Following on from last week's "Heads Up" I have had a bash at "doing" one of my own "Paint Your Own" nutcrackers that Poundland have had amongst their Christmas craft section this year.
I knew it wasn't going to be as simple as it looked, from the start I decided that I wasn't going to use the brush and paint that it came with. The brush was cheap and nasty and I guessed the paint wouldn't really be up to the job either and to be honest, it was just the wooden figure I was interested in when I bought it.
I left the face and hands as they were in the natural wood but used Sharpie pens to colour the rest, however I also needed to use coloured ultra fine tipped pens to work the edges first to help avoid the colours bleeding into each other and to get into all the tiny nooks and crannies. This was so fiddly. Luckily the arms came off so I could get to the little fiddle farty bits, again using fine liner pens. I did use a tiny bit of the accompanying red and black paint in the end to colour the inside of the nutcracker as it was impossible to get even the fine liner pens in there.
When the nutcracker was dry I used tiny, gold, flat back domes for his buttons and various shapes from a metal nail art set (also from Poundland) for the buckles on his shoes, belt, the epaulets on his shoulders and buttons on his boots, this made such a difference, bring the nutcracker to life.
Nutcracker as illustrated on the packaging.
I also used the tiny black rounds from the set for his eyes, because after all the fiddle fart I didn't want to risk using a black pen only to have it bleed into the face and ruin it. It also made them stand out a little more.
I decorated his hat using a tiny holly punch (Hobbycraft £1) and equally tiny flat back, red pearls for the berries.
On his moustache I added Ranger Glossy Accents again to help make it stand out more, plus add a different texture.
I also added a few white lines on his boots and three white dots on his shoes using a white gel pen.....
....... however I only did this lightly because at that stage I could have very easily over embellished Mr Nutcracker and then completely ruined all my efforts. That's one down, another one to go!