Alter: Decoupage wine bottles

It’s always fun designing projects as a challenge – genres of crafting thatimage I’ve admired but normally don’t dabble in. Decoupage is one of these, while I’ve decoupaged a lot during my early crafting years I felt I had grown out of it and moved the greener pastures of mixed media – until of course this project came along. An old client came to us with a very specific requirement, an image of 2 hand painted 1920’s-esque bottles. I love working with paints but fine arts is so not my forte. I turned the project down and told the client I’d help her find someone who could paint something similar for her. A few months passed (and ofcourse I forgot) she came back with the same project – this time around I was working on another mixed media project that used tissue and glassine paper to create textured backgrounds – looking at the image again sparked an idea, I knew I couldn’t paint intricately but I could definitely work something out with decoupage.

I started off with two old bottles I loved how they were not identical but similar in shape and complimented each other perfectly. The glass bottles got a through coating of white Gesso to create the base for the decoupage. The client’s color palette was specific and while I found the hot pink and yellow she wanted I decided to make my own mint green color by mixing acrylic paints together. The third component was the patterned element – I used white tissue paper and stenciled over it using Americana Decor Harlequin 12×12 stencil and black gesso. Once everything was dry, I tore up the sheets into pieces of various uneven sizes. Each piece was layered on, one on top of the other, keeping in mind that the opaque mint green pieces were mostly used in the background or exposed areas. The pieces were decoupaged using matt Mod Podge.

Entered for the following crafty challenges:

#35 January 2016 – Be inspired by BOTTLES




Vogue – Altered wooden box

It’s a long weekend break here in Pakistan and I thought I’d get some much needed craft room cleaning done. wpid-20150924_173508.jpg*Siigh*…I have realized that  I have the attention span of a monkey. I’m not entirely sure how my cleaning escapades turned into yet another altered project – although I have inkling that this shiny Versace belt buckle had a role to play.

As soon as I found the buckle I knew what it would become, the project had to be a fashion/ haberdashery inspired piece. Next a mini raid was conducted and i picked out sewing bits and bobs including metal bobbin, beads, old buttons, metal filigree, a discarded pieces of gorgeous lace.

The box was an old abandoned project, i had covered it in Rustoleum hammered finish Bronze but never really liked the outcome and had set it aside. I normally work with white Gesso, and had recently bought Black Gesso to experiment with, I decided the gold would go well with the black background – after adding the lace to the lid to add the texture the lid of the box was covered in black Gesso.


The embellishments went on next, played around with them a bit till I was happy. I liked the idea of contrast against the black background and so the embellishments I painted in White using Liquidtex White Acrylic paint. I dry brushed the buckle embellishment so that parts of it would remain gold.


The elements were then stuck on the lid and sealed in using DalerRowney Matt Gel. I went over the embellishments once more with Marie’s Gold Acrylic paint and gently dry brushed the pieces to leave a hint of gold behind. The inside of the box got a lick of Bright red with Marie’s Scarlet Acrylic paint.


This project has been entered for the following challenges:

Try it on Tuesday

Anything But Cute – Challenge #5 – September – Mixed Media Makeover

Show history

Cast Away…. – Mixed Media on glass

Hi there and welcome back to the blog…my obsession with mixed media and alter art continues, possibly growing stronger after all the appreciation a few experimental projects got from family and friends.

The inspiration for this project came from a request send in by a friend who had bought and extremely pretty clear trunk coffee table – she was looking for decorative altered bottles that could be placed inside the trunk as a show piece. The trunk and bottles kind of spun my mind off into the whole nautical/wash on shore direction. I had 20150920_113850recently done a gentleman’s club theme birthday for a friend’s son and had collected all sorts of ephemera as props for the decor – included in the prop stash were old liquor bottles. With my background in marketing ive always loved the detailing that goes into packaging design – the shapes, contours and typographic embossing that add up to designing liquor packaging.

So i started off by picking a bottle from the stash, I knew what i had in mind for the embellishments would be visually heavy so i chose a bottle that has less detailing on it. The bottle was placed under warm, the labels came away pretty easily – what was left behind i scrubbed off using a brush. I started off by applying two heavy coats of Gesso to the bottle – this will help give a nice texture to the background and will make sure that any paint applied to the bottle adheres properly. I love force drying Gesso in places with a heat gun – this lets me create random bubble texture in the background. I let the Gesso dry over night. I started off painting with my favorite palette of colors -greens blues and golds.

I used Marie’s Acrylic colors Yellowish Green (562), Green Pale (503), Cerulean Blue (455), Pathalo blue green (450) . I cut up a sponge to purpose as a dauber. Starting with the the lighter colors, i worked up from the base of the bottle and build on layer after layer of color. The greens went on first, then the lighter blues, followed by the dark blues and finally just a bit of black. I forced dried the paint in places as well to get more of the bubbling effect. The last two layers were gold, which was either dabbed on so it was reminiscent of sand sprayed on the shore or it was blended in and stretched it in stokes towards the neck of the bottle.




Next – the fun part, embellishments! The first to go on were a piece of rope and plastic trim that went all the around the bottle, i tied the rope at one end and let it hang, i thought it looked interesting. Next to go on were an array of shells, buttons, metal findings, coins and beads – i arranged the front to be visually heavier and the back of the bottle only has a small arrangement.  Once everything was in place, the heavier pieces were stuck down with hot glue and everything else i adhered using Matt Gel.  To get the washed out look i diluted Gesso and covered all the embellishments with it.

20150920_112439Once dry, the arrangement was dry brushed with Marie’s gold acrylic paint. For the neck of the bottle i covered the bottle cap with rope, which i ran Gesso over and then dry bushed with Gold acrylic paint. I added on a small button to the top that reminded me something that goes over a sailor’s uniform. Voila! the completed project 🙂

20150920_112757 20150920_11240120150920_112740



Entered in challenges for: