Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Rustic Christmas Angel Tutorial

Hi and servus!

Claudia here to share another tutorial with you as OCC's Resident Guest Designer. I hope by now you are already in full Christmas swing and my how-to finds you in perfect Christmas-blings-and-wings mood!

And maybe you are also in the mood for playing along with our actual "Topsy Turvy" challenge which can be found HERE. Don't forget - DecoArt are OCC's prize sponsor this month and are giving away a fantastic bundle of DecoArt media goodies to one lucky (randomly selected) winner! There are three more days to enter the challenge!

I created Gwendolyn (my little winged friend has a name of course) from white Fimo air microwave which is a polymer clay that can be hardened in the microwave within ten minutes (yesss!), creates no toxic fumes and is especially light weight. Perfect for a collection of angels to hang on your Christmas tree...

And as a rustic or naive look is what we are up to you can also try this with your kids as they are the best sculptors of all, right?

What else did I use to create Gwen?

- sculpting tools (or cutlery)
- DecoArt media fluid acrylics: Titanium White, Yellow Oxide, Quinacridone Magenta, Titan Buff, Burnt Umber
- DecoArt media fluid acrylic Interference Gold
- DecoArt "Gold Rush" Metallic Lustre
- paint brushes
- clay rolling tool (or rolling pin covered with plastic wrap)
- non stick sheet

First I sculpted Gwen's head using my fingers and some sculpting tools. If you don't have any scultping tools cutlery will do the job as well.

Don't worry if the face isn't too precise - a lot can be "saved" when painting the face. Also make sure you keep the rest of the clay in an air sealed box or bag so it doesn't dry out in the meantime.

Your angel also needs a bit of a bust to fix the dress and wings to. 

Using the rolling pin create the skirt by spreading the clay into an elongated oval of about a hand's width. Torn and uneven edges are more than welcome because they add to the rustic look! You can even tear off pieces once you have fixed and sculped the skirt around your angel's bust until you are content with the shape.

As you can see I created some folds and wrapped my rolled out "sheet of clay" around the neck. Smudge the upper edges of the skirt so it mixes with the clay of the head piece.

Model two simple arms and attach them to the bust the same way as you did with the skirt. Use a tool to press in the fingers' shapes.

Gwen's wings were done as quickly as easily. I simply pressed the clay flat with my hands and spread and tore the clay in all directions as needed. That also created the torn looking edges. Don't get too thin with the middle piece as this will be needed to fix the wings to the skirt on your angel's back.

To fix the wings to Gwen's dress I roughened the clay on both pieces at the spots that were to be fused with a sharp tool. That creates some "grip" for both pieces to hold on to.

Then it was time for Gwen to be hardened in the microwave. I used an old glass plate. To make sure that all parts kept their shapes I formed little balls of the clay and used them as supports (for the skirt and the slight bend with the wings).

I followed the instructions on the package and it went just perfect. No fumes, and really just ten minutes - and Gwen was ready to be painted. Wow! 

I mixed a skin colour from Titanium White, a tiny bit of Yellow Oxide and Quinacridone Magenta. To paint Gwen's face and hands I used a fine detail brush.

Then I painted her dress with Quinacridone Magenta. I also added paint to the inside of the dress so no white spots would be left.

Gwen's wings got a coat of Titan Buff.

Her hair was painted with Burnt Umber. (don't worry - this was just the base for the gold highlights).

Then it was time for the first addition of Bling by adding some Interference Gold here and there. Interference paints are perfect for "moving" (dangling) pieces, because depending on the angle you look at it you either see the colour underneath or the gold sheen.

 For more golden Bling and to highlight the texture on Gwen's wings, her hair and her dress, I applied some Gold Rush Metallic Lustre with my fingertips. Before that I dry brushed some Burnt Umber around the wings' edges to create a visible outline.

Here's Gwen's face in the middle of being painted. You could of course paint her face with more visible details (red cheeks and lips and such) - but I loved the gentle expression on her face so I only did a bit of highlighting and putting a hint of red to her cheeks. 

To hang your angel on your tree all you need to do is screw in a small ring bolt at the back to fix a ribbon to.

I hope you like Gwendolyn and have fun creating your own angels!

Hugs and happy Christmas crafting! 


  1. What a beautiful angel, my has my mother in laws name too! I must try the new clay and the interference paint is perfect for her dress. Hugs x

  2. Brilliant Angel, there is a real charm about her . I love the touch of metallic too. She is lovely. Tracy x

  3. Hello Claudia, you always have something good to show and your little angel is lovely, I'll definitely want to go ahead to try.
    Hugs, Susan

  4. What a lovely angel, she is so beautiful!!!!

  5. She's lovely. You might need to make a host now!

  6. OMG Claudia!! Gwendolyn is simply precious!! I love her!! She's delicate and pretty and looks oh so vintagey and rustic!! And you molded her with clay that can be dried in the microwave? WOW!! That is cool!! Just a wonderful Christmas angel and I hope you make more to keep Gwendolyn company :) :) XOXO-Shari

  7. Claudia, this is amazing!! Such inspiration for all. Love the name!! Julia xx

  8. How fun and lovely angel Claudia, I love to bits your Gwendolyn!!!!
    I have absolutely to try your way of doing this with my two last little girls, I'm sure they will love doing their own angel or doll!!! Thank your for this beautiful and great tutorial Claudia.
    Bises xxx


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