I do a lot of my crafting at my office. I’m stuck answering phones and small project are perfect for keeping me busy between calls. Lately, we’ve had a lot of changes at work. Mostly a huge rearranging of office spaces so I took most of my supplies home. I’ve been uninspired with everything so it was a good time to take it all home and re-evaluate what I need.
Then came the offer – a member of a group I am in had a collection of old printer paper in a variety of styles from photo paper to magnet paper. I, gladly, took the whole lot. In that was a packet of postcard paper. The paper is full sized but, when split, makes 4 postcards. I thought this was perfect for making a mini-art book or the like. The Frugalcrafter has been sharing her version all summer.
It’s so simple that I am not going to link to that post (don’t want to overwhelm her site). I took a stack of the postcards (you can use any size paper you like to make your own) and then added hot glue to the side. You have to go slow and use a palette knife (or spatula or card) to smooth it out.
I had originally did just one side and my pages kept falling off. Might have just been a bad gluing but I peeled that off and went with the three sides. I have been so inspired and it’s perfect for limiting my supplies while we are shuffling things around.
While I have many ideas, one of the best came from a post by The Frugalcrafter this week. She made a scratch board using oil pastels and ink. Craypas has a video on making a scratch board with just oil pastels on their youtube channel. I thought – why not experiment.
I have to say, I love this size. The glue around the edges was difficult to work with because I couldn’t get to the edge with the pastels but other than that, I was so grateful to have such a small piece of cardstock.
Start with your base layer. I started with the red. I blended each color to smooth it out. This is important because it creates a layer that makes adding the black easy.
Then I took my time and added the black. I, almost, wish I had made a video so you could see the texture difference between the layers. I was surprised at how smoothly the black went on. No blending here because you want to be able to scratch off the black to reveal the colors underneath.
Sometimes picking something to draw when I am experimenting is really tough. What if this is the only one I ever do? The stress of this experiment could have been devastating. I thought this would be fun to use a stencil. This does two things – I don’t have to have a perfect drawing and lets me know if you can use a stencil on a scratch board.
This is an old tupperware stencil. I love these things – have owned them since I was a little kid and they are in perfect shape (okay discolored in places as you can see but completely intact).
The disadvantage of this stencil is that it has a lip on one side so it sits like a tray.
I used the stencil on my scratch board. I used a pencil to outline my stencil image and then a paper clip to scrape out the rest of the black. For the first two images, I was able to hold the stencil in place and scrape most of the black off. When I reversed the stencil, it wouldn’t lay flat on the board so I did my outline and removed it to scrape out the inside.
I was glad for that because what a difference between the two. Scraping with the stencil in place reduced my chances for overscraping and it gave my hand something to rest on. I can’t explain why but it was less difficult to use the paperclip with the stencil on as well. My second left (on the left) was far harder to create once I removed the stencil.
I do have tools for scratch boards but I thought it would be fun to use tools everyone should have. I loved using the pencil. It gave the image a drawn look, especially if you use the pencil to scratch off the black. The paperclip gave a nice smooth finish but gummed up with the pastel often.
In the end, this was a blast and I love that you don’t really need anything outside of the oil pastels. It does take a lot of black so if this is something you find you will do a lot of – buy extra black pastels.
Craypas has some suggestions such as using white over colored paper. I’m thinking that you can use any color as your top color so long as it contrasts with your under colors. Stop by The Frugalcrafter if you want to learn how to do it with ink (which looks to be a little less work and may stretch further).