2013 Alchemist Call!

Hi everyone!  Chrissy here to ask a couple question. Do you love Gauche Alchemy?  Are you irreverent, snarky, creative AND maybe just a wee bit coo-coo cachoo? If so, we want YOU!

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Here at Gauche Alchemy, our goal is to support and encourage creative thought and expression by providing materials that help artists of all types and skill levels think differently about their creative pursuits. We endeavor to be the “jumping-off point” for your next great idea! We are all about upcycling, as well as digging up the best manufactured products we can find.  We are all about being inclusive rather than exclusive.

And now is *your* chance to get in on all of the fun, snark, and gauche awesomeness we pride ourselves on.  We are on the hunt for a few new faces to add to our team of Alchemists.

“What does an Alchemist do??”  I’m glad you asked!

“Alchemists” are more than just “oooh lookie what I made” and “here’s how I did it.”  Our Alchemists are teachers, crafters, artists, and enablers.  We share our knowledge as well as our projects.  We are here to inspire.  After all, we are regular schmoes too.

“What kind of workload is required of me?”

As an Alchemist, you will be required to submit 2 projects per month.  One project is for the newsletter and one is for the blog.  Occasionally, we may have special events such as swaps in which additional projects will be asked of you.

“Projects” include actual finished projects, technique tutorials, and anything related to what we do.  These posts can be about your craft space, what inspires you, how to bust a rut and so on.  Like we said, we are more than just a “creative team” who shows off pretty schtuff.

“Now how about the whole quid-pro-quo thing?  What do I get in return?”

As an Alchemist, you will receive an Alchemist “kit” that is looooooaaaaaaded with Gauche goodness.  You will also receive a discount to the Gauche Alchemy store.  There are other perks you receive but those will be discussed with you should you make the team.

“How long is my term?”

An Alchemist term is 12 months with the possibility of being invited to extend.

 

“Now where do I sign up?”

 

To apply, send the following to GaucheAlchemistCall@gmail.com by midnight Eastern Standard Time on  Tuesday, April 30th with the phrase “2013 DT Call” in the subject line.  This call is open to international aspiring alchemists too!

 

All aspiring alchemists please send us:
Name:
Location:
Your blog address:
Are you currently on any other design teams? (Previous DT experience is not required)
Your favorite type of project to create:
Which products in our shop inspire you the most?
Why do YOU want to work for Gauche Alchemy?

 

 

Our Blog Has Been Moved!

Hi everyone!

We decided to put our big girl pants on and have moved our blog to our gauchealchemy.com server. (We’re so grown up and stuff :P) Please update your links and bookmarks to: gauchealchemy.com and follow our new feed here. We’ve already updated the code for our blog buttons, feel free to copy them again!

Thanks for your support!

Washi Thank You Card

Good morning everyone!  Marilyn here with a quick project from our very own Mama Amy.  She has created a wonderful “Thank You” card that I believe you will love.  Amy, please tell us how you made this beautiful bright and happy card.
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Washi Tape Thank You Card

I begin the card by laying down drywall tape as the base, then layered floral washi tape from our Green Washi Tape Combo Pack and aqua striped tape from our Diagonal Stripes Washi Combo Pack over it.  Next came some Heidi Swap neon letters and Basic Grey chipboard pieces.  Lastly I inked the edges and chalked over the drywall a bit.

Washi Tape Envelope

For the envelope, I added chevron washi tape from the Green Washi Tape Combo Pack to give me a decorative area in which to write in the mailing address.

This card was done for a special person whose very kindness brought tears to my eyes.

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Amy, thank you for a wonderful, thoughful card.  It’s so great that you were able to repay a great kindness with one of your own.  Anyone would be thrilled to receive the beautiful card you have created.  Plus, I LOVE the chicken!

Until later…………………….
Smiles~
Marilyn


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Do-It-Yourself Craft Mat

Hello, Marilyn here with a cool how-to from Alchemist Misty.  Have you ever need something, but just can’t seem to make yourself part with those hard earned bucks to purchase it?  Never fear!  Today, Misty shares with us how to make one of those much longed-for items, a craft mat.  So without further ado or to-do, here’s Misty……………………………………………………

If you’re like me there are things you should probably have but don’t buy because you would rather spend your money on more paper, inks, mists, etc.  One of the things I really needed was a craft mat, but I really couldn’t see spending $20 on one!  So I kept trying different things to get the same effect and finally stumbled upon a roll of laminate…the kind you can find in hardware stores to protect drawers and shelves.  I has some on hand as I had just laminated a chore chart for my kiddo.  Anyway, I decided to test it out over a piece of cardboard and I was so excited to see that it worked PERFECTLY for my needs!

Homemade Craft Mat

First you find a large piece of cardboard.   I’ve used the Gauche Alchemy “pizza box”.  It’s the perfect size and you already have the shape lined out for you!  Plus, who wouldn’t love to have their own Gauche Alchemy craft mat, right?

Craft Mat Step 1

Then you use the “magic cover”, which is just a roll of clear laminate, and cut two pieces about an inch or so bigger than your cardboard piece.  Take the first piece and slowly remove the backing off small sections at a time while laying it over your cardboard piece….trying to smooth it out and prevent any bubbles or creases.  Then once you cover the first side, repeat with the opposite side.  The second side is a little harder because you want to make sure that you place the laminate on the cardboard without touching the sticky side of the laminate on the opposite side…or you will have troubles detaching them.

Craft Mat Complete

Once you have both sides laminated, cut the excess around the cardboard and your mat is ready!

Nonporous craft mat

Craft Mists

As you can see from the pictures you can use inks and mists and since its a non-porous surface, it has the same effect as the expensive craft mats, and you are paying less than $5 for this one!

Now, I’m not saying that this is just as good as a craft mat in every way.  For instance, the Ranger mat is supposedly heat resistant, and this one will melt under extreme heat!  If your a cheap-o like me though, this is a perfect knock-off so that you can spend your money on better things like more mists, inks, and glitter!

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Thank you Misty for once again giving us a great how-to.  I don’t know about the rest of you, but this is the perfect solution to a problem I’ve been having.  See, I LOVE glue, but I get it everywhere & my nice, expensive craft mat is just too big for my work area.  So did I give this a whirl?  Oh, yessiree, yes I did, I sure did, I made a smaller one using Misty’s instructions.  PERFECTION! Now I can glue to my heart’s content and when done, move the mat out of the way.

Until later……………………
Smiles~
Marilyn

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Punchinella Gets Down With “The Girls”

Hi there! Scraps, here, with a layout from Alchemist Misty that features loads of texture and plenty of personality.

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Gritty and gorgeous, right? Let’s see how she put this layout together.

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Misty: Here is a layout I made using lots of different styles of Gauche punchinella to make the background.  I painted my cardstock and then pressed the different punchinella’s in the gesso to give texture.  Then misted away.

From there I used the chevron template from The Crafter’s Workshop and and added modeling paste over it and misted it as well.

rectangle_punchinella

To embellish the page,  I added strips of the rectangle punchinella to the right bottom corner, and some 6 petaled flower punchinella to the top left corner.

I matted the picture to a piece of cardboard that I covered with aluminum tape and then embossed.

Below the pic, I added a strip of ouchless cardboard backed with some lace, and added large silver eyelets.

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To the top right corner I clipped on a barrett from the blue color kit to a piece of scrap (ouchless) cardboard.  Because the color didn’t quite match my layout, I decided to heat emboss the barret and then add some purple ink over the embossed areas.

metal_letters_stars_barrett

I had tons of fun creating this layout, and I’m obsessed with all of the different punchinellas that are available, to create textured backgrounds and to satisfy my need for metal on a page!

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I am just loving the monochromatic, industrial vibe to this layout. That turquoise pop from the bit of lace does a fabulous job of pulling the eye in towards the picture and highlighting the subtle and not-so-subtle textures.

Of course, I’d be totally remiss if I didn’t point you towards the Gauche Alchemy punchinella variety pack so you could try out your own take on this layout.

Until next time!

~Scraps

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Layout from Outer Space

Hi everyone! Maggi here with a new layout from Alchemist Michelle!

I loved our kit, Monstrous Mutant Robots From Outer Space from the moment I saw it- the pops of orange and the Bam Pop papers are so AWESOME. But I must admit the patterns are very intimidating. So here’s what I did- I pretended the paper was plain white. Sometimes the biggest hurdle using a certain material is overcoming your preconceived notion of what the final product should look like. I’ve been drawn to white background pages for a while now but when I tried to put this page together on white paper, I felt I needed to add a background to it with stamps and misting so I just decided to let the paper be what it is. I really like this as it represents what my nephew’s minds must look like (there’s probably more burgers, fries and soda involved though.)

Mixed Media Scrapbook Layout

My youngest nephew Marcus (background) is within the Autism spectrum and though he’s highly functional, mastering social interaction took a while for him and makes him uncomfortable to this day. His older brother Kaine (foreground), does his best to guide him through interactions in school and in public. It’s a role he didn’t choose for himself but he handles the occasional stares and comments with humor and good sense.

Journaling Card

You’ve seen these before- I have a thing for triangles on borders lately. I’m so excited about the geometry trend in crafting! Mathematical equations, triangles, hexagons- I have a fetish. What I love most about washi tape is that it’s translucent so layering solid colors over patterns really makes an impact.

Punchinella and Washi Tape

I also used our blue punchinella, red grid washi tape, and metallic silver washi tape!

Robot Scrapbooking
The embellishments in the this kit are really cool. I LOVE these wall decals and their pure colors. I also cut out the robots from another Bam Pop paper but they never made it on here- in a future project perhaps.

Awesome layout Michelle!  Your layering of different elements is always so inspiring!

Now go glue something awesome onto some awesome something!

Maggi :D

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Among Trees: In The Style Of

Good Morning!  Marilyn here, with an experiment from Alchemist Jo.  Jo was inspired by an artist she read about and decided to create something “in the style of” that artist.  She’s done a bang-up job and the result is an awesome piece of artwork.  Jo, show us how it’s done.

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I wanted to complete a project using a paper napkin background and chose a very striking black and white paper napkin from the Paper Napkin Art Kit .  While very striking by itself, I wanted to see how it would look sprayed with some vibrant color (using Dylusions Ink Sprays – mmmmmm, yummy), which I liked.  So, I stuck the napkin onto a cardboard base using Mod Podge (although as you can see, I’d torn it a bit small!).

Paper napkin background

OK, I’d gotten my background, but now what was I going to do with it?  Hmmmmmm (** thinking face**).  I had a few ideas but nothing that was exciting me.  So, I picked out one of my ‘Stuck Sticks‘ (a previous Gauche project) and it told me to study an artist and have a go at creating something in their style.  Good idea (if I do say so myself).  But first, coffee!!  I took myself off to my local coffee shop and sat with a “medium cappuccino to have in please” and the Mar/Apr 2012 issue of Somerset Studio.  As I’m leafing through, what should I see?  An article by Mary Beth Shaw who, wait for it, studied an artist and then created artwork inspired by that artist.  Wow!  How serendipitous!  The artist she’d chosen to look up?  A Viennese artist named Hundertwasser (1928-2000).  I’m ashamed to say I’d never heard of him.  His artwork, full of detail and colour, is STUNNING.  I’m in LOVE!  Back home, I carefully studied the main elements that make up his artwork and picked out several to create something which nods to his style but doesn’t copy it.

Napkin Collage Punchinella

On one side of the paper napkin background I smeared black gesso over some large hole punchinella from the Punchinella Variety Pack .  Once dry, I used the ends of pens and paintbrushes to add neon bright acrylic paint dots (I was inspired to use neon colours by Alchemist Michelle’s stunning layouts and photographs).  Using black Staz-On, I stamped a Claudine Hellmuth line circle image onto paper which I then cut out and painted with neon acrylic paints.  These became my trees.  Once they were stuck on, I painted their trunks.  Often in Hundertwasser’s paintings you can see the trunk of a tree through the ‘foliage’ of the tree in front, so I replicated this by using charcoal pencil.

Background Gesso Paint

The finished piece includes a Hundertwasser quote,  which I’ve handwritten.  I initially wrote it with a white paint pen but it didn’t look very good so I painted over it with neon yellow paint.  Better.

I learned such a lot from this exercise.  From Mary Beth Shaw,  I discovered a new (to me) artist.  I REALLY enjoyed experimenting with a style totally out of my comfort zone.   From Alchemist Michelle I got the confidence to try using colours that I would NEVER previously considered using.  From myself, I learned that I can spread my little arty wings and try something new without fear of failure.  Have I created perfect artwork?  NO!  Did I enjoy creating it?  YES!  Will I do this exercise again with another artist?  DEFINITELY!

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Jo, what a truly beautiful work of art you have created!  Thank you for showing us that experimenting is good for our creativity, can bring us enjoyment, and that we should never fear the unknown.  All it takes it that one “AHA!” moment and we are off on a new adventure.

Until later…………
Smiles~
Marilyn

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