THE BIG REVEAL, PART 8.
This is the second of two posts today.
Many of my regular visitors have been justifiably very frustrated and impatient with me lately because I’ve been working hard on several secret projects that I wasn’t at liberty to reveal until now. With her permission, I can now reveal that I have been making stuff for Shaz. As many of you will know, she is about to undergo major surgery and has been through so much over the past year. She and her lovely hubby share the same birthday and I have made cards for them both, a get well card for her (still under wraps) and a selection of bits and pieces for her to play with once she feels up to being creative again. She opened the parcel on her birthday (14th Aug.) and now that she has received them I can share the making of them with you. Until now, I didn’t want to spoil her surprise as she visits my blog regularly. Throughout my own cancer journey, this wonderful friend has been such an encouragement and support to me, and this is one way I can thank her, and show my own appreciation and support. I know that she would love a visit from you to wish her well for her surgery on 2nd Sept.
I shall be uploading a couple of posts each day over the next few days until all is revealed. Please scroll down for earlier posts.
More Faux Leathers
I have made three more sheets of faux leather, this time A4 size, as mini-masterboards, and decided to try doing some different colours. One was the classic brown that I’ve done before, but this time I didn’t use the yellow ochre, and the other two were green and red respectively.
Here are the materials for the green one.
I chose Hooker’s green for the main colour, as it is a nice rich dark green, and sap green for the dry brushing.
For the red one, I didn’t really have the colour I wanted, so I got out the various shades of red that I do have, and also some black in case it needed darkening.
Here are the sheets after their first coat, drying, each with their respective paints.
As before, the brown one’s main colour is burnt umber. For the green one: Hooker’s green. For the red one, I used the whole small tube of crimson red from a very cheap and nasty little set of acrylic paints that I started off with – I’ve had them for ages and can’t remember where they came from – when I squeezed it out onto the palette it was like water, and then at last some more solid paint came out! I mixed it all up well and it took the whole tube to cover the sheet. The colour is more or less OK, though, and it will all get covered with subsequent layers. This red one was more experimental than the others because of not having the exact colours I wanted.
Here are the faux leathers with their respective paints, after all the painting was complete. With the brown one, I decided to leave it plain after the dry brushing with the burnt sienna, and not add the yellow ochre which gives it a slight tan tinge, and I did not add any gilding wax.
The green one looked very rich with a light touch of Treasure Gold gilding wax in the raised creases. As someone said, to get the right effect, you need to touch the surface as if it’s red hot when applying the gilding wax, and this is good advice because that way it prevents you from being too heavy-handed and getting the gold anywhere but on the raised surface.
As predicted, the red one proved more difficult to get right. I added a dry-brushed layer of alizarin crimson, and then cadmium red, but the whole thing still didn’t look quite right, so I made a dark wash with black and alizarin crimson, which I brushed liberally over the surface and let it run into the creases. I repeated this with more black in the mix until I got the right look. I was concerned that all that water would make the card disintegrate so I was careful not to handle it until I’d dried it with my heat gun. The result was pretty fair at the end! It had a lot of layers of paint, dry brushing and washes before I was satisfied, and again it was given a lovely rich look by the application of some Treasure Gold gilding wax. The red one also proved the most difficult to photograph to get the colour accurate – in this photo it looks a bit brown.
Once all the leathers were painted, gilded and fully dry, I was able to apply the acrylic wax. After much experimentation, this is my preferred finish for faux leather. It gives a gorgeous rich, shiny, polished surface once it is dry and buffed with a soft cloth, like the patina of old leather. It goes on quite milky, but dries clear and shiny. Fabulous stuff! I have seen it applied to stitched teabags and they look like old leather!
Here are the finished leathers with their application of buffed acrylic wax.
Unfortunately in these photos, the gilding no longer shows up! It is still there, though, and they look sumptuous and rich. You can see a little of it in this detailed shot of the three leathers.
This is such a fun technique to do! I recommend it to everyone. You can use it for the backgrounds for cards (it is especially useful for those perpetually tricky male cards we are all called upon to make from time to time!); book covers, to cover boxes, for scrap book pages, etc. etc. You are only limited by your imagination.
Suggestions on a postcard, please, on how to make this stuff actually smell like leather!!