Saturday, January 16, 2010

Cuttlebug Ceramic Lantern Tutorial (paint fresco variation)

...can't decide which was the most fun in making this:
Sewing on itty-bitty tassels or the texture. It's gotta be a tie.

This card uses the same process as the last tutorial (linked at the bottom of this post)...but it adds sanding and heat embossing (with a Versamarker & clear embossing powder) over the colour as a finishing touch. It all combines to give you some funky texture!

It started out as this...embossed 100lb Bristol paper...

...and with some Copics, paint, sanding &
heat embossing... it ended up being ceramic...

texture shot C

...with lots of bold colour...
(unusual for colour-chicken me) ;o)

texture shot B

...and scritchy scatchy shiny texture...

texture shot A

It all ended up on a box....

Ceramic fresco Cuttlebug Copics Paint & Heat Embossing mel stampz

...with a beaded border...
(box template coming soon to a blog near you.) ;o) to do the bold sanded freso technique (Ceramic lanterns) tricks: upside down artsy brain

If the flickr photos don't load for you, you can
click these Blogger photos to see the texture

I had an absolute riot trying this out. I just wish you could come over
to my house & see the texture in person. :o)


Bold sanded freso Ceramic lanterns
(Cuttlebug embossing & Copics...
with paint & heat embossing)

The process to get this particular glassy ceramic look has a good number of steps, but of course if you didn't want to go to such lengths you could stop at any one point in the process: stop at just plain colouring the raised embossing, or stop after swiping the coloured embossing with paint...etc. :O)

A) Emboss a piece of cardstock in a Cuttlebug folder
B) Colour it with Copic markers (or another method)
C) Apply paint to a cardstock scrap; swipe it over the colouring
D) Fill in any missed areas with paint on a brush
E) Sand paint off the coloured areas & clean the dust off
F) Add a wash (coloured ink & water) to the background
G) Heat emboss (in clear) over the image for shine
H) Add more paint wash to the background

  • Strong White cardstock (I used Strathmore Bristol Vellum 100 pound--holds up nicely to the messing around.)
  • An embossing folder--this is one of new Provo Craft Asian line called "Lanterns" It's an A2 Emboss size folder. You can see all the folders here on the Cuttlebug Challenge Blog.
  • Copic markers (or another colour method, but please consider testing some with your paint to be sure it doesn't smudge too much on you.) ;O)
  • White acrylic paint, scraps of cardstock to spread it, paint brush
  • 150 grit sand paper & a dust cloth
  • Distress inks (Peeled Paint & Antique Linen) & water
  • Versamarker, Clear embossing powder, Heat gun
  • Paper piercer, needle, embroidery thread, seed beads
You can click any of these tutorial photos to see the texture close up
(Just hit back in your browser to return to this post) :o)

Step 1) Emboss --I used the new Provo Craft lantern folder & Strathmore Bristol Vellum 100 pound (it holds up nicely to the messing around.)

Step 2) Colour the Cuttlebug embossing with Copic markers.

Step 3) Put some white acrylic paint onto a scrap of cardstock (along one flat edge.) Any scraps will do, but thicker cardstock holds up to this well (80lb+)

Step 4) Use a second piece of cardstock to spread the paint out, thinly.

Step 5) Swipe the paint over the coloured embossing. Apply the paint as thinly or thickly as you like. Paint which is rather runny will cover a lot of the colour. I feel that paint which is thick (so that it holds its shape) is nice.

Step 6) Fill in any dark or missed areas with white paint on a brush. (Add a little water if you think it needs it.)

Step 7) If you would like to see more colour (and get great texture) sand some of the raised embossed areas. Please Note: You might want to clean the sandpaper periodically to prevent smeared colour. I used 150 grit sand paper, but any should do...

Step 8) Clean the sanding dust off of the image (This is a cut up bit of a Swiffer floor cloth. Love it!)

Step 9) Apply a wash of coloured ink. This is a mix of Distress inks (Peeled Paint & Antique Linen.) It's mixed with white paint that has been watered down a fair bit.

Step 10) Heat emboss over the image in clear:

A) Cover the lanterns & strings with Versamarker
B) Sprinkle on clear embossing powder.
C) Brush off excess powder with a clean paint brush.
D) Melt the powder with a heat gun.
E) Repeat the process until you're happy with the coverage.
(I did this clear embossing twice.)

No need to worry about stray powder to much, since it will add even more texture in this next step...

Step 11) Add another wash of white paint.

Step 12) Embellish with a bit of hand sewing: Pierce and stitch & knot the image. To create mini tassels, let the thread hang down the front in places & cut it. *giggle giggle giggle* You can add a teensy dot of Crystal lacquer to secure the threads well. :o)


(my brain is upside down, right?)

Flip your image & work upside down. This engages the right (artistic)
hemisphere of your brain, so that you can judge the overall effect--or balance--of your background more easily.

and th-th-th-th-that's all folks...

Thanks for taking time out of your busy day!

P.S. The faster, softer-looking version of this
Copics & paint technique is here:


Renee G said...

you are utterly fantastic! i so enjoy your blog! i cant get enough of your tutorials! So wonderful. this one just blows my mind! beautiful! reminds me of old time christmas cards.......keep up the tuts ok!

Anne-marie said...

wow this looks stunning
Anne-marie x

America said...

FABULOUS technique and WOW-outstanding results. Love your easy to follow tutorial! This CB business ROCKS!

Dotty Jo said...

Amazing Mel - I had a jaw dropping moment when I spotted this! Jo x

Anonymous said...

mornin mel gorgeous work love the muted bright colours,love lady

Dawn said...

YES...your brain is upsidedown! oh my, what will it think of next?!! AMAZING girl!

fabulous, just fabulous...I'm speechless...well done my friend!

CinnamonSally said...

This is a truely stunning piece of work, love seeing your tutorials they are so inspiring.

Kim said...

Oh, Mel! This is positively stunning! You've made the embossing the star of the card, not just background texture! LOVE, LOVE, LOVE it!!!!

Domna said...


Joanne B. said...

Oh how I LOOOOOOOOOVE this. I'll be right over to check it out in person (I wish.) I'm cracking up about your comment about turning it upside down to work. I actually do that all the time, and who knew there was a legitimate reason!

Hope you have a great day!

Mary Dawn said...

i will say it again: SHUT UP!

Kim H. said...

HOLEY BUCKETS Mel- you totally have me sitting here drooling on my keyboard! Such wonderful colors and textures! I would have never in a million years thought to do this! You inspire me!

Willow said...

I LOVE IT!!! Both projects are awesome!! I have the embossing folders, now I just need the time to give it a try!! Oh, and thanks so much for the links to the house patterns and to I sat and made a crochet necklace the very evening I went to the site. Thanks so much for sharing your creativity and your wonderful sense of humor!!!

liannallama said...

every thing you do amazes me! This technique is outstanding and the card is fabulous! wowowowow!

kksb said...

Your work is freaking incredible!!
I do so love the stuff you do.
Thanks for sharing your wonderful gift.

Barb said...

Freakin' amazing... seriously! I love the texture & the muted color... and all the detail in this. Lovin' the tutorials :)

Sherrie said...

This is absolutely STUNNING Mel! I love the fresco look you totally rock!

Vina said...

Oh my gosh Mel, another breathtaking project! I didn't consider ordering the Asian folders..until I saw your fresco technique on the Geisha bookmark..I HAD to order them. I'm soo glad I did cause I can't wait to receive it so I can try your lantern tutorial!
Many thanks!!

Teri said...

Thanks, Mel! This is one of my favorite looks and now even I can create it - thanks to your CAS tutorial. I LOVE your blog!
So glad you're feeling up to posting; keep you in my prayers.

Creative Momma said...

Amazingly breath taking....I love visiting your blog, your creativity blows me away. :)

lilscrappers said...

I love both of these tech.'s. I tried, but not having the right folder.....gonna haveta try again! I need to see if i can salvage my mess up and then I will share (if it works) You sooooo inspire me to jump outside the box or make one!

sunghee said...

Holy cow~!!! You are just toooo amazing!!! Genius!

Beth Norman said...

OMG this totally rocks. You are always coming up with original unique 2 U designs. I'm definately doing this tut as soon as I get the folder. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

Thank you! Your blog post will be advertised on the CraftCrave Tutorials search engine today (look for timestamp: [17 Jan 03:16am GMT]).

melrose said...

What shall I say but THAAAAAAAAAAAAANKS!!! Your blog is real revelation for me!!!

Etha said...

aww man these look so good it hurts! (and makes me drool while drinking coffee, what a mess LOL)

WickedPixie said...

This is gorgeous and so creative! Thank you for your fabulous tutorials! :-)Traci

debbie said...

gorgeous!! thanks for sharing! love it!

Cassie said...

Holy WOW! That is amazing and I am definitely going to have to try this! Thanks for the inspiration ;D

Rae said...


Maria said...

Oh my gosh, Mel! You're right, we were thinking along the same lines. . .LOL! Too funny. I guess I was channeling you when I was working with my acrylic paint! I do love your technique! It's totally awesome and the results. . .wow, not suprisingly gorgeous as always. Thanks for sharing your wealth of creative genius with us. . .I have a lot to learn from you!


htis is fun said...

So that's how one colours on embossed images! How clever. Thank you for all your time sharing your creativity.

Stacey said...

Such a pretty card! What a cool technique! Thank you for the step by step!!!!
Can I ask what color Copics you used? I can try to use my own and then I will be mad that it doesn't turn out....

Auntie Em said...

What a gorgeous gift box! I love the technique you used. Great tutorial. And the little tassels are the absolute best finishing touch ever!
Thank you so much for sharing! :)

Billie said...

Hey Mel...I hopped over from Lydia's blog and found heaven. What a combo you two make! TFS!...Billie