Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Sunday, March 1, 2009

February Winner

Our February winner is Melody Zahara...congrats Melody!

This month's prize was a zip file of collage papers....  March Prize is also a collage pack that will be emailed to the winner of the March Jigsaw Challenge...

On March 30th, we will add a slideshow of everyones work on the Jigsaw Puzzle Pin, put names of all those who joined in into a hat and draw it - winner announced here same day...the next day April 1st the fourth technique will go live.. (April will be by Barb Thomas)

March Project - Altered Jigsaw Puzzle Pin

By Bevlea Ross

This month is an altered jigsaw puzzle piece.I  made mine from a piece of a child's jigsaw puzzle (because the pieces are a lot larger than 'grownup' jigsaw puzzle pieces), but you could also use the commercially available blank chipboard puzzle bits.

I added a pin on the back to wear as a brooch - but it could also be a fridge magnet if you added one of the heavier magnets (not the flat sort)

These make great gifts as you can make a batch of them up at once and have them handy for unexpected occasions - as well as using up odd bits and peices and beads etc., that you only have one or a few of....

  • Child's jigsaw puzzle bits (you can usually pick these up cheap in the Oppies... (Thrift shops)  
  • 2-3 acrylic paints (I like Lumiere  but you can use any paint)
  • 1/2" Flat brush
  • Black Ink pad (doesnt matter if its dye or solvent ink)
  • Collage type Rubber Stamp
  • Beading wire in a colour to match your paint
  • Jump Rings
  • Charms
  • Beads
  • Pin back or magnet
  • Micro Beads
  • Dimensional Magic
  • Strong Glue
  • Darning Needle
  • Needle nose pliers

Step One

Rummage through your box of puzzle bits and choose a few shapes that appeal to you. Consider how they will look when you put them 'right way up'

Step Two

Paint the right side of each piece with two coats of Gesso. You just need a couple of light coats to give the paint something to stick to - doesn't have to totally cover the image...

The 'right side' is the image side.. the image side will always have the nicer, smoother edge to it because of the way they are die cut when manufactured

Step Three

Take your Lumiere paints (or whatever you have chosen) and with your flat brush 'pounce' one colour of the paints onto the jigsaw bits in a couple of patches.  It needs to go on a little heavier than normal...and you do need to pounce it on.. just painting in strokes as you would normally would make it streaky.. pouncing it gives it a bit more texture and ensures a good solid coat.

TIP:  When painting or glueing I use an old phone book under my work - then I can just rip the sticky/messy page off and have a clean palette to paint the next ones.. no transferring paint from one job to another...

Step Four

Now just wipe the excess paint off the brush and dip it into the second colour and pounce that in the remaining white areas. 

Step Five

Next, WITHOUT cleaning or wiping the brush off, dip the tip of it back into the first colour and dab/pounce where the two colours meet to blend/mottle the edges.

Step Six

Paint all your peices and allow to dry thoroughly.

I have used all Lumiere's here:

Citrine with Sunset Gold
Rust with Burnt Orange
Purple with Turquoise

Step Seven

Next, take your stamp and black ink and stamp on each peice.

I have used a collage type stamp that is a mix of swirls and text.  You need one that is bigger than your puzzle bit so you dont get the entire design on it - just a section of it.

Step Eight

When all your peices are stamped, decide which way up they are going to be.. and with your Japanese Screw Punch or Crop-a-dile, punch holes in the bottoms of each peice.  

You can see here that some have only one hole, while others have two or three.  You can also punch a hole in the sides that stick out if you like.  Where ever you punch a hole, we will be adding a charm and jump ring later.. so visualise where you want your danglies :-)

Step Nine

Next, take your dimensional magic and go all around the edges, then fill in the middle.

You can use a glossy varnish but the dimensional magic does look a lot better.  One of the good things about the Dimensional Magic is it stays exactly where you put it.. doesnt run over the edges like varnish would and doesnt clog up your holes, but sits nicely on top.

NOTE:  Never shake Dimensional Magic.. that will puts little bubbles in it that are hard to get rid of.  If you do get a bigger air bubble when you are using it pop it with a pin.

TIP: I have two bottles of Dimensional Magic on the go at a time.. one of them I have snipped the top down a little to allow it to flow faster, I have marked the bottle with an * so I know its the bigger opening and use this for bigger jobs like this.

Step Ten

Now, gather your beading wire, charms, beads,jump rings,  metal bits etc., 

I cant give you step by step here.. you have to go with the flow of what works for the peice you have vbg.  The only main rule is bear in mind where you are going to put the pin or magnet, and dont have wire going across this spot.. it needs to be flat to give you good grip when you add the pin/magnet.

NOTE:  The pin is best placed as high as you can get it on the back... don't make the classic mistake of positioning in the middle as this could cause the pin to tip forward when worn.  Its best placed right at the top on the back and it will then sit flat

Step Eleven

Some things I like to do:

  1. Wind the wire around a couple of times and on the last pass add a bead.
  2. Thread some seed beads onto beading wire and add them across a corner
  3. Wind some wire around a darning needle to create a coil, then thread some beads onto the straight end, add to the puzzle peice and send your wire ends to the back
I have used one long peice here..

I did the coil,  taped the wire to the back (coil end) with some masking tape, added the beads, passed it to the back, wound it a couple of times around the right hand top corner, added another bead, wound it to the back again, came out on the other side, threaded some seed beads on and went to the back again.  Then I lifted the making tape off, twisted the two ends of the wire together with the needle nose pliers and added some fresh tape over the ends so that it wouldnt catch on clothing.


When I had added beads, wire etc., to all my peices, I added a few micro beads here and there (with Dimensional Magic as a glue).

When your beads are dry, hang the charms off the peices with a jump ring.

And finally... with good strong glue (I use Weldbond its brilliant) glue the pin or magnet to the back of your peices, as high up as you can position it.

Tip:  open the jump rings with your needle nose pliers by twisting the ends apart, one end towards you, one end away from you.  Never PULL them apart.  They will close up much neater if you just twist them apart.  Once they are pulled apart with a gap in the centre, its hard to keep them round.