Friday, 9 August 2013

Playing with Gelatos

Hi everyone, me again...

If you receive our newsletter or follow us on Facebook, you know that we now stock the Faber Castell Gelatos and accessories. Although those have been around for a while, they are still new to a lot of you so I thought I would do a "little" introduction and show you different ways to use them.
Here's what you can find on our website:

Gelatos set with brush and little dabber. 
Those are new colours, not included in the other sets. 

Gelatos set with stamp and brush

Tool sets

What are Faber Castell Gelatos? 
Here is what Faber Castell say about them:
Nothing on the market today compares with Design Memory Craft Gelatos.
Those compact sticks glide on creamy smooth for vibrant colour and coverage.
All Gelatos blend easily with or without water.
Try this unique medium on paper, canvas, or wood!
Gelatos are creamy sticks infused with brilliant colour.
The colour glides easily onto paper and can then be dissolved with water to create watercolour effects or left to dry for vibrant bursts of colour.

And they are right... There is nothing like Gelatos out there. They come as a little stick, a bit like a lipstick (although I would not use them as such!) of "pigmented water soluble creamy paint"...
Not easy to describe unless you try them... But I love them.
Wonderful to make subtle watercolour background if you blend them with water, or rich creamy background with vivid colours if you just blend them with your fingers (lovely on AJ pages!)

How do I use them? 
Well there are a lot of ways to use them, and I won't cover it all in one day. Especially as I have not received the tool kits nor the new colours yet (they are in transit across the Atlantic I guess), and I really wanted to show you what you can do with those. So I guess "I will be back" :)

In the meantime, here's what I have come up with...
Bear with me.. grab a cuppa, this is a long, picture rich post but I tried to be thorough.

Using Gelatos on card
Being water soluble, you will guess that a good watercolour card is the best, especially if you want to spray with water (spray the card itself or the stamp... )
Having said that, you can use the Gelatos on "normal" card. Just keep in mind that a gessoed card will be much better than a blank card.

1/ Apply a couple of Gelatos colours onto a "normal" card and rub with your finger, you will find that they will blend but leave traces.
2/ Now cover a card with Gesso, dry it, and apply a couple of colours of Gelatos and blend them with your finger. Now they will blend much better. If you add a bit of water on your finger before you blend it will be even easier, but not too much if you want to keep the rich colour.

This shows you the difference between the Gelatos on a plain card (left) and the Gelatos on a card that has been prepped with gesso (right). The top is just the Gelatos, the bottom is Gelatos + water. You can see that they blend much better on the card with gesso

Now, with watercolour card.

Apply two colours of Gelatos, a little bit goes a long way.
Spray your card (or your fingers) with a bit of water and blend the colours with your finger
Dry with a heat tool
Apply Gelatos colours onto your craft sheet and add water to make a "puddle". 
Load a brush with either mix and flick onto your card. 
Repeat with the other colour

Stamp your flowers and butterfly with Archival (or StazOn) ink and use the Gelatos to watercolour the flowers (make another little puddle on your craft sheet and paint with a brush)
Stamp the text.

I used
Gelatos: Peach and Butterscotch for the background (Neutral pack) and Red Cherry (Red pack) for the flowers
Stamps: Crafty Individuals CI-226 and CI-256

Using the Gelatos onto the stamp. 
This will work on rubber and clear stamps
Apply the different colours of Gelatos onto your stamp, spray with water (not too much!!) and stamp onto your watercolour card. 
You can apply a bit of water onto your stamp first (with your fingers), apply the Gelatos and then stamp. 

(click to enlarge picture)
I used:
Gelatos: Chocolate (Neutrals), Bubble Gum (Pinks) and Green Tea (Greens)
Stamps: Crafty Individuals CI-226 and CI-256

Try both: apply the Gelatos to the stamps and then spray.... OR ... dampen the stamp first and then apply the Gelatos, the effect is different. The colour is a bit richer with the second method. 
It depends how vivid or subtle you want your stamped image.
Once again, it looks different if it's a card with or without gesso.

Another card I made using the same method as card 2
Love the subtle watercolour look
I applied the blue all over the flower first, then added the metallic purple, then the green. 
Sprayed the stamp with a bit of water and stamped. 
Added the quote with Archival ink.

I used 
Gelatos: Metallic Grape (Metallics), Cotton Candy (Blues) and Green Tea (Greens)
Stamps: IndigoBlu Nature 1

Using the Gelatos for die cuts. 
Again, I applied the Gelatos (2 colours) onto my card, sprayed with water, blended and dried. 
I applied more Gelatos until I was happy with the colours
I then used this to cut some flowers with the Memory Box die, which I used on the canvas below
I used:
Gelatos: Butterscotch (Neutral), Tangerine and Red Cherry (Reds)

Using the Gelatos on chipboard
This is one of my top favourite use for the Gelatos. They cover the chipboard beautifully, even without gesso first. I don't have step by step pictures for this card, but I will use the Gelatos on chipboard again for Part 2, so I will take lots of pictures then. 
I DID take pictures but those have disappeared too ... argggghhh

For this card, I applied my Gelatos on the card (this was a "normal" card.. not watercolour) and then blended with a waterbrush. Added more colours and the hill in green until I got what I wanted, making sure to dry with the heat tool between layers.
I then laid a Crafters' Workshop mask onto the card, added a bit of Gelatos onto the mask and rubbed with my fingers. A little bit goes a loooong way, so don't add too much. 
On the hot air balloon: I applied the Gelatos and blended with my finger (no water needed so you keep the rich colours); added more colour (brown) with the mask on and then highlighted the pattern with a white gel pen. 
This mask is called Peacock Pattern, love it!! It's amazing to make background with the Gelli Plate too!
Added a bit of stamping (CI-336 Around the World), glued the hot air balloon onto the card and mounted onto Bazzill card.

I used:
Gelatos: Buttercream (Yellows), Cotton Candy (Blues), Metallic Blueberry (Metallics), Red Cherry and Tangerine (Reds), Butterscotch and Chocolate (Neutral)
Tando Creative Hot Air Balloon

Using the Gelatos on Canvas.
This is my other favourite use for the Gelatos. 

Once again, you can apply the Gelatos and blend with a wet brush
Dry and add more colours if you want to. You will find that some lighter colours with cover the darker one if you dry between layers. So you can really play with them.
I used:
Faber Castell Gelatos: Butterscotch, Peach and Chocolate (from the Neutral pack)

You apply your Gelatos to your canvas and you add water to your fingers and blend that way. 
Colours will then be darker/richer because you are using less water.
Now another fun twist to the Gelatos... as they are water soluble, you can REMOVE the colour you have applied. 
Here's my Peacock Pattern again, place it on the "gelato-ed" canvas, take a baby wipe and remove the colour. How cool is that??  Love this!

And that's not it... cut a bit of your Gelato stick onto your craft sheet, mash it up and mix it with Gel Medium to make a coloured paste. Use a mask/stencil to add texture to your canvas.
Make sure you dry it with the heat tool to set the colour or it will come off.   

I used: 
Faber Castell Gelatos: Butterscotch, Peach and Chocolate (from the Neutral pack) and Red Cherry (Reds)
The Crafter's Workshop Peacock Pattern and Swiss Dots templates

Still with me? I'm not done yet... 
Because I like to try all sorts of things when I have a new medium, I thought.. give it a shot with a domino.. Why not? I know.... it's non porous.. and the Gelatos are water based, so it won't be 100% ideal, but IT WORKS. 
Here's how.....

Apply the Gelatos on the domino and blend - no water needed at all.
Add more colours if you want and dry again. 
I then used a baby wipe to remove some of the colour for a "textured" effect. 
As I wanted to set my colours (they are a bit set with the heat tool, but not fully), I added a layer of gel medium. This blended the colours even more and added a bit of texture. I liked that. 
I dried with my heat tool again. 
I then stamped the Giraffe (CI-390 On Safari) using Archival (or StazOn... can't remember, both will work) and dried. 
I then pressed my Versamark inkpad onto the domino and embossed with 3 layers of clear UTEE, adding some micro beads in the last layer. 
The sides were covered with gold Krylon, dried, and I then stamped it with details from CI-390
(click on picture to enlarge)
Gelatos: Tangerine (Yellows) and Lavender (Pinks)
Crafty Individuals stamps: CI-390 On safari

By now, I have on my table... a canvas, an altered domino and some die-cut flowers... 
which, all put together ended up like this.

One last thing.... using Gelatos on metal
Yup, I had to try this too. How about a cool Verdigris look on your TH clocks? 
Use the Metallic Mint Gelato.. rub it onto the clock, blend with your fingers, especially on the numbers, remove the excess with a baby wipe until you get the effect you want and dry with a heat tool for 3 or 4 minutes. 
BE CAREFUL!! The metal will stay HOT for about 5 minutes afterwards!! so let it be for a while or you will really burn yourself. Once dry and cool, it will be permanent.

Here's what it looks like... lovely isn't it? 
I used:
Gelato Metallic Mint (from the Metallic pack)
Tim Holtz Time pieces

So how about you have a play with your Gelatos and come and show us what you came up with. 
Please share your work in a comment below (and on my blog too if you want).

I will be back soon with more techniques and samples made with the Gelatos... if you follow my Facebook page, you might see a few sneak peeks or two ;)

The DT is also going to make wonders with those too, I am sure... So stay tuned, we shall be back ;)

See you tomorrow, 


  1. Wonderful stuff and thank you for all the information! xx

  2. Thanks so much for this wonderful tutorial. I just recently purchased some Gelatos and was worried that I should be treating them as pastels and setting them with a fixative but as you explained it, they are a water soluable paint! I look or ward to part two! Best, Yvonne

    1. no, nothing to do with Pastels (which I use too for drawing). Once you have heat set the Gelatos, you don't need a fixative.. the only exception so far is the Domino, but the UTEE did the trick ;)

  3. You have no idea how grateful I am at the moment Izzy! I have just spent an hour trying to find a decent tutorial on the internet and now here you are! Many thanks my lovely xxx

  4. If I had only knows you were going to do this Izzy -- oh woe is me. I paid for a class about using Gelatos - it did not have near the info you had and was a complete waste of $15. Your post today is wonderful and you can bet I am going to read it over and over. So sorry I cannot participate in the Alpha challenge now but maybe soon. Thank you tons for this very informative post!!!!!

  5. At last the Gelatos have crossed the pond and arrived at the Craft Barn! Looking foward to your next tutorial Izzy...

  6. Oh we'll done Izzy!!! What fab tutorials, amazing cards and so many different techniques!!!! Well what can I say????..............I am in awe :) xxxx

  7. Oh Izzy - how did you know?? I have recently bought 1st pack of bright gelatos (haven't found blender stick much use yet) & have been trying to work them out!! Have even (like Karen Gist) been to YouTube for help.....
    Then I read my news letter from TCB & Voila!! This is so comprehensive & I can't wait for part 2!! Now all I need is for Mojo to come back from wherever it's been, lol.
    Bravo Izzy, Thank you so so much!! C :)))

  8. How could I resist to buy them after that haha ???!!! Thank you Izzy for this wonderful tute, I will keep it preciously ... Bravo !!

  9. Perfect work Izzy!!!! bravo! bisous

  10. Ahhh, gorgeous post, Izzy.
    I love especially the effect on canvas and on the domino tiles.

    Can't wait to get mine!


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