Monday, February 23, 2015

Exhibit 156: Vintage Botanical Alphabet

Another experiment, as I try to discern the wily ways gesso interacts with inks, sprays and paints.   In a previous make I happily sprayed away on a page that had been painted with white gesso, only to discover upon drying that nothing of the sprayed pigment remained.  

This time, I decided to take advantage of that to create a lacy background with DecoArt Media crackle paste, I love the white foreground this paste creates, against all the amazing crackles that can readily be covered with virtually anything - DecoArt's own antiquing cream, Distress or other sprays, gelattos..... the field is wide open.  

First, I applied DecoArt Media Crackle Paste to a page that had a white gesso layer, using a long Prima stencil.  This is after I sprayed with ink but shows the stencil layout. 

Once the crackle paste was dry, I used Distress Stain Sprays in Walnut Stain, and Gathered Twigs.   I sprayed heavily, let dry, and sprayed again, wondering if I could achieve some color in the paper (not the crackle paste).

And the answer is "sort of".....extremely light, but pleasing.  But more pleasing is the color absorbed by the crackle paste.  You can see from these photos that despite intense sprayings in the darkest colors of Distress Spray (Walnut Stain) and Ranger's Adirondak Color Wash Spray (Espresso), the paper treated with gesso just soaks it all in.....who knows where it goes?

But all of these lovely sprays have colorized the beautiful DecoArt Media Crackle Paste!

So now the background was complete.  I knew I wanted to enter the Artistic Stamper's challenge Alphabet Soup , A Vintage Journey's challenge Special Numbers , and the Monday Challenge at Simon Says Stamp (as well as posting on Brenda's non-challenge art journal blog-hop).  So now, need to add numbers and letters!

My imaginary trunk (from my equally imaginary townhouse) yielded an old alphabet primer, catalogued as #156.

The number plate is a faux enameling technique from Shelly Hickox.  I used liquid pearls as the "brads".

The background paper was created using three Distress Inks: Frayed Burlap, Vintage Photo and Gathered Twigs, plus Picket Fence Distress Paint and generous sprays of water.... this is all from Laura Bomber's beautiful Alice In Wonderland make.  I made my pages a bit darker by using less Picket Fence.

I then stamped the alphabet stamps - obviously this little primer has had many pages go missing.  The stamps are from Serendipity Stamps (Floral Alphabet) and heat embossed using Lindy's Stamp Gang Midnight Copper embossing powder (it is very fine and great for these types of intricate images).

Inside are some beautiful botanical alphabet stamps....

Here is a close-up of some of them:

This primer needed some covers.  I used Lindy' Stamp Gang Bayou Boogie Gold spray on both sides of the front cover, spraying and drying several times. The front cover was made by stnping a beautiful Michelle Ward flourish stamp with Versamark, and heat embossing with Stampendous Victorian Bronze.

The inside front cover was stamped with an intricate Penny Black stamp in Archival Coffee.

The back cover is attached to the page, so only the inside shows.  It is embossed with a Brenda Walton Sizzix folder, and sprayed with Tea Dye and Gathered Twigs.  Once dry, I highlighted with a bit of Olive Gold from Treasure Gold.

The pages were inserted and secured with a bit of textured gold paper, and the coveres secured with a grunge board  Hardware Finding, which is painted in Ferro Iron Gold paste.  The entire little book was glued to the background, which is heavily sprayed with Frayed Burlap, Gathered Twigs and Vintage Photo, and cut at both ends with the Tattered Doily edge die.

To hold the book closed, two Antique Handles were cut from acetate, painted with Copper and Gold Mixative alcohol inks, and embossed with the matching folder.

And here is the final product!

Thanks so much for stopping by, and please do comment - I love hearing from you!


  1. Wooow! I love the texture, the colors! The idea is brilliant! I love this fabulous mixed media creation!
    Branka x

  2. A delicioius to watch it,,,,,love the textures,,,,,OMG they are incredible ones.

  3. A beautiful mixed media project and a wonderful set of photos to show the progress. thank you for joining us at ATP Exchange this time.

  4. Wow Lynn! What stunning cards! Love all the gold shimmery detail and texture! Stunning and eye catching!

  5. Beautiful! Loved reading your thought process to construct this gorgeous project, it's full of wonderful techniques and details. Thank you for joining us at the ATP Exchange . Toni x

  6. Wow, absolutely love how you've achieved this, all those glorious neutral tones and texture look so rich, love the crackle and use of monograms. Stunning...ooh and nearly forgot, thanks so much for joining us at ATP exchange! Ruth x

  7. Wow Lynn! This is brilliant, such wonderful colours and textures! Thanks for showing and describing so well how you made it! Chrisx

  8. The DecoArt Crackle is amazing, one of my favourite products to use, it certainly likes the Prima stencil you used, you achieved an amazing background for your lovely book. Fantastic project :-) x

  9. Love this so much Lynn, that wonderful technique with the crackle paste and sprays looks absolutely amazing. There are so many great textures and I particularly like the faux porcelain number plate as well. Thanks for sharing another wonderful piece of art on my visual journey.
    hugs Brenda xx

  10. Wonderful project with lots of fantastic details. Love the amazing textures and the fabulous faux porcelain

    Thank you for sharing with us at ATP

    Hugs Annie

  11. My goodness this is totally stunning - I love everything about it! I particularly love the inside front cover - it looks so beautifully delicate and shabby chic. You have the most amazing collection of stamps and you've used them to perfection.

  12. Gorgeous vintage, grungy colours and love what you've done with the DecoArt product! Wonderful mixed media piece and that alphabet is stunning. Thanks so much for joining us at ATP Exchange. Juliax

  13. yum! Love all the texture and vintage colors!

  14. Me again Lynn to say thanks for linking your fabulous work to A Vintage Journey.
    hugs Brenda xxx

  15. What fabulous textures, and I just love those botanical alphabet stamps. So beautiful, Lynn!
    Alison xx

  16. Gosh Lynn, I love to see anyone who plays and experiments to extend their knowledge about how different media interact with each other and my goodness you've done that here in spades!!! And what incredibly beautiful results - texture, aged colours, superb acetate handles and embossing. LOVE it all! Thank you for joining us at A Vintage Journey. Jenny x

  17. This is so rich looking and beautiful!