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')

Monday, September 19, 2016

Feature Artist - Friendship - Welcome Brenda!!

Hello Everyone!

Anne here, to introduce the winner of my Summertime Fun Challenge in July.  I am completely thrilled to introduce you to the super talented Brenda Brown of Bumblebees and Butterflies.

Brenda has a wonderful vintage/shabby style, her art is always stunning, beautifully crafted and always incredibly elegant!  Not only that but Brenda loves to share her techniques on her blog.  She is a published artist, a tutor and is part of an international design team.  She is one very inspirational lady!

Brenda's project is perfect for Branka's Friendship Challenge, it celebrates Friendship so well.  The project includes some wonderful techniques and celebrates Brenda's style perfectly.  Brenda has included a quote about friendship at the end which is so very true too!


Hi fellow crafters and artists, it is Brenda here from Bumblebees and Butterflies I am super excited to be here today with a guest post and project for you

I love my 'work', I am able to get up every day and choose what I would like to do. I always seem to have a to-do list of projects that need making but I always seem to get them done even if it is by the skin of my teeth sometimes. This year has been amazing with so many doors opening for me and I feel blessed and honoured that people follow me on my blog and on Facebook and often leave me wonderfully supportive comments. 

Thank you for being here today to see what I have designed. What makes it thrilling is that I don't get the chance to enter challenges very often these days and was so pleased to be able to take part part in the Summer Fun challenge and then found myself totally flabbergasted when Anne and the amazing team chose my frame as the winner. Thank you all so much.

I love the theme Branka has chosen for September, FRIENDS are such an important part of our lives and need to be loved and celebrated often, so here is my contribution to add to all the other wonderful makes from the super talented team and the entrants who have already taken part.

Process steps
~ Adhere a piece of designer paper to the board, sand the edges to smooth them and rub ground espresso distress ink all round them.
~ Stamp a patterned stamp using black archival and paint in some of the design, I used raw umber fluid acrylic from DecoArt.
~ Seal with a layer of clear gesso.

~ Start to gather the added layers for a collage, I did a quick rust technique on some wooden letters to spell the word 'friends'
~ Begin by painting over the letters with raw umber, make sure you catch the sides and dry.
~ Stipple over some paynes grey and yellow oxide.
~ Apply a coat of quinacridone gold.
~ Repeat any of these steps if you need to add more layers to get your required effect.
~ Rub coffee archival ink pad round all the edges.

~ Gather other collage embellishments some of which are left over pieces from other projects. I also found a vintage picture of a group of friends together which fitted the challenge theme and focus for my board perfectly.

~ Add some colour to the clipboard, I used watery washes of  quinacridone red, yellow green light, vermilion and titanium white. I also added some of the paint to the actual clip mechanism and attached it back on the board then rubbed in some iced espresso metallic lustre.

~ Finally I layered all the pieces up  to complete the board ....,.

...... splattering with white paint .....

 .... and finding the 'just celebrate' which seemed to fit in perfectly.

Thanks for letting me be a part of your 'Friendship' group this month 'Anything But Cute' I have so enjoyed it.

Remember - 
are people you don't need to talk to every day.
In fact you don't need to talk to each other for weeks,
but when you do, it's as if you'd never stopped talking.

I'm sure we all have some of these.

hugs Brenda xxx


WOW, what a beautiful project!  Isn't that a wonderful way to celebrate friendship?  We would love to see you join in Branka's Friendship Challenge and we hope that Brenda's project has inspired you to do so!

You have until the 4th of October 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
Anne xx


  1. Beautiful art! Brenda's art is always inspiring and this is no exception!

  2. You never fail to impress me with your wonderful techniques and creations Brenda. Well deserved win :D XXX

  3. Huge congrats on being the winner of the July challenge Brenda x it's lovely to see you here and your make is just stunning x lots of lovely layers of texture, paints and papers, it xxxxx
    Annie x

  4. Great tutorial and beautiful friendship project, Brenda!

  5. Wow, Brenda, this is absolutely stunning!! The clipboard looks amazing!! I love the tutorial, too!! The rusted letters are gorgeous!! What a fabulous project this is!! And so inspiring!!

    A Mermaid's Crafts

  6. Such a wonderful piece from Brenda xx

  7. Wow, Brenda! I'm so pleased you could join us with your wonderful artwork and this fabulous step by step tutorial. Your post really touched my heart, and seeing your artwork featured here is a real highlight! Love your collage and all the elements; I especially love those altered letters-they remind me of rusted galvanized steel-perfect! Thank you for all your hard work! Big hugs!

  8. This really is gorgeous! A truly wonderful way to decorate your clipboard! Chrisx

  9. A fantastic friendship project Brenda, after a well deserved win!! Congrats again, and thank you for this new tutorial. Hugs, Coco xx

  10. Wowzers Brenda! So many lovely layers and elements are involved with the creation of this fantabulous Friend design. those rusty bits are gorgeous and so stunning. Your entire design is so full of fun and vigor. The tutorial is spot on and very helpful! Thank you for sharing this and enjoying the process. Totes awesome sauce! Hugz. ~Niki

  11. Yes ... absolutely true Brenda! Best friends are those you don't have to see everyday. Your conversation just seems to pick up where you left it the next time you see them. Wonderful way to pay tribute to these friends. Love the flourish stamping in the background. And you have this amazing gift for layering embellishments. Congrats on your win for the Summertime Fun challenge and your guest DT spot here!

  12. Brenda, THANK YOU THANK YOU for sharing your AMAZING creativity and inspiration with us. Yet again, you've blown me away! I could literally spend hours drooling over your creations daily! Biggest congrats on your win and feature, my friend. Hugs, Autumn

  13. Hi Brenda, love it. Congrats on your win too. Angela x

  14. You re in point of fact a just right webmaster. The website loading speed is amazing. It kind of feels that you're doing any distinctive trick. Moreover, The contents are masterpiece. you have done a fantastic activity on this subject! BodyContact