Tribal Batik Boxes

As a former quilter, I fell in love with batik fabric. I have a set of batik fat quarters that I could never bring myself to use. There is something so special about the organic flow of the colors and the dreamy patterns. Nathalie Kalbach has a set of batik artfoamies and matching stencil. My love of batik and all things tribal are my inspiration for this project. Here is the my post for Nat’s creative squad from back in November.


8×10 Gelli Plate

Black fine line sharpie

A variety of Apple Barrel Acrylic paints including black

Two paper mache boxes

Dylusions Paint in Vanilla Custard, Black, Cut Grass

Nat’s Batik Stencil

Nat’s Mini Batik Pattern 1 foam stamp

Mod Podge Matte

 I began this project on my 8×10 inch gelli printing plate. After selecting several shades of blues, greens, and oranges, I decided to go with a Batik design. (Color list: Sunbeam, Nectarine, Laguna, Key West, Cool Blue, Parakeet, Black) Lucky for me, Nat has a great batik stencil and set of Batik foam stamps. I used my 9×12 inch Batik stencil and gelli printed multiple pages on white paper.

November One

I picked through my gelli-printed papers and chose my favorites. I then used my large Dylusions journal block and a black fine tip sharpie and drew alongside the outside edge of the journal block. I saved a few sheets of batik paper for another step.

November Two

November Three

Then I cut along the drawn lines. These strips will eventually be glued down the paper mache box in alternating strips.

November Four


While I had my gelli plate out, I thought it would be quicker to use it instead of a stamp buddy. I brayered the black paint out in a small spot. I then pressed my Mini Batik Pattern 1 foam stamp onto the black paint and pressed the design on the paper I had reserved earlier. I continued this design all along the paper. I then cut the papers into strips.

November Five

I painted the inside of both containers and their lids with Dylusions paint. One box I painted with cut grass and the other with vanilla custard. Let the acrylic paint dry before moving on.

November Eight

Using matte finish mod podge, I glued the strips down to both of my boxes while alternating the colors and patterns. Patience during this step is the key to a nice finished piece. Do not try to glue too many at once and allow sections to dry before moving on. I also glued down strips to the top of the small box. Using the leftover paper, I cut out all of the x’s. I then arranged them on top of the large box top. Once I had them arranged how I wanted, I glued them down too.


After gluing down all of the strips to the containers and their lids, and allowing them to thoroughly dry, I decided to add some final details. Using black Dylusions paint I added some fun designs to the interior of each container. I also did some dashed lines alongside the strips on the outside. I hope this post has inspired you to try something new. I am very happy that I did! Be sure to comment and let us know how you intend to try something new. See you next time.

November Nine


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