unique papercrafting graphic 45

March 11, 2014

Two Terrific Ideas with Typography and Botanical Tea


Our Dear G45ers,


Oh my! Do we have a great blog here for you today. We are in a mixed media and altered art sort of mood. How about you? Well, Nichola Battilana and Maiko Miwa have some great inspiration for us today. Nichola wows with a Typography altered printer's tray - tutorial included! Maiko shares her beauteous Botanical Tea Book Box. We also have some fun announcements about events upcoming and a great Facebook highlight!




Charee Filimoehala — Director of Customer Service and Social Media Coordinator

 “I joined the team in 2009 and haven’t looked back…what a life-changing experience this has been.  I love working with and around creative people and products (not to mention I like my co-workers quite a bit).  I spend my days working with our friendly stores and talented design team…the occasional trip somewhere warm is pretty nice too.”

Charee Filimoehala will be attending CHA @ NAMTA in Pittsburgh, PA this April 30-May 2, 2014. Attendees include retail buyers interested in seeing and purchasing art and creative supplies from manufacturers, importers, publishers and distributors. Charee will be teaching a wonderful Botanical Tea mini album workshop there.

"Discover the joy and brilliant color of springtime with Graphic 45! Join us for a fun and informative mini album class featuring our gorgeous new collection, Botanical Tea! This fabulous class will feature amazing new techniques for working with our new Shabby Chic Staples, Ivory Tag Album Staples and Artist Trading Tags! We'll be creating an elegant mini album that you'll treasure for a lifetime, while you learn stylish new methods for shabby chic distressing and dimensional layering! Get inspired for a new season of creativity with your friends at Graphic 45!" ~Charee

Botanical Tea Album


See more about CHA @ NAMTA

Let's celebrate our Graphic 45 Facebook Page! My goodness, we love seeing your beautiful creations there day in and day out. What creativity and inspiration! Have your shared your projects there, lately? Today, we want to spotlight a beautiful April card by Ginny Nemchak using Place in Time and A Ladies' Diary. Isn't this a great idea? Love her layering!


Share on our Graphic 45 Facebook Page


Now to the altered art party!


Nichola is an amazing artist, and we are so excited to share her printer's tray today. She gives you great guidance and tips all throughout this fun tutorial, so grab your cuppa tea or coffee and enjoy these fun step-by-step instructions.

Typography Printer Tray Tutorial by Nichola Battilana

"I love altering things, making assemblages and mixed media pieces. The process I go through when creating most of my mixed media pieces is almost always the same. Prep, base, gather, play, layer, finish! I’ll show you my process using Graphic 45’s Typography and a small (rather dinged up) printer style tray.


The first thing you’ll want to do is prep the object you are working with. Give it a quick wipe, sand any rough edges, and remove any hardware.


My next step is to prime the object I’m altering. The papers I’ll be using are quite dark so I’m using black. Doing this helps to hide flaws and uneven edges. You might want to use a coat of white paint, or other colour depending on the paper you use for your project. Tip: Pay close attention to the corners!


Once the base coat is dry, I’m going to cover the back of my project. Working on the reverse first might seem a bit strange, but I’ve found that doing it first saves a lot of aggravation later. I’m using Typography to give the back a finished look.


Next, I cut strips of Journey to fit the exterior edge of my piece. If you encounter a situation where you need to piece together two or more separate pieces of paper, try to use the pattern or design to your advantage to create a seemingly seamless join.



At this point I cut squares from Inscribe and Inspire that will fit in the little interior areas. I prepare more than I need so that I can experiment with the layout.


When everything looks just right, I glue it into place. Now I can decide on a complimentary paper to use on the edge of my tray. I’ve used Journey here but it seemed a bit too bright so I inked the edges and distressed with some watered down acrylic paint. Tip: Don’t be afraid to lighten or darken with a bit of paint.


Now that the base is complete I gather some goodies to begin the first layer of embellishment! Again, I gather more than I need so that I have lots of options and plenty of elements to play with.


You want to begin building interesting layers with those lovely Tags & Pockets, Chipboard and Stickers.



Once again, keep working, playing and experimenting until you have a solid base and are happy with your composition.





Now to add the junk! Gather all sorts of little things that will fit in those little spaces. Buttons, coins, rusty bits, left over letter tiles… the possibilities are endless!




But don’t stop at just junk! Make NEW junk by combining objects. Embellish a spool with Washi Tape add a turn key and button… just like a tiny little sculptures!



Consider texture, colour, depth, proximity, pattern, and height when arranging your do-dads. Keep playing and experimenting, you WILL get there :)



I added some little metal corners along with some Ornate Metal Key Holes, all of which I have dry brushed with some flat black paint. Finally, a large Typography Chipboard tag finishes off the front of the piece.




And the very last touch is to add another Ornate Metal Key Hole to the back to replace the hanging hardware that I removed at the very beginning of this project.




Prep your base really well, work in layers, and above all else… enjoy yourself!















Supply list:





 Typography Tags & Pockets

 Typoygraphy Chipboard

 Typography Stickers

 Washi Tape Set

 Ornate Metal Key Holes

 Ornate Metal Keys

 Metal Clothespins

 Small wooden printer style tray

Acrylic paint

Ink pad


Misc items for embellishing: wooden spools, wire, twine, Glass Bottles and vintage vials, buttons, miscellaneous rusty bits, old pen nibs, metal letters, Tim Holtz Clock Keys, metal brads,  Reversible Round Metal Number Tiles, Scrabble tiles, metal corners


Maiko draws you into a fairy tale world with her amazing projects. This Botanical Tea Book Box is no exception. She fills it with handmade treasures that just makes this a whimsical masterpiece!


Maiko Miwa Graphic45 Botanical Tea Altered Bookbox#2


Maiko Miwa Graphic45 Botanical Tea Altered Bookbox#3


What a clever idea to pack an altered box with a framed pictures and fun handmade stars!


Maiko Miwa Graphic45 Botanical Tea Altered Bookbox8


Maiko Miwa Graphic45 Botanical Tea Altered Bookbox#9


Maiko is a master of detail. What a great use of the Shabby Chic Ornate Metal Brads and Shabby Chic Door Pull (below)!


Maiko Miwa Graphic45 Botanical Tea Altered Bookbox#10



Graphic 45 Products



Book Box

Washi Tape Set

Shabby Chic Door Pull

Shabby Chic Ornate Metal Brads

Shabby Chic Ornate Metal Keys

Botanical Tea



Spring Duet

Field of Flowers

Birds of a Feather

Hello Friend

Robin's Egg

Herbal Infusion

Just Because

Love Notes



 inks-Ingvild Bolme Chalk Edgers Ink

 Modeling Paste

Riquid Pearl-Ranger


 What a great day full of dazzling altered art. Have you made a printer's tray recently? Maybe this week is the week to give it a go! Many thanks to Nichola and Maiko for sharing their wonderful creations. Have a terrific Tuesday, G45ers!


All About Altered Art,


Graphic 45




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Great Inspiration Thanks Sandra x

Love the mini album. Will instructions be available after CHA? or as kits to our LSSs?

Fabulous projects!!! Just love them!

I just love the door pulls used to open the album...very nice!

Those projects are very beautiful. Thanks for sharing,

What wonderful eye candy to start my Tuesday with! LOVELOVELOVE Maiko's Botanical Tea Book Box!! I just received my Botanical Tea collection and am planning to find some time to get started on a project that has been in my head since I saw the first sneak peek of this stunning collection!
Maiko has added so many wonderful little details to this incredible work of art!! TFS!


thanks for sharing with us!

Wow. This week's projects have been amazing! Can't wait to see what you feature the rest of this week!

Oh my goodness!!! All of these are gorgeous!!!

The printers tray is my favorite today, which means I will have a new favorite tomorrow. So many talented people gathered in the same pursuit of art.

So excited to see Ginny Nemchak featured on your blog today. Her work is so inspiring! Love the altered printers tray and the gorgeous album from Maiko, too.

Wonderful book box. Botanical Tea is growing on me. Love the bits and bobs in the printers tray, they work so well with the papers. Thank you for sharing.

I can't get enough of the book box ideas. So cute and fun

I love LOVE the Typography Printer's Tray! And then scroll down to see the gorgeous Botanical Tea Book Box! The beautiful and interesting Graphic45 papers really make these projects.

Love the printers tray and the gorgeous book box! Wonderful inspiration!!

I absolutely love the botanical tea collection! So gorgeous! Great job on the book box! :)

Great Typography project. The Botanical Garden box is a great idea. That would be nice to have if you go to the beach to keep little trinkets and keepsakes in.


I love the book projects! Such beautiful papers! I would be so happy to win one day!


Barbara Diane

GREAT projects today! Makes me wish I could stay home and play in the craft room all day! Thanks for bringing us such inspirational and beautiful pieces, Graphic 45 folks!

OMG!!!!!!!!! I know what I will be trying my hand at today. i don't have a wood tray but I sure can make one from chipboard. Love it all today. Thank you for I a chance to win.

simply gorgeous! TFS!

Oh my goodness - such beautiful projects and inspiration. These collections are so versatile.

Super neat projects!

Awwww, it's like a mini vacation each time I visit this blog!

Wowza!!! Great stuff today in Graphic 45 Land. Thanks for the chance to win! You all rock!

This is always an interesting and inspiring site. Thanks for finding such creative projects for us to enjoy!

WOW!!! Just WOW.

Fabulous printer's tray!! So thought out and creative. Inspiring!! Love the book box too!!

Charee does a great job in your company. I have noticed how she is always so kind with her facebook comments on our creations. Beautiful mini book and tray. There is always so much inspiration on the G45 blog.

Wonderful work by the team! Congrats to my pal Ginny for her card feature! Well done!

The card is stunning, and the printer's tray is amazing. Thanks for the inspiration!

Such stunning Artwork. I love them all!

wonderful projects today. Love the printers tray and the card is adorable.

What a great tray! Thanks for such a detailed tutorial. Beautiful book box too. Michelle t

As always, speechless. Just beautiful :)

love the tray it has such character

amazing projects!

Absolutely loving the printer tray!!! And I think even I could follow such concise instructions. The box is really sweet & shabby romantic. Great fb entry too (I sometimes wish I was still blissfully unaware how talented you have to be so I could share there again, lol).
Tfs today :))

Your mixed media projects are just breathtaking.

Wow - two amazing projects. Time to check my 45 paper stash to get started.

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