Friday, 19 February 2016

Efco Cork Fabric is Fab!

I'm afraid it's got to be a quick post this week as I'm packing up to head off to CHSI Stitches tomorrow, but I did just want to share with everyone the wonderful new range of Cork products Efco have launched this year. 

There's compressed cork which I think everyone will recognise, especially if you've ever had cork tiles in your house. However, the really fab stuff is the ultra thin sheets of cork that come either backed with paper or fabric which make them very versatile for assorted craft applications...

Here I've used one of Efco's new Texture Mats (Africa) to stamp an image onto a piece of fabric backed cork which I then cut up and rolled into beads using a dab of glue on the edge to secure them. They were super easy to do and yet very effective!

Happy Crafting everyone (and wish me luck at Stitches!) ;)

Friday, 12 February 2016

Daisy, Daisy...

I'm busy getting ready for the UK's big trade show, Stitches, taking place at the NEC next weekend where I will be demonstrating Efcolor techniques, Texture Mats with Cernit polymer clay and Metal Foil Embossing. 

So I thought this week I would share an enamelling project from the Efcolor One Day Special I did for Hochanda TV using the delightful daisy stamp designed by John Lockwood of Creative Expressions...

Rectangle Copper Blank (Efco)
Fine Sand Paper
White Efcolor Powder (Efco)
Efcolor Tea Light Stove (Efco)
Daisy Striplet (Stamps To Die For from Creative Expressions)
Black Staz-On Ink Pad
Transparent Efcolor Powder (Efco)
Swarovski Crystals (3mm & 4mm) (Efco)
Silver Jump Ring and Chain

Step 1. Lightly sand the copper blank. Cover it with a good even layer of white Efcolor powder and heat until the powder has melted and you have a smooth glossy layer of enamel. Remove from the heat and allow to cool. 

(If you find you don't have a super smooth finish you may need to apply another layer of powder and re-fire your blank.)

Step 2. Ink up part of the rubber stamp with Staz-On ink. 

Top Tip: You can use larger stamps when stamping onto Efcolor enamelled just have to work out which part of the stamp image you want to use and make sure you ink up enough of it to cover your blank.

Step 3. Stamp the image onto the enamelled surface, taking care to not to all the stamp to slide.

Step 4. Clean the rubber stamp immediately allowing the ink to dry thoroughly on the enamel.

Step 5. Cover the blank with a thin layer of clear transparent Efcolor powder - just enough to cover it completely and still allow you to see the vague outline of the stamped image.

Step 6. Pop a couple of Swarovski crystals into the Efcolor powder in the flower centres before placing the blank back on the tea light stove to fire.

Step 7. When cool, lightly sand the back to clean it before attaching a jump ring and chain.

Top Tip: It is always best to allow the clear transparent powder to cool slowly at room temperature as rushing it can cause fine cracks to appear.

Hey ho, it's back to play, oops! I mean WORK, I go...

Happy Crafting everyone!

Sunday, 7 February 2016

Another week, another Hochanda ODS :)

Hi Everyone, A little bit late this week (what, again?! I hear you surprises there then, eh! lol!). In all seriousness, I decided to take an early weekend to recoup after the Stampbord One Day Special on Hochanda TV. There's so much prep beforehand and then a late night launch show (followed by a sleepless night in a hotel due to the thermostat clicking away non-stop) and then a very long day of shows, pre-show meetings and ongoing prep topped off with a late night drive home, woohoo! (I must be getting old as I can't hack the pace like I used to, lol!)

Anyway, another week on and another One Day Special down, this time on that wonderful product... Stampbord. I also had some new mediums to play with along with some stamps and stencils. The Maimeri mediums certainly went down a storm as we sold out of them and had to find some more to last us through to the end of the day. I must say I've certainly gone a bundle on them because you can not only apply them just as they are but also add Pan Pastels to them to colour them up and/or sprinkle ultra fine glitters over the top to add a little sparkle...

Stampbord Pendant

Materials needed:
Domino Stampbord
Stampbord Scraper Tools
Stampbord Inks
Blending Tool
Inspired by Banksy Greatness Girl Rubber Stamp Kit
Large Acrylic Block
Black Staz-On Ink Pad
Clarity Flower Heads Stencil Set
Glassy Gel Medium
Cocktail stick
Ultra fine Iridescent Glitter
(The Stampbord, Tools, Inks, Stamp & Medium are all available from

Step 1.Ink up your Stampbord with a blend of blue and yellow inks, making sure it's nice and wet.

Step 2. Scrunch up a piece of tissue and 'blot' off the excess ink in one motion to create your pattern.

Step 3. Create a hole towards one end of the domino Stampbord using a Crop-a-dile hole punch. (Alternatively you can use a small modelling drill but if doing this is it best to lay another Stampbord piece face down on top of your coloured piece and drill through both, thereby protecting the clay surface.)

Step 4. Ink up the scroll border stamp from the Inspired by Banksy Greatness Girl Kit with black Staz-On Ink and stamp it down the edge of the Stampbord.

Step 5. Once dry, use the scraper tools to scratch highlights into the design.

Step 6. Lay the flower head stencil over the top and spread some Glassy Gel medium through it using a spatula.

Step 7. Use a metal spatula to clean up the edges of the Stampbord, removing the excess medium. Use a cocktail stick or the end of a scraper tool handle to remove the excess medium from the hole.

Step 8. Place the Stampbord on a piece of paper and sprinkle some ultrafine glitter over the top. Tip off the excess and leave to dry. 

Top Tip: Once dry, give it a good rub to remove any loose glitter before using an eye pin to attach it to your necklace chain.

Et voila! 

(If you want to give it added protection you can coat it with another layer of Glassy Gel Medium.)

This is such an easy technique but so effective!

Happy Crafting Everyone!