe to get this.
Sample two: the Crazing Medium was put on with the brush.  Finer crazing...almost directional in pattern but still great.  I used the same color, but less Crayon and more water.
One and Two side by side.
Sample three: Crosshatch with the brush (again you get that directional crazing) and this time Vintage Photo and Hickory Smoke together. 
Sample Four: Another brush sample but a change to Walnut stain Crayon.
Here is all four samples together.
Honestly, every one of the samples looks pretty good.  I think it's just a matter of practicing a few times to know how much crazing medium to use.  You can also see how the color of the crayon used really changed up the look.  Remember the lighter the coloring method the lighter the result.
I think I was surprised at how strong the crazing is.  Unlike crackle where the finish has a tendency to flake off, crazing dries flat and never flakes away even when rubbing the crayon into the surface.

Well, I hope this addition to the project helps a few people to try the new crazing medium.  I know I sure like it and you will be seeing it projects to come.  We'll be testing out Crazing Medium at Memory Bound in Iowa when I'm there for classes in April!  Hope you'll stop by if you live in the area!

now carry on,