Friday, June 20, 2014

Guest Designer - Christina Anderson

‘Romp and Frolic’
CM Anderson
Salvaged Remnants Studio

Using Stazon Jet black ink pad, apply ink to stamp, press onto heavy white cardstock, repeat. You should have two copies of this stamp on your paper. With scissors, separate the stampings. Prep your space to paint/color the images.



Select a color scheme that pleases you. I like to use a color wheel device (1a) to to help me sort out this type of decision. It also helps to keep in mind the tulle and frame colors that you have chosen. I love using complimentary colors in my motifs/schemes.
Chose a medium to tint your images. I am using watercolor crayons to fill out my images. They are easy to use, tidy, and somewhat forgiving in application.
Scribble a dot of a crayon into the lid of the tin (1b), add water to your micro-sized brush and dampen the pigment (1c). Don’t make it too watery, paint unto area of your image. Adding water to the pigment on the paper will help blend additional strokes of paint or new colors. Use the embossing heat gun ( with a heat mat under your images) to gently dry the paper as you go to prevent “bleeding”. Layering and layering the paint will build up the color in the image to achieve a specific goal. Tiny crosshatching strokeswith a semi-dry brush, will aid in shading specific areas.


The rubber stamp image in this project is going to be seperated into two subjects-the octopus and the lady.
Therefore, some areas of the subject need to be filled in with a fine point permenant marker (2a). Using small dots/dashes, fill in the areas of the octopus’ tentacles on the horizontal bar of the lamp post. Add paint to soften the markings. Once the paint is dry, cut the lady away from the lamp post as in photo 2b. Set the octopus aside in a safe place until it is time to trim both sections of the image. Using the second stamped image (2c), repeat the steps for painting the octopus for the woman. Keep the painted octopus handy (2d), for referencing the “swing” that is comprised of tentacles.






Prepping the frame. Remove the faux photo from the frame and save for future template (3a). Cut the back easel insert away from the frame (3b,3c). Store easel in safe place, as we will be coming back to it. Remove glass. Or in this case, remove the clear vinyl with an Exacto knife, you may toss it into the trash can or use in another project (3d).

 Utilizing wet/dry sandpaper (4a) or a fresh, clean green scrubby, distress the front and sides of the frame. This will remove some of the paint and add texture to the surface for adding the acrylic washes.



Color washes. I prefer Golden Brand acrylic paints for mixed media art (4b). They are specially formulated for this type of art and worth the investment. Liquitex is a great option,  just try to stay away from craft-type acrylics as they are not capable of creating the effects used for this project. The colors for this project are as follows in order of use:
   Golden brand-Green Gold; Liquitex brand- Prussian Blue; Golden brand- Irridescent Brilliant Gold.
The first two colors were applied watered down (4c,4d), dried with an embossing heat gun between applications. As with the watercolor crayons, build up layers of paint to achieve your specific goal. If so desired, remove extra/unwanted wet paint with the baby wipes, then set with the heat gun.



With a dry brush, straight from the tube, add a gilding of gold paint over the acrylic washes (4e) by skimming over the relief parts of the frame. Let dry for next steps. Pretty! (4f)



Remove frame hardware using the side cutting (5a) and chain nose (5b) pliers. Take care with the cardboard easel, making sure not to rip or tear (5c).


DeWalt 20 watt Variable speed drill-my best friend in my studio!
Okay, we need some holes in this frame and it is time to use “Big Girl” tools.
A variable speed drill has a motor that can be controlled via the trigger. Barely pressing the trigger will get the drill bit just started for a pilot hole, OR, in our case, can go through strange substances, like resin or some metals, without a big mess! This $2 frame from Micheal’s craft store is comprised of a hardened epoxy resin that melts when too much friction/heat is applied. So, a SLOOOOOOOOOOOW rotation of the drill bit is required!
If you have never used a drill like this before, ask someone that has to show you the how. You will need to know for this project, or you may have to get even more creative!  Wear protective eyewear, PERIOD!
Note the small plank of wood under the drill. This is the surface for the frame to sit on to prevent extra holes being made in your workbench. Use clamps to hold the plank to your work surface.



Mark holes for hanging a ribbon and decorative bead drop later (6b). Using a 1/8 drill bit, rest the drill bit perpendicular  to the surface, on your first mark. Very slowly, press the trigger to start the hole. Let the weight of the drill press down into the surface to create the hole. See that white powder (6c)?  That’s the resin being raised to the top of the hole.Stop drilling and dust away that powder before continuing drilling all the way through the frame (6d). Repeat steps for the 2 remaing holes. Groovy!

Now, don’t put that drill away,yet! You’ll need a couple more holes in the frame in a few more steps!

Adding decorative scrapbook paper to the former “easel” part of the frame backing. Trace the opening with a pencil unto the paper, cut with an Exacto knife. Insert the backing back into the frame to trace the opening, center the paper unto the outline, and glue down with a permanent glue stick!

Tulle background. I cut a continuous strip of tulle netting, 3” wide by 24” long to weave onto the 18” piece of 20 gauge copper wire. I made a little hook at one end to keep the tulle from sliding off. Weave one end of the wire, in and out,  about a 1/4” from the edge of the strip.

Crimp all the gathers together at the center of the wire. Make sure the 1/4 “ edge is bunched together and not twisted into the longer side of the tulle strip. Slowly twist the wire ends together and clip of ends about 1.5” from the tulle.
Measure and mark the paper covered backing’s center and punch a 1/8” hole for the tulle wire to go through. Tear up some small strips of masking tape to be ready for the next steps.

Insert the twisted tulle wire through the front of the backing, bend and tape twisted wire to the back. Using the masking tape, fold down the tulle strip end to the back of the cardboard. Tape down the other end. Using a criss-cross pattern, tape down the edge of the tulle to the cardboard,until all the tulle is adhered to the frame backing. Your scrapbook paper should look like 9d. If it’s a bit wonky, adjust accordingly by resituating the tulle on the back.

9 e-g

On the back of the frame, put E-6000 glue on the area where the back sits in. Gently nudge the tulled section into place. Let cure for about 30 minutes, remove tape and trim tulle with Exacto knife.

10 More prepping of the stamped graphics.
This is the section where the painted stamp graphices need some structural reinforcement. You can strengthen them with any number of solid backings, i.e.,layers of heavy cord stock, mat board, cereal boxes, metal, balsa wood, OR something you usually toss into the garbage/recycling, a flexible,medium to heavyweight, blister pack! You know, that stuff you need to buy a “Package Shark” for! Apparently, this material makes wonderful shrink film, but I like to use it as backing for paper. It needs to be on the thick/flexible side, not thin and brittle. This pice was perfect, because it didn’t crack when I cut it with scissors. But, you can use mat board or 400 lb watercolor paper to make the stamp graphics stronger.

10 a-c

I cut away the sides of the packing and am using the top which is about 6”x4”. To give the surface some “tooth”, wet/dry sandpaper scuffed it up nicely. Go diagonally across in one pass and then diagonally across in the opposite direction. I did both sides so I wouldn’t have to guess which was the proper side to glue.
Trim up the painted stamp graphics with sharp scissors, leaving just the slightest margin outside the black outline. Place the film on the frame to find the proper placement for the octopus (the same process for any other stiffeners), as it will need longer tabs to fit across the frame.
The girl can fit into a remaining corner of the film.

10 d-g

In a well ventilated area, using a bamboo skewer, spread some E-6000 on one of the figures. Adhere it to it’s place on the film/stiffening material, flip the film over and firmly tamp down on the back surface. This helps spread the glue out and make it less “bumpy”. Repeat for the next stamp graphic. Let cure for about 30 minutes. Sometimes longer for the film.You can add weight to the back, just take care that any glue oozed out does not create complications later.

11  After the glue has cured sufficiently, you can roll off some of the excess glue with your fingers or a clean bamboo skewer.


Separate the two figures with an Exacto knife. You can snap the scored lines by folding the film forward at the cut lines.Leave plenty of additional space for the octopus at each end.

11 d-e Center the octopus figure over the frame to draw extensions fitting over the frame.

12  Tint the white edges with Distress ink & a sponge on both figures.

13 a-d

Alignment of the Lady & the Octopus. Set the 18” length of hanging strap below the holes previously drilled for the ribbon. Make sure a small hole is designated “center” for the piece of hanging strap. Use a Sharpie to make marks for drilling. As seen in Step 6, begin drill process. Place octopus over holes, center, and mark for hole punches over drilled areas.

13 e-g  

Center for the octopus is shown in photo 13e. Use 1/8” round hole punch for marks at each octopus extended areas, designated center of octopus, and at the TOP of the LONG tentacle on the girls figure’s “swing”. If the figures are stuck to the hole punch, ease off with a metal ruler, back of scissor blade,etc., DO NOT PULL! Be patient and take your time.

14 a-b    Apply Stazon ink to both sides of hanging strap, let dry, then distress by lightly going over with a clean,green scrubby.


Assembling the figures to the strap and frame. Cut an 18” length of 18gauge copper wire, bend into a “U” shape (15 a).
String a size #8 glass seed bead on to the center. Gently squeeze wire ends close together  with the aid of the chain nose pliers (15b). String a decorative gear unto both ends, then a spacer bead. String on the girl figure last (15d).

 15 e-g

Pull the wired girl figure through the center hole of the octopus and the small,center hole of the hanging strap (15e). Add a little brass washer to the back and bend wire down (not too tight) parallel to the strap (15f).weave each end of the divided wire back through the coordinating hanging strap hole and octopus end (15g). each end should now be coming through to the front of the octopus figure.


With the help of the chain nose pliers, straighten out the wires. Add a gear,brass nut and glass bead to each wire and very,very carefully, without kinking,pull the wire end back through the brass nut,gear,octopus,and hanging strap.use the chain nose pliers to assist the wire back through. It should end up looking like photo 16b. The girl should be able to swing to and fro.

16 c-e

Draw the wires from the combined figures on the hanging strap through the holes drilled for the octopus. Secure the wires behind the frame by crosing the wires together (16e). Gently twist the wires together as in photo 16d. Clip off at about 1”, bend twisted end next to the cardboard, and affix masking tape to keep it held down (16e).
Check your work from the front. Make adjustmens with pliers to straighten out bent wire areas.

17   Remember the photo insert from step 3? Use it as a template to cut a pice of fabric to glue over the back of the frame.Cut a small piece of muslin to use as a label to sign & date your work with a Sharpie pen.


These are metal cutting shears, note the tin lids. You can also use a pair of aviation snips to cut through the ends of the hanger strap. Cut into the ends of the strap with the back part of the shears/snips to shape a ribbon “tail” (18b). Use a flat needle file to smooth out the strap ends, rempving burrs and sharp points (18c).

18 d-e 

Using a mandrel of some kind (bail making pliers, Sharpie pen, large nail,etc) bend each end of the hanging strap in half toward the center of the frame. Use your hands to bend the strap over (18d) instead of twisting the pliers. Bend the tail ends back toward the outside of the frame and squish c the “ribbon” ends closer together with a pair of chain nose pliers or a rawhide mallet (18e).

19a-b  Cut a 4”-5” pice of 20 gauge wire for the beaded drop. Coil one end to make a type of headpin, add ta brass nut and gear o the wire (19a). String the wire through the front of the frame at the bottom, bend at a right angle. Add three round beads and the glass drop. Trim the wire down, if necessary, leaving a tail to coil back a “stop” to prevent the beads from falling off (19b).

Check your work by holding frame up and adjust and areas of the wire as needed. Double check to see if the swing can sway back and forth.
Almost finished!

20 a-c

Cut 2 6” lengths of 18 gauge wire. Use pliers to bend into a “u” shape (20a). Slide one of the U-shapes through the pre-drilled holes left at the top of the frame. Bend the wire ends over with the chain nose pliers to form a rectangular shape (20b). Using your fingers and the pliers, twist each wire end around the rectangle shape, like in photo 20c. Tuck the wire ends in close to the rectangle shape with the pliers.


Last step!
Cut an 18” piece of wired edge organza ribbon and 2 5” lengths of 20 gauge copper wire (21a). Thread the ribbon through one of the wire rectangles, fold down the edge of the ribbon and fold that edge back toward the ribbon long end over the wire rectangle. Weave the 5” piece of wire back and forth through the three layers of the folded ribbon, cinch the ribbon to the center of the wire (like you did with the tulle in step 8). Coil the wire ends back over the ribbon to keep it in place (21c). Tuck the wire end in the coil with the chain nose pliers. Repeat for the other side.
Congratulations! All finished!


chaddy233 said...

Wow!!! Seriously awesome!

Christina said...

Thanks!I appreciate it!

dragonflyer333 said...

This is great- so detailed and easy to understand! Cool finished product!

Claire R. said...

What an excellent tutorial and so totally well written. Clear. Fun to read! Yay!!! "Plus Alignment of the Lady & the Octopus" is a totally fabulous structure, one that I never, ever expected to read!!

Unknown said...

Very cool Christina! You put a lot of work into this piece great job !

Chark said...

can't believe you gave the whole tutorial--tons of work! but I love the project and seeing how you created it. said...

Crazy fabulous! You are diligent and dedicated to make your piece unique and fun! It's your way to make it yours! Love the uniqueness!