TCW Virtual Visit and Ken Oliver ColorSparx!

Tuesday we had a great time hearing from Jaime Echt at The Crafter's Workshop and learning about stencils, modeling paste and Ken Oliver ColorSparx watercolor powders. The continued education of our Sales, Marketing, and Merchandising teams on new products and trends is important to us here at Notions, and so being able to get hands-on with TCW's products was a blast!

Jaime Echt is the designer and founder of The Crafter's Workshop. The company began as a small paper arts shop in 1997, and one day in 1998, they realized the only thing missing from their shop was a great assortment of unique templates and stencils...and thus TCW was born! Today they have a large collection of stencils, mediums, and more!

If you loved Ken Oliver's ColorBurst powders, then you're going to love the new ColorSparx powders! Ken and TCW have teamed up to keep this product going with a newly designed bottle for smaller hands or grip strength that isn't quite what it used to be. They come in six color coordinated sets! Shop Now.

Check out the video next week on our Facebook for What's New Wednesday!

Here's the step-by-step on how to use the ColorSparx watercolor powders! You can use whatever stencils and modeling paste colors you like with this technique!

Step 1: Get a 6x6 Mixed Media Board and a 6x6 stencil (we're using SKU #086539 "Snowflakes") and choose your colors.

Step 2: Sprinkle the watercolor powder over your stencil. Think of this as a "light salting," as a little goes a LONG way.

Step 3: Spray your stencil with water. Two spritz should do it. Don't overspray, or your print wont look very crisp. Peel off your stencil.

Step 4 (optional): Waste not! Get a fresh mixed media board and put your wet stencil face down on it to create a negative of the original. This is great for creating a heavily colored background!

Finished! Use these as backgrounds for a different work of art or leave as is! This technique is great for use on watercolor paper for making Christmas cards!

Now that we have the basics, let's move on to the bigger project! This project uses the 12x12 stencils and mixed media board, the watercolor powders, and the modeling paste to create a textured multimedia art piece that is perfect for Autumn and/or Thanksgiving! Use this technique with any of the other stencils and modeling paste colors by TCW.

Step 1: Choose your colors and stencil. We used a harvest themed stencil, but the sunflower would also look stunning! (Stencils used: TCW 819 & TCW 799)

Step 2: Sprinkle the watercolor powder over your stencil. Tip: Do the light colors first, then do the darker colors.

Step 3: Spray your stencil with water and peel off the stencil. You could just leave it at this and be completely happy (or do the negative and see how it looks!) but we're going to go one step further. Let your work dry completely before continuing. 

Step 4: Pick a sentiment stencil like this "Thankful" stencil and place it over your work and tape it down at the corners. This will keep it from moving around while you work.

Step 5: Scoop a dollop of the modeling paste (we used TCW9042) out with the BACK of your pallet knife. This will make it easier to spread. Start in the middle of your stencil to avoid smearing and use the long edge of your pallet knife to spread the paste lightly, like frosting a cake. Do not lift straight up off your stencil, but rather glide away.

Step 6: Do the same to the outside pieces.

Step 7: Peel off your stencil and soak in water or wash off immediately. The modeling paste will stick like cement to the plastic, so you're going to want to get it off as soon as you're done.

Now you're done! Set up your artwork in a place of honor, you worked hard on it! This technique can also be used on a smaller scale for card making, using the 6x6 stencils.

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