Article Source: Read more: DecorablesArt

July 29, 2014

How to decorate a Cool2Cast dragonfly tile

Thanks to Tiffany Windsor for sending me some great precast Cool2Cast tiles to work with. 

Materials Used:

Cool2Cast tile
Ann Butler Designs Unity faux-quilting stamps
DecoArt  Cool White acrylic paint
Adirondack alcohol inks
Rub n Buff
Hero Arts stamp
Stazon black ink
Michaels mini alpha stamps
Glossy Accents

Cool2Cast dragonfly tile

Cool2Cast dragonfly tile

Cool2Cast dragonfly tile

I first did an 'underpainting' of red, orange and purple alcohol ink, including the edges. I then daubed on the white paint with a sponge. I rubbed off certain areas to expose more of the under-colour. Next I stamped with my clock stamp, and then my sentiment, and let it dry. I added more paint and left certain areas with excess paint into which I stamped with Ann Butler's Unity faux-quilting stamps, and allowed that to dry. 
I then came in with the Rub n Buff in gold and red and highlighted the stamps and most raised edges. (By daubing the paint on it created a wonderful texture.)

Notice how smooth the original tile is and how textured the finished piece is.

For the dragonflies I used the alcohol inks to colour and then filled them in with Glossy Accents. You need to allow the Glossy Accents to dry, undisturbed, for at least 24 hours.

My tile is now ready to display!

Thank you for stopping by today!

July 26, 2014

Cool2Cast and Ann Butler Designs Blog Hop

canvas stamped book Cool2cast

   Ann Butler cool2cast blog hop 

I really enjoyed pairing Cool2Cast with Ann Butler's faux-quilting Unity Stamps and Clearsnap inks.

And here is my decorated canvas book!

Materials used:
Cool2Cast medallion
Clearsnap inks in aquamarine, lilac, limelight
Ann Butler Earth Safe Finishes Iridescents in aquamarine
Beacon Quick Grip
assorted embellishments, ribbon
Recollections Vintage Romance Mini Canvas Scrapbook Kit

I started with a plain medallion similar to the one in the photo. I was too anxious to start my project and forgot to take a photo of the medallion I used before I started... my bad :)

Cool2Cast vintage medallion
Using Ann Butler Clearsnap inks I coloured my precast shape, painting it with sponges and a brush. 
Once dry I gave it a coat of Iridescents.
Using Unity 2" Leaves all over stamp I easily covered the front page of my canvas book. 
canvas stamped book Cool2cast

canvas stamped book Cool2cast

canvas stamped book Cool2cast
The interior pages also get stamped!
Beacon Quick Grip makes gluing just about anything a breeze! The medallion is securely attached. I also used the adhesive to insert and attach the ribbons and page tabs.
canvas stamped book Cool2cast

Please visit all the participants. You may also win this prize!  

Cool2Cast giveaway prize
Roberta Birnbaum <-------you are here :)

July 03, 2014

My Creative Process BLOG TOUR

Hi Everyone,

I was invited to be part of a Writing and Creative Process Blog Tour by my Creative Girlfriend Ann Butler

1) What am I working on? This is a loaded question because I am preparing/packing for a long-distance move to Niagara Falls so I have had to adjust my routine. Right now I am working on 4 projects: one for my design team post this month;creating a project using Ann Butler Designs products and Tiffany Windsors Cool2Cast for a special blog hop this month: a DecoArt project and article; and a mixed media canvas using Pebeo paints, wax, and resin.
2) How does my work differ from others in the same genre?  I guess I better pick one of my genres since (like many artists and designers) I enjoy creating in multiple media. In mixed media I always try to invoke humour so you will always find a bit of whimsy or a humourous comment accompanying my work.

3) Why do I create what I do?  I wasn't always this way and in school my artwork was 'average' at best. Growing up, my mother supported and encouraged me to try different creative media. She took me to ballet and piano lessons and played opera on the car radio or on the stereo in our home. She introduced me to  painting, mosaics, clay, drawing and set up a room in our basement where I could experiment. I loved creating but I wasn't really very good. I abandoned most of the crafting and turned my sights to business and finance. 

Fast forward 30 years to when my mother died. The strangest thing happened. The day after we finished shiva ( Jewish mourning ritual usually lasting 7 days) I felt like I was hit by a lightning bolt and I could swear I could feel my mother's presence. 

I felt a warmth envelope me and all of a sudden I blurted out to my husband, " I have to create!" I was not only filled with this need to create something, but I also had the confidence and belief that I could actually make something.  I feel my mother has guided me and continues to be with me whenever I am creating.

4) How does my creative process work?                                                                                                 Sometimes I'm not sure. An idea will hit me or I spot an interesting object and immediately my brain starts thinking of ways to use it. I don't do a lot of sketches. My process is very organic and very 'touchy-feely'. I like to work with 'my white' bins' (purchased from the Dollar Store) where each one is devoted to one project. I will gather items I like, as if I'm shopping and keep everything needed in that one bin. eg. papers, ephemera, embellishments, paints. Once satisfied with my hunting and gathering I will dump the bin on my desk and start pulling the project together; eliminating items along the way. I prefer the variety of working on several things at once, so the bin method works well for me. 
Thanks again to Ann Butler for inviting me to be part of this Blog Tour!  Theresa Cifali , and Beth Watson will be sharing on their blogs in the next week so be sure and check out their post and see how their creative process works for them!

Roberta signature

June 27, 2014

CHA Designer Retreat Workshops I

2 solid days of CHA creative workshops really put the go-go in my mojo!

CHA Designers Retreat 2014 swag

First of all, please check out all the product and items I came home with!

The product value alone is about $500. When you consider that these workshops were lead by  experts who would normally charge for their services, the value of this weekend easily tops $1000.

And while I am on this topic, you cannot ignore the intrinsic value of an event like this.    
The knowledge I gained, new skills learned, networking, new friends made, and creative spark ignited --- PRICELESS!

CHA Designers Retreat 2014 swag
CHA Designers Retreat 2014 swag

Crafting with Carmi Cimicata

Westcott scissors
We received this gorgeous duo of Westcott scissors and personalised them with ETI jewelry clay and crystals. So much fun! 
That white 'pencil' was invaluable when applying the crystals exactly where I wanted them.
You can always count on Carmi for a great crafting session!

Encaustics with Nancy Donaldson

Roberta Birnbaum Nancy Donaldson encaustic
It was really fascinating learning about encaustics with Nancy. I had previously worked with beeswax in mixed media but not this technique. It is incredibly fun. Purple Cows generously donated everything we needed plus lots of product to take home.
Because encaustics involve embedding, I decided to try to add wire to my canvas. It was a little challenging but I was able to coil the wire and layer it nicely.

Roberta Birnbaum Nancy Donaldson encaustic
My canvas

Sewing with Linda Pidzamecky and her 10 awesome Janome machines!

Roberta Birnbaum Janome sewing
Roberta Birnbaum Janome sewing
Do you know how I feel about using a sewing machine? For some reason sewing machines and I do not usually get along. I can get through the threading the needle part and it grabbing the thread from the bobbin, but once that machine takes off it seems like it doesn't take long for something to go wrong.  My threads inevitably wind up in a ball of chaos (or as I like to describe it, " ...a colourful thread orgy'. ) I remember making an awful skirt and jacket from jersey in Grade 8 Home Ec with Mrs. Awolija. (sp)? It was this nasty green print and I can't remember who helped me finish it, because there is no way I did it by myself. But I digress...

I loved the Janome machine I used and I believe I have been converted! I'm so happy we had this opportunity through CHA.

Roberta Birnbaum Janome sewn bag
And this is what I made!

More posts to come (because we created ALL weekend)...
Roberta signature

June 25, 2014

Make a Whispy Butterfly Mobile

Roberta Birnbaum butterfly mobile

My monthly featured blog post is up on the Ann Butler Designs blog. 

You can find it by clicking this link:

Thank you for checking it out!

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