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

Creative Fire Art Journal Page

Creativity is one of those things that can burn brightly or die down occasionally. We all need to be inspired and recharge our artistic batteries now and again. New ideas and a fresh perspective can be all it takes to start a really exciting artful adventure. So this month our creative squad members are all taking a look at what keeps their creative fires burning. For me, it really is multiple things. First, I find that creating just for the fun of it is key. As a working artist, I often lose track of this. But finding time in my schedule to make things for myself, or just for the heck of it, really keeps me balanced. One way I do this is through art journaling. My art journal is a place for artistic experimentation and self-expression. Second, I find that seeking out new ideas and inspiration from my fellow artists is what really keeps me going. One artist in particular, for me, brings both of these ideas together. Recently I have been very inspired by Tina Walker. Tina’s art journal spreads are bright, bold, and fearless. I really admire her work. I had her in mind when I created this journal page.
I do not journal per se, but I do use quotes and phrases to express myself. I find it hard to find the words to add to my pages so quotes or lyrics really tend to fit the bill. On this spread, I used our creative squad theme to literally say it for me. Just between us, I struggle with hand-lettering. I tend to avoid it at all costs! However, one of my goals this year has been to write in my journal and be at peace with the quality, or lack thereof, in the hand-lettering. On this page, I just went for it!
Art Journal
Dylusions large journal block
Artfoamies: Exchange Place, Valley Road
Sakura Gelly Roll Pens, white and black
Gelly printing plate
Daler Rowney Acrylic Cadmium Red Hue
Daler Rowney Acrylic Cadmium Yellow Deep
Dylusions Paint Postbox Red, Vanilla Custard
Tim Holtz Mini-blending tools
I started by brayering out the yellow paint on my gelly plate to use it as a stamp buddy for my artfoamies. I used Nat’s Exchange Place Artfoamie, pressed it into the paint, and applied it onto my art journal pages for a cool background. After the paint dried I used my Dylusions large journal block to pencil in a few places that I would later add my text. I used my mini-blending tools to apply my red dylusions paint to those penciled in spaces. I then did the same with the vanilla custard around the edges to get a nice blurred edge look to the red sections.

While that paint was drying, I used Nat’s Valley Road Artfoamies to stamp out what will become several suns I will place on my journal pages. I stamped several of them onto a large sheet of white paper. I then cut around the edges of the shapes, revealing a sun shape.

Photo Six.jpg

I applied the cut paper suns, did a lot of doodling, and wrote in my saying. I love this journal spread. I hope you will find it as a source of inspiration for your own creativity.
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Frida Journal Page

Today I spent a while in my newest art journal. I held off buying a new one for a while because I really wanted to complete the ones I had first. But I just couldn’t pass up the great deal I got on a Dina Wakley Media Journal by Ranger. If you haven’t heard of this journal, you should check it out. It has four different substrates in it. The page I am sharing with you today is on the cotton watercolor paper.


I am really happy with how this page turned out. So here are some of the particulars for those of you that may be interested. (Many of the supplies could be substituted for what you have on hand. A lot of this could be done with watercolors. I didn’t list all of the colors I used for the products below. If you are interested – leave a comment and I’ll answer it.)


Dina Wakley Media – scribble sticks, bird masks, text and scribbles stamp set, washi tape

Dylusions – Ink sprays in four colors

Sandra Everston new stamp set “Portals” and “Alma” from Rubbermoon Stamps

Dictionary paper

Tim Holtz Distress markers

Tim Holtz Detail water brush

I started by spritzing a little water onto the paper and then spraying a few colors of Dylusions Ink spray, allowing the colors to intertwine. I allowed it to dry. (If you aren’t familiar with the ink sprays, they are water-reactive.) I used my bird masks and matching stencil and ink sprays in darker colors to place bird images throughout the piece.


Once dry, I chose the stamp titled “creation” from the portals collection and wet the stamp with clean water. I pressed the stamp onto the paper in the center of the page, allowing it time to thoroughly wet the paper. I then took a paper towel and dabbed the moisture up – DO NOT RUB! Once dry, in the absence of color it now leaves a ghost like image of the stamp behind. I did the same thing with the “Alma” stamp. Next I used the brush tip of my distress markers to lay color on the creation stamp in a few small areas and pressed it on the ghosted area. I used black archival ink and inked up the Alma stamp and applied it too. I then filled in Frida’s flowers, face, and clothing with distress markers and the detail water brush.



Using the text and scribble stamps from DMW, I inked up black archival ink and pressed it onto dictionary pages. I did the same with my bird stencils and ink sprays. I also stamped the ethereal stamp from the portals collection multiple times, cut out the crowns and flowers, and colored them in with distress markers. I applied them with some inexpensive school glue. Using the night scribble stick I outlined Frida’s frame and some of the birds and circles. Taking my detail water brush, I spread the color out and into the background. Once everything was dry, I glued down the crowns and flowers. And what page of mine would be complete without a little doodling with a black pen?


I hope you enjoyed this page and that it brings you inspiration. Thanks for visiting my blog. If you liked it, please leave me a comment.

January Nstudio Creative Squad Post

It’s that time again. It’s my turn over on Nathalie Kalbach’s nstudio blog for my monthly creative squad post. This month I am proud to show you my step by step instructions on how I made this adorable shadow box.

Using Nat’s new Rubbermoon stamp collections, Stroll Around the Block Sets 1 & 2, I hope to inspire you and share with you what home means to me. Visit to see more!

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Ranger Ink Letter It

I was so excited to hear from Ranger Ink that I would be getting an early shipment of their brand new product line, Letter It, before it hit store shelves. I am going to share with you a new project, or projects, every day for one week.

So, what is Letter it? According to the Ranger blog, ” Letter It ™ is a carefully curated collection of stamps, pens, embossing powders, pearl powders, mediums, tools and surfaces designed to work together so you can create beautifully personalized cards, tags, gifts, and more for all of life’s occasions! Achieve the look of hand lettering with Ranger’s Letter It™ Clear Stamps. These handwritten sentiments are ideal for every occasion. Each stamp set is 4” x 6” with various sized phrases to fit on standard cards and tags, and are easily customizable for many other sizes. Use with Letter It™ Stamping Inks, Embossing Powders and Perfect Pearls to personalize cards, tags, invitations, and more!”

Ofcourse, I was thrilled to receive the package from them. I love card making! I have always wanted to do hand lettering on my cards, but let’s face it, my lettering stinks! The great thing about these stamp sets is that they give me the ability to have the look of beautiful hand lettering easily. If you would like to see a complete list of the new product line visit the Ranger blog at

Now onto the fun stuff!

I made this simple but beautiful ivory thank you card with my new supplies. I used a Dylusions stamp and embossed the leaf stamp in gunmetal from the Letter It collection. I then used the Letter It metallic markers set to color in sections of the leaves in a pretty blue. Letter It™ Metallic Markers are opaque, permanent, paint-like markers. But they didn’t bleed through my cardstock! I then used a small section of the grey cardstock available in this new line. All of the surfaces are ideal for use with the Letter It program tools and mediums. I used the sentiment” You’re the best”. I love how this card turned out.


Stay tuned every day for the next week to see a new Letter It inspired project.

Creative Jumpstart 2018

I am so excited to share with you that I have decided to register for Creative Jumpstart 2018. This will be my first year participating and I know it’s going to be a blast. HUGE names in the mixed media industry will be leading each class.CJS logo 2018


In case you are not familiar with CJS, it is a month long online workshop in January that features 31 lessons by 31 mixed media artists, spread out over the 31 days of January. Participants are invited to follow along each day with the lessons, share their projects, and join in on the discussion in the comments. It’s a fun way to start the new year with a bit of renewed creative energy!

If you sign up by November 29th you will save $10 on registration. After the 29th, it is still a very affordable class.

If you are interested in registering, or finding more info, visit: I hope you join us for what is sure to be an amazing time.