Paperartsy challenge journal … fabric stiffener

As regular blog readers will know I’ve been trying to do a page in a journal for each of the challenges on the Paperartsy blog.  I’ve been working a good few weeks behind on most challenges (wih the exception of the previous challenges where i managed to get some entries in!) and this is no different!

The challenge I am attempting is fabric stiffener. Now the usual products for this would be Powertex or Paverpol neither of which I have nor have a desire to have.  Darcy did an experiment with using other mediums though so I thought I would give it a try with matt medium and a piece of muslin and try it for the cover of the journal rather than on a page as it would be more dimensional.  Brave to have a go straight onto the journal… but what’s the worst that can happen?


I roughly cut the muslin to size and then used a fair amount of matt medium to rub into the fibres and make sure it was all coated.  Then started to mould it into some folds and ruffles on the cover… yes directly onto the cover!


I then started to add a little bit of glass bead gel into the folds and at the edges and then left it to dry overnight.  (I did have a little peek and a touch of it before I went to bed and it was definitely getting harder but still have some movement to it.  I also checked I could still close the journal at this point.)

The next day it was harder and dry and time to start coating it with gesso.
It was tricky to get into all the nooks and crannies but starting to look good. I left it a full day to dry. And surprise surprise there were bits I had missed…

I then left it for a few weeks unsure where to go with it next. I also left it under a heavy frame so it would flatten a bit more.

Then out came the paints …
A lime green.
Added Cheesecake.
Then Bora Bora.
And a pinky red colour.

Then I decided to use the dressmakers dummy as the main image but thought it needed a few white bits on the fabric first. So I added paint to a text stamp and added that. You couldn’t tell it was text but it added some white highlights.

I stamped the dressmakers dummy image onto sheet music and then adhered it and some thread to the front. Then added lots of treasure gold and gilding wax to the front, both on the fabric and bead gel and the image.

Added a few more white patches and stamped the title from alphas before adding that too.

Now I am pleased I tried this but I am not convinced I would ever do something like this again… It is a little too grungey for me … but I do like the finished article. I still have the back to do but I suspect it will be staying black for a while.

Happy crafting!


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