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Welcome Back

After sharing a picture of my first marbled print. I wondered if you would like to see how the print was created? For this tutorial I used the Marbling 4 Fun kit that I reviewed in an earlier post.

My first marbled pages

My first marbled pages

Here is the Marbling 4 Fun video tutorial, for mixing up the floater powder. You need to do this 24 hours before you want to marble, for the mix to set. This is the fluid that the paints float upon.

Because I only had a small bowl to mix in and a small bottle to store it in, I used the guide found on the Marbling 4 Fun website that states : 5 grams of floater powder to 1 litre of water. I made up 1 litre of water to the 5 grams of floater powder and it was enough to fill the small tray that the kit comes with. So you don’t need so much storage space if you are only doing small items.

To store my floater mixture; I used a clean and empty 2 litre plastic milk bottle, which has a screw top lid. Write on the bottle what it will contain BEFORE you fill it, to ensure there are no accidents with people trying to drink it! You need to leave the mixture at room temperature overnight before you use it. After this stage, if stored in the screw top bottle in the fridge, it can last up to three months.

Set up you area to marble in.

This is a messy process, I won’t lie, but its also very much worth it. The floater mixture, leaves a coating of what feels like thinned out hair gel, on the surface of the paper/project and it takes a fair while to dry. So you need to plan for where you will put them. Here’s how I set up the area I marbled in.

Preparing your workspace to marble in.

Preparing your workspace to marble in.

First I put a layer of plastic over the whole area, these are just bin bags cut along the sides so they lie flat. On the right, you can see a few layers of blank newsprint, this is not expensive and I got mine from a house moving company. This paper is to lie wet pages onto, while they dry. In the end I also added a try under the white box so I had somewhere to put wet tools.

You need to mix the paint in the kit with soft water 1:1. As suggested by the company, I used old camera film pots for the mixed paint and secured them to the sides of the lid of the box, with masking tape. Its worth sticking them down as by the time you put the pipettes in, they fall over without support! (Ask me how I know!)

Its a good idea to work on a hard floor in case of drips n spills and expect to leave the wet papers overnight if you are working in cold conditions. This was done in February in the UK and they took around 12-24 hours to dry depending on the size of the card/paper, in the unheated studio. Have a bucket to hand to dump the wet waste paper into.

Making marbled patterns

Stage 1: Applying the paint to the tray.

Here are the paints on the water, before I pulled the print.

My first marbling page. Paints on the water.

My first marbling page. Paints on the water.

To create this pattern I used;

  • One drip of Violet paint in each corner of the box
  • One drip of black paint into the centre of the purple shapes
  • White paint acts like a resist, I put white paint in the centre of the black circles
  • Another drip of purple into the centre of each of the shapes.

Using the star flower technique, I used a pin to drag ‘petals’ in to the centre of each shape; the flowers with the points, I created by pulling the paint back out toward the edges from each of the purple ‘petals’. I’ll add the star flower video tutorial at the end of the article.

Stage 2: Creating the print

Using 80 gsm printer paper, I placed a sheet on top of the pattern in the try, allowed it to sit there a few moments, then carefully peeled it back off to reveal the print. The first generation of print will be bright, the later ones more pastel.

Here are the newly printed pages, still wet with the floater mix.

First generation marbled paint print on the left and the second generation on the right.

First generation marbled paint print on the left and the second generation on the right.

Stage 3: The Finished prints

Here’s how the pages turned out after drying.

My first marbled pages

My first marbled pages

My second marbled page. Second generation of paint.

My second marbled page. Second generation of paint.

Links

Here is Craig Joubert’s video for how the flower pattern is created. I’ll try to make my own videos with marbling, once the light levels improve in the UK. Craig is the maker of the kit and the man behind Marbling 4 Fun.

Have you ever tried marbling? How did you get on? Would you like to see more marbling videos at a later date? Let me know in the comments below.

Best wishes and thanks for reading, see you soon

Billie :)

Welcome Back

Did you know there was a You Tube channel for this blog? Come and see the trailer and the new look You Tube channel.

Its been a while since I posted a video, due to health and computer issues but DH has sorted out how to get videos online again, and  I was able to create this new trailer.

Hope you like it and I look forward to creating some new videos for the channel, this year. Thanks for sticking with me during my technical difficulties ;) Just need some good weather now, to let me record some new tutorials. I’m thinking marbling, gelli, stencils?

Links

If you liked the trailer, do come and visit me on You Tube, where you can see the new look channel. I’ve gathered related videos into playlists, so I hope you will find it easier to get to the videos, you most want to see.

Do let me know in your comments, what you think about the new design & layout. If you have any requests for projects or techniques you would like to see tutorials for, let me know and I’ll see what I can do.

Best wishes and thanks for reading, see you soon

Billie :)

Welcome Back

Today I would like to share a free download with you. A calendar page for April 2014.

Free download Calendar page for April 2014

Free download Calendar page for April 2014

How to Use

  • Click on the image to open the calendar picture to full size.
  • Click on File, then choose landscape option for paper orientation.
  • Click Print

To Change the size of the calendar

  • Click on the image to open the calendar picture to full size.
  • Right Click and choose ‘Save As’ from the list of options.
  • You can print it as, is or open a Word Processing program and insert the image. (Once it is on your machine.) This will give you more control of the final size of the calendar page.

Feel free to tell your friends about this offer and forward them a link to this site. If you missed this month’s calendar page you can find it on the Calendar Downloads page.

Let me know what you think, of these calendar pages. If comments suggest this is popular…it just might become a regular feature.

Best wishes and thanks for reading, see you soon

Billie :)

Welcome Back

Today I’d like to share a couple of pictures of my first marbled pages. These were created using the Marbling 4 Fun kit which I reviewed last week.

My first marbled pages

My first marbled pages

I was really pleased with how these prints turned out, the colours were very bright and vibrant on the first print and got more pastel as further prints were taken from the original paint layer. This is great as it makes for a lot of versatility in design. You can also alter your later print with more manipulation of the existing paint or add more in some areas for a light and dark effect on the same design.

They tell you to use the pipettes to mix the paint on each application, I wonder if the textured effect (which I quite like) was due to my ‘over mixing’ the paint in this way.

My second marbled page. Second generation of paint.

My second marbled page. Second generation of paint.

This was ordinary 80 gsm copier paper and I also marbled onto paper torn from an old book. This was a great way to use the second generation of ink, do it a few times on several sheets to remove all but the last trace of paint from the tray. They get very pale with later generations but if you plan to use them to stamp over, that’s no problem.

What do you think? Have you ever tried marbling? Would love to see your results if you have this kit too.

Links

Best wishes and thanks for reading, see you soon

Billie :)

Welcome Back

In today’s post I will be reviewing; Marble Art; Full kit.

Marbling 4 Fun; Marbling kit

Marbling 4 Fun; Marbling kit

Product Details

  • Manufacturer/Brand; Marbling 4 Fun/ Marble Art Kit
  • RRP at time of writing: £35

Reason For Buying

I’ve always wanted to try marbling on paper but in the past it looked so complicated and kits were expensive. I saw this kit demonstrated on Create and Craft, but on the makers own site they also had marbling combs, so I bought from them as the pattern I most wanted to create would need a comb.

Contents

  • Marbling paints: White, Yellow, Blue, Red and Black. 50gms of each
  • Alum crystals. 30grms
  • Floater Powder 40 gms
  • 8 Pipettes
  • Instruction sheet
  • A6 box for storage and to marble in.

Pros/Cons

Pros

  • Fun
  • Simple to do
  • Colours are mixable so you can mix any colours you like from the core kit
  • Neither the paints nor the floater mix smell, I am sensitive to highly fragranced products but neither gave me any issues.
  • Storage box the kit comes in becomes the tray you marble in
  • Bright colours from first prints
  • Later prints become lighter as there is less paint on the floater, you get beautiful faded pastel shades with later prints.

Cons

  • Needs a bit of prep for the area you want to marble in as papers take a good while to dry off
  • Best done in a room with a hard floor in case of spills
  • In a domestic situation, you would probably want to keep cats/dogs/ younger kids out of the room where you do this or where papers are drying, or they might walk on or or lick the gooey papers.

Build Quality

Excellent, does what it says on the tin. I like the fact that the tray that you marble in is also a storage box for the kit, which when you are short of space is helpful. The lids of the paints are easy to remove but also very secure.

Value for Money

Excellent. Its an affordable price for trying a new hobby.

Extras you will need

Its always advisable to keep craft and food items separate, so bear in mind you will also need the following items to get started, on top of the main kit.

  • Dedicated bowl (that will accept near boiling water), to mix the floater powder in.
  • Whisk also for mixing the floater powder.
  • Bottle of deionized water, the best prints are created with soft water, even bottled waters are hard so use deionized water for the best results (see Links)
  • A screw top bottle to store your mixed floater water. Once made up, it will last up to 3 months if stored in the fridge.
  • Air tight pots for your mixed paint, such as the little pots that used to contain 35mm film for cameras. (available from the company if you haven’t got any horded away)
  • Protect your working area with plastic, such as cut open bin liners ;)
  • Some extra pipettes if you want to mix loads of colours.

You will also use LOADS of kitchen paper to clean the tray between prints and a bucket to put the wet waste paper into is essential.

Optional Extras

  • Combs to create patterns in the paint, you can use paper clips etc but the company does sell a small comb.
  • Get the Violet paint! Its not in the main kit but it is beautiful, so if you budget will let you get it.
  • If you don’t want the paint to stain your fingers you can wear protective gloves
Marbling 4 Fun; Marbling kit plus Violet paint and a comb to help create patterns

Marbling 4 Fun; Marbling kit plus Violet paint and a comb to help create patterns

Would I buy it Again?

Yes, because I love the effects.

Summing up

If you have always wanted to marble but been put off by a lot of expensive kit, this is a great place to start. The finished results are superb from bright vivid colours for your first print out to pastels if you take later prints from the same paints on the tray.

Best to do this in a kitchen or on an area with a hard floor in case of spills and keep a plastic bucket next to you for the kitchen paper you use to clean off the tray with. I did this in the studio and cut open bin bags to cover the table for a wide area, had some disposable gloves so I didn’t colour my hands too. I put the marbling box on a tray and put layers of butchers paper for the prints to dry on.

After a marbling session

After a marbling session

Stick your mixed paint pots down! I thought I didn’t need to and when I stood the pipette in it, gravity tipped it over! I used a curl of masking tape and it held the camera pots to the side of the box nicely.

I stuck my pots to the tray with masking tape.

I stuck my pots to the tray with masking tape.

My papers took overnight to dry in an unheated outside studio. The papers will be covered in a layer of floater mix which feel a bit like light hair gel, so it does get messy but its lots of fun. The results were much better than I expected and by storing the floater mix in the fridge it can last up to 3 months after you first mix it. So you get a lot of prints from each batch of floater.

Messy but marvellous, does what it says on the tin! Its a lot of fun and the marbling effects are addictive and beautiful.

Links

If you would like to try this kit for yourself, check out the links below. Marble Arts do ship internationally too.

Marbling 4 Fun website

Full Marbling Kit

Deionized water

Best wishes and thanks for reading, see you soon

Billie :)

Welcome Back

This month I’m going to try this marbling kit.

Marbling 4 Fun; Marbling kit

Marbling 4 Fun; Marbling kit

As soon as I saw this kit on Create and Craft I just had to get it, I’ve always wanted to try marbling. After some research into the process and chatting to my bookbinding friends who also paper marble I think this will be a wonderful way to try the process in a smaller more achievable scale.

Once I’ve had a play, I’ll let you know how I get on and hope to write a review and maybe some tutorials, we’ll see how I get on. I bought my kit direct from the makers and added some extras; the Violet coloured paint and the comb you see in the next picture.

Marbling 4 Fun; Marbling kit plus Violet paint and a comb to help create patterns

Marbling 4 Fun; Marbling kit plus Violet paint and a comb to help create patterns

Feeling tempted? Check out You Tube for Marbling 4 fun tutorials and also well worth watching are the ones for Ebru, which is Turkish marbling. Let me know in the comments if you are interested in this too and I’ll share my links for some really wonderful marbling sites and videos.

Best wishes and thanks for reading, see you soon

Billie :)

Welcome Back

In today’s post I will be reviewing; Stabilo Point 88 pens.

Stabilo Point 88 Pens

Stabilo Point 88 Pens

Product Details

  • Manufacturer/Brand; Stabilo
  • Item number: 8825-1
  • RRP at time of writing: RRP £30.60 but £16 on Amazon

Reason For Buying

Having decided to give doodling a go, I wanted a set of quality fine nibbed colored pens, these looked a good set of colours to allow

Pros/Cons

Pros

  • Excellent fine nib 0.4 mm (see graphic on case)
  • Smooth to draw or write with
  • Good selection of colours, suitable for a range of subjects
  • Case is lightweight but plastic so will last a while if you like your pens lined up by colour
  • These pens are water-soluble so if you want to bleed out the colour for projects you can
  • Pens are also available singly from Art supply stores if you wish to replace colours over time

Cons

  • The only colour ID is on the pen cap and base, not the barrel of the pen. So you’ll want to clip caps to base while in use or risk getting colours in a muddle
  • With my dexterity issues I found the narrow barrels and caps a little awkward to get hold of. Not a problem if you hands work tho ;)
  • Given the high rrp, the case quality is a bit of a let down. It works well but looks like it would rip quite easily, not that sturdy

Build Quality

The pen itself is excellent, the material of the nib gives a smooth writing or drawing surface on different papers/card. The caps fit well, the only quality issue is the case they come in. Not a deal breaker if you are intending to store them in other containers.

Value for Money

TBH I’m not sure I would have paid full rrp, but I got mine from Amazon for around £13 delivered and for that I am very satisfied. They are excellent and if you like to use fine liners in your art, these are excellent quality.

Would I buy it Again?

Yes

Summing up

I’ve used these pens on cheap paper as well as good quality cartridge paper, they perform well and give excellent results. The colour range is good and the glide of the nib on the paper is a joy.

Personally, I would have liked a coloured barrel to help ID the colours and due to difficulties with fine motor skills, I struggle with the small caps and fine barrels. The barrels are approximately the same diameter as Bic biros for reference.

Be aware of the water-soluble nature of these pens when choosing a project to use them on. So if you are using them with mixed media and use anything waterbased over the top, bear in mind the colours will reactivate and move. If you want a water colour look from the pens, scribble some colour onto an acrylic block or non porous surface and use a waterbrush to pick up the colour. This does make for a versatile pen that will have many uses. Single pens and smaller sets are available if you want to try them out before investing in a bigger set.

The other use for these pens, they are great for pattern drafting (dressmaking) due to their fine line. Careful of where you store your patterns though due to the water-soluble ink!

These pens have become a favorite for me for doodle art. Do try them out, the colours and ink flow are a joy.

Links

Here are some places where you can find Stablio pens. They are also available in larger sets with a thicker nib known as Stabilo 68. If you want something more compact to take out and about there were also some pocket-size pens in Staples.

Whats your favorite pen for doodling? Would love to see projects you have created with these pens, do leave me a comment with your thoughts.

Best wishes and thanks for reading, see you soon

Billie :)

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