Hi it’s Kore! This month on the Powertex UK blog we’re all about keepsakes. I keep a box of treasures that I have collected over the years from letters and concert tickets to small things. They include tiny gifts from dear friends, a crystal pendant bought on a special holiday, a chinese coin, a teeny clay cat and a little angel. Usually these things hide away, only occasionally being found for a wander down memory lane.
My Treasure Tree project gives me a way to display my tiny keepsakes all the time.
Powertex Universal Medium in Red and Blue
Black Bister spray
Copper Colortricx pigment
3d balls in Medium and Large
1mm craft wire and cutters
Cotton fabric strips and textures e.g. string
Base or box for your tree to stand on
Flat brush and paper towel
Step 1. Making the wire frame
A quick internet search showed me several ways to make a wire tree armature and I took inspiration from those to make my wire tree. 1mm craft wire is good for this as thicker wire can be hard to twist when you have several strands together.
I wrapped wire round an A5 notebook to measure it out, cut the wires at the top and then used my fingers to create a loop at the bottom. From here I can twist the wires into a trunk and branches. Bend the loop to make a base and keep the branches horizontal so you can hang your treasures. Watch my video below for more details on creating the tree shape.
This video shows me making my second tree!
Step 2. Shaping and taping the tree
When the wire tree has been made, I give it some shape by wrapping strips of foil around the trunk and the start of the branches. Padding out the bottom also means I can tape it to a base or box lid.
When done, I completely cover the wire and foil with masking tape.
Step 3. Powertex and fabric wrapping
Now it’s time to get the Powertex out. I wanted to use a purple colour, so I mixed Red and Blue but any dark colour of Powertex will work brilliantly. I pre cut strips of cotton fabric no more than 8″ long. I also had some pieces of stockinette, string and muslin for extra texture. I used 3d balls for texture on the base.
I painted the whole tree with Powertex first, then used the fabric wrapping technique to cover the tree. I wrapped the strips in spirals and kept lots of texture. The stockinette pieces were gathered around the base of the tree. This created wrinkles and pockets that would hold trinkets when the tree was finished. String pieces and 3d balls were added last, coated in Powertex and put into place.
Step 4. Adding colour
When dry, colour can be added. I used a few sprays of Black Bister around the base and the trunk. This creates depth and shadows. A quick blast with a hairdryer works before adding my dry brushing. I chose the Copper Colortricx pigment for my tree and didn’t need to add any more colours as the metallic effect looked great without anything else.
This technique uses a dry mix of Easy Varnish and pigment powder and is applied to raised areas using a flat brush. Add your pigment over your project, highlighting all the textures. It works best if you remove excess colour onto a paper towel first and keep your brush flat against your project. Watch your tree come alive as the textures are picked out against the dark background.
The finished tree is perfect for hanging my tiny treasures and displaying those little keepsakes that get lost at the bottom of my memory box. They can be attached or left free to move and change.
So now my tiny treasures can be kept out of their box and displayed, reminding me daily of happy memories.
If you would like to see more Powertex creations pop along to The Powertex Studio facebook group where you can share your makes too. Powertex Addicts United on Instagram has lots of inspiration from across the world.
Until next time, make a little space in your week to let your art out!