Tag Archives: Faber-Castell

Faber-Castell product review

2 Mar

Guest Blog Post by Design Team Member Venisa Gallegos

Comments in italics by Deb


Blue Twig Assignment for February

This month, I got several items from Deb to try out including a set of a new kind of cardboard stencils from Faber Castell and some dimensional paint also from Faber Castell.  The set of stencils are simply called Mixed Media Stencils and contains 10 different stencils at a very reasonable price.  There are several sets of stencils and Deb gave me Set 102 to play with.  The metallic paint is called Texture Luxe and comes in Copper, Silver, Gold, and Pearl.  It’s basically an opaque paint designed to work with Stencils and is Permanent.  I’ll say right off the bat I tested it on fabric and washed it and it didn’t wash out. Yay!!! (good to know!)




Figure 1 – Set of Stencils and dimensional paint from Faber Castell


First I’ll talk about the Stencils.  I read that some people first coat the cardboard stencils with a glaze to help them last longer.  I actually did this but after using several stencils I decided it wasn’t worth it because the paint actually did a good job of coating the stencils.  They are also very strong and I had no problem using them over and over again.  (Side note:  Deb actually told me that I didn’t need to coat them with glaze but I had to see for myself.  Guess I could have saved myself some time if I listened to Deb in the first place.)  (Ha Ha – you should always listen to me. At least that is what I always tell my husband. )

What I loved about the set of stencils was that you can get 10 really cool stencils for a very decent price.   So if you didn’t have any stencils and wanted to try them out this is a great investment. (Plus once they are all coated up with paint and paste and stuff, and not really usable as stencils anymore, you can cut them up and use those pieces in your art!)

I spent most of my time using the Texture paint.  It has a very buttery texture and was easy to apply.  I tested it on paper and fabric as you’ll see in the next figure.  On paper it came out very crisp but my first attempt on fabric I had some leakage under the stencil.    You see that my next attempt came out better but I still had some leakage.

GetAttachment firstattemptflowers

Figure 2 – Texture Luxe on Paper and Fabric

On my second attempt I tried to stitch around the petals of the leaves to see if I could make them stand out.

As you can see in Figure 3 the stitching didn’t quite show up that well.  This is the piece I test and you can see that the paint stayed on perfectly.   I decided that the dimensional paint would be good on T-Shirts but that I’d have to make sure I had a stencil that really stayed down on the fabric.  (You may want to try to adhere the stencil down with a temporary spray adhesive like 505.) 




Figure 3 – Second attempt at Texture Luxe on Fabric with a close up of some added stitching 


You’ll see in Figure 4 that when I used a very tight stencil I got a very crisp image with no leakage on fabric so I know it’s possible to do.



Figure 4 – Texture Luxe with Stencil



Figure 5 – Texture Luxe on Hand Dyed Duck Cloth

Finally, I decided to stencil the flowers on some hand dyed duck cloth that I had previously dyes.  I really love how the copper color popped on the fabric as shown in Figure 5.  I’m thinking of leaving this just as it is and either adding it to a collage piece of maybe even sewing it onto a canvas bag.  I will definitely look into using some of the pearl colored metallic paint and add my own color to the paint.  I can see that with this technique I can make some fun pieces to add to other types of art projects.  I also can see getting some more stencil sets because they have such a great variety.


Thanks for another great product review Venisa. I always love seeing what you do with the products. I love the Faber-Castell products, and the stencil sets and Texture Luxe are great! 


Let Your Inner Artist out to Play

Blue Twig Studio – 5039 N Academy Blvd – Colorado Springs, CO 80918



Gel Crayons Review

1 Dec

Guest Blog Post by Design Team Member Venisa Gallegos

Comments in italics from Deb



This month, Deb gave me some Faber-Castell Gel Crayons.  They are very soft and come in red, yellow, orange, dark blue, grass green, black, silver, neon yellow, neon orange, neon pink, neon blue and neon green.  The cool feature about these crayons is that they come in a nice carrying case and all the crayons are wrapped in twist-up holders.  They are about the thickness of a gelato stick.




I started to use them just like you would any crayon and just started coloring.  I can tell you they have a very smooth and buttery texture and lay down well on paper.  Pretty much what you get with regular crayons, but I then wanted to see how they performed on fabric.  I pulled out some stencils and proceeded to color some white tone on tone fabric that I had (a very cool way to use these).  The crayons themselves are a little bit chunky and didn’t quite reach in all the corners of the stencil so I just grabbed a Q-top and moved the color where it was needed.  As you can see, the neon colors showed up very bright against the white tone on tone fabric.  To get even better coverage, I took a small wet wipe and ran it over the stencil (a trick I learned from Deb).  They aren’t listed as water soluble, but they seemed to work well with water.







In fact, I think using a wet wipe is the best way to apply and blend these crayons on the fabric.  A little messy but still fun.  To dry and “set” the colors I placed a paper towel on top of the fabric and then ran my iron over it.

Since Deb always gets asked if the fabric can be washed, I grabbed a bigger piece of white fabric and used a larger stencil so that I could use all the colors.



Since I knew I was going to wash this fabric, I spent more time heat setting it with my iron.  I spent probably two minutes going over the design.  So, what happened after washing?  As you can see from the images, I got mixed results.  Basically all the neon colors washed out but the regular basic colors remained.  A bit faded but you can still see the color.  So the lesson is, if you want to put it on fabric for washing, use only the regular, non-neon colors if you don’t want any color to wash out.

I decided to try the colors on black fabric and to my surprise the neon colors did not show up very well.  In fact, after a bit of ironing the colors basically disappeared.  And here I thought the neon colors would show up the brightest (this is why we test things out – so we know for sure).  What I didn’t expect was how bright the regular colors showed up on black as you can see in the figure below.  I added backing to the image and finished it by quilting in the colored areas.



I made a few more pieces where I just took the crayons and colored on the white tone-on-tone with the results shown below.  As you can see, I stitched one of the colored pieces of fabric with different colored threads.


stiched cloth


These are marketed for small children but you can have fun too. (lots of products marketed for kids are fun for adults too)


Thanks for a great review Venisa. I really love how the colors came out on the tone on tone fabrics. The crayons are available at Blue Twig Studio. Samples are at the shop if you want to see them in person. 


Let Your Inner Artist out to Play

Blue Twig Studio – 5039 N Academy Blvd – Colorado Springs, CO 80918


Silver pen review

20 Nov

Guest Blog Post by Design Team member Pat Mathes

Comments in italics from Deb


Greetings on this cold wintery day!


I love pens!  Anyone who knows me knows that I am always buying a new pen to try.  In the Zentangle® world (Pat is a CZT – Certified Zentangle Teacher), we normally use Micron Pigma pens.  You notice I say “normally”.  I actually use whatever suits my fancy that day.  Of course, that is when I am creating Zentangle Inspired Art.  I still use Microns with Zentangle tiles.  But I digress….


Deb gave me six silver pens to review for you.  Oh wow did that make me happy!  So I played and played and thought I had a favorite, then I would pick up another and have a new favorite.  So I decided all were good for different purposes.  After I played with them, I did go on line to read any other details on the pens (you will see some of that in the descriptions of the pens).  I also wanted to see if there were reviews on the pens, and found everything was pretty comparable to my findings. (all of these pens come in different colors too)




The first pen is the Y&C gel Xtreme 0.7 from Yasutomo .  These pens feature high quality, water based, acid free and non-toxic pigment gel ink.  It is a 0.7 millimeter tipped pen, so a nice fine line. It would be great for detail work as it flows very fine.  It has a shimmery metallic effect.  I think it works well on both the white and black paper.  It would be great for journaling, as it is easy to read the writing.


Next up is the Uniball gel impact silver 1.0 mm.  It flows very smooth.  It has a bold 1.0 mm tip and a contemporary barrel design with a rubber grip.  There is a visible ink supply and it is permanent ink.  I really like the Uniball pen, but I confess a lot of times I do Zentangle drawings with a Uniball black fine pen. Uniball pens are so smooth on the paper.  My favorite white pen is a Uniball Signo.  This silver Uniball really stands out on the black paper, as well as the white, and maintains a shimmery metallic sheen.  Again, it would be great for journaling because of the ease of writing.

Then we have the Faber Castell Metallic Pitt artist pen.  It has a broad tip – not a nib or gell roller tip, more like a micron graphic 1 or Sharpie pen.  It is an India ink base.  It has a very smooth style.  I like Pitt pens.  I like the way they write.  The only drawback for me with this one is that it dries more of a flat grayish silver.  It doesn’t have a sheen.  When I use a silver or gold pen, I like the sheen.  It is one that actually looks better on the white paper rather than the black.  It would work in journals – just a flatter silver color.


The Derwent Graphik line painter is an opaque pigment ink with a 0.5 mm  Japanese nib.  It is a very fine line and would do great detail work.   Like the Pitt Artist Pen, the Graphik line painter shows more of a flat silver gray on paper and looks better on white paper.  Because of the fine linework, it would be good in journaling.  I did see some reviews for this line painter of issues with blobbing ink or bubbling ink.  It does have a see through cartridge, and I do see bubbles in the cartridge.  But I had no issues.


The Molotow One4All acrylic paint pen has a 2.0 round tip.  It flows very smoothly.  It is refillable and you can also replace tips.  I don’t think it would be too difficult. The tip screws onto the cartridge.  I actually had to go on line to read about this one – there wasn’t a whole lot of information on the pen and it was such tiny print, it was hard to read.  It got good reviews – I like the effect – it would make some great framing borders or whimsical lettering on a journal page.


Last, but not least, is the Sakura Pen-Touch 2.0 mm.  This is a permanent paint marker with opaque color.  It is archival ink and goes on really smooth.  It does cover an area very quickly and doesn’t streak.  Like the Molotow, it would be great in doing journal work and lettering projects.



I tried all of these pens on a white mixed media 90 lb. journal page and on an Artagain black 100 lb. page.  None of the pens bled through the paper.  They all show very nicely on the black paper – on the white they are not as dramatic.  I switched to a 60# drawing pad and the Molotow and PenTouch came real close to bleeding through.


All of them dry pretty quickly which was a surprise, especially with the Molotow and Sakura, and they are all waterproof.  About 20 minutes after I did the pages I took a water brush to the pages and none of the inks smeared at all.   With a lot of pigment and India ink type pens, you need to allow some setting time or they will smear a bit.  For instance, a Micron pigment pen almost needs to set for 24 hours or use a heat drying method to be able to use water over it.


I have started doing some journal work and can see potential in all six of the pens to use in journaling.  I could use any of them in Zentangle Inspired Art.  I actually took the Uniball and applied it over an alcohol ink piece I did and liked that too.  Great pens, and all are available at Blue Twig Studio.  Check them out.



Journal page



Thanks Pat for an awesome review. I love pens and markers too and am always on the lookout for new and wonderful pens. Of course, we have lots of pens in the shop. I apologize if the full selection isn’t available on the website, but you can always ask me about products and I can send you an invoice for them. 


Let Your Inner Artist out to Play

Blue Twig Studio – 5039 N Academy Blvd – Colorado Springs, CO 80918



Easy Mixed Media Tutorial

12 Nov

Guest blog post by Deborah Pace – Design Team Member

comments in italics added by Deb at Blue Twig Studio


 Deborah created this beautiful mixed media piece, which is really easy to do. I hope it gives you some ideas for your own projects. 



Apply a thin coat of gesso to your surface.


Rub metallic gelatos and Aquarelle watercolor pencils onto watercolor paper (Deborah started with the Mixed Media Sampler). Blend with water using a paintbrush or your fingers.  Dry with a heat gun.


Apply metallic gelato over a stencil.


With another stencil, mist watercolor, remove stencil and let drip. Outline with watercolor pencils and Faber-Castell Pitt Pen.  Add additional colors and dry with a heat gun.

Mixed media project by Deborah Pace

Mixed media project by Deborah Pace

Embellish with the Prima Free Spirit paper flowers and the flair buttons.


Faber-Castell Mix & Match Mixed Media Sampler (yellow used here)

Gelatos (come in packs or singles)


Pitt Pens

Big Brush Pens

Prima Free Spirit embellishments (there are lots of other embellishments available to use)

Gesso (I have the FC gesso available on the website)

watercolor paper (I don’t have any listed on the website, although I have some in the shop)

heat gun



I adore how beautiful this looks. I know you can make something similar (perhaps making some holiday gifts?). Thanks so much to Deborah for sharing this project idea. 


Let Your Inner Artist Out To Play

Blue Twig Studio – 5039 N Academy Blvd – Colorado Springs, CO 80918



Yummy stuff at CHA

21 Jan

I just got home from CHA in Anneheim. I fully intended to blog about CHA while I was there, but alas that didn’t happen. There is just so much going on and so much to do and see and then you end up exhausted at the end of the day and don’t want to really do much work. Plus the hotel was charging us if we wanted to use the internet, which really just annoyed me. Anyway, I only managed to do a few Facebook posts while I was gone.

First of all, Sunny California was downright cold. Apparently there were record cold temperatures while we were there. I know, it certainly wasn’t as cold as at home, but when you go to California you expect it to be nice. The trek from the hotel to breakfast and to the Convention Center every day was quite brisk (especially since I didn’t really take warm clothes with me). But still, the sun was out, the palm trees were swaying, the shrubbery was green and lush. And the company was great.

I did a number of workshops/classes while I was there, which were really great. I tried to sit in on a few demos on the floor, but really didn’t have the time to do as much of that as I wanted. I did look at lots of samples of fun mixed media art. It does really look like the scrapbooking industry is trying to incorporate more mixed media into what they do. Most of the scrapbooking companies are adding more texture and layers and embellishments than they have in the past. There is definitely more of a mixed media feel to everything. Of course, I am not really a scrapbooking business so all those rows of paper and more paper just weren’t that interesting to me.


The booths I liked best were more art and mixed media. Those were the yummy booths. Lots of fun stuff to play with and lots of great art and new products and fun colors.

Of course, Ranger has a fabulous booth, and there are Tim Holtz things everywhere (not just at Ranger). Tim Holtz is like a rock star. His demos have so many people watching and filming and snapping photos, and then if he is out and about there are people wanting his autograph and hoping to take a photo with him or get a hug. Of course there are many other artists doing demos and having photos taken, but he is by far the most popular.

Faber-Castell has a nice booth and demos. They have great packaging so their products always look nice. Plus they had these fabulous cookies there with icing that showed all the gelatos. Very pretty and colorful and tasty.


The Luminarte booth was a lot of fun too. All that wonderful color and lots of sparkle. And quite busy too.

The Petaloo people had so many samples of artwork using their products. A lot of texture and dimension and layers. I thought they had a lot of great samples of ways to use their products in mixed media art. I liked the Kaisercraft booth too. Cute ideas for using their products. My theory is that if you are selling scrapbooking papers you need to show some other ideas for your products to appeal to the part of the market that isn’t really scrapbooking. I love pretty papers, but I’m probably not using them in a scrapbook. I might use them in art journaling or collage or other mixed media work.

cha cha cha cha cha cha cha cha

Of course there are all those booths that try to outdo each other with displays and accessories. There was not one, but two enormous elephants in two different booths, a cool hippy VW van, dinette vignettes, numerous dresses, flying butterflies,  a magic show, bicycles, etc.  So much creativity and ingenuity in the displays. I loved seeing all those fun booths.

cha cha cha cha cha cha cha cha cha cha cha cha cha cha cha cha

All in all, it was fun and entertaining and I had fun playing with new goodies. I can’t wait to share the new products I ordered as they start coming into the store.


Let Your Inner Artist Out to Play

Blue Twig Studio – 5965 Whiskey River Dr – Colorado Springs, CO 80923 – USA

Birthday Give-away! Woo Hoo!

9 Aug

My birthday is this week and I thought it would be fun to do something special for it. So I am going to do a giveaway. At my age, it is as much fun to give as to receive on my birthday.

So what do you have to do to win?  Just comment on this post (it won’t count if you comment on the facebook page) with a message about what your best ever birthday gift was. I will draw a winner at the end of the day Aug 13th. How easy is that?

And what do you win? Hmmm. Good question. How about one of these great new Faber-Castell kits that I just got into the store.

This is the Mixed Media & Collage kit and it includes 3 Art Grip Aquarelle Pencils, 1 Stamper’s Big Brush Pen, 1 Pitt Artist Pen, 1 Gelato Stick, 1 Clear Stamp, 1 Pencil Sharpener, 1 sm bottle Gesso, 1 sm bottle Craft Glue, 20 assorted Clipart/Design Papers, 7 Greyboard surfaces, 1 foam brush, 1 mesh screen, 1 piece of lace, 12 Illustrated Cards. There is so much fun stuff in this kit as well as some idea cards for you, that I know you will have a blast playing with everything.

I think somebody will be very happy to win this kit!  Don’t forget, to be eligible to win, you need to leave your comments on this post, about a favorite birthday gift!

Faber-Castell Mixed Media

4 Aug

Faber-Castell is celebrating its 250th anniversary this year. Isn’t that amazing? The company was originally founded in 1761 in Stein, Germany, and is currently headquartered in Cleveland OH, USA. They are also a company that believes in sustainability, and they grow 215sf of wood every hour. WOW! They work to maintain a sustainable supply of timber without damaging natural resources. I believe that says a lot about a company.

We were aware that Faber-Castell was releasing some fun new mix and match mixed media products so we wanted to stop by the Faber-Castell booth at CHA and check it out. We did their make-n-take, which was a cute little paper banner. We got to use a bunch of the new products and had fun.

Deb Prewitt at Faber-Castell CHA

The new Art Grip Aquarelle Watercolor pencils were really great. They have flat sides, rather than being round, so they don’t roll away from you when you set them down. They also have these little raised dots on the barrel that help you grip the pencils easily. And they blend really well when you add water, so you can have all kinds of fun with them. They are waterproof and lightfast when dry, so it is easy to layer them.

We also got a chance to use the Stamper’s Big Brush Pen, which are an India Ink. They are waterproof, lightfast, and archival.  We got to apply the big brush color directly to the rubber stamps we were using, which is super easy to do. It is a great way to control the amount of ink on the stamp, or to add several colors to the stamp at once, or to only color in a portion of the stamp that you might want to use.

And the Metallic Gelatos are luscious. They come in a tube that is about the size of a chap-stick, and it glides just like a nice lipstick! They are creamy and come in lots of colors and the have a fun shimmer effect. You can blend them with water or with a sponge or your finger.

And of course, there are many other products by Faber-Castell that you will want to play with.   I hope you can try out some of the new products. The Mix & Match sampler packs are great. You choose a color that inspires you, choose a medium, and mix and match. The palettes are color coordinated to give you the freedom to design, knowing the colors will work together well.

Let Your Inner Artist Out To Play!


Royalty Free Images
%d bloggers like this: