November 06, 2014

Powertex and Paper Arts Workshops

I am thrilled to be offering 2 great workshops before Christmas: 

 3-D paper Christmas class Niagara Artist Roberta BirnbaumArt House Studio Powertex workshop Roberta Birnbaum

Powertex Fabric Sculpture Workshop      

Art House Studio Powertex workshop Roberta Birnbaum

Roberta Birnbaum - Powertex Fabric Sculpture Workshop


10am - 4pm
Whether you are a beginner or advanced artist, you will love this workshop. You will learn how to construct a one-of-a-kind seated sculpture.

Starting with a wire armature (a framework around which the sculpture is built) you will learn how to give birth to the human form of your figurine using tin foil and masking tape. You will then learn how to ‘mummy wrap’ and dress your lady. Dipping fabric strips in Powertex not only gives them colour, but hardens the fabric and makes your sculpture weather-proof. You will then finish your lady by adding optional embellishments and paints. All artwork is finished in one session.

Sculpting with fabric allows complete freedom of expression and is so easy to work with. I will guide you step-by-step to create a beautiful sculpture with her own unique personality. *Powertex is a highly versatile product, with a Global Safety Seal of Approval. It is safe for humans, animals and eco-friendly.

Click HERE for Fabric Sculpting Registration Information


3-Dimensional Paper Christmas Greetings Class

WOW your friends and family and learn how to make a very trendy Christmas ‘box card’ and 2 beautiful *star ornaments. 

Paper folding is BIG! 
At the end of this class you will be an expert! 
 *special shout-out to Tina Hois of Wylde Rayne Studio for the Star inspiration!

 Saturday, December 13th 2-4 pm Niagara Falls, Ontario at

$35 includes all your supplies. 
Please call the Studio to register: (289) 646-6369

Roberta signature

November 01, 2014

Cool2Cast Book Review

How Exciting! Tiffany Windsor's new book that is all about Cool2Cast is now available for purchase on Amazon !

Cool2Cast book review

I was given an advance copy and have the pleasure to review it in it's entirety. It is an extra special task because this book represents 

*my very first published project!

What I love about the ebook is that you can click on any of the projects and it will take you directly to the designer's tutorial.

I started using Cool2Cast many years ago and it is wonderful to see how it has evolved. 
Having been already familiar with Cool2Cast I think it gave me a good perspective on how well Tiffany conveyed her concept and explained how to use it, how to incorporate many techniques, and showed so many wonderful ways it can be used through an extensive project and photo gallery.  

Cool2Cast book review

Cool2Cast book review

Cool2Cast is a casting medium that is very easy to use. Amongst other benefits;

  • it air dries quickly   

  • receives inks, especially alcohol inks, absolutely beautifully 

  • no release medium is required when working with pliable molds

TIPSTips are always SO important and very much appreciated. My favourite 'Tiffany Tip' is:

Always keep some of your favourite molds handy to use when you have a small amount of mixture left over. 

Cool2Cast: Tips, Techniques and Ideas by Tiffany Windsor is a complete manual for creating beautiful and unique items. The photos are bright and colourful and the instructions are extremely easy to follow.

Thank you for stopping by today

October 30, 2014

Textured Clay Buttons

Playing around with Ann Butler's faux-quilting Unity stamps and Makins clay,

I decided to make buttons for these lovely fabric flowers I made last week. 

To make the dark button I rolled a small ball of brown clay, about the circumference of a nickel, and pressed my stamp gently into the ball to create a convex (puffed out) button. While it was still moist I brushed on Ann Butler's Earth Safe Finishes Iridescents and it took on this beautiful new colour.

makins clay ann butler buttons
I added Deco Art Glass medium to the top of this button after it dried.
 It's such a great way to use the clay. Remember that there is always shrinkage, so I left the buttons alone for several days.  I used the pokey-tool to make my holes and you should do this before the clay dries.
Let your clay dry on a non-stick surface.

makins clay ann butler buttons
I totally LOVE this button. It looks like a real button!

makins clay ann butler buttons
I also made a pretty pendant. Ann Butler's Faux Quilting stamps make the most wonderful impression and texture!

makins clay ann butler buttons
A bale attaches very easily, and voila, you have a pendant!


 Thank you for stopping by

P.S. I SEWED those fabric flowers! Yes! Me! :) 

October 19, 2014

Sand and Water - Dealing with Loss

Dealing with the loss of a loved one is beyond description. 

Roberta Birnbaum mixed media tear

I think that as human beings we have a need to make sense of that which defies our senses and all that we hold as true. 

I recently experienced the loss of my childhood friend, Lori Beckerman. What a beautiful and brilliant flame she was. Feeling loss again is my prompt for writing this article.

For those of you that know me, you know I can speak to this as I've lived through grief too many times to count.
But that's the point: I have lived through it.
I have survived.

Believe it or not, one of the cruelest truths to a surviving spouse, child, parent, sibling, or friend, is that 'life goes on'.
How can 'life go on'? It somehow doesn't seem right or even logical. The sun continues to rise, the children continue to laugh in the playground, and the earth continues to spin with us on it. Don't the birds know how much pain I am in. How dare the sun shine so brightly when my loved one is gone?

And that's the point. Life does go on and we are here to live our lives to the fullest. We have to go on living because the alternative is not an option. We have children who need us, or maybe parents, friends, colleagues...

Over the years I have found certain books, but especially certain songs very helpful in pinning my emotions and helping me understand and express what I was feeling inside.

Here is one example:

Lyrics by Beth Nielson Chapman

All alone I didn't like the feeling
All alone I sat and cried
All alone I had to find some meaning
In the center of the pain I felt inside

All alone I came into this world
All alone I will someday die
Solid stone is just sand and water, baby
Sand and water and a million years gone by

I will see you in the light of a thousand suns
I will hear you in the sound of the waves
I will know you when I come, as we all will come
Through the doors beyond the grave

All alone I heal this heart of sorrow
All alone I raise this child
Flesh and bone, he's just bursting towards tomorrow
And his laughter fills my world and wears your smile

I will see you in the light of a thousand suns
I will hear you in the sound of the waves
I will know you when I come, as we all will come
Through the doors beyond the grave

All alone I came into this world
All alone I will someday die
Solid stone is just sand and water, baby
Sand and water and a million years gone by

What do you think? What helps you cope?
Wishing you love and peace,


October 17, 2014

Wardrobe Malfunction: VELCRO saves the day!

Who doesn't love Velcro!?

Last weekend I attended a wedding in The States.

I hadn't tried on my dress in a while, and quickly discovered that the belt was much bigger and it had NO WHERE to go but just hang at my side.
how to velcro fixhow to velcro fix

how to velcro fix
Ta-Da! Wardrobe malfunction averted! My belt is now securely attached and I can dance my little heart out!

Thank you Velcro Brand for saving the day!


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