Hi! It’s Laura Denison here. The journey of my first blog post for The Crafters Workshop reminded me of one of my kids’ favorite children’s book: If you Give a Mouse a Cookie…
If you’re like me, you have dabbled in MANY different crafts over the years. In doing so, you most likely gathered lots of bits and pieces from this and that. These then meld together to become part of that amazing entity called….your stash! Visiting your stash can be like shopping in all your favorite craft supply stores, in your jammies, without having to deal with traffic or shipping! In looking for inspiration for this post, I started to browse my my studio. I came across a glass artist bead with some amazing colors. Well, when you give a mixed media artist a bead, she’s going to want some hand dyed fabric to go with it. Digging into my box of hand dyed fabric I sat back and got lost in the rich colors and almost organic-like images on the fabric. The organic imagery reminded me of a walk down to the pond near my house which made me think of ferns. Wait, don’t I have a fern stencil?… I think you get my analogy about the mouse and the cookie story by now.
I continued to explore my stash and gathered together some more beads, some paint and ink, some chain, split rings, wire, and some scrap chipboard and set to work, well, its really play, isn’t it?.
My experimenting led to a double sided necklace with ferns stenciled onto fabric wrapped chipboard along with tiny metal dragonfly charms along the chain. Heres a tutorial so you can create your own statement piece of wearable art!
PLEASE NOTE: The incredible people at TheCrafters Workshop provided me with some of the products I used to create this project. I gotta tell you that part, but my opinions about those products are completely my own. (I love them by the way!)
Start by cutting some rectangles of chipboard. I used one large piece (1 1/2″ x 5″) and 3 smaller rectangles (1″ x 1 1/2″, 1″ x 1 3/4″, and 1″ x 1 7/8″). The sizes are not critical so adjust if you choose. Cut 2 of each size.
Attach one color of fabric (or patterned paper if you prefer) to the half of the chipboard rectangles, cutting the fabric slightly larger to wrap the edges. Use a contrasting , but coordinating, fabric to wrap the remaining rectangles. Add a touch of glue to the corners and smooth down to prevent fraying.
The next steps apply to one half, or set, of the rectangles. Set the remaining rectangles aside for now. Now, pull out a “background” style stencil. I used TCW237 Tile Texture with some metallic Heavy Body Paint (TCW9013 Iridescent Gold) to stencil some small accents to the background
For the primary image on each mini panel, mix a bit of liquid acrylic to some Light and Fluffy Modeling Paste (TCW9004) using the color of your choice. Place your image stencil (I’m using TCW243 Ferns) on top of each of the mini fabric panels and stencil on the colored modeling paste with a palette knife. Allow the paste to dry.
Dab an accent color of liquid acrylic with your finger or a dry brush to add a bit of accent color. You may find it easier to align your stencil over the modeling paste image to keep your dabbed paint on the paste and not the background. Add addition accent colors as you wish.
Allow the paint to dry. You then can finger-rub a bit of metallic wax over the top of the painted texture paste image, just to give a metallic hint. Add a bit of transparent ink to add a bit of shadow.
I then added some dots of accent paint to the background stenciling. I like to add little details like this. Details elevate your work from homemade to handcrafted.
Set this first set of panels aside and lets work on the other set.
For these panels, I mixed some liquid acrylic in to some Gel Medium Gloss (TCW9006) and used TCW357 Cell Theory to apply a bright accent to the background. The colored gel medium has a translucent feel.
Using the same stencil and technique as I used for the first set of mini panels, once again add color to the modeling paste and stenciled on with a palate knife. Add accent paint, metallic wax and ink as we did for the first group.
Allow all panels to dry completely before assembling into your necklace.
The panels will all have a corresponding panel of the other color combo.
Attach the corresponding panels back to back with glue or strong adhesive. Pierce a small hole centered on the top and bottom. Add a split ring to the pierced holes.
The panels will now be able to be integrated into your necklace along with other beads, rings, and chain. The panels can be flipped to create an entirely different mood with the same necklace!
When you give a girl a necklace, she’s going to want a pair of earrings to go with it….ahhh, that will have to be for another time.
I hope you enjoyed this project and I look forward to bringing you some unique and unusual ways to use stencils and mixed media over the next year. See you all next time!
Laura Denison (Following the Paper Trail)