Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Helga Stauss: Faux Distressed Wallpaper Background

Hi artists!

I've got another fun tutorial for you. This is one of my classic go-to backgrounds that I do all the time. I like to call it my Faux Distressed Wallpaper Background even though there is actually no wallpaper used at all.

Here's how:First, pull out your supplies. You'll need some vintage ephemera - whatever you have on hand. I used ARTchix Studio Vintage Labels and Science Pages. Plus, you'll need a rubber stamp (I used Judikins damask pattern) along with Staz On ink, gesso, UHU glue stick and watercolor crayons. You'll also need a surface for collaging on (I used ARTchix Eco ATCs).

Rip and tear vintage ephemera into strips and pieces and add them to the Artist Trading Cards. Glue them into place with your favorite glue when you like the look of them. I used a UHU glue stick.

Paint on white gesso sparingly...leave some parts without any gesso. Use the gesso as a way to blend the papers together. Let dry.

I love to rubber stamp onto my ATCs at this point. Staz On ink is great. This rubber stamp from Judikins reminds me of an old wallpaper damask pattern.

To add a bit of color, I like to scribble on watercolor crayons.

Blend them with a damp paintbrush.

And use a paper towel to dab, try rubbing it in light circles...all in an effort to blend the colors into the background.

Rub black watercolor crayon around the edges to give it a finished look.

Ta da! Check out this cute ATC! It includes a Faux Distressed Wallpaper Background along with an ARTchix bird and one of my Hand Painted Eggs.

Another ATC using this fun and easy background technique. I only added a rubber stamp and color to the bottom section. And ahhh, more of my Hand Painted Eggs. I've been putting them on everything lately! lol.


Thanks so much for having me as your monthly muse! It's been an honor! Come visit me anytime on my website (online shop & free classes), blog (creativity, cuteness and freebies), etsy (handmade art bits & charms) or facebook (art challenges & more) : )

- Helga

Monday, February 27, 2012

Contributor and Columnist Call for Unruly PaperArts

That's right! We have a call on for Contributors for the new blogozine, Unruly PaperArts! With all of the fantastically imaginative and creative Gingersnappers out there, I thought you might want more information.


Unruly PaperArts will include articles and tutorials for all crafting levels in a variety of different styles and formats. Our features will range from step-by-step projects to technique tutorials to reviews to design concepts and more. As the blogozine title suggests, our main focus will be on the experience and exploration of papercraft and mixed media rather than any staid instruction manual. Inspiration and imagination will be our hallmarks with a little edgy attitude thrown in for good measure. We are Unruly after all!

Each issue, we will be featuring up to 5 guest contributors! Share your fabulous projects with our readers!

UPA Submission Guidelines

If you are interested in being published on Unruly PaperArts, please submit a brief synopsis to rogueredheaddesigns@gmail.com with a picture of your finished project for consideration. Include your name and your blog or online gallery. Please put UPA Contributor in the Subject line of your email.

Your article must be original and include artwork that you personally have completed. If you use work that was inspired by another artist, please include a list of which artist or artists have influenced your artwork. Artwork that is a direct copy of someone else's hard work WILL NOT be accepted.

There is no financial compensation for being a contributor or having a project featured on Unruly Paperarts.

We accept tutorials, step-by-step projects, reviews and articles for consideration. Reviews cannot be submitted for products for which you officially design.

Current UPA Calls and Upcoming Issues


April 2012 - Ink Minx Issue

We are looking for creative ways to use various types of ink in papercrafting and mixed media projects. From stamping to stenciling and printing to paper dying, ink is one of the essential tools of the papercraft trade.

Prove yourself an Ink Minx and submit your original idea focused on the creative use of ink in mixed media or papercrafting art.

Submissions must be received by March 10, 2012.


May 2012 - Wedding Wonders Issue

For this issue, we invite you to submit articles which celebrate weddings!

Projects may include such things as wedding and/or engagement cards, creative wedding favors, decorations, gifts, and even wedding planners.

Marry your creative projects to this joyous theme.

Submissions must be received by April 10, 2012.



June 2012 - Buds and Blooms

Sow your artistic seeds in this fabulous issue.

Showcase art including botanical elements as focal images, embellishments or as natural ingredients in your creations.

Submissions must be received by April 10, 2012.





July 2012 - Catch the Wave

As our minds turn beachward, we would like to see projects or techniques that feature water as an integral element.

Let your imagination flow freely.

Submissions must be received by May 10, 2012.



Interested in Being More Involved?

We are still looking for a few more columnists to fill out our ranks!

Are you:
  • an ATC artisan?
  • a sensational scrapper?
  • a career carder?
  • an inky inventor?
  • a digital diva?
  • a collage queen?
  • formidable 4x4er?
  • a journal junkie?
  • a stamp sage?
  • an album addict?
The list goes on! If this sounds like you, check out our Columnist Call!

Thursday, February 23, 2012

The Rogue Crew Tries Out Two Colors

The usually colorful Rogue Crew is reigning in their charming color sense to play along with the new Color Challenge - Two Colors Only.

Check out their happening hues in these samples:

Artwork by Barbara Washington, Guest Rogue
using the Just Sayin' plate (Rogue Redhead Designs)
and grey and rust


Artwork by Jingle, Guest Rogue
using the Relish Reading plate (Rogue Redhead Designs)
and tuxedo colors


Artwork by Holly Brown
using the Milliner Misses and
Bits and Pieces plates (Rogue Redhead Designs)
and a faux stitching technique and wisteria and white


Artwork by Beverly G.
using the Carnival Dreams mini (Rogue Redhead Designs)
and a faux torn edge technique


Artwork by Sharon Briss, Chief Rogue
using Just Sayin' and Bits and Pieces (Rogue Redhead Designs)
using Coffee and Cream

Join the Gingers and the Rogue Crew in creating some fabulous two-color designs for this colorful challenge!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Wrap-Up: GC136 - Glorious Greens

We all went green with envy when we saw what beautiful art you had created for this challenge! Absolutely stunning! Thanks to all who submitted!

Thanks to Stampotique Originals for their generous sponsorship of this challenge! The winner receives a US$30.00 gift certificate to the Stampotique Originals store.

Our randomly drawn Home Page Artist this week is

Congratulations, Gail. Please email us at gingersnapstamp@gmail.com with your contact details by March 13, 2012 to collect your prize.

Your artwork will be showcased on the Home Page of the Gingersnap Creations Yahoo Group as well as on the sidebar on the blog.

Now onto our fabulous Ginger Gems. When each challenge closes, we also pick 10 Ginger Gems - fabulous creations that we feel really exemplify that challenge's objective. The Ginger Gems appear in a slide show in the blog sidebar for the entire week, as well as in this wrap-up post, and their creators have the honor of displaying this Ginger Gems blog badge.

For more information about Ginger Gems and entering our challenges, please visit the FAQ page.

Our Emerald-Infused
Ginger Gems


Artwork by Clare


Artwork by Alison

Artwork by Tanya

Artwork by Sandra

Artwork by Salamanda

Artwork by Retro Dolly

Artwork by Debs

Artwork by Sue C

Artwork by Brenda

Artwork by Aisling


Special Guests

Artwork by Marjie Kemper

Artwork by MeggyMay

Artwork by Suze Bain

Artwork by Trisha Too


Congratulations to all our Ginger Gems this week! We hope you take a minute to stop by their blogs.

Come by tomorrow for a new Color Challenge.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Sharon Briss: Faux Clouds

If you want a simple technique, this is on my top 10 of easy! It takes almost no time to create this fun sky background. Use it on your whole canvas or create a lovely landscape!

Here's what you will need:
- canvas or other surface to paint
- white, silver and blue paint (I used Jacquard Lumiere paints as I like their sheen)
- sea or foam sponge
- foam brush
- scrap paper

I started with a plain canvas. I wanted a really vivid blue so I painted the whole canvas with Jacquard Lumiere Pearlescent Blue paint using a foam brush making sure not show my brush strokes.

Once I had a nice even layer, I let my canvas dry completely.

When I was ready to add my "clouds", I put some Pearlescent White Jacquard Lumiere paint onto a paper plate. I got out my sponge and misted it slightly.

I dipped my sponge into the paint and then dabbed the sponge onto the scrap paper before applying to the canvas. This step keeps the paint less dense and keeps your clouds light and fluffy.

Have fun dabbing the sponge onto the canvas to create big fluffy clouds or drag it slightly to create more wispy clouds.

Once I was content with my clouds, I add one more touch - a silver lining.

I like to add a tiny bit of silver to the bottom of each of my clouds. Remember to dab your sponge on your piece of scrap first or your clouds will look too dark!

It adds a little dimension and makes the coloring more interesting. To finish off, I lightly dabbed my clouds with a soft cloth to make them a tiny bit softer in shape.

When my canvas had dried completely, I added some fun figures from Rogue Redhead Designs' Just Sayin' plate along with some wings and words from various ArtChix Studio digital collage sheets.

The woman and man were stamped onto an old text page which had been lightly painted with white acrylic paint to take down the text a little.

The paint also served to stiffen the paper so extra benefit there!

Here's a look at the whole piece:

Hope to see some of your fabulous skyscapes soon!

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Alexa Noble: Faux Spanish Leather and Faux Tie-Dye

Hi everyone! As you know we are delving into the world of faux techniques this month so my tuturial is based on a couple of variations to existing faux techniques which you may already be familiar with, to create new effects.

The first is faux leather. I wanted to create the deeply ridged leather which you often find in Spain and which comes in a range of different colours to make gorgeous purses and bags.

I started with a sheet of cardstock and used 1.5" masking tape which I tore in long strips and applied creating folds as I went. I overlapped all my pieces which helped to stick down the folds on the under pieces.


Continue until the whole sheet is covered and then trim the edges. If any large folds are lifting up, you can use PVA to secure them flat.

At this point, you can choose what finish you want to create. I cut my sheet into three and used different products on each to show you what you can achieve.


To create a traditional brown leather look, I used a combination of inks. Apart from solvent inks such as Staz-on, all other inks will not dry on masking tape as it is non-porous, so you have plenty of time to play with the finish you want to achieve.

I gently inked my page with the Jumbo Java VersMagic which allowed me to pick up all the creases in the darkest shade of brown.







Then I started to add in Gingerbread Versa Magic.







Finally I used Vintage Photo and Brushed Corduroy distress inks.



Once I was happy with my effect, I sprinkled the entire piece with flat clear embossing powder and heat sealed it.










I used a brown acrylic paint on this piece and finished it with some metallic rub-ons to highlight the creases.

My third piece was painted with Byzantia Jewel Tone Metallic Glaze in Turquoise and when dry, rubbed with Gleam Guilding Wax in Peacock and Patina Blue. This is a small part of it but you can see the whole piece in my DT entry last week or on my blog.

My other technique variation that I want to share with you is to show you how to create a faux tie-dye effect.

To do this, start with a piece of ordinary paper and gently scrunch it up into a ball. Do this carefully by starting at one end of the sheet to prevent the paper tearing. Once it is nicely screwed up, use an embossing pad and dab it around over all the creases and also some of the little flat areas you have created. Open the sheet out and dab it over some more. Once you think you've one enough (which is hard to tell as the ink is invisible!) sprinkle with clear embossing powder and heat until melted.




Now colour your piece with either spray inks (I used Adirondack Colour Wash) or other inks. I've used one colour but you could use a variety including shimmer colours.


Once you have applied your colour, cover the piece with an ordinary sheet of printer paper and iron with a hot iron. This re-melts the embossing powder and will leave those areas white.


I used my tie-dye sheet to cut out some tattered florals for my card using the leather background. I hope my ideas will generate some inspiration for you to create a new effect in one of your projects.


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