Tag Archives: Art Journal

December Mystery Kit

Hello Home and Garden Welcome readers; Michelle Wofford here to share with you some projects from the December mystery kit. Let me just say how excited I was when I opened this box and saw all the goodies I got to play with, many for the first time. All of it was such fun to work with and I now have some new favorite paper craft techniques.
Here is the supply list of goodies included in the mystery kit.

Coordinations Cardstock – Aqueduct
Graffix Vellum – Irridescent
Karen Foster Designs Scrappers Floss – Bone
Tim Holtz Distress Crackle Paint – Vintage Photo
Petaloo Velvet Hydrangeas – Blue
Dress It Up Buttons – Au Jardin Whisper
Melissa Frances Glass Glitter – Tarnished Silver
Tim Holtz Adirondack Alcohol Inks – Country Side
Lazer Cut Elm Tree

My first project is a tea bag holder. I had been wanting to make one of these for a long time and this was the perfect time to go for it.


Here’s a step by step tutorial so you can make your own tea bag holder.
Additional Supplies: Paper Trimmer, Scissors, scoring tool, adhesive, paper piercer, chipboard shape, Alocohol ink applicator, Straw
Step 1 – Trim a piece of cardstock to 6” x 12″. Score at 1” on the long edge, score at 3 1/16”, 5 ¾”, 8 13/16”, 11 1/2″ on the short edge.
Step 2 – With a scoring tool, score 3/4″ above the 1″ score line in the SECOND SEGMENT ONLY (this is the opening for your tea). Pre fold score lines
Step 3 – Use scissors to cut out the 1 ¾” x 2 3/4″ piece from the bottom of the second segment and the ½” x 1″ corner piece. Cut between the remaining 1″ flaps.
Step 4 – Using a strong adhesive adhere the ends together to form your holder. Adhere the bottom flaps.
Step 5 – Trim a 3” x 3 3/8” piece of cardstock and attach the box bottom to the base.
Step 6 – To create the top, trim a piece of cardstock to 4 ¼” x 4 5/8″ and score at 3/4″ on all sides. Cut and taper the corners. Adhere corners with using a strong adhesive.
Step 7 – Paint chipboard shape with distress crackle paint, sprinkle with glass glitter and allow to dry.
Step 8 – Using alcohol in applicator add a few drops of three colors and dab on vellum in a random pattern. Allow to dry.
Step 9 – To create look on lid, drop one drop at a time and blow into the end of a straw onto the alcohol ink. Repeat using the three colors in a random pattern until top is completely covered. Allow to dry.
Step 10 – Trim a piece of vellum treated with alcohol ink to fit behind chipboard cut out. Attach to the inside back of the chipboard piece. Attach flowers to front of chipboard piece and attach to front of box.
Step 11 – Use a paper piercer to puncture two holes in center lid, using a button as your guide. Also, pierce through flower. Cut a length of floss and thread through button, flower and lid to attach to lid.
Step 12 – Add your favorite tea.



My next project is a crackle paint frame.


Additional supplies: Paper trimmer, green pearl accents, brown acrylic paint.
Step 1 – Paint unfinished wood frame with brown acrylic paint. Once dry apply a layer of brown crackle distress paint, and sprinkle with glass glitter. Allow to dry.
Step 2 – Apply alcohol inks to vellum, trim vellum and cardstock to fit in frame cut out. Layer vellum over cardstock and wrap with scrappers floss. Place inside frame.

Step 3 – Attach flowers and leaves to upper left corner and bottom right corner. Add green pearl where needed to flower centers.
Step 4 – Attach buttons to top right corner and bottom left corner.


For my final project I created a bound book that could be used a mini album or as a journal.

Additional Supplies: Cinch binding machine, coordinating color of cardstock, paper trimmer, strong tape adhesive, bind it all 6” x 6” covers, binding wires, Alcohol ink applicator, chipboard alphabet stickers and stickles.

Step 1 – Trim multiple sheets of cardstock to 6” x 6”, however thick you want your album to be. Cover album cover front and back with cardstock.
Step 2 – Apply alcohol in to vellum and trim to 6” x 6”.
Step 3 – Use cinch (or other binding tool) to punch holes in cardstock and covers. (Tip, punch the holes and bind before you begin to embellish). Trim Coil binding to length and thread through punched holes.
Step 4 – Apply strips of strong adhesive (like score tape) and cover with glass glitter.
Step 5 – Apply pink alcohol ink to bone colored scrappers floss and thread through buttons. Attach buttons and flowers alternating above glass glitter.

Step 6 – Using alcohol ink applicator apply to elm tree laser cut out in a random pattern. To achieve the look on the tree use the same technique as you would on a nonporous surface. Wrap floss around trunk and tie in place. Attach flower to center of tree. Attach tree to vellum.

Step 7 – Select chipboard letters and cover with a light layer of stickles in a color coordinating the glass glitter. Attach to vellum.

A big thank you to Home and Garden Welcome for having me as a guest designer this month. I had a blast playing with these products and was challenged as to how to include all the elements together. I hope I’ve inspired you to start playing with your own mystery kit.




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Christmas for the Girls

This year I have decided to make as many of the Christmas presents as I can this year.   For some of the girls I have made these journals with a coordinating bracelet.


Is there a girl in your life who would love a pretty journal like one of these?  Instructions on how to make your own can be found in the Art Journal Tutorial.

Find the supplies you need to complete your own journal, and all your paper crafting projects at Home and Garden Welcome.


In the meantime, Happy Holidays and may you find plenty of moments to craft!


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Faux Brick Texture

Have you seen all the faux brick in the mixed media art projects and wondered just how that was done?  Well, it is quite simple, and I will show you how you can create a brick wall on any art or craft surface in just an evening.

To begin you need to gather your supplies.  You will need a surface to create your texture (I am using a page in my art journal).  You will also need some molding paste.  I am in love with the Golden Light Molding Paste.  It is super easy to work with, is flexible when dry and will absorb water colors when dry allowing you to blend your colors when painting your surface.
You will also need a pallet knife or other utensil for spreading your paste and creating a semi-smooth surface and either a sharpened pencil, stylus or other tool to carve ‘mortar’ lines in between your bricks.

The molding paste has the texture of a medium bodied frosting.  Spread a layer of paste over your surface where you’d like the brick texture.  A layer of about 1/8″ is perfect.  I feathered the edges of the paste so it would almost fade into the page. Once you have your paste spread across the surface you can begin to tool the surface.

Using a pencil I carved horizontal lines in my molding paste about 3/8″ – 1/2″ apart.  How far apart your lines are all depends on the scale you want in your brick wall.  If you want it to look close have a larger distance between the lines, far away make your lines tighter.  Once you have your horizontal lines carved in begin to carve your vertical separations.  Your vertical lines should be about 2 times the distance as was between your horizontal lines.  All these lines/measurements boil down to one thing – carve a brick pattern into your paste.

When you are carving the paste you will need to keep something close by to collect the extra paste from your stylus (or pencil if you are fancy like me).  Make sure that you add your border lines even between the ‘bricks’ where your paste fades in to your background.

Set your project aside and allow the molding paste to dry completely.  This can be anywhere from 20 minutes to an hour or more depending on how thick your layer of molding paste was.  Once it is dry you can gently rub your hand across the surface to remove any extra globs of paste that may have been left by your carving.

Now comes the really fun part – coloring your wall!

It is up to you how you would like to add color to your faux brick wall.  You can use acrylic paints in reds/browns/greys and make a traditional red brick wall.  Here I used a dark grey to add the mortar in the bricks.

In the piece I made for this tutorial I went for a different look.  I wanted the look of an old whitewashed brick wall.  Using Glimmer Mist sprays in Nougat, Black Magic and Fern I sprayed my surface.  The molding paste is absorbent so the wet spray soaks into the surface of my ‘bricks’, and the colors blended beautifully without much manipulation. You can allow the spray to dry on its own, but I am impatient so I used my heat tool.

After my bricks were dry I needed to add some mortar between my joints.  I could have used a water brush while my glimmer mist was still wet and helped it go find all the nooks and crannies but I wanted a darker look. Using a water brush and an iridescent watercolor paint I painted the mortar joints between my bricks with a deep brown.  Because the molding paste is so absorbent the watercolor paint bleeds into the brick, automatically mixing with the paint that was applied earlier.

And here is the final product, along with some closer views.

Notice the different appearance you get between a colorwash on the molding paste and the acrylic paste.  The molding paste is so absorbent the water colors soak in and bleed quickly.  The acrylic paints don’t soak in as well, they sit more on the surface.  If you want to use products like Glimmer Mist or Perfect Pearls Sprays on the brick wall and DO NOT want the paint to soak in spread a thin layer of gesso, acrylic gel medium or acrylic paint over your molding paste and let it dry.

I hope you have enjoyed this tutorial and will try to create your own textured backgrounds.  If you do, please share them with us all at Home and Garden Welcome!

Happy Crafting!



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August Mystery Kit Creation

It is that time again, time to reveal what came in the August Mystery kit.  Remember the clue?

“It’s the dog days of summer. The sun is shining, the mercury is rising                                                                                                                           and small town celebrations are happening all over.”

Well here is what would have surprised you when you opened your package.

This month I had the pleasure of inviting Tiare “ClassyGirl” Smith from iClassygirl.com to play along.  I am thrilled to introduce such an amazing lady to all my friends.  This is her creation using the contents of the August Mystery Kit.

“Freedom” by Tiare Smith

Such an inspiring creation, and she certainly captured the ‘free’ feeling of those lazy late summer days.

Visit her blog and check out the September give-away!  Play along with us all by purchasing the September Mystery Kit from Home and Garden Welcome and you could win a $50 gift certificate from Tiare, enter your creation to the Home and Garden Contest and you will be in the running to win a $50 gift certificate from Home and Garden Welcome!!!  Win both and you could find yourself with $100 of crafting supplies to spark your creativity.

Come along and play with us this month!

Happy Crafting


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A ‘pleather’ you can love.

Pleather.  That cheap, plasticy leather look-alike that every child of the 80’s should remember.  Your dreams will always be haunted by images like these:

Not to fear.  I will replace these haunting images in your dreams with an entirely different pleather, one you will love to make and love even more to use!

The ‘p’ part of my pleather comes not from plastic but instead from paper!  Yes, you can create a leather-like material with items you probably have already in your craftroom.  If not, what you need to gather is a bit of cardstock (plain or printed work well), some acrylic medium, a brush, an old credit card and/or  brayer and a non-stick work surface.  I use Liquitex, you could use Golden gel medium, or any other artist quality acrylic medium.  The key features to look for in your medium is a semi-self leveling fluid that dries clear and flexible.  I don’t care for Mod Podge for this technique but if you love it, use it.
Begin by selecting your papers.  I have done this with cardstock, mid-weight patterned scrapbooking paper, even book pages!  If you are going to use lighter weight paper you will want to glue together several pieces of paper to get the strength you want.

Lay your paper on your non-stick work surface and apply a generous coat of your medium spreading evenly with your brush.  If you are using light weight papers once you spread the acrylic gel you should lay another sheet of paper in the medium.  Repeat this process for 3-4 layers of paper.  Finish off with another coat of the gel.  At this time you can experiment with different surface finishes.  I found spreading the gel with an old credit card creates a very smooth finish, while using a brayer gives more of a ‘distressed leather’ look.  You could even experiment with other surface techniques to find your favorite.  Let the medium dry completely. (For this project I wanted a little added strength to the ‘wrong side’ of my cardstock so I layered a rice paper sheet on the back of the page, then finished the front of my paper.)

Once your acrylic medium is fully dry turn the paper over and repeat the surface finish on the back side of the page.  Even if you are not using a paper with a pattern on the back coating both the front and the back will add the extra body you need to create the leather feel.

Once your paper is completely dry carefully peel it off your non-stick surface and start creating! This technique is great for adding accents to a masculine scrapbook layout or for your decor and art journal techniques. If you try share some of your creations here with me!

This is a braided ‘pleather’ piece that I will share with you all soon!
Happy Crafting,




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Learning how to make ART!

Check out my new video you YouTube, then check out my downloadable art classes!

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New Downloadable Art Class

Looking to learn some new techniques using your art supplies?  This downloadable class will teach you how to create a beautiful handmade book with stitched binding and a custom made cloth cover. Learn new techniques using acrylic molding pastes and gels and your collection of crafting templates, and learn to make beautiful embellishments to accent all your art projects.  The techniques you learn in this class can be easily transferred to other crafting projects and make a great starting point for your own exploration of the products and techniques used in this class.

Available for immediate download on Home and Garden Welcome under Handmade Cloth Bound Art Journal Class work at your own pace to create beautiful custom art journals, diaries and scrapbooks for yourself or as thoughtful gifts.

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