Friday, 1 November 2013

Steampunk Tic Tac Toe At Our Creative Corner

Hello Everyone. I'm taking a break from unpacking boxes this time to bring you my offering for the new challenge at Our Creative Corner. The challenge this month is a Steampunk Tic Tac Toe hosted by the Queen of Steampunk, Claudia. Here's the grid you can choose your elements from:

You can choose any straight line which is horizontal, vertical or diagonal and as long as you include the three chosen elements, you can, of course, include any of the others if you wish. Please make sure you let us know which line you are choosing won't you? 

Claudia says that we can go full on Steampunk or simply ensure that some Steampunk elements are included such as wings, gears etc. All the details for the challenge are over on the blog and if you would like to read more, click here.

For my piece, I decided to make a small travelling box for a Steampunk gentleman. Small valuable items could be kept in the travelling box which is small enough to hide in the gentleman's luggage or in a deep leather trench coat pocket! I have chosen the line: Gears; Texture and Transport. I have to let you into a secret here: originally, I was going to do the top line with wings, gears and wire but in my haste to complete my project before I moved house, I forgot the wire!! When I looked at my project against the above grid, I realised my mistake and had to improvise with my interpretation of the 'Transport' element! I do hope Claudia is happy with that!

Here's my Steampunk Gentleman's Travelling Box:

I altered an old box from a car boot sale - as usual, I forgot to take a photo of the 'before' view! 
DecoArt Traditions burgundy paint was applied after the box had been prepared with two coats gesso and sanded between each coat.
Images of steampunk gears were stamped onto the dry paint with black archival ink. This needs to be thoroughly dry before applying any further mediums to the surface.
DecoArt two step crackle was then applied over the box (excluding the base). I made sure the layers were extra thick and allowed it to dry naturally. Finally, carbon black Traditions paint was rubbed all over the box then cleaned away with a baby wipe. This allows some of the paint to remain in the cracks but removes it from the unbroken areas. 
Various die cuts (including the gears for my tic tac toe choices) were made from both plain and textured grunge paper. Various sized half pearls were added to imitate rivets.  Each diecut was given two coats of gesso followed by two coats of silver paint. When dry, carbon black Traditions was lightly applied to each die cut then wiped back with a baby wipe. Finally, a graphite stick was used to highlight certain areas.  

The thin strips of grunge paper are the scraps from around the edge of pre-cut grunge paper shapes - much easier than cutting them myself!
On the die cut gears, a metal Ideaology gear was added for greater depth - it was painted in exactly the same way as the grunge paper gears.

The inside of the box was given an antiqued finish using various types of paint on a gessoed base. 
The bubbling you can see in this image was a happy accident. I was trying to dry things in haste (as you do!) and the surface started to bubble - shock horror! Once I'd calmed down, I decided that I rather liked the effect as it added to the aged appearance of my box - just as well really!
The 'studs' you see at the ends of the grunge paper strips are the waste formed when a gear is die cut. I thought these would be more suitable for the sides of the box than the half pearls used elsewhere.

Your turn now to get all Steampunked for Our Creative Corner! Can't wait to see what you make! Don't forget to pop over to see the creations made by my hugely talented teamies and on the 15th November the second team will be offering even more inspiration for you.

For those who follow my recent trials and tribulations of moving house: we have now moved into our beautiful house. The unpacking of boxes goes on, along with cleaning and trying to find lost items! Hopefully, tomorrow will see our internet installed so I won't have to rely on my phone as an internet connection! Even better, we're having a fridge delivered - having been without for a week, I wonder what on earth people did before they were invented! 

My craft room is still a sea of boxes but watch this space for some before and after pictures as I set it up!


  1. OMG, the Mistress of Crackle did it again! *lol
    I do not only love what you did to the outside of this box, I really love the aged interior too!!!! It makes your altered box look very, very naturally aged and "whole". I definitely admire your attention to detail! I can imagine this box being in the possession of a very mysterious gentleman on a secret mission, who surely has to hide away items from nosey people. Your box evokes a whole story in me and that is what great art usually does! LOVE IT!

    See the "Queen of Steampunk" (*lol) kneel in front you! ;)

    Claudia xx

  2. Glad to hear the move has been completed successfully. Hope you get some sort of semblance of order soon. LOVE this box Julia. I can't even begin to imagine what it would have been like originally as your transformation is so complete. That crackled red surface is perfect. Jenny x

  3. Fabulous make-over Julia (as always!). I love all those wonderful crackles and the interior too. So pleased to hear that your move went well and things are finding their new homes. Such a big upheaval! Have a great weekend x

  4. This is an amazing box and the way you have crackled it is superb.

    Chrissie x

  5. Julia, you make the most beautiful creations, the box is superb, love the color, the crakle, the stamping, you have made the grunge board, look like real metal, the inside it also gorgeous, thanks so much for sharing hope you have a wonderful weekend..

  6. Stunning how you've altered this box Julia...looks like top great from top to bottom...gorgeous!!

  7. A fabulous Steampunk creation Julia!
    Glad to hear you're settling into your new home, & good luck with the unpacking!
    See you Sunday, hopefully,
    Alison xx

  8. Great overhaul of the box, love your crackle but those metal embellies are just the ticket, fabulous

    Sam xxx

  9. This is wonderful Julia. That cracklr is amazing. The whole box is just gorgeous. A real treasure itself.

  10. A fantastic piece of art. Great texture.

  11. Love your piece Julia, the textures are totally amazing! Wonderful steam punk creation, fabulous!!

  12. Totally scrumptious, Julia - wonderful work with the DecoArt paints and textures as always... and those metallic embellishments work brilliantly!
    Alison xx

  13. This is a fabulous box Julia, I love the crackle and the colour is gorgeous..
    xxx Hazel

  14. Love this Julia, The richnes of colours and the pewter looking fastenings and gears are fab. Proud to say I have seen it in person too x

  15. Stunning work Julia ! the crackle is wonderful and looks very dimensional :)
    My worst nightmare would be having to pack up my craftroom but on the other hand it would make me clear out some of the over flow lol
    Von ♥

  16. Oh my Goodness Julia! It has all been said above more eloquently than I can too!
    The richness of your gentleman's box is truly amazing!

  17. Just entering to ask: hello, how are you Julia? Because of a new provider...I lost all my email contacts (my own fault)...hope you're going well! Hug Alie


Thank you so much for taking the time to comment. Juliax