Thursday, 5 March 2015

Springtime. . . . .

Morning all. Today sees a new challenge at Artist Trading Post Exchange. Sadly, this will be the last challenge as the blog is being closed by the owner. Keep a watch on my blog though because there will be something new starting in the near future with some members of the team!

Our host for this last challenge is the talented Annie and here's what she has to say:

'Annie here with the new challenge, which is Springtime. For this challenge I would like to see the colours of 'Spring' in your Mixed Media projects. You can include flowers/birds if you wish as longs as you have a fresh colour palette.
No special requirements other than you should include stamping in your challenge entries. As we are a Mixed Media challenge, we do not allow digi stamps.'

The winner of the challenge will receive a £10 voucher to spend at the Artist Trading Post online shop.

So, here's what I made: (products available from Artist Trading Post are listed at the end of this post)

An ATC with a matching gift box. Not very spring like I hear you say! However, I got my inspiration for this project from the following image:
I love snowdrops and where I live they are out in abundance in the gardens, hedgerows and verges. I have used the white and green of this beautiful spring flower for my inspiration but of course, I had to add a little grunge and crackle too!
The ATC is cut from foam board and given a coat of gesso followed by some modelling paste through a stencil. The box (I forgot the photo sorry!) was die cut from saved cardboard packaging and also painted with gessso.
When dry, the ATC is painted with green acrylic paint, gold acrylic paint and some stencilled white and gold acrylic paint. Finally a coat of crackle glaze is applied - you can just see this in some places on the photo.
The outside of the box is painted with white acrylic paint and a little green which you can just about make out in the photo! This is followed by some stencilled gold acrylic paint and a layer of crackle glaze. Both the ATC and the box have some acrylic paints rubbed into the dried crackle glaze to highlight the cracks. I used green, gold, white antiquing cream and a little raw umber here and there.
The sides of the box are painted with green, stamped with Versamark ink then embossed with gold powder. A layer of crackle glaze followed which is antiqued as described previously.
The front of the box is decorated with a die cut heart which has been rusted using acrylic paints and mediums.
Another die cut rusted heart is applied to the ATC.
Part of the box closure is made from a piece of waste die cut (the bits we usually throw away!). This has also been 'rusted' to keep the same theme.
Various little flowers are made using both die cut pieces and punched shapes. Each layer is painted and crackled as described previously. Some of the edges are finished with some random areas of Krylon pen. A tiny black gem is used for the flower centre.
A single layer flower prepared as before. This particular bloom is a punched shape.
Rusty wire helps to keep the box closed and the ends are curled to look decorative.
The rusty wire goes around the box.
Closeup to show the stencilled modelling paste with touches of gold acrylic. The edges of the ATC is edged with archival ink. This has also been used on some edges of the box.

I hope you like this spring inspired project! Don't forget to pop over to  the ATP Exchange to see the wonderful projects made by my Teamies!

Products used which are available from the Artist Trading Post:
*Acrylic colours: green gold; raw umber; gold; titanium white; quinacridone gold.
*Crackle Medium
*Archival Ink
*Tim Holtz Layering Stencil


  1. Gorgeous Julia! I love how you get such an amazing crackle effect and the rusting is fabulous! Snowdrops are among my favourites too, we have loads in the garden and they are such a joy to see. Sue C x

  2. A fabulous project, love all the wonderful textures, rust and vintage aged look.
    Yvonne xx

  3. I want to reach into the screen and feel how tactile your ATC and box are Julia. So much beauty here and very springlike, the verdigris colours on the rust we see emerging are sensational:-) xxx

  4. Love your inspirational project Julia. The ATC and matching gift box are stunning with gorgeous textures. The rusty embellishment and wire really add to this piece. Tfs and huge hugs
    Annie x

  5. Gorgeous your creation , Julia

  6. Oh wow Julia, I have to keep going back to look at your rusting on this wonderful ATC and matching box, your work is always outstanding! I am so pleased that there is something else in the offing for such a group of talented ladies, I look forward to hearing all about it! Hugs, Anne xx

  7. Oh Julia! I love your ATC and it's little box and the inspiration for making it! Who doesn't love snowdrops - a sure sign that Winter is almost over! Like Anne I kept going back to take in all the details, love the rustiness, the crackle, the embossing , the touch of gold in fact, it is all just so beautiful!! Chrisx

  8. Julia- Very spring like in my book!! that green is so yummy!! These are fab and delishous (sic) at the same!!Your textures are gorgeous and the added rusting- well- perfect! well done!
    I look forward to what you gals have up your sleeves! xo

  9. Julia, in my opinion, you are the queen of crackle and rust...perfection...I just love the look you acheive. Beautiful springtime colours and inspiration. LOVE these pieces and like Anne have to keep looking back at them. Wonderful. Ruth xx

  10. oooooh lovely Julia - the textures and tones are just amazing! Nikki xx

  11. Fabulous project Julia! I just cannot say what I like more, the box or the ATC itself.... both are just stunning and you have worked your usual magic with the crackle and the paints. Wonderful work!!

  12. Absolutely gorgeous, Julia!! Love the crackle, colors, texture, rust, box, ATC..... stupendous!! So glad you and some of the team will continue something in place of ATP..... xx Lynn

  13. Your ATC and box are wonderful Julia, I love all the different textures.
    xxx Hazel.

  14. These are stunning Julia, great textures and effects! xxx

  15. I'm so amazed! This is just beautiful what you've created and I love your inspiration photo. The aging and inking and rustic appeal you've acquired here is sensational. :)

  16. Uber gorgeous! LOVE the texture, love the design, love the embellie!

  17. Gorgeous crackle and rusted elements, Julia - these are simply stunning! What a lovely idea to create a co-ordinating box for the ATC - fabulous as always.
    Alison xx

  18. Wonderful ATC and its box Julia, at last I can read you haha!!! :D Love this very contrasted (both springlike and rusted) set, it is fab Coco xx


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