Tuesday, 24 April 2018

" Chained And Geared" By Heather Thompson

I am back after a fabulous holiday with so many great friends. After a very creative weekend with the crew at Ministry of Mixology, I jumped right in creating when I landed on home soil. 
I created a gear filled, rusted mechanical assemble, "Chained and Geared" and totally ready to go. 
I  love this tag, I love how it has the illusion of actually working cogs and gears.
Using rusty wire, I anchored the chain down in order to work around the gears and keep things where they ought to be.
I have already thought about expanding this tag, and continuing the theme all the way around the backside of the tag. How cool would that be? A 3-D tag.......oh the possibilities.
Here are a few close ups for you .
So stay tuned for phase 2 of the evolution of the tag.
Have a great creative Day
black and white head shot
Titian Buff
Phthalo Green Blue
Cobalt Blue
Titanium White
Quinacridone Gold
Medium Grey Value 6
Transparent Yellow Oxide
Burnt Umber
Paynes Grey
Carbon Black
Ultra Matte Varnish
Tinting Base
Andy Skinners Industrial ASCR03

Sunday, 22 April 2018

Barouque Grunge Tag by Fiona Randall

Morning all Fiona here with a Grungy Baroque inspired tag to share.
 To start prime the large tag from Andy's Tagtastic 1 kit with DecoArt Media Tinting base. Next stamp with Andy's Textures stamp set from Stampendous in the centre of the tag with Watering Can Archival ink. In a couple of mini mister bottles apply Decoart Media fluid acrylics in Prussian Blue Hue and Quinacridone Gold and mist over the tag drying between layers until achieving the desired effect. Then edge the tag with Decoart Media Fluid Acrylic in Raw Umber.
Next take the greyboard heart from Andy's Tagtastic 1 kit and apply Andy's rust technique. When dry apply DecoArt Media Modelling paste through Andy's Baroque stencil using one of the corner designs and apply watered down Metallic Lustre in Vintage brass to the raised areas.
Apply DecoArt Media Texture sand paste to a Cog and Porthole from Andy's Tagtastic 1 kit. When dry apply Andy's rust technique to the cog and Decoart Extreme sheen in vintage brass to the porthole. Apply a coat of DecoArt Media Antiquing cream in black to the porthole and wipe back for an aged effect.
Take a Small flaming heart from Andy's Flaming Heart set  from Tando Creative and apply a base coat of Red a mix of Primary Magenta with a Touch of Paynes Grey Media Fluid Acrylics. Stamp a Number from Andy's Illusionary Artists Word up and Numbers Set onto Craft card and attach to the heart base. Apply Extreme Sheen Acrylic paint in vintage brass to the heart frame and the flames apply Antiquing cream in black and wipe back for an aged effect. Apply frame and flame to the heart base and fill heart recess with DecoArt Triple Thick Glaze.
Layer up porthole, cog and flaming heart and attach to the large heart and  then affix to the tag base to complete.
Here's a close up of the detail.
Thanks for stopping by Fiona xx
Products used :-



Media Fluid Acrylics in
Prussian Blue Hue
Quinacridone Gold
Paynes Grey
Rimary Magenta.
Raw Umber
DecoArt Media Modelling Paste, Tevture Sand Paste and Tinting Base.
DecoArt Extreme Sheen- Vintage Brass.
DecoArt  Media Antiquing Cream- Carbon Black.
DecoArt Metalic Lustre- Vintage Brass.
DecoArt Triple Thick Glaze.
Other supplies
Ranger Archival ink pad- Watering Can.
Verafine Ink Pad- black.



Wednesday, 18 April 2018


Spring has finally arrived! 
I'm celebrating this by completely altering a dingy black birdhouse into something of a shabby chic "Chateau De Skinner".  Using DecoArt Products and a combination of Andy's wonderful new Illusionary Artist and Stampendous stamp sets, I was able to imagine and create this beautiful little home decor piece.

Here is the finished piece ... certainly a lot different style from most of the artistic adventures done using Andy's wonderful products.  But, I love finding ways to mix different genres.  Join me on this adventure to see how you too can use your imagination to completely alter anything!

In the upper right corner, you can see the original birdhouse.  Pretty plain, dark and dingy.   DecoArt's lovely Americana Decor Everlasting Chalky Finish paint is the perfect base color to completely transform this rather drab house.  Adding first DecoArt's Vintage Effect Wash in Patina followed with Tan gives the perfect shabby, aged look in a matter of seconds.  I simply applied the Vintage Effect Wash using a damp lint free cloth and wiped away the excess.  Continue to add layers until you achieve the desired effect.  So simple! 

To create a lovely "tile-ish roof", I painted a piece of regular cardboard packing material using DecoArt's Media Fluid Acrylics Burnt Sienna followed by DecoArt's White Vintage Effect Wash that I lightly brushed over the top using a wide brush.  It was heat set and then using Black Permanent Ink, I repeatedly stamped the Ouija Board image from Andy's Spook Illusionary Artists stamp set.  I heat set again and then cut the cardboard into 3/4' strips by 1 1/4" blocks. These were used to lay the "tile" on the roof of the house in rows.  I kept the extra pieces to use as "bricks" to surround the arched windows on either side of the house. (You will see the results in an upcoming picture). 

Using Black Permament Ink, I stamped these wonderful Gothic windows onto a piece of Specialty Stamping Paper.  I layered the windows onto three layers of chipboard to give them dimension.  I painted the edges of the cardboard with the Everlasting Chalky Paint as well as the Vintage Effect Wash colors used on the birdhouse.  The panes of the windows were filled in brushing a wash of DecoArt Media Fluid Acrylics Cobalt Teal Hue and water.

To really accentuate the windows, I added the "brick" edging.  You can still see some of the random Ouija Board images on the brick.  Just one more thing I loved about this embellishment!

Using a Dark Brown Permanent Ink, I randomly stamped areas of the house mixing three of Andy's stamp sets.  Ilusionary Artists Tech Trama provided much of the back design. I love the diagrams and how they blend with the much softer images from Andy's Stampendous Shabby Chic and Textures stamp sets.  I also stamped some of these images using a Yellow Ochre ink on the sides and front of the house.

Here is a closeup of one of the sides of the house.  You can also see the tiled roof above.  Here you can see the combination of the yellow and dark brown stamped images.  LOVE the subtle detail that they add!

I created a "Cafe" hanging sign using Andy's Shabby Chic stamp set.  This little sign gives such extra character to the Chateau.  Speaking of the Chateau, I used a partial image of the "Chateau" stamp (from this same stamp set) on white tissue paper and then applied it on the front of the bird house using DecoArt's Media Matte Medium.  It works wonderfully as a glue and a sealer.  You can see "Chateau" on the photograph of the entire birdhouse.

In this picture, you will also notice the greenery on top and around the grounds of the bird house.  This was added using DecoArt Media Matte Medium that was generously brushed onto the surface of the areas.  I sprinkled the greenery and petals (Flowersoft product) and gently pressed the greenery in place to air dry.  Then I lightly sprayed a coating of DecoArt's Americana Sealer over it to secure it in place.

The little clay pots were filled with tiny flowers and glued onto the front side of the birdhouse; welcoming all of it's feathered visitors.  Rhinestones were added to the centers of the flower like stamps on either side of the "doors".  A white wire was covered with the Flower Soft pieces, wrapped with ribbon and I made a little garland across the front of the Chateau with bows on either side. The little pegs in front of the round "doors" were covered with DecoArt Media Fluid Acrylics Metallic Gold paint. I used my fingers to wipe the gold on; leaving a little of the black showing underneath.  I also used my fingertip to lightly add the Metallic Gold color over the raised design on the three metal squares in the center of the birdhouse.
Quite a "chic" little Chateau, don't you think?

Thanks so much for stopping by and I hope this shabby "Chateau De Skinner" tutorial has inspired you to not be afraid to blend different genres to create your next masterpiece!

  • DecoArt Americana Decor Chalky Finish-Everlasting
  • DecoArt Vintage Effect Wash-Patina
  • DecoArt Vintage Effect Wash-Tan
  • Decoart Vintage Effect Wash-White
  • DecoArt Media Fluid Acrylics Burnt Sienna
  • DecoArt Media Fluid Acrylics Metallic Gold
  • DecoArt Media Fluid Acrylics Cobalt Teal Hue
  • DecoArt Americana Spray Sealer
  • DecoArt Media Matte Medium

  • Andy Skinner's Gothic 
  • Andy Skinner's Spook
  • Andy Skinner's Tech Trauma

  • Shabby Chic
  • Textures
Miscellaneous  Supplies

  • Permanent Black Ink
  • Permanent Yellow Ochre Ink
  • Specialty Stamping Paper
  • Packing Cardboard
  • Wooden Birdhouse
  • Paint Brushes and lint free cloth
  • Ribbon
  • Small flowers and clay pots
  • White tissue paper
  • Rhinestones (for centers of stamped design on front of house)
  • Flower Soft of Sweet Pea and Shamrock Green
  • Small metal chain and hook (for Cafe sign)
  • Chipboard pieces

Monday, 16 April 2018

Uncertainty tag by Monika Maksym

 Hi all!
it's Monika here! Today I'm going to show you my latest tag with grungy, rusty background. You'll need a brayer ( rubber paint roller) for this technique.

To start with, prime the large tag from the Tagtastic 1 kit with black chalky finish paint. Squeeze a few dots of medium acrylic paint  on the craft mat and start rolling your brayer to get even, thin coat, then run it through your tag. ( I've used Decoart Media Fluid Acrylics in  Paynes Grey, English Red Oxide, Quinacridone Gold, Titan Buff, Transparent Yellow Oxide)  Repeat this step with all of the colours and as many times as you like until you're satisfied with your background.

 Stamp your chosen image and word on regular cardstock, then cut them out ( word has to be slightly smaller than your bookplate- measure it ) Using decoupage glue stick them on the tag and seal it with glue. With a small brush and transparent yellow oxide tint and shade your image. 

Paint your bookplate, bolts and nuts with Paynes Grey wash, then add Quinacridone Gold on top. Glue them on once fully dry and apply a thin coat of ultra matte varnish.

Thank You for stopping by.
Monika, x

 Products used:



Decoart Media Fluid Acrylics -  Paynes Grey, English Red Oxide, Quinacridone Gold, Titan Buff, Transparent Yellow Oxide
Decoart Chalky Finish Paint - Carbon ( you can use black gesso or premium acrylic paint instead)
Decou-Page glue
 Decoart Media Ultra Matte Varnish

Facebook page:  Love Creations
Instagram: Love Creations

Friday, 13 April 2018

Industrial shabby vintage media board.

Hi Everyone - Brenda here to share a sample board I made for Stitches back in February. I made it before we had the new kits and stamps because I wanted to show how Andy has inspired me and taught me. I have been very lucky to have attended many of Andy's workshops over quite a few years (at least 10 and probably more!!!) and I have also taken some of his online classes. In fact I am on my way to Coventry today to take part in the Ministry of Mixology weekend with both Andy and France  Papillon teaching, these are the most amazing retreats where we have so much fun and learn so much.
So my key message to you is that if you get a chance to go to an Andy Skinner workshop then please do, if you have been thinking about going you won't regret it, you will be made very welcome and make lots of new friends. Those of you who have already attended one and know Andy will already be aware of his style, antics and humour!! 

This media board make bears witness to the fact that it was Andy who got me into the grungy, messy and industrial genre of art but in those early days I was also loving my distress inks and the vintage focus from Tim Holtz. As time went by I found myself mixing and matching products and styles to the point where I think now I produce a whole range of eclectic pieces, but my favourite is something like this with the neutrals of old sepia vintage photos and the cogs and elements of the industrial age.

I have a board book that Andy did as a workshop when the Craft Attic at Wantage was open with the lovely Wendy at the helm. In it I have got samples and notes of the techniques he taught us that I still refer to today. I have also got altered sketchbooks that I keep notes and ideas in, one in particular where I have some of Andy's and also lots of my own techniques written down with a cover taught by him. These days I now love going to Ministry of Mixology retreat weekends, enjoying the fun and social side as well as the creative learning that goes on. In fact I will be on my way later today to Coventry for such a weekend with both Andy and France papillon teaching.

Thanks for reading my ramblings but I just wanted to say a huge thank you to Andy for his inspiration, teaching and support, without which I wouldn't be doing what I love doing today.
Andy you're a star.

I have a few more photos and information about how this piece came together over on my blog which you might find useful.

Thanks for stopping by.

hugs Brenda xxx

Products I use in my art and workshops are from -

Click on the product links above to be transported to the retailers.