Category Archives: Products

New Shoes for FREE!!

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I love to test new products to see if they are really all they are cracked up to be.  When DecoArt’s new Patent Leather Paint arrived, I was not convinced that it would look all that great.  After all, how many times do you paint shoes, purses or belts??

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I looked in my closet and found a pair of brown sandals.  I really liked them, but rarely wear dark brown in the summertime. Determined to find out about the paint, I put the first layer on the leather straps.  Yuck, however, I did not except the first layer to cover perfectly.  So, I added a second coat, then a third.  At this point, I could see potential.  From experience, I know it is ALWAYS best to add several thin coats as opposed to a thick heavy layer.  This eliminates any lumps, bumps or ridges of thick paint.  One more coat…

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The last coat was beyond belief!  The sandals were smooth, and flexible, the color was stunning and, BEST OF ALL, they didn’t look hand painted.  These sandals look super expensive and very classy!  Check out my new “expensive” looking sandals!  sandals.jpg

So to recap, the new DecoArt Patent Leather paint comes in 13 amazing colors and can be used to refresh or restyle leather and leather-like surfaces with this high-gloss acrylic paint.  That means that it can be used not only for fashion accessories, but also for leather, or faux leather surfaces such as ottomans, chairs, cushions, etc… As well as used to embellish or add design to any of these surfaces!!!  In addition to being water based and non toxic, this paint is specially formulated to be flexible to prevent cracking or peeling.   My mind is absolutely swirling with all the possibilities that this unique paint offers!

DecoArt Patent Leather Paints available at Cupboard Distributing:  https://www.cdwood.com/collections/decoart-patent-leather-paints

Viva Las Vegas!

16265266_1350454528308899_4036656819822082977_n.jpgThe Creative Painting Convention 2017 in Las Vegas definitely receives five stars!  Hats off to Jayne Jones and her terrific staff for a show that ran smoothly from start to finish.  With all the classes, exhibit hall, vendors and registered attendees, she has huge responsibilites, tremendous workload and still manages to give us all her sweet smile the entire week.
We arrived in Vegas on Saturday.  I taught the Sponsored Event “Signs of the Times” with Laurie Speltz on Sunday.  The class was filled with talented, eager students.  We had a great time sharing our unique techniques, tips and tricks to make painting easier and a little more fun.

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Whew…late night hours combined with weary travelers, slow the pace just a little.  However, we almost got finished and hope to see final projects posted on FaceBook.

For those that may not know, my husband, John and I are the founders and owners of Cupboard Distributing.  Because Creative Painting is such a great show and we have an awesome, hard working staff, we bring them to help with our booth. 17021801_1435103303188220_7574829373836147440_n.jpg(Left to right; Lindsey Applegate; Jen Key; Drake Newman…and no…they’re not our kids!!) However, Monday was a “play day”.  We went to see Hoover Dam.  Because our truck was packed to the hilt, and because we didn’t want to unpack the entire load, we were banned from entering the dam area.  LOL, if they only knew what was in those totes…class supplies!  Oh well, nice to know that Homeland Security is doing their job.    We did get to park and enjoy the scenic view over Lake Meade.

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Tuesday was set up day and this is no small task.  Thank goodness for capable employees.  Everyone knew their job and the booth went together little by little.  It is quite amazing to watch as those huge stacks of boxes and totes are transformed into a fantastic booth.

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Wednesday was opening day…and what a day it was. Our booth was packed from the beginning to the end of the day.17097513_1441580369207180_181651958227779787_o.jpgThanks to Jen and Lindsey for keeping the line moving quickly. 16864654_10155141875526209_7853455619886834793_n.jpg John and Drake had their hands full restocking the product.  I had the best job of all, talking to my painting friends, answering questions, showing off new product, tools and giving tips.

The patterns I designed for this show were a little different for me.  I worked really hard to create really unique, trendy surfaces and patterns.  I was a little nervous because these were outside my “box” and comfort zone. However, I was so pleased at how well they were received.  A big thank you to all of our customers for their kind words, support and patronage.  I am always overwhelmed with this wonderful group of painter friends.  I feel so blessed to be able to do what I love!  All surfaces and patterns are available at Cupboard Distributing  www.cdwood.com

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Because Cupboard Distributing is celebrating 30 years in business this year, we added a contest.  With every $30.00 purchase, customers received a ticket for a chance to win 30 of my newest pattern packets or a huge basket of Stampendous stamps.  We had so much fun promoting our 30 years with these great prizes.  Contest winners were selected after we returned home. Vegas Winner.jpg Congratulations to Kay Stahm for winning the patterns and Regina Oswald for winning the stamps!

Thursday evening was my last class.  We had a great time learning how to use stamps, as well as other unique techniques for creating unique projects and easily updating older designs.

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All of a sudden it was Friday and before we could blink, we were tearing down the booth! Whew…what a fun and high energy show!  I love this show and, even though I am bone tired, can’t wait till next year!

 

Who doesn’t like FREE???

DecoArt Media Give-away!

dask351-centered2017 is here and it’s time for fresh starts, new beginnings, trying something different, organizing, creating, and accomplishing many new and exciting projects!  To help you celebrate, Cupboard Distributing is offering a fantastic Media kit by DecoArt.  This fabulous kit will help get those creative juices flowing and help kick off your new year with pizzazz, bamm, pow and wow!!

I absolutely LOVE the Media line from DecoArt.  For those that are a little hesitant to invest into another line of paints, I would suggest a sampling.  So, if you aren’t the lucky winner of this awesome kit, here are a few of my favorite picks:

  1. Liquid Glass will give crystal clear dimension.  Perfect topping for berries, bubbles, eyeballs, dragonfly wings, etc…and with the precise tip, wonderful for adding texture.
  2. Matte Medium, I call it Magic Medium!  I use it for a varnish, decoupage, glazing medium, it is my most used “go to” jar!
  3. Quinacridone colors are rich, saturated color that explode on contact!  The Media Fluid Acrylics can be used in conjunction with regular acrylics, which means they will totally ramp up highlights to a new level. Plus, I love saying the name!!!
  4. Ultra Matte Varnish has the same sheen as acrylic paint.  I can varnish the surface to protect (I call this my safety net) and when dry, I can go back and paint on OR drybrush with excellent results!

All you need to do to enter this fabulous kit is make a comment on Cupboard Distributing facebook page on how much you love DecoArt, Cupboard Distributing, Pixelated Palette,…or me!!  To receive more chances to win like, comment or share with a friend!  https://www.facebook.com/CupboardDistributing/

Who wouldn’t want this fantastic set of pure inspiration.  Remember to comment, like and share to enter!  Contest starts Jan 15th and continues through the 21st.

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How to enjoy Infinity Ornaments All Year!

 

With the start of the New Year and the end of the Christmas season, I wanted to talk about the Infinity Ornaments again. I don’t want anyone to think they’re too late to join in on the fun just because Christmas over. Actually, the opposite is true – now is a great time to start getting into Infinity Ornaments!

You might have noticed some of the ornaments aren’t necessarily specific to the Christmas season. For example, you could use the dog bone accessory to commemorate a new pet any time of year. Or create a baby rattle ornament for a baby shower. The candy could accessorize an ornament framing a couple’s picture for Valentine’s Day or a family picture at Easter. The possibilities really are infinite! But there will be even more possibilities coming soon…

As I mentioned the last time I wrote about these ornaments, I’m already thinking about future additions to the Infinity Ornament line. These will include ornaments and accessories for all seasons. If you missed my blog post introducing the Infinity Christmas Ornaments, you can read it here: https://chrishaughey.wordpress.com/2015/12/01/infinity-christmas-ornaments-are-here/. This post explains the ornaments and includes ideas to help you get started. But remember – there is no limit to the possibilities!

Not only do these ornaments offer many possible combinations – there are also many options for decorating them. Infinity Ornaments aren’t just for painters or stampers. Even people who don’t consider themselves artistic can use decoupage and paper to quickly create beautiful, unique ornaments. And if you want some guidance, I’ve made a pattern that includes 12 different Christmas ornaments. You can follow the pattern directly or make your own variation by changing colors, stencils, etc. This means if you aren’t quite ready to start thinking about next Christmas, you can still use the pattern as a loose guide to creating ornaments that fit other seasons as well. Whether you choose to follow the pattern or start from scratch, you have infinite possibilities – you just need to get started!

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As I know from experience, though, finding a good time to work on craft projects can be difficult. That’s another reason I wanted to make these ornaments so flexible. Depending on what you want to do, they can be quick and easy or more involved.

 

Infinity Ornaments can be great for crafting alone in your spare time, or as a group. In fact, working on them could be a great group activity to build a crafting party around! They’re also ideal for working with groups of kids, because they can all work on the same project while expressing their own unique creativity. The ornaments are wonderful for family bonding as well, whether through giving ornaments as gifts or creating them together. You can spend as much time on them as you want, or make them quickly and easily. It all depends on what you want your creating experience to be.

 

If you’re ready to get creative with Infinity Ornaments, check out http://www.cdwood.com/collections/infinity-christmas-ornaments to get started. Remember, this is just the beginning! I’m working on even more additions to this collection. So get your craft supplies out and come along with me on this creative adventure with infinite possibilities!

Jennifer McConkey, copywriter and editor. For information or quotes call 937-207-2082 or email jmcconkey@cedarville.edu

Christmas Rescue…

…or should I say DecoArt rescue….again…

Christmas is always a hustle, bustle time of year.  Christmas lists are can be a bit of a challenge as one tries really hard to find just the right gift for everyone.  It’s always a good feeling to think you have acquired the perfect gifts.

My brother in law has a pontoon boat and my husband found the perfect t-shirt for him on line.  Pontoon.jpg

However, when it arrived, the front side was just what we wanted, but the back of the shirt was this!Backside.jpg

Since he does not drink beer, and there was not enough time (you know how that last minute shopping goes!), I decided to try another approach.  I wondered about using the Photo Transfer Medium  (available at Cupboard Distributing) to cover up the beer mug.  Since I have never used this product on fabric, I called the DecoArt helpline (they have wonderful technical service for any of their products).  They suggested once the t-shirt had been washed to remove sizing, that I use So-Soft to cover the image as the mug might show through the transfer.  I had used a water soluble pencil to outline the area to be basecoated.  The dark edge around the basecoat is wet fabric to dissolve the markings.  IMG_2069.JPG

He is a big Coke drinker, so I decided to use a Coke can image to cover up the beer mug.  I printed the image in reverse on my laser printer.  Once the basecoat was applied, I followed directions on the bottle to transfer the image.  Probably the worst part was waiting the required time before removing the paper to see if would work.  I am not good at doing crafty things, so was really on pins and needles, plus I had no time for error!  IMG_2115.JPG

Guess what??  It looked wonderful!  I was so excited, it really looked like it was factory printed with the Coke can.  You know, there is nothing worse than giving a gift to someone that looks like a 5 year old created it!  A great big thank you to DecoArt for once again saving the day and making something look amazing!

So, the moral to this little story is to not give up.  DecoArt has such a broad spectrum of products that do a myriad of things, from crafts, to home decor, to decorative painting to wearables.  Just remember, when you are in a pickle, they might be able to save the day with flying colors!

Sketchbooks and Organizing Inspiration

Get your new sketchbooks here »

I am often asked how I come up with so many ideas. I love to design and believe I have been blessed with a talent to create. Trying to organize and systematize my ideas has been a challenge. However, over the years, I have created a logical approach to cataloging my designs.

1. Always have a sketchbook close at hand. Whenever inspiration hits, I sketch a quick image and add a few notes. Rarely does the finished product look exactly like the quickie drawing, however, it is the idea that I want to capture. Because of this, I find that spending a great deal of time with a “perfect” sketch is rather a waste. Besides, I like to keep my options open just in case my mind wants to travel in a different tangent.

2. Buy a nice sketchbook. I use a standard 9” x 12” Sketchbook. There is something inspiring about having a book full of blank pages just waiting for ideas. I have used scraps of paper, but a sketchbook is more professional, consists of quality paper, keeps every idea in one place and encourages entries.  Besides, little pieces of paper seem to disappear.

3. Purchase a small travel size sketchbook. A 4” x 6” fits perfectly into my purse and is always handy whenever inspiration strikes. It is amazing how much time we spend waiting. Why not spend idle time, being creative?  It would be nice to be able to sit down and simply pour out ideas onto every page, but not realistic!  The smaller pages can either be removed and taped into the larger sketchbook or re-sketched.

4. Sketch every idea, or at least jot it down. I am sure that many, many designs have fallen through the cracks of my memory. Nothing is worse that knowing it was a great design, if only I could remember!

5. Don’t be critical. I would be the first to admit that most of my hurried sketches are very poorly executed and would be embarrassed to show them to anyone. However, these are my ideas and not intended to hone my sketching talent nor for show and tell.

6. Gather themes together. I have a three ring binder and hole punch. After I have a multitude of sketches, I punch them and file them in a binder. I have a binder for Christmas, spring, fall, everyday, etc… When I get ready to create a new design, all I have to do is flip through my catalog of ideas.

7. Once an idea has been used, it is not outdated. I have sketchbooks that are so old that they are curled and yellowed!  I have sketches ten to twenty years old that still inspire new designs. It is amazing to realize how many ideas result from a simple sketch, even old ones!

I have re-used many ideas as they can be updated with trends or change of color. I am sure we can all look back on projects from the early days and see how far we have come. A simple sketch from twenty years ago may be a solid design, all it needs is tweeked using some of the skills acquired over the years.

8. Let your mind be free. I truly believe that we are so regimented with adhering to rules and regulations that it is difficult to loosen up and try something different. Dont be afraid to experiment.  If it doesn’t turn out…oh well, but if it is amazing…aaaahhhh!

9. Play in your sketchbook. If you are trying to figure out a color scheme, painting strokes in the sketchbook will make it much easier to visualize. I have saved much grief by testing on the pages of my sketchbook, after all, I don’t have to sand and start over on paper!

10.Get in the habit of using your sketchbook every day, or at least several times a week.  Even if I don’t sketch, I get excited just looking through my pages.  I can almost guarantee that by the time you turn those pages, you will have at least one or two ideas to add!

11. A sketchbook is the perfect remedy for painting blahs.  If I ever get out of the painting groove, browsing through my sketchbook will revive my spirits.  Sometimes, painting just won’t fit in my schedule, but I can peruse through my designs, select what I will be doing next and mentally get everything in order, such as surface, colors, mediums, etc…  Doesn’t always mean that I will stick to the original plan, but it is enough to get me going.

12. Write notes.  Just because it is a sketchbook doesn’t mean that it is for sketches only.  I jot down what colors I may want to use, background info, additional embellishments, anything that may work for this project.  Often I overload the project with suggestions.  This give me plenty of choices when I get ready to paint.  It also gives me optional ideas for the same design.

I love to paint and my sketchbooks are my source of inspiration.  My sketchbooks are near and dear to me and I have a stack.  I probably spend more time with my sketchbook than I do painting.  Several years ago, I was working on a new book and the publisher asked how it was coming (which means “is it almost ready?”).  I told him it was finished except for the painting!  LOL!    To me, the designs, colors, and surfaces are the biggest obstacle, the painting is the fun and easy part!

My advice is to purchase a nice sketchbook and have fun filling up the pages.  It is an enjoyable and exciting adventure.

DecoArt Courage

When DecoArt asks me to do a project for them, I always try to push my creativity in an unusual direction to provide a new look at traditional painting.  DecoArt’s Media Line is intriguing because it is so different and versatile.  Matisse once said “Creativity takes courage”.  I titled this “Courage” as it seemed to sum it up as I stared at the blank journal.  I wanted to design something totally new and unique.  Learning new techniques and using new paints and mediums can be overwhelming, however, the results are so amazing that they are almost magical!  This project is the Featured Video in DecoArt’s Decorative Painting Newsletter.IMG_7663

Because journals are so popular, I decided to use this as my surface.  Everyone can use a journal…kids, teens, adults…we all need to make lists, write short mementos, or just jot down ideas!  Journals are a perfect and thoughtful solution for any gift giving.  My daughter creates stunning journals just for her that anyone would be thrilled to have!

This technique is very loose which can be a little stressful.  I encourage you to relax and let the brush take you to fantastic places.  I had a professor in college that emphasized that the painting always reflects your feelings.  With that in mind, relax and enjoy the ride!  The process always takes you through the “ugly stage” before it arrives at the impressive results!

Click  to see the  short instructional video creative process from start to finish…

All supplies are available from Cupboard Distributing www.cdwood.com

DecoArt Media Fluid Acrylics

DecoArt Media Misters

Loew Cornell Brushes

DecoArt Media Mediums

Supplies

Instructions:  The design is painted on canvas paper, then adhered to the journal cover.  Coat 5” x 7” Canvas Paper with white gesso using small specialty sponge.  Allow to dry, lightly sand, wipe clean and repeat.

  1. Screenshot_01Starting with Turquoise Shimmer Mister, lightly spray top, left corner and ⅓ down left side.  Using Yellow Green Mister, spray from top right corner to bottom left corner.  Spritz a very light amount of Primary Magenta in the area of the pinecones.  While still wet, spray with White Screenshot_1Shimmer Mister to lighten.  Hold paper vertical and allow paint to “run” down page.  Lightly mist with water or alcohol using Mini Mister.  When drips are as desired, lay paper flat to dry.
  2. Screenshot_2Attach dictionary cling stamp to acrylic handle.  Using the Archival Ink Pad, coat stamp with black ink.  Stamp words randomly onto the background.  This does not need to be heavy or solid coverage.   Random and incomplete create more interest.
  3. Load oval wash with Burnt Umber and MaScreenshot_3tte Medium (50/50).  Using a slip slap motion, coat background area to tone down.
  4. Load toe of angle with Matte Medium and QBU to float across the bottom and part way up the right side.  Blend softly into background.
  5. Attach pinecone stamp to acrylic handle.  Coat stamp with black ink following instructions above and stamp image.  Allow to dry.
  6. Screenshot_4Load liner with Titanium White to paint first layer of pine branches.  Repeat with Sap Green and Turquoise Blue Hue.  Keep adding layers until branches are full.  Finish by adding a few qbo needles.  Keep these sparse, add solely for color interest.
  7. Load filbert with Matte Medium and Burnt Umber.  Wash over pinecones to tint.  Pick up Titanium White on dirty brush and press down to create the tips of pinecone layers.
  8. Load toe of angle with qbo and float around the outer edge of the pinecones and in between.  Without cleaning brush, repeat with Prussian Blue and finish by adding a light float of qbo.
  9. Load tip of filbert with a tan mix of Titanium White and Burnt Umber (50/50) to re-define the layers of the pinecone.  Load liner with Titanium White and highlight the top tips of the layers.
  10. To create the spatters, load round with a thinned mix of Prussian Blue and qbo.  Rap brush sharply onto another brush handle.  Always test on palette before spattering surface.  Spatter mostly around the outer edges.  Repeat with Titanium White, mostly in the darkest areas.Screenshot_6
  11. Trim paper to fit journal cover.  With oval wash, apply a layer of Matte Medium onto the cover.  Place painted canvas paper, smooth flat and seal with a top coat of Matte Medium.
  12. Using pad of finger, rub Titanium White around the outer edge (and spine) of the journal.  When dry, repeat with a touch of Sap Green.  If needed, add Burnt Umber.
  13. Screenshot_7With finger, rub a small amout of Ttianium White on the raised design of the metal frame.  When dry, tone down with a small rub of Sap Green.  Add a touch of qbo for interest in just a couple places.
  14. Varnish journal surface and metal frame with a coat of Soft Touch Varnish.
  15. To add the words, coat canvas paper with Gesso.  With oval wash, tint paper with Burnt Umber and Matte Medium (50/50).  Thin Sap Green with Matte Medium (50/50) to add a hint of color.  qbo may also be added.Screenshot_8
  16. Select word stamp of choice, coat with black ink and stamp onto the canvas paper.
  17. Cut word to fit metal frame and secure with adhesive.
  18. Cut fiber or ribbon and thread through the holes in the metal frame.  Allow enough length to tie.  Apply Quick Grip Adhesive onto the back of the frame and glue into place.
  19. Fill inside frame with Liquid Glass.

I am so impressed with the vibrancy of the Media paints.  It only takes a little to create rich, glowing colors.  Please visit Cupboard Distributing for more inspiration, information and for all supplies used for this project. www.cdwood.com  Email me with any questions  chris@cdwood.com