Tuesday, 18 June 2013

Steam punk, dylusions and loads of cogs! (tutorial)

Products Used:
  • Tim Holtz Tag and Bookplates die
  • Ranger Dylusions-
    • Melted Chocolate
    • Squeezed Orange
    • Dirty Martini
  • Stampendous stamp - Clockworks
  • Kanban stamp set - Steampunk, Jasper
  • Tim Holtz movers and shapers cogs die
  • Stampendous Fran-tage embossing enamel
    • aged copper
    • aged Taupe
  • Distress ink
    • vintage photo
    • rusty hinge
    • crushed olive
  • Distress Paint
    • antiqued bronze
    • tarnished brass
  • Tim Holtz stamp - time is a companion quote
I have struggled to make fathers day cards over the years because when I make them I want them to reflect my dad, or my dad-in-law or my husband. Same with birthday cards for them. Why are men so hard to create for???

Anyway I had recently visited our local Hobbycraft and every time I went in the last month or so I had seen this gorgeous Kanban stamp set and kept umming and ahhing over it. What would I really use it for? Well this last time I decided I would definitely buy. It was on sale for £5 and I doubted it would be that easy to come by in the future. Unfortunately when I looked for it, it was no longer on the shelves and I thought I had lost my chance. Luckily for me though, a very helpful employee had a look in the back for me and found one!
Of course when you get new stamps you have to try them out immediately right? So I stamped all three of the characters in the set onto watercolour paper and painted it with my distress inks.
I took my stamp pads in the colours I wanted and pressed them into my splodge mat (or non stick craft sheet) then I used my waterbrush/paintbrush and added a bit of water on the side and mixed with the colour as I needed it.
I used vintage photo for his trousers, scarf and hat. I added more colour to where the shadows were and dragged the colour with water only away into the lighter areas to create depth. I did the same with rusty hinge for the jacket and trim on the top hat. I shaded the darker areas with faded jeans and used crushed olive for the jackets trim. I used antique linen for the face and tarnished brass and bronze distress paint for the base as I wanted to give it a slightly more metallic look.
I liked the colouring so much that I cut it out to use on a tag with the intention of making it a fathers day topper. Not sure I achieved that but I tried!
I sprayed my tag with Dirty Martini, Melted chocolate and squeezed orange. I then water stamped onto the dry tag with my inkadinkado clock works cling stamp to fade it into the background.
I used the cogs from the same Kanban stamp set and stamped them around the tag (making sure they would at least partially be visible once  I stuck my character down. I embossed these with fran-tage embossing powder in aged taupe. I love these embossing powders. They look make things look so real!
I usually use white embossing powder with my dylusions tags so that the image will stand out. Only here, white really wouldn't have worked with the orange and browns. So I chose gold embossing powder and stamped my tim holtz stamp in the corner. It says:
 Time is a
that goes
with us
on the journey.
It reminds
us to cherish
each moment
because it
will never
come again.
What we
leave behind
is not as
as how we
have lived.
What a great quote right? Makes you think.

After the full background was finished I started playing  with placement. I cut some cogs with my movers and shapers cogs die from Tim Holtz and placed them around my character to find the best fit. I overlapped some and put some on top of the other but I made sure that I wouldn't be covering too much of the cogs that I had stamped earlier. I also had a clock charm that I wanted to incorporate into the tag somewhere so I played with the placement of that as well.
Obviously the white cogs wont do so, to make them as realistic as possible, I painted a few of them with tarnished brass distress paint and others with antique bronze which I then coated with fran-tage aged taupe and aged copper. The paint itself when heated starts to bubble so if you aren't after that sort of look then I would chose to use a different base or be careful of how long you heat it. I like the texture so I heated them extra long just to get more bubbled up effects. I actually figured this out by accident one day doing just this. I was a little worried about the bubbles and tried to flatten them a little after it had cooled a tad but it left a sort of pocked mark look which reminded me of hammered metal.
Once those were all done (I made more than I was going to use just in case) I placed them back on the tag where I wanted them, again overlapping some but keeping them in a slightly more natural placement, like you would see with actual cogs.

After all the base pieces were stuck on, I positioned my steampunk man at an angle on the tag over the cogs. This did cover most of the background ghost stamping but if you look closely you can still see it. I decided I didn't want the clock charm where I had originally put it. The way the position of the man is the clock would have been stuck right in the middle and would have broken up my 'flow' if you know what I mean. It also would have covered up a lot of the painted detail that I was so proud of. I still wanted it on the tag though because of the time reference in the quote so I attached it with some thin brown satin ribbon at the top. Its a little bit bigger than what would work best but I still like it.

So here is the finished tag! In the end I don't know that this works as a fathers day card for my family in particular. Maybe if I attached it to a card base that had a train coming around a corner???Hmm more thoughts!  Anyway, I hope it gave you some inspiration to create your own steampunk goodness.
Have a crafty day!!


  1. Beautiful work, Sam, right up my street, as you well know! Blessed if I know how you remember everything you did though, I never can :) xx

  2. I adore this tag. Great work and helpful tutorial. Thanks Sam x

  3. I LOVE this, what a wonderful tag. I do like a bit of steampunk!

  4. Totally love this, the colours and the stamp. Missed getting that set and love it, so will be looking out for it once the money tree has grown some :) The sentiment is so sweet too x

  5. This comment has been removed by the author.

  6. Fab blog Samantha and really super project - dead impressed!
    Super sentiment - might have to nick that! LOL!
    Eiglas x


Leave us some love!!