Rainbow Jars! Let’s color with water based markers!

Hi friends! Today’s tutorial might have you running for your kids markers and that’s OK because you can use Crayola for this technique! You can also use Tombow, Spectrum Aqua, Marvy LePlume, Zig or any other water based marker you have!


You will also need a water-brush (or small round brush and a cup of water) or, if you want a bit of sparkle, try a Wink of Stella brush like I am using. A viewer on YouTube said the glitter pen made the jars look fizzy, how cool would it be to color soda bottles or a glass of champagne like this. What are you waiting for?Let’s do this!


The mason Jar stamps I am using are from our sponsor Rubber Stamp Tapestry! Use coupon code: GLASS to save 20% on all $10+ orders of mounted stamps! Coupon expires Sunday, September 25 , 2016.

*Note, the unmounted rubber sheets are at an everyday low price of $12 and do not qualify for additional discounts.


  • Watercolor paper (Canson XL) or cardstock*
  • Water based markers (any kind but I am using Zig Clean Color Real Brush markers)
  • Brush-you can use a waterbrush, or a Wink of Stella pen like I did or small round brush and cup of water. *If you are working on cardstock I recommend a water-based blending marker from Tombow or Stampin Up
  • Stamps: Summer on the Farm set from Rubber Stamp Tapestry
  • Waterproof grey ink
  • White gel pen
  • Tile, plate or acrylic plate for use as a palette

Tips for coloring class:
1. Work in layers. It is easy to get the transparent look of glass when you work in transparent colors.
2. Stamp in grey for a hand sketched look.
3. Let the paper dry between layers to keep your lines crisp.

If you are not a stamper you can still try this technique, simple draw a jar and get coloring! You can even use watercolors in the same fashion so make this project your own and til next time happy crafting!

LIVE! Watercolor Pencil 101 12:30pm ET Today!

Hi friends! Today I am going to answer all of the questions I get about watercolor pencils (and I have gotten a lot over the years!) We will go over bet paper to use, best brushes and also what pencils are the best for each budget and application! I will cover both fine art applications and rubber stamping/crafting applications.



We will be live here and on YouTube at 12:30pm ET but the replay will be available if you can’t make it. If you have a question and want to chat live be sure to watch live on YouTube during the broadcast. I will also respond to questions in the comments section after the broadcast it over.


  • You can find most of the pencils I will talk about (all the “art” brands) at our sponsor Jerry’s Artarama!
  • I will also mention a couple of craft company brands that are very nice: Spectrum Aqua and Prima and they can be found here.
  • The stamps I am using are from Rubbernecker
  • Blender pens for use on cardstock so the paper doesn’t pill

Want more info on watercolor pencils or drawing? How about a class? Any Craftsy classes you buy via my link (including my class! Here is the 50% off link for followers) supports my channel and keeps my daily videos free for you! See what’s on sale at Craftsy!

I hope to see you for an hour (or so) of watercolor pencil fun! Happy crafting!


Review: Sennelier Artist Watercolors

Hi friends! This week I have been playing with a new set of watercolors. I had several people recommend these as well and many folks wanting a review so when I saw a special on them I decided to give them a go. I picked up a set of 18 half pans of Sennelier l’Aquarelle watercolors, the deal was buy 12 get 6 free and I could not refuse. The set retails for $120 and I paid $60 (not bad but not cheap either.) Here are the colors in the set. I painted each swatch and let it dry and did 2 glazes (bottom half of each swatch with the 3rd glaze being in the bottom left corner) to achieve color intensity.


These paints are well suited to glazing. Glazing is the building of color using transparent layers of color. See what else I thought of these paints in today’s review!


I find that I am enjoying this set more and more as I use it. I look forward to combining it with other more vivid paints so I can get the best of both worlds. I don’t think these paints are for everyone, I really don’t think they “shine” unless you are willing to spend some time and layer. They are not the most vivid paints or the cheapest either so I think it is important to decided what features are most important to you. They are beautiful quality and worth a look if you like to build up color with layers and a bit of patience. Many online art stores are running this special so if you want the I suggest you grab them now while you get 18 for the price of 12. I will also say that half pans run either side of $5 on sale so you could always try a few open stock before committing to this set. Let me know if you have used these paints in the comments. Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

Stamp School: Quick One Layer Birthday Cards and Invites!

Hi friends! Today’s project is a good one when you need a batch of cards or if you just want to practise with a new stamp set because it is on a flat sheet of cardstock. Limited supplies=fast & frugal!


Watch the video to see how it’s done! I apologise for the long video but this is a “stamp School” video and I want to make sure all the steps are clear. If you are making a batch of these I suggest you work “assembly line” style and stamp each item on each card before grabbing the next stamp, it saves a ton of time!


You can find the supplies I used from our sponsor Luvin’ Stampin’ *Use the host code to receive free card kits when you order. Here is the current code valid through Sept. 24th A636C73Q (After that check http://www.luvinstampin.com/ for the current one!)


For more fun projects visit “Luvin’ Stampin'” Wendy Cranford’s YouTube Channel

When stamping one layer cards think about the ink you are using for subsequent layers. Blue stamped over yellow may take on a green cast and a lighter color stamped over a darker color may not show up at all.

When you are using a layering stamp but you don’t have many colors of ink you can keep overlapping the same ink color until the desired darkness is achieved.

Don’t worry about being perfect, these fun cards area fantastic way to get to know a new stamp set and when you are done you have a new batch of cards to show for it! Besides, people love to get a handmade card even if it isn’t perfect!

Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

Let’s paint a geranium in watercolors!

Hi friends! Here is a fun and loose painting for today, A geranium!


I just bought some Sennelier watercolors (there was a deal I could not resist!) and wanted to try them out. I will have a review for you later after I get a few more paintings under my belt but for now here is a tutorial on how to paint a geranium.

Please follow along using whatever watercolor you like! Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

Water Brush Comparison!

Hi friends! I have been asked by a few viewers if I would compare all off of the different water brushes on the market and while I don’t have them all I do have quite a few and today I will share the benefits and failings of each. I also welcome you to share your favorite water brushes in the comments section below.


A waterbrush is a brush with a hollow handle that you can fill with water (or ink, paint etc) so you do not need to bring a separate jar of water with you when travel painting or if you don’t want to deal with a spillable cup of water at home. These can also be handy for stampers or scrapbookers that want to add some mixed media to their art but don’t want a pot of water on their table that might spill on their project. Whatever the reason fo you wanting to use a waterbrush I will show you the features of some of the most popular ones out there.


I compared 8 different brands of waterbrushes. Personally I like waterbrushes for travel sketching. I think you can get better brushes for your money for in studio work that are not waterbrushes but for times when it is inconvenient to have a bucket of rinse water nearby they are a great option!

Here are the brands I demoed:

Caran D’ache $8-$10 each or 3/$24 small, medium, large point rounds

Koi $7.50 each or it comes in the Koi watercolor pocket box that I use en plein air painting:  This brand offers the most compact brushes, including really short mini brushes. Don’t throw away the black stopper that comes with these because you can use it to plug the water in the handle if you want to take apart the brush for compact travel storage. These brushes are very easy to squeeze to release more water.

Niji $10  or  These were the first water brushes I owned and they are going strong after 15 years of frequent use. I think they were the first to make a waterbrush and probably have improved in technology over the years. A tried and true brand.

Prima Round (2/$8) and Flat (3/$10) HS or SSS  I really like the rounds, I have been using them for over a year and really like them, they are a bargain too. Soft bristles come to a nice sharp point.

Aqua Stroke (4/$12- 3 rounds 1 flat)  I have used these for years too, they are fine but the barrels are harder to squeeze and would be hard for people with arthritis or other strength issues.

Mudder (6/$12 3 flats, 3 rounds) These are a decent bargain and I have painted with them a few times since I filmed this comparison and I like them. Beware when replace caps on the flats that you don’t squash the bristles

Royal (3/$5 rounds)*I do not recommend these brushes as water brushes, they do not have a regulator inside so it is hard to control the water coming out and it tends to suck paint back into the barrel making the paint water dirty. I use these to make DIY glitter pens.

Generic (Came in Jerry Q art kit)

These are some brands YouTube viewers have listed as their favorites:
Tim Holtz/ Ranger has a round detailer $10 and flat $12
Derwent Waterbrush had mixed reviews from YouTube fans which leads me to believe that there might have been a bad batch made at some point. I recommend contacting Derwent if you get a bad brush. Many viewers listed this brush as their favorite.
Pentel Aqwash  These got great reviews from YouTube viewers and they are quite affordable. Also I think the larger bulbous barrel might be easier to squeeze.
If you have a recommendation let me know in the comments!

Bottom line, other than the Royal water brushes (which I do not recommend) I found that most of them preformed about the same with no big advantages over the rest other than price so see what you can find in your price range and have fun!

*Note: Affiliate link to Hallmark Scrapbook and Simon Says Stamp used. I find Simon Says Stamp has the BEST selection BUT Hallmark Scrapbook has better prices but they sell out fast! They are both wonderful & amazing companies though:)

I hope you found this useful, Happy Crafting!



Stamp School Free Class: Coloring “Metal” with Markers & Pencils

Hi friends! I am going to warn you right now, todays video is a long, content packed, follow along with me class on coloring. I went searching the topic of coloring shiny and metallic objects and could not find what I was looking for so I decided it was a video that needed to be made. I also wanted to make a tutorial that could be adapted to the limited supplies the average or beginner stamper would have on hand. Today I will show you how to get a realistic metal look for your stamped images on paper.


You are going to see me use many brands of markers in today’s video. I am using alcohol based markers but if you don’t have any you can use water based markers or even watercolor pencils (just gently blend them with a damp brush) or watercolor paints for the first layer. If you do substitute water media on cardstock do not over work it, it will not take the amount of blending as alcohol markers do. My advice for stampers looking to get into alcohol markers is to buy the largest set of office supply store alcohol markers they can get (My pick is the 36 pack of Bic-Mark-its that are about $20 at any department store) and then, as you can afford it, buy the super light shades of markers and a clear blender from an art supplier. I also recommend you try different brands (buy different colors so you don’t get duplicates because they all play nice together) as you are collecting the lights because as you use up the office supply markers you will know what you want to replace them with and replacing them one at a time does not hurt the wallet too much. One more tip! If you have a clear blender and a few sharpies or even bottle of alcohol ink you can make a palette of colors on a tile or white plate (just scribble them out or add a drop or two of ink) and you can use the clear blending marker to pick up color and mix colors to get the shade you need. It will take longer than just having the right markers but by golly you will be a pro when you are done! This technique is called “palette blending” and I have a tutorial for Alcohol markers here and water based markers here if you want more info on that.

I also want to say that you can use any colored pencils you have. No excuses folks, let’s make it metal!


Sponsored by Rubber Stamp Tapestry Use coupon code: METAL to save 20% on all $10+ orders of mounted stamps! Coupon expires Sunday, September 18, 2016.



As you probably realized by now the techniques you learned today can be used for any metal you can think of, from coloring a rusted pick-up truck to a shiny pewter frame. You just need to change the color and pay attention to the highlights. Practice and you will get it:) And that is the key, it is nice to know how to do it in theory but you don’t really learn until you do it. Use what you have, improvise and see if your supplies will work before going out and buying the latest and greatest coloring media or you might end up not knowing how to use it and you become a collector rather than a crafter. Go on,dust off those markers and pencils and get to work, I know you can do it! Happy crafting!

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