Swimming With the Gumballs

Hi there! Scraps, here, with a bit of altered art for the home courtesy of Alchemist Misty!


diy bubble gum machine fish bowl

Misty: I found this idea on the Oh! Crafts blog, via Pinterest.

Supplies Needed:

Terre Cotta pot, with base
Wooden dolls and pins
A round bubble bowl

Instead of spray painting my bubble gum machine, I decided to cover it in a collage of papers from Foreign text for mixed media art and collage. Also instead of using the wooden doll for the handle on the lid I used a little wooden knob I found in the Its All Gravy, Baby! Brown Mixed Media Color Kit. Then I added aqua punchinella around the pot with Mod Podge.

Unfortunately, because of the shape of the pot, I couldn’t put the punchinella on very evenly.  In the end, after the Mod Podge had already dried, I decided I didn’t like the way the punchinella looked and tried ripping it off.  Of course, since it was glued on it wouldn’t come off entirely and left a layer of the punchinella behind.  Luckily, I kind of like the way it looked and decided not to cover it.

punchinella top

From there, I misted the lid and base with color.  Then added trim and gems around the pot, both came from the green with envy color kit. From that same kit I also added some black and green metallic looking flowers towards the top of the pot. Then to top it off I added gold beads from the banana hammock yellow kit, around the lid.

My kids absolutely love these and luckily, they are a lot of fun to make. This particular one holds my son’s betta fish!  Unfortunately, he didn’t like having his picture taken so he’s a little hard to see!


That looks like such a fun project!

Unfortunately, we’re received news that the fabulous fish bowl might have finally been too fabulous for the family fish. Guess he just couldn’t take all that sparkle.


~~In Memoriam~~
Blue the Betta Fish


Image Map

Cheryl’s takin’ a walk

Hello there!

Michelle here with a wonderful new step by step process video from Cheryl.

I am currently undergoing the arduous procedure more commonly known as “Project Life” where you shoot and journal every day life. I am already “cheating” by journaling only 2 days a week (if that). What I really love about Project Life or Project 365, a similar 1 photo a day version,  is how it forces me to pay attention to every day details.

Cheryl has taken the much more HUMANE approach by documenting 52 walks she will take this year- one for every week.

Here are a couple of images from week 5 and 6:

Image from week 5. I like the more abstract nature of Cheryl's photos.

This photo is stunning. I. can't. stop. looking! I actually started walking in my neighborhood after I read Cheryl's post about 52 walks on her personal blog.

Now a brief pause while we check in with Cheryl as she makes the binder cover for this project:

And a quickie shot of one of the pages she recently worked on. She used stamps from Sassafras Lass and items from the Blue Streak mixed media color kit.

Please excuse the admittedly imperfect lighting. Cheryl was very gracious to provide this as she was literally on her way out the door for a week long trip to Dublin. But I'm not jealous! (much)

So how are you tackling Project Life or Project 365 or any other year long art project? Let us know by commenting here or linking up your work to the Gauche Alchemy Flickr page!

Check us out on the social networks mi gente!

Image Map

Collage art– it’s not just for Kindergarten!

It’s a cloudy day here in the desert (quite unusual for May!), and I went in search of some new art inspiration to feed my soul.  And let me tell you, the art world is rich with mixed media and collage work…I was inspired, indeed!

Take a look:

I am really loving the monochromatic quality of this one!  In fact, there just may be a kit full of these neutral, faded tones released soon *hint hint*

 Looking at all this amazing collage work has really inspired me to look at the things around me (even trash!) in a new way.  Receipt from the convenience store?  Ticket stub?  Old letter?  Discarded ribbon?  All of these things can be used to create art that is personal and meaningful.

I encourage you to take some time to think about what inspires you, and how you can incorperate everyday objects into your art.  And then leave us a comment and tell us about it!

**all artwork found on www.notpaper.com**

Punchinella Princess with Erika

And now a sing-a-long with Erika!

Punchinelly, Punchinelly
Night and day it’s Punchinelly
Make a border, do some masking
cut out patterns, Multitasking
Every time I’d find a minute
That’s the time that I’d begin it
Punchinelly, Punchinelly

Yup, this stuff could definitely have its own Disney movie. It’s complex, interesting, somewhat funny and downright beautiful.
Maybe it could even be one of the Disney Princesses???!!! Oh to dream

Today I’ve got a quick and easy way to take a strip on Punchinella and make it go from chambermaid to PRINCESS!!!!
This is so easy and quick too.

First you will need a strip of Punchinella and ribbons. Did you know you can find Punchinella at our Artfire Store? It’s there in all sorts of fabulous colors and shapes!!!

Your ribbon should be about the width of the punch out image on the strip.
Start weaving your first ribbon, making sure to leave a punched out shape open for viewing.

Continue weaving until you hit the end of the road

Repeat with a few other colors

Heat seal ends of ribbon. This is what the final border will look like

Adhere to layout or card as a border.

See what I mean? Definitely a Princess!!!
Now I’ve got that darn song stuck in my head, and I hope you do too.
Show us your weaving techniques using “Punchinelli”

Erika Taylor

Kas’ Louie Louie

Kas’ altered item this time around…is a dog bowl.

She says….
My daughter informed me the other day that she thought I must not like our latest dog (of about 6 months) as much as the others, because I haven’t made any craft or photo projects about him.
Well, I of course had to prove her wrong…and now she believes me.
So Louie now has his very own work of art.

I glued a strip of scrapbook paper around the inside edge and a picture of him in the center, using Martha Stewart glue.
I made small snips in the paper so that it would lay flat on the curve, much like sewing on a curved seam.

I then embellished it with objects from the following kits:
Scarlet Fever Red Kit,
Banana Hammock Yellow Kit,
It’s All Gravy Baby! Brown Kit, and
Wedding Night White Kit.

I hot glued some dog ribbon for a hanger…and voila!!

Last minute gifts made from your Gauche Goodies!

Kas’ Techniques for Saving Your Behind. (also known as last minute gifts made from your Gauche Goodies!)

Well this weekend I got one of those surprises. We had planned on going out with a large group of friends, but we (or at least I) wasn’t told it was for a birthday. It was super late on the other side of town from ANYTHING. So of course I sat at my crafty table and pondered.

They it hit me….I must have some Gauche goodies to help with this! First I took a plain vase. Added a glue strip…

Then wrapped a piece of Purple Punchinella around the vase.

I added some beads and trinkets from the Purple People Eater kit along with some clear marbles.

It seemed to me that this would work for other things, so I wrapped some different punchinella around a small glass and added a tea light.

I LOVE the way the light shown through it.

For the last “gift” I cut a square of Ouchless Cardboard.

I painted the edges with pink and purple shimmer paint. Then I cut a smaller piece paper from the Wholly Sheets and glued it to the cardboard pressing it down between the ridges as I attached it.

I then added a purple butterfly sequin from the Purple People Eater kit and a flower from the Pink Parts kit.

Lastly I took two flower beads from the Pink Parts kitt and put them on two plain circular earring blanks I had. I used a Basic Grey Notch & Die Tool to make the cuts and a Crop-o-dile to make the holes to add the earrings too.

These could all three be done start to finish in less than an hour!

Water Bottles go to Work!

Andrea Altered here.

Ever feel bad about throwing away all those water bottles? Here is a fun (and super cute) way to put them to work! You can go to the Grace Violet blog to see a tutorial on how to create these gems, and put them together anyway you like!

I myself used an old vase that I covered with paper from the Career Girl kit. After covering my vase, and using Mod Podge to keep it in place, I glued a Styrofoam ball on top. Then, I was ready for my flowers. I painted them with acrylic paint, used some images on shrinky dinks (also, by the way available as part of the Wholey Sheets kits!) to create the center, and poof! I had an adorable vase, AND I was doing my part to recycle.

Yay for recycle, reuse and repurpose!

Kas’s Altered Bottles

Altered Project from Kas:

I ran into my inspiration from an altered book group. I saw the blog link and she asked us to take a look at something new she tried……so I did. I love altering bottles but these were really cool:

Altered Expressions Bottle 1

Altered Expressions Bottle 2

I have a few bottles sitting around…lying in wait….and there it was…the bottle of whisky. I thought it would be cool to make a “Manly Man” bottle! So I used vintage pictures, cigar labels and of course LOTS of Gauche goodies. I used items from Wholey Sheets, It’s All Gravy Kit Brown Color Kit, Banana Hammock Yellow color kit, Lady Marmelade Orange Kit and some odds and ends out of other kits, and the beloved Punchinella.

I used hot glue and tried some of Martha Stewart’s decoupage glue and sealer. It was the first time I used it, and I really like it.

Daring Backgrounds: Graffiti Style

By Nicole Maki (Perky Nihilist)

I love a fresh crisp piece of hot off the presses paper as much as the next gal – trust me, there is a shelf full of Crop Hoppers bearing witness to my obsession. But sometimes, when I’ve seen the sheet I so desperately covet as the base of the seventh card or the umpteenth scrapbook layout on the blogs I visit I lose heart a bit. Some days it all seems so done.

Luckily I have the perfect pick-me-up for times of paper panic. I make my own. No silly, not the paper itself (although to be honest, I have on occasion) – the pattern that makes it pop 🙂

Supplies: Sorry, can’t help you. What do you have on hand?

I recommend using something sturdy – like watercolor paper – as a bottom layer, but I’ve had equally luscious results on butcher paper, scrapbook paper, card stock, plastic, transparency… see, the sky’s the limit. You also need colored stuff: paint, crayons, markers, ink, tea, colored pencils, Sharpies. And I love to add some layers with text, collage etc. Junk mail, comic books, manga, menus – Anything that goes in our ACME paper art & mixed media kit is perfect. Markers or paint pens for scribbling/journalling are a necessity and stencils are a terrific addition. My favorite “stencils” are the punchinella – you get a variety of hole shapes and sizes. Awesome!

Each piece of make-your-own designer paper will be different. I wanted something with an edgy, urban graffiti feel – kind of Alisa Burke meets inner city. Here’s what I did:

Step One: Dribble paint on edges. Smear around with a baby wipe.

Step Two: Squirt complimentary color in white space. Blend with baby wipe.

Step Three: Spritz with dye mister (I used Glimmer Mist, available at Gauche Alchemy shop).

Step Four: Start adding interest. Here I sprayed close up with fabric spray paint and tilted the paper to make it drip. Then I stenciled some letters haphazardly around the page.

Step Five: Go in with complimentary color  (yellow here) and add large sections of paint. Use punchinella as a stencil by pouncing chalk ink through the holes. I find the pattern unifies the elements.

Step Six: Take a white or metallic paint pen (black is good too but very, very bold) and journal all over the page. I tend to get “stuck” so I often write song lyrics or poems I’ve memorized. Keep it loose and messy. Don’t worry if it looks like ka-ka; it’ll be fine.

Step Seven: This pic is bigger so you can see the details. Rip some text, comics etc and glue them to your substrate. Don’t cover up all your hard work, just add some pieces here and there. Then go over it again with paint, punchinella and stencils until it integrates into the piece. If the look seems unbalanced don’t worry about it. If you can’t not worry *raises hand* then add a few dribs and drabs of dry brushed paint to make it look right to your eye. In this example, I added the green paint to the edges. Made all the difference in the world. Now leave it alone to dry.

Step Eight: It’s so horrible I couldn’t take a picture. Kill your darling! What? Cut this beautiful piece of awesomeness into useable pieces. *GASP* I know!

Here’s some ideas: Card Front and ATC Blanks. Keep your scraps, they’re awesome to craft with.

Then wow your friends and yourself by making cool projects. This card was made with the ATC scraps:

Features: Punchinella, Career Girl Mixed Media Kit, Scarlet Fever Mixed Media Kit and Bombshell Stamps.

I made little vignettes with Foreign Text and Wholly Sheet:

and attached them to the (matted) ATC Blanks.

Urban Angels:

These ATCs feature Bombshell Stamps and wings from the beading section at Michaels.

Thanks so much for joining me as I made my own Daring Background: Graffiti Style. It’s truly a ton of fun and the results are well worth the effort.

Introducing Sherry Goodloe!

sherry goodloe portrait

Sherry Goodloe is one of my fav artists – she’s always got something good going on over at her blog. She is a sweet, sweet lady – one thing I love about the art community is how willing folks are to talk and share no matter how well-known, no matter how busy. I find that very rewarding. It makes us little people feel important. 😉

Another thing I love about Sherry is that she shares (maybe that’s why she’s called “SHERRY”?!) her techniques. She is more about the art than the ownership, and you gotta love that. We all inspire and take inspiration, and it seems that Sherry has, indeed, internalized that concept.

Sherry kindly obliged when I asked her for an interview.

GA: Tell us a bit about yourself.

I’m a divorcee with a full-time day job and trying my hardest to raise a teenage manchild on my own.

I love all types of mixed-media art and used to teach at least 3 or 4 classes every month. Lately I haven’t been teaching much. My life has just been so full these days.

Ticket Bowl

Ticket Bowl

(Want this piece?  You have until tomorrow at midnight to make a deal with Sherry!)

GA: Show us a favorite project and tell us why you love it.

My Jazz on Canvas series was a favorite project of mine. The old jazz masters reminded me of my dad and his love of jazz – which became a love of mine as well. Ella Fitzgerald, Louis Armstrong, Eartha Kitt, Bessie Smith, Nina Simone and so many more.

sherry goodloe eartha kit jazzsherry goodloe bessie smith jazzsherry goodloe ella louis jazzsherry goodloe nina simone jazzsherry duke ellington(Want this piece?  You have until tomorrow at midnight to make a deal with Sherry!)

GA: What are you working on now?

For the past couple of months I’ve been making artist trading cards to swap on my upcoming Artful Voyage Cruise with Tim Holtz. Looks like there will be more than 150 of us cruising with Tim (October 11 – 18), so I’ve been quite busy with the atc’s!

(Aren’t you so jealous she’s going on this cruise? *sigh*)

sherry goodloe atc

I’m also taking KC Willis workshops (Collage Camp – a fabric collage class and Mixed Media Mania which includes three workshops – Alters & Shrines, Altered Books and Works on Paper over at her Lipstick Ranch on-line).

Big Eyed Girl

Big Eyed Girl

(Want this piece?  You have until tomorrow at midnight to make a deal with Sherry!)

GA: Where do you get inspiration?

I get my inspiration from just about everywhere! I always carry a notebook or journal with me and when I get an idea in my head I write it down. At 56, I’m finding that I suffer from CRS. LOL!

Little Man's Journey

Little Man's Journey

sherry goodloe little man's journey close(Want this piece?  You have until tomorrow at midnight to make a deal with Sherry!)

GA: Who are your favorite artists?

Ooooh, this is a hard one. I have so many favorites. One of my favorite artists that is no longer with us here on Earth would have to be Romare Bearden (9/2/1911 – 3/12/1988). His life and art encompassed a broad range of intellectual and scholarly interests, including music, performing arts, history, literature and world art. He was a humanist who supported young, emerging artists. I LOVE his collage works!

As for living artists, some of my favorites at the moment are Cindy Forrester, JoAnnA Pierotti, KC Willis . . .

Altered Composition Notebook (fabric collage)

Altered Composition Notebook (fabric collage)

(Want this piece?  You have until tomorrow at midnight to make a deal with Sherry!)

GA: What products can you not live without when making art?

This is an easy one. I cannot live without Golden’s Matte Medium, Black Gesso and my Tim Holtz Tonic Scissors!

sherry goodloe record cd clock

GA: What’s your process when creating?

The process varies. If I’m working on a canvas collage, then I get the focal point picture out and set it aside. Then I cover the canvas with gesso, start picking colors to use on the canvas, and then I hit the drawers and shelves and anywhere else I have “stuff” that I think I might want to use. When it comes to fabric art, I get out all of my vintage suitcases that are filled with fabrics, open them up and start “auditioning” fabrics to use. Then there are times when I just pull a few boxes of stuff out and just let the contents dictate what I want to create next.

Thanks so much, Sherry, for taking the time to share your little corner of the world with us! (Those vintage suitcases sound like Christmas morning… Yhmmm…)