A Winter’s Tale – Nostalgic Powertex

By Donna Mcghie

My prompt for this month’s Powertex article was A Winter’s Tale.  The festive season is fast approaching and my mind wandered back to those seemingly halcyon days of Christmas’ past.

Nostalgic Powertex Christmas tree by Donna Mcghie tells A Winter's Tale
I just love the retro look of these Christmas Rice Papers

Obviously memory plays tricks on us all, but for me, nothing beats a bit of nostalgia at Christmas. I fell in love with the retro look of the Victorian Christmas Rice Papers, the style of the images really made me smile. 

However, rather than making me think of all things Victorian, for me they conjure up memories of the early seventies.  Lots of gaudy tinsel and Slade blasting out Merry Christmas on Top of the Pops.

I decided to attempt to create a wall plaque that captured some of that seventies atmosphere. 

So grab yourself a snowball to drink, (or something non alcoholic from the soda stream if you prefer), and let’s  have a bit of festive fun with Powertex.

I deliberately chose to keep this project fairly simplistic and quick to do.  The reason being is that most of us are frantically busy on the lead up to Christmas, and don’t have much time to set aside for crafting.  Hopefully this little tree can slot in to the timescale somewhere though.

Materials List:

Step 1

Powertex nostalgic Christmas tree by Donna Mcghie - A Winter's Tale
I use a sponge to apply the colour as I find it quicker

Mix together green and white Powertex Fabric Hardener to a pale green colour. Sponge over your tree shape and allow to dry. You can use a hairdryer to speed this process.

Step 2

Nostalgic Christmas tree, Donna tells a Winter's Tale
By adding stone art we are starting to build some texture

With a flat brush apply Easy Varnish where you want to place the images. Then gently put them in position and brush over them again with the varnish to seal. Add some more hardener in various places and whilst damp gently dab on some Stone Art.

Step 3

A nostalgic WInters Tale with Powertex by Donna Mcghie
When adding the ink, protect your images with paper.

Using a small pallet knife scrape some Easy Structure downwards to give the impression of branches. Blast with a dryer, and then add some Acrylic Spray Ink.

Step 4

Powertex nostalgic A Winter's Tale by Donna Mcghie
The darker Bister adds some depth

Now add more branch shapes with Easy Structure, dry and spray with the Bister.

Step 5

If the pigment does not show up enough, you can add white fabric hardener as well

Now mix a small amount of white pigment with easy varnish, load a flat brush, wipe off on paper towel, and gently sweep over your tree segments. Gradually building up the intensity until it looks like snow.

Step 6

A Winter's Tale Powertex project by Donna Mcghie
A sprinkle of glitter, and we are done

A final flourish of glitter and we are done 🙂 I like to use a very fine bio degradable glitter as although we’re going for a seventies vibe, it’s good to use current sensibilities about sustainability.

I decided to add a simple star on the top but obviously if you decide to make one you can bling up your tree with whatever takes your fancy.

That’s my lot for 2019 folks. I have really enjoyed sharing my makes in these articles and have equally enjoyed seeing what you share with us on our Facebook page, so please do pop over and share any of your nostalgic makes.

I’ve been making lots of other festive decorations which you can see on my own Facebook page here.

The other design team members have been busy as well. I particularly love Fiona’s Christmas star from last year.

Have a wonderful Christmas everyone, and here’s hoping you get lots of Powertex goodies in those stockings 🙂

Nature inspired Powertex painting

By Shell North

For this article I was asked to talk about my favorite artist. I have lots of things around me like nature that inspire me but rarely a well known artist.

I was inspired to push my Powertex canvas work further a couple of years ago by fellow Powertex tutor and artist Rosie Casselden. This was my first piece with Rosie in her studio with a little guidance.

I had never braved painting detail before so it was a big thing to me, but wow did it opened doors to floods of ideas. So I would say Rosie is definitely a favorite artist of mine that inspires me.

Powertex nature painting art by Shell North
‘Natures strength’ (spring edition) Powertex mixed media canvas by Shell North

I started painting fauna and flora but with a mixed media twist, using textures and random items such as shirts.

Powertex painting mixed media canvas by Shell North inspired by nature
‘The Dandy-lion’ Powertex mixed media canvas by Shell North

Upon sharing this to the Powertex studio group there was a comment “Elfie Cella does some amazingly inspirational work”. She does some textural nature art using textiles and everyday objects. Here is some of her work, which has become my inspiration.

How to make a nature inspired Powertex painting

Materials list

Step 1

Plan your scene, starting by draw a den around where the foxes go and adding a grass line, tree and moon out line. Add X’s where the very high textured area will be.

Draw out the scene fro your nature painting

Step 2

Paint around your napkin image with a paint brush and water and then tear away the excess napkin, remove top layer.

Step 3

Coat the fox den with a layer of Easy coat. Carefully place napkin image on top then coat another layer working from the middle outwards. Once dry add another coat.

Coat nature napkin scene with Easy Coat Mat

Step 4

Paint the areas that require texture thickly with Transparent Powertex, sprinkle with art balls, stone art powder and 3D flex and add fabric with Transparent Powertex.

Finally sprinkle stone art along higher ground.

Tip: Dust off any loose bits when dry. Also note that you don’t want balls in the higher ground area as it will make harder to paint any roots later.

Add textures with Powertex

Step 5

Spray all the texture with Brown and Black bister, avoiding the foxes. Dry with hair dryer.

Step 6

Using Paynes grey acrylic paint and a little water on your wash brush, paint the night sky, avoid the tree and moon. While wet, dab with a scrunched piece of tissue roll and leave to dry.

Step 7

Using a mix of different shades of white and paynes grey, create moon shades by stippling. Add very watery white around the moon for its aura. Finally using a fan brush flick white over the sky for stars.

Paint the sky with acrylics for this nature inspired painting

Step 8

Use the pre-made brown stone art clay, sculpt around the tree outline, paint the thinner branches with brown acrylic.

Use clay to create a tree on the canvas for a nature Powertex painting

Step 9

Now add all the detail such as grass in shades of green and yellow, roots shades of browns and white mixed, branches and bark in shades of browns.

To finish dry brush the dirt textured area with various shades of light brown to off white acrylic paint.

So here’s the finished piece….

Shell North nature Powertex painting on canvas
Sleeping fox cubs by moonlight’ Powertex mixed media canvas By Shell North

I hope I’ve inspired you to push your canvas work in a different direction. If you would like to have a go at this or something similar you can contact me on my website at The Crafty Little Corner or take a look at my other design team projects.

Well that’s all from me this month, see you again in the days running up to Christmas for my last blog of the year!

Peace, love and cosy fox cub cuddles

Shell x

Inspired by Buddha?

Designed by – Shell North

One thing I love about being a part of the design team is getting asked to do pieces for upcoming Hochanda shows. Being a part of such a great team keeps me focused and gives me a huge sense of purpose. Eager to get creating and inspired by the Buddha kit, I knew exactly what my mind was being inspired to bring to life. I put my whole heart and soul into creating it.

My creative process

I created a scene of tranquility, calm, love and peace with the items I had been asked to use. For this piece I sat peacefully and envisioned creating textural scenery of bamboo, blossom trees and mountains, a place I could imagine Buddha sitting in contemplation.

Being unique

Use paperdecoration to cut out bamboo shapes and the main part of the blossom tree. Use mixed Stone art powder into a spreadable paste for the textural mountains and water. Utilise small and medium art balls for the blossom on the tree. Instead of using just the red Powertex universal medium as it’s stand alone colour, I mixed it with ivory Powertex to create the pink blossoms. I wanted this piece to show the unique and limitless ways you can use Powertex products.

If at first you don’t succeed, take a moment to walk away!

Sometimes, when you envision an idea in your head, it doesn’t quite come out as you imagined. Nearing the end of the piece, I actually didn’t like what I had created and had to walk away. In fact I wanted to throw it in the bin!

I cleared my head and looked at my work with a new perspective. I removed a part of the piece that wasn’t right by scraping away part of the blossom trunk and started that bit again. A clear mind was what I needed to feel more content with my piece.

and here it is…

Powertex temple inspired by Buddha project pack by Shell North
Powertex Buddha temple by Shell North

I hope you enjoyed this this article? Please do leave a comment below so we know you love what we are doing for the love of Powertex.

Feeling inspired and want to come and create one of these with me? Look at my website to see when the next course for this is being held at The Crafty Little Corner.

With the clocks going back in a few days here’s a link to my article last month, my Powertex clock. Also please do check out other design team members blogs like this rusty letter piece by Kore.

Anyway that’s all from me,

Peace, love and tranquil crafting.

Shell x

A shrine to Buddha

Designed by – Jinny Holt

I love being on the Design team as every so often we get asked to do samples for the Hochanda TV shows. As soon as I saw the goodies I had to play with, I knew what I wanted to do. So this is a step by step of the shrine to Buddha that I created for the latest show.

Buddha Frame Project Pack from Powertex UK
Powertex UK Buddha Frame Project Pack

Materials list

I received the Budda Frame Project Pack and some Paperdecoration. I also used:

Build the frame

Build the frame with Red Powertex
Step 1

I started by building up my kit and giving it a coat of the Red Powertex and leaving it to dry, although you could force dry with a hairdryer if desired.

Adding texture with Easy 3d Flex

Add texture with Easy 3D flex
Step 2

I decided to add some texture, one of my favourite products to use is Easy 3d Flex. I added the Easy 3d Flex and patted it down and then rubbed it gently into the Powertex, then left to dry overnight.

Add more texture

Add more texture
Step 3

I had some black glass stones in my stash and decided I would glue them using the Transparent Powertex. The white in the photo is the Transparent that’s not dry.

Stone Art

Add Stone Art texture to the plaster Buddha
Step 4

I decided to add texture to my Buddha by coating it with Powertex and then pressing in Stone Art powder, to give him an aged feel.

Black and gold Buddha

Use black Powertex and gold pigment to paint the Buddha
Step 5

Once the Stone Art powder was dry, I re-painted my Buddha in black Powertex. When dry, dry-brush on some gold and set him in the centre. I used Transparent Powertex to adhere him.

Paperdecoration

Use paperdecoration from Powertex for texture
Step 6

I used the Paperdecoration, thoroughly soaked in Red Powertex and draped and pulled into pleasing shapes across the boxed canvas.

Paperdecoration with Red Powertex
Step 6

Top Tip

When working with Paperdecoration material, I find it easier to use if I mist water on to it first as it helps to make the edges softer quicker.

Add texture with Easy 3d Flex powder.
Step 7

Once I was happy with how I had laid out the texture, and whilst the Powertex was still wet, I rubbed in some Easy 3d Flex to add even more texture to my piece.

Using Black pigment and Easy Varnish

Black pigment and Easy Varnish
Step 8

Using Easy varnish mixed with black pigment powder, I painted my piece and then wiped away, to add some depth and to highlight all the texture.

Use mdf shapes

use mdf shapes from the Buddha project pack
Step 9

In this step I chose a couple of the MDF pieces that came with the pack and decided only on using 2 of them. To these pieces I mixed in a sand texture with Black Powertex and then dry brushed gold over them when completely dry.

Dry brushing with Gold pigment paint
Close up of texture
Close up of shrine to buddha in Powertex

I love the finished piece. These colours are my own favourite colour combination and I also love the theme.

I hope myself and my fellow design team members have left you feeling inspired. Crack open that bottle of Powertex that you keep thinking about opening. Go on, open it and just do it!

Have you been inspired by this shrine to Buddha? Then come and say hello in the THE POWERTEX STUDIO. Don’t be shy to upload any photos of projects you have created too.

You can get all your Powertex goodies at POWERTEX UK. Find Powertex on PINTEREST and INSTAGRAM too. I post all my other creations at MUMS SHED on Facebook and you read about why I love Powertex in this blog.

Until next time,

~LIVE~LOVE~LAUGH~CREATE~

Jinny

Cow skull and flowers wall hanging

Designer:  Jill Cullum

When I received the mould for the Cow Skull and Flowers I was immediately drawn to a Native American reservation.  Speaking to a friend she told me it reminded her of the Navajo tribe.  When I searched this I found the colours used in their art and pottery were beautifully vibrant.  What better than to have a lovely wall hanging with a nod to the Navajo art culture.

Materials Used

Preparation

Use Powertex Stone Art clay to make a cow skull and flowers from the mould
Stone Art clay skull and flowers

Using Stone Art Clay and the Cow Skull and Flowers Mould, make a cow and several flowers.  Put to one side to dry.

Dreamcatcher Ring

Dreamcatcher ring
Dreamcatcher ring with paperdecoration

Add texture to 3 of the rings – 2 using Paper Decoration, Light Pink and one with string.  Leave to dry.

Using 2 of the solid circles create a background texture of your choice, with Ivory Fabric Hardener.

MDF Frame and Panel

Mdf frame with paperdecoration
Add textures to the mdf frame

Use Stone Art Clay and Texture Paste to add interest background.  For the front use Paper Decoration Natural with Ivory Fabric Hardener.

Hanger – Make a Branch

Make a hanger
Create the hanger

Use twisted cardboard tubing and tinfoil, adding texture with more Paperdecoration. At the same time secure string in place to use later.

Feathers and Colouring

Acrylic inks to decorate the mdf feathers
Colour with acrylic inks

Using Acrylic Ink, add colour to the feathers and the pre-prepared rings.

Use Brown Bister spray
Spray with Bister

Use Brown Bister to add colour to the Cow Skull and the flowers. Also do this to the centre panel of the MDF frame and branch.

Colour the textures with acrylic inks

Use the Acrylic inks to add colour to the outer section of the MDF frame.

Transparent Powertex to fix the skull and flowers to the wall art
Transparent Powertex to fix the skull and flowers

Using the solid ring from the dreamcatcher kit, fix the skull and flowers using Transparent Powertex.

Putting it all together

Powertex wall art with cow skull and flowers
Powertex wall art with cow skull and flowers

Attach the Skull circle to the centre panel on the mdf frame. Attach more string to the circles and the MDF panel (I used Transparent Fabric Hardener). Finally fix the feathers in place to create your beautiful Navajo Indian Wall hanging.

I really hope you enjoyed this article and it has inspired you to use the MDF, Cow Skull and Flower mould in a different way.

Show us your ‘makes’ here in the The Powertex Studio. We love to see what Powertex Addicts create. If you need more inspiration take a look at this beautiful wall art with a Venetian feel, by Gill Goldsmith.

Get making, be creative, but most of all have fun 🙂 Bye for now, Jill x

Powertex Dreamcatcher

Designed by Donna Mcghie

Powertex dreamcatcher by Donna Mcghie
Step by step guide to creating a Powertex Dream Catcher

The story behind my Powertex dreamcatcher. I will always have a bit of a soft spot for dream catchers.  When my daughter was young she suffered awfully from night terrors. 

We tried many techniques to get her to have a peaceful night, and spoke to many professionals as well.  One of the things we tried,  hoping that it would help her even if just a through a placebo effect was a dream catcher. 

I’d be lying if I said she slept perfectly once we hung up her dream catcher. The thought of it catching those bad dreams and holding them at bay definitely had a calming effect on her before she closed her eyes at bedtime to go to sleep.

Thankfully those days are long behind us now, and my daughter is now a young woman.  But she has seen the dream catcher shown here and I know this is something she would still hang up in her bedroom or living room.

For this dream catcher I used the gorgeous ink sprays now available from Powertex UK.  I just love how vibrant and easy to use these are, and how they automatically blend into each other to create almost an air brushed effect. 

Materials List

How to make my Powertex dreamcatcher

Prepare the frame

Prepare the frame
This mdf frame is so easy to use


Paint the Powertex mdf frame and panel with Ivory Fabric Hardener and set aside to dry.

Mix up Stone Art clay

Mix up Stone Art Clay
I used the mould for one cow’s head, but made lots of the flowers to add onto my final design

Mix up  Stone Art with Ivory Fabric Hardener to form a clay. I  pressed this into the Cow Skull and Flowers mould.

Spray with acrylic inks

Spray with acrylic inks
I put the small raised square to one side for now and only sprayed the larger piece

I wanted to create a surreal dreamy effect, so popped out the shapes from the MDF Dream Catchers and used them as stencils, spraying over with my ink sprays randomly.

Add Easy Structure texture

Add easy structure feathers
The easy structure adds texture to the design

Put Easy Structure onto a pallet knife and smear it through a leaf stencil.  I also sponged silver acrylic onto the leaves.

Use Bister spray for depth

Use Bister sprays for depth
Bister gives added depth to the design.

I added more texture by soaking my natural paperdecoration in transparent hardener and placing around the edges. I also sprayed the edges with Mahogany Bister Spray.

Lay out Paperdecoration

Using Paperdecoration
I sprayed the cow’s head with acrylics to keep in with my colour scheme

Put together the inner section and add paperdecoration (soaked in transparent hardener) and the cow’s head. I did not glue it in just yet.

Layering paperdecoration
Once I was happy with this section, I secured it onto the larger piece.

I soaked my light pink paperdecoration in transparent fabric hardener and add this to my design also.

Mdf feathers

mdf feathers
Once the easy structure was dry I painted my feathers with Raspberry Sorbet Acrylic and also dry brushed them.

My next step was to add texture to my mdf feathers by using the Easy Structure and my feather stencil. I put them to one side to dry.

Paint and add clay flowers

Stone Art clay flowers
I used lots of these little flowers

Painted all the small flowers with Acrylic Paint and once dry, dry brush with White Powercolor.

Add crochet fabric

Create the dreamcatcher
If you are clever enough crochet your own middle, or do what I do and scour the charity shops

I soaked some crochet in the Ivory Hardener and secured it into the mdf circles. Once dry, I sprayed with my inks and added flowers

Glue the pieces together

Glue the dreamcatcher pieces together with Powertex
My mdf feathers are glued to the dream catcher to help secure the whole piece together

Glue the dream catcher into place and add feathers to the design.

Dry brushing

Powertex dream catcher with feathers by Donna Mcghie
The finished Dream Catcher

Finally I dry brushed my whole piece using the interference pigments and the white Powercolor.

Finishing Touches

The interference colours were gorgeous to use with this project, as I honestly do think they have a dreamy quality to them.  I also used a sponge to add just a touch of the aqua ink to the tips of the feathers. I felt they needed something extra to help them blend in. 

TOP TIP: I was slightly concerned about the dream catcher adhering to the square, but found by putting glue on both the top of the dream catcher, and also the larger feathers it secured on nicely.

That’s all from me for this month. If you’ve enjoyed this Powertex dreamcatcher, I would be really grateful if you popped over to check out my Facebook page as well. You can also see my last design team project that’s great for Halloween.

Until next time, keep powertexing 🙂

Stone Art Temple

Designed by – Abigail Lagden

Powertex Stone Art Temple by Abigail Lagden
Powertex Stone Art Temple by Abigail Lagden

When I received the Buddha themed goodies from the Hochanda shows, my mind was immediately drawn to the temple of Ta Prohm in Cambodia where trees grow through the ruins. Although I have never been lucky enough to visit, it is a place that has always intrigued me and sparked my imagination. So it is from there that I drew my inspiration this month for my Stone Art Temple.

Materials

How to Create a Stone Art Temple

Step 1

First, I used Easy Structure paste through a stencil from my stash. Create some swirly patterns on the front and sides of the box frame and on the base piece where the recess would be.

Powertex Easy Structure through a swirl stencil
Step 1

Step 2

I then used ivory Powertex to attach some of the MDF shapes around the edge of the base piece and to construct the middle square. You can also see that I drew around the outer square with pencil to provide a guide when applying the stone art.

Mdf frame and pieces, build the temple
Step 2

Step 3

Stone effects were created by coating the surfaces with a layer of ivory Powertex and firmly pressing the stone art onto it, before gently rubbing off the excess. I applied the stone art lightly over the stenciled pieces and more thickly on the base. I then used ivory Powertex to fix all of the pieces together.

Apply Stone Art to the Powertex
Step 3

Step 4

I painted the plaster Buddha statue with black Powertex, let it dry and then painted it using rich gold Colortricx powder mixed with Easy Varnish. I secured the statue into the recess using ivory Powertex and surrounded it with large, medium and small 3D balls mixed with ivory Powertex.

Paint the plaster Buddha with Black Powertex and Gold Colortricx
Step 4

Step 5

The whole piece was sprayed with black and green Bister sprays.

Spray with Bister sprays in Black and Green
Step 5

Step 6

I mixed ivory and black Powertex together with some green Powercolor pigment to create a grey/green medium. I used this to coat some pieces of natural paper decoration and gently stretched them to create stringy tree roots across the box.

Paperdecoration
Step 6

The final step was to dry brush the whole piece using ivory Powertex to really enhance all the ‘stone’ textures. I also added a few blush tones using red and white Powercolor pigments mixed with Easy Varnish.

Powertex stone art temple close up
Finishing touches
Powertex temple by Abigail Lagden

If you treated yourself to any of the new products showcased on Hochanda in September, we’d love to see what you created. Please share your pictures in The Powertex Studio facebook group.

If you’d like to see more of what I am up to you can follow my Curiously Contrary Facebook page. If you’d like to find out about workshops that I am running please visit my website www.curiously-contrary.co.uk

You can also see another project of mine, the mixed media hanging heart tutorial here on the magazine.

Until next time, Abs xx

Powertex Stamped Pendant

Powertex stamped pendant by Kore Sage

I was inspired this month by Abigail’s Stone Art Clay Pendant as I wanted to try the stamping into clay technique. Using her tutorial I created my own Powertex stamped pendant.

Powertex mdf and stone art clay stamped pendant
Powertex stamped clay pendant by Kore Sage

I quite like small projects like these that can be done quickly but have very satisfying results. It’s a great gift idea too.

I didn’t have a bauble shape for mine so I used an mdf ring shape like these. I chose the Studio Light letters and numbers stamp to create the pattern in my clay. It’s a personal favourite as I love using letters and numbers in my projects.

Materials

mdf rings from Powertex UK
mdf rings from Powertex UK

I followed Abigail’s steps from the tutorial and despite using different shapes it was easy to follow and really quick to do. There’s a break for the clay to dry but this can be sped up with a hairdryer if you like.

Making a Powertex Stamped Pendant

Simply mix up some air dry clay with Red Powertex Fabric Hardener and roll out a layer for your mdf. Stamping into the clay creates a clear texture.

I love the way the Bister spray deepens the textures. A quick blast with a hairdryer makes this step fast.

Powertex Stone Art Clay stamping
Stamping into Stone Art clay

I used my clay over the edge of the mdf and wrapped the Powertex with string on the side to keep it neat.

Powertex pendant string edge
Detail of string edge

With a dab of clay I added a large jump ring to the top of my pendant. I left mine to dry overnight.

Attach jump ring with a dab of Powertex clay
Add jump rings

The Powerwax and pigment mix softens the finish on the pendant. You can also mix your pigments with Easy Varnish and use a dry brushing technique over the textures.

Powertex and string detail
Powertex string spiral on mdf

Another jump ring and some cord and I have a lightweight statement necklace.

Powertex stamped pendant by Kore Sage
Powertex Stamped pendant by Kore Sage

I used some of the very small mdf circles to create a couple of tiny pieces. These could be made into earrings or rings with some basic jewellery findings. Customising this piece with your favourite colours or stamps is so easy too. These would make lovely handmade gifts.

Powertex stamped pendant

I hope you’ll give a pendant a try or maybe take the techniques and create something else! Remember you can share your makes at The Powertex Studio on Facebook or follow us on Instagram.

Until then, make a little time to let your art out.

Kore xx

Winter Scene with Powertex Snow

Powertex snow scene by Jill Cullum

Designer: Jill Cullum

This month, for my article I was asked to do a ‘remake’ of another design team member’s step-by-step article. I love canvas work and came across this Powertex winter scene by Kore Sage, whilst searching through the vast choice of inspiration. I immediately fell in love with the effects, decision made!

Powertex snow scene by Jill Cullum
Winter snow scene by Jill Cullum

Materials List

As I worked through the step-by-step instructions, inspired by making the initial background of the scene, lots of other ideas were popping into my head.

I started with the landscape and although I have used Stone Art many times, I hadn’t used it with a coloured Powertex before which had brilliant results.

I didn’t have the same window as Kore had so as you can see, my piece is slightly different including an mdf tree. The snow effect is made with Ivory Fabric Hardener mixed with 3D Sand which gives a great texture.

Powertex snow scene

Powertex winter scene by Jill Cullum
Textured canvas art with Powertex

I love to find inspiration in other artists’ work which is exactly what doing this piece has done. I cannot wait to get started on my next canvas, possibly a field scene.

If you like the finished canvas and feel inspired to create something similar, please have a go at using the step-by-step articles on the Powertex UK Mixed Media Magazine. Be inspired by other artists and then to do your own version of it. For Kore’s full step-by-step instructions one how to make a winter scene, please see here.

Bye for now and thank you for taking a look at this month’s article. Have fun and don’t forget to share your work in the Powertex Studio. Jill x

Powertex Creature Comforts

Designer – Shell North

What inspires me?

As a tutor I’m often asked how I come up with all my ideas and what Inspires me. My first answer is everything. I’m sure we all know a Powertex crafter that is inspired by everything around them and has a list longer than their arms of inspirations.

Creature Comforts

Creature comforts Powertex by Shell North
Creature Comforts by Shell North

Are you like me, someone who hoards every Powertex-able thing in sight from recyclables to a plethora of textures? The thing is all these inspirations form ideas and grow into creations. Could it be an inanimate item in a charity shop you imagine as something else. Could it be a feeling or connection in a place, maybe a vision or inspiration from another artists work?

Whatever your inspiration is, there’s usually a theme. My theme is often nature and animals or a bit of fantasy. In this month article I’m going to show and briefly talk about a few of the animals and creatures I’ve created since finding Powertex.

In the early days with Powertex fabric hardener

One of the first animals I created was this Frog. Now I thought he was ugly, even for a frog! But someone at an event fell in love and begged for me to sell her him a few days after creation, she adored him.

Frog sculpture in Powertex by Shell North
Ugly frog. Made from an inflated balloon base and Powertex coated cotton scraps.
Moon gazey hare bunny sculpture by Shell North
Moon gazey ‘bunny’ By Shell North. Made using Wire amateur, foil, masking tape and Powertexed hessian scraps

Inspired by moon gazey hares now, but wanting to try a stronger base to work on. I studied images to try get the shape right, without a 3D model it can be tricky to get anatomical correctness. This little guy however turned out more bunny sized than hare. I loved it all the same, as above, the beauty is in the eye of the beholder!

Practice pays off

As time has gone on I learnt from ‘happy accidents’. They give you a learning curve, room for growth. I’ve also learnt that I do prefer to sculpt with the stone art clay as a first go to material. I find it easier for me to manipulate and build up the shape more naturally. These black bird and octopus are sculptures I’ve made with Stone art clay.

Black bird Powertex sculpture
Black bird, by Shell North. Made from Powertex stone art clay on polystyrene egg base.
Powertex octopus by Shell North
Powertex Octopus by Shell North. Made using wire armature, foil, Powertex stone art clay and Powertexed fabric
(Find Octopus tutorial here)

Getting a little quirky

Ginger cat Powertex by Shell North
Ginger quirky cat by Shell North. Made using bottle base, Powertex ivory stone art clay mix and red bister.
Black cat sculpture in Powertex by Shell North
Black quirky cat by Shell North. Made using bottle base, lead grey Powertex stone art clay mix and black bister.

Adding a twist of fantasy

The exciting thing about fantasy animals is that you can work on inspirations of nature’s animals and add a fantasy touch to it. Let’s face it, when you see some of natures wacky designs on many animals, birds and creatures, it does make you wonder if unicorns and dragons were actually real?! My first blog for the Powertex team was just this kind of unique style (see here).

Blue bird of paradise sculpture Powertex by Shell North
Powertex birds of paradise by Shell North. Made using mdf bird template, foil masking tape and blue stone art clay.

Final fantasy animal

My last piece of inspiration is to finish with one of my all-time favorite makes, my ‘wicker basket’ dragon. Another piece that spoke to me of it’s purpose at the tutor retreat challenge.

Dragon Powertex by Shell North
Dishy the dragon by Shell North. Made using a wicker plant basket, foil, masking tape, Powertexed dish cloths and Powertex stone art clay.

Inspiration isn’t always easy, sometimes we need to be shown an idea through tutorials or going to a workshop. Still needing inspiration? Find your nearest tutor in the tutor directory here.

Fancy making an animal sculpture with me? Find me here at The Crafty Little Corner.

Well that’s all from me this month, I hope I have left you with plenty of animal and creature inspiration.

Peace, love and creature comforts,

Shell x