Here at Anything But Cute we love to see all the seasoned and expert mixed media artists, but we also want to encourage those who are just getting their feet wet. Our design team will always be on the lookout for these exceptional artists, and you just never know when we might be giving out something special to a talented mixed media newcomer.
Make sure to put 'newbie' after your name in the linky so we know who you are.
(new refers to 'new to mixed media' NOT 'new to our challenge')

Friday, June 26, 2015

Spotlight Artist - Samra - Texture Galore

Hello everyone, Samra here of Paper Talk with Samra thrilled to share with you step by step of making this father's day card:

This card is filled with textures and I'll show you how I achieved this look.

I started off with a 6" x 6" piece of cardboard...

Covered it with Mod Podge and scrunched up white tissue paper. As you can see there is some extra paper around the edges, they are wrapped around the edges and glued on the back. You might ask later on, why did she even put on the tissue??? Well, I cover the cardboard with tissue paper since once it is dry it is way sturdier and covers up the edges of the cardboard so it almost looks like working on canvas...

Once tissue paper layer was completely dry, I covered it with thick layer of home made texture paste, (recipe can be found on Pamellia's blog HERE) and made groves with my Pampered Chef scraper (???) Works like a charm spreading the texture paste :)

Once paste was dry I painted it with shown paints...

Here is the closeup of the texture and crackle paint effects...

Here you can see the final touch to the weathered wood panel...

To create my sentiment I cut out the sign using my beloved Cricut, glued together all the cutouts and got a very dimensional sign which I covered with Mod Podge and black tissue paper. It was quite time consuming wrapping everything and making sure that letters are recognizable once everything is glued, but my husband sure is worth it, and some..:)

Once tissue paper layer was completely dry I rubbed almost dry paint brush that had white paint on it to get that carved in stone look... Well, that is it from me... I hope you enjoyed this post and it gave you at least some new perspective on using certain products while creating mixed media projects. 

There is still time to enter our current Challenge "Make it Masculine

Thank you so very much for stopping by.... 

Friday, June 19, 2015

Feature Artist for Make It Masculine - Welcome Anne!

Hello Everyone!

Pamellia here and I am so excited to be here today to introduce you to our surprise guest for June. I have been following this talented lady for quite some time, and it is always such a wonderful learning experience every time I visit her blog. She is the master of texture and her ideas are so original and unique, you can't help but leave a better artist than when you arrived! I do hope you will all join me in welcoming the extremely talented Anne of Redanne!!

Hello, my name is Anne (of Redanne) and I would like to say a huge thank you to the wonderfully talented Pamellia for asking me to be part of her exciting new Challenge Blog. I feel so honoured to be taking part with such a talented team of designers!

I was inspired by Cec's challenge theme - Make it Masculine - as I usually find it hard to make things for men, but with mixed media there are no real rules, which is quite liberating, so I just went with the flow and created a little project to show you.

My lovely DH keeps his keys to his 'shed' and other areas on a nail so I decided to create a proper holder for him using some of my favourite products and techniques.

I started with a 5 inch square deep canvas and coated this with my current favourite paints DecoArt Media Fluid Acrylics in Titan Buff and Medium Grey.  I painted them on and then spritzed them with water to move them around and create a random background.

I then mixed some DecoArt Crackle Paste with some English Red Oxide (about 80 / 20 mix) but I did not mix it fully as I wanted some areas to be darker than others.  Using a Wendy Vecchi brick stencil I covered the canvas completely, matching up the top and sides.  It take a little patience to match it up perfectly but it is worth it in the end!

When you use crackle paste to do the bricks they look much more realistic than a flat paste, but as an alternative you could use a textured sand paste and achieve a similar effect.

The cardboard cogs were coated with Texture Sand Paste and left to dry naturally.  You can use a heat tool but it does cause the paste to bubble and I did not want that look this time.

The next bit is my favourite.  I coated each of the cogs with Paynes Grey Fluid Acrylic and allowed this to dry.  The paste has given a lovely texture already and dabbing the paint on gives even more.  I then applied Quinacridone Gold which is a lovely rusty colour.  Once dry I covered the cogs in an 'Andy Skinner Dirty Wash' (70% Quinacridone Gold, 30% Paynes Grey and thinned with DecoArt Ultra Matte Varnish).  If you make it up in a little pot with a good lid, it will keep for a few weeks.

As a final step I added a few little dabs of Cobalt Teal Hue Media Fluid.  For the finished piece I did add some metal cogs, some chain for the top and some brass cup hooks for the keys to hand from.  These were treated in exactly the same way as the cardboard but without the Texture Sand Paste.

You can see a better view of the cup hooks in the picture above.  The letters are from Tim Holtz Idea-ology range and have been coated in the 'Dirty Wash' mixture.

A view from the side to show the 'brickwork'. 

I hope, as Cec asks in her challenge, you feel inspired to make a mixed media card or other project for a fellow in your life!

A little bit about me....

I have been crafting in some form or other all my life but as a wife and working mum this was put on hold for a long time.  After contracting a serious illness about eight years ago I had to take early retirement and the rest is history!  I love all forms of craft, from sewing and knitting to mixed media and my particular love which is working in 3D.  I am so fortunate to be on a few design teams which allow me to explore and experiment with lots of different mediums and styles - some of which challenge me enormously, but I love every minute of it! 

I have met some of THE nicest people in blogland, many in real life, it is such a wonderful, supportive, hugely inspiring and such a friendly place to be.  Thank you once again to Pamellia and to Cec for letting me be a part of this wonderful new challenge blog.


HOLY WOWSERS, isn't that awesome! I was just blown away by the incredible textures that Anne achieved and wasn't her tutorial just to die for! That brickwork looks so real, and those gears look greasy and grungy, how amazing is that! Thank you so much Anne, for spending the day with us today and for the wonderful inspiration you have provided to us all. It has been an honour to have you here with us.

I hope that seeing Anne's incredible creation will inspire you to join us for Cec's current challenge MAKE IT MASCULINE!

You have until the 4th of July to play - and you'll find all the challenge details as well as lots of inspiration from the brilliant Anything But Cute design team by clicking on the challenge link.

Happy Crafting

Friday, June 12, 2015

WINNERS - Challenge #1 - Vintage Garden

Hello everyone! 

Branka here and I am back to announce the Winner and Runner-Up from my 'Vintage Garden' Challenge. First, I would like to say a huge thank you to everyone who entered our first challenge last month! I was so excited to see all those amazing projects that were posted! You all put a lot of love into your fabulous creations and I am completely awed by the range of projects and creative ideas!  It really is heart warming. My Goodness, I had a very hard time choosing only one winner!

I have a real pleasure to announce our very first challenge Winner...

When I saw Libby's fantastic creation I fell in creative love at first sight! For me, this is an amazing mixed media interpretation of my 'Vintage Garden' challenge! I adore every single detail there, from a broken vintage plate and glass vials to an old pair of eyeglasses. Spectacular dreamy background and a fabulous design!

Congratulations Libby!! Pamellia will be contacting you via email to send you your personalized winner's badge and details about being our Feature Artist for the next challenge.

And now for my Runner-Up

Lula built a breathtaking project out of a fish can with all that stunning layering and beautiful texture! I am loving the effect she got on the tin and that gorgeous garden in full bloom with a perfect detail of metal mesh piece!

Exceptional New Mixed Media Artist

We had so many gorgeous entries by artists new to the mixed media world and they were all outstanding! We chose one artist this month who really stood out with not just one, but two mixed media projects! She is such a talented lady, we do hope to see much more of her mixed media creations in the future!! Congratulations Jennifer!!

Now on to our DT Favourites

Each one of our lovely Design Team members has chosen the entry that stuck with them the most. For each of us the reason is different, perhaps the colours captivated us, maybe the techniques amazed us or it might just be that the overall creativity blew us away.

Cec's Favourite - Lula - # 30
I chose this project because I think it is a fabulous transformation of an item that would normally be in the garbage.  Other than Lula, who keeps fish cans?  Well me starting now.  The enclosed garden is so sweet and the lace at the top is a perfect vintage embellishment.

Georgie's Favourite - 21. Handmade by Yulianna
I adore the colours, texture and layout.... The background was built up beautifully, with so much interest by painting over fabrics and those yummy hints of golds. There's such pretty vintage ruggedness to this, I feel like every time I see this I see something new to drool over.

Niki's Favourite - Jennifer H #23
I love arches and this wonderful vintage garden wall is splendid. The different techniques used to paint her die cuts and the window arch is beautiful. 

Pamellia's Favourites - I just couldn't decide between these two gorgeous journal pages. They both just took my breath away, so I went on ahead and chose both!! 

There are just so many wonderful layers of flowers and inky patterns, I was just hypnotized! Jane's freehand doodling blows me away and those white highlights make her page come to life!

The vibrant colours in Suzz's background are blended beautifully and are so perfect for a summer scene, I could almost feel the sun on my face! Those wispy flowers are captivating against the amazing brickwork!

Samra's Favourite - Carol Gill #36
Carol got me at the Raven!!! This card reminds me of Edgar Allan Poe's poem  "The Raven". "…And the Raven, never flitting, still is sitting, still is sitting on the pallid bust of Pallas just above my chamber door…." Well, Raven is sitting on one of my favorite embellishments to use in cardmaking: bicycle! And of course challenge theme was interpreted so well!

Sara Emily's Favourite -Evelyn Walter #64
Evelyn's earthy colors on her lovely vintage layout really drew me in. She also used so many mixed media techniques for her beautiful layered background.  What a breathtaking vintage garden scene! 

Honourable Mentions 

There were just so many gorgeous projects this month. We wanted to honour some that really captured the spirit of our challenge theme and tugged our heart strings with their beauty!!


        14. Candy                    17. Sue                    35. Max                   75. aNNie's Style   

A huge congratulation everyone! Thank you so much to everyone who played along with us last month and don't forget to grab your badges! You earned them!!

There is still plenty of time to enter Cec's current challenge MAKE IT MASCULINE! We can't wait to see what you come up with this time!

Hugs to all, from the 'Anything But Cute' Design Team

Friday, June 5, 2015

Challenge #2 - June - Make It Masculine

Hello, Cec here and I am your hostess for the second challenge at Anything But Cute. We were pleased that so many of you joined us for our first challenge and you certainly  pulled out all the stops to make some fantastic projects. Don't forget to check back with us next Tuesday when Branka and the team announce the winners of the Vintage Garden Challenge. Now on to this month's theme.


I decided to call the June challenge Make It Masculine and would like you to make a mixed media card or other project for a fellow in your life. It could be for Father's Day, a birthday, an anniversary or just because you want him to know how special he is.

The Anything But Cute design team has created some wonderful inspiration for you.  I encourage you to click on their name, which will take you directly to their blog so you check out all the details.

I made this Father's Day card for my husband and it features stenciling with both texture paste and distress ink, a panel covered in casting material, a handmade hot air balloon along with some metal embellishments. Lots of ink sprays and wax paste were added to create a unified colour palette.


I decided to create a steampunk style cardboard hanging plate with cogs, gears and pipes for my son. The pipes were made of plastic straws that left from my daughter's birthday party. I used black gesso for the base and then applied my antique paste in bronze. Also, I used an acetate package and a printable downloaded image. 

To be honest I wasn't really sure how this would turn out. I had an idea in my head that I wanted to do a little deep canvas with cogs, Tim Holtz embellies and left over items from an Ikea haul ages a go. With this I just ran with the mojo, and a happy little helper, and created!

This is my first masculine piece. It isn't a card, or a canvas, but recycled manila folders. With the 4th of July coming up, I first thought of our soldiers (masculine to the nines) and how much they have done for my country. This piece will be an abandoned art piece at a local Veterans Hospital to say thank you to whomever picks it up.  

I have been dying to try out some new earthy type techniques using my new DecoArt products, so this was the perfect opportunity. I have altered a book box for my Dad for Father's Day. Lots of faux bark, wood, leather and metal to make it masculine! It's sort of Steampunk meets the Deep Woods!


As soon as I saw the theme Cec picked for this challenge, I knew what I was going to make:this frame to put a picture from amazing 70,000 Tons Of Metal Cruise I went to with my husband earlier this year. This is the first time I used aluminum foil tape and it was so much fun!!! The gears were either die cuts or crafter clay molds and bolts and nuts were the real metal ones.


I had this cigar box on my shelf for over 2 years with one piece of home made background paper on it. I had visions of leather and rust when I started, and I hope I was able to convey that in using various products and techniques I've either picked up here and there or just experimented with. I probably used every single type of mixed media product in my Closet on this leathery-John-Wayne-turned-greasy Steampunk box I made for my husband.


Now I hope we have inspired you to get your mixed media supplies out and create a masculine project to share with us.

The winner will receive the honour of being our Feature Artist for an upcoming challenge!

Here at Anything But Cute we just love to see all the seasoned and expert mixed media artists, but we also want to encourage those who are just getting their feet wet. Our design team will always be on the lookout for these exceptional projects and artists. You just never know when we might be giving out something special to a talented mixed media newcomer. We all have to start somewhere, right?
Be sure to add "newbie" after your name in the linky, so we know who you are.

Challenge runs until July 4th - we can't wait to see what you come up with! Be sure to review our guidelines. Happy Crafting from the entire team and thanks for visiting Anything But Cute!