I still haven’t worked out who I want to be or what I want to do when I grow up, so on this blog please join me while I try and work it out while keeping child-like creativity alive!  Find home and fashion inspiration; travel and days out; photography, writing and more. Have fun looking around 🙂

 

00

Zig Kuretake Clean Colour watercolour brush pens review & a handmade thank you card idea

handmade thank you cards with zig brush pens

After some research, I put the Zig Kuretake Clean Color real brush watercolour brush pens on my wishlist and was lucky enough to receive a pack from my cousin for my birthday. Ever since I was a little girl I have wanted brush pens like this! I think it must have been an episode of Blue Peter when they showed an artist who decorated narrow boats with beautifully crafted swirls that inspired me to recreate the style as best I could. When I grow up I want to paint narrow boats!….

I tried buying a long thin paintbrush and using paints, but I couldn’t get the control I needed. So I bought disappointingly named ‘brush pens’ from WHSmith, which turned out to be ordinary felt tip pens. However after a recent wander around a large craft shop, I saw a selection of packs of pens which led me to hope that the product I’ve wanted actually existed.

making thank you cards with kuretake brush pens

A bit of googling and reading artist blogs and reviews, I decided upon the Zig Kuretake clean color watercolour brush pens. Although I have nothing to compare them to, I’m sure I made the right choice. The nib is surprisingly small, and at first I worried that I wouldn’t be able to achieve that lovely long swirl that I was after, However I needn’t have been concerned, these brush pens are absolutely perfect! Not only can I do those swirls with ease and without running out of colour (like you always seem to with felt tips), but I also have the control I wanted to write fancy lettering with them.

I thought a thank you card to my cousin’s family using the brush pens they gave me was a nice idea, and why not make everyone’s while I was at it?! I used Chiltern Wove 135gsm cartridge paper, and although it warped a little when I added water, I thought it did a fine job. For a more professional finish though, I would recommend watercolour paper. Although, if you’re not going to add water at all, then there’s no need.

For the lettering on my thank you cards, I wrote with a pale colour, and then added a darker shade at the bottom. Then I used the aforementioned narrow paintbrush to blend it together to give a pretty ombre effect to the letters. I drew flowers in the corners of the paper, and did the same thing with two shades of green for the leaves. I felt that the white background of the card was too stark, so I added water to the flowers and blended out the colours, taking care not to touch the lettering with the paintbrush. I didn’t want those colours to blend together.

zig clean color brush pens and sketch pads

It was this blending on the lettering and the leaves that was time-consuming. I really like the effect though, so next time, I’ll try a shorter stiffer brush and see if having more control will help. I also found the leaves quite difficult to paint with these pens, as they were so small, but I think I could improve on that with practice.

handmade thank you cards made with brush pens

To turn the drawings into thank you cards, I used a pretty washi tape that I’d bought from the Paperchase summer sale last year, to attach the back page. For this I used the tear-out pages of a book I bought in Homesense called The Famous Five Splendid Notes for Every Occasion. There were several sheets with ‘I say, thanks awfully’ written on them, and as all of my family (I think) were/are fans of (or at least brought up on) Enid Blyton, I thought this was perfect to use.

I would really recommend the Zig Kuretake brush pens. They felt lovely to use and I was able to achieve the look I was going for. If you’ve never used brush pens before, you will love these!

And here’s the video I made to go with this blog post: (Please click my face at the end to subscribe for more videos!)

I’d love to see your brush pen projects. Please add your links in the comments below. And if you liked this post or found it helpful, please link to it in your social media. Thank you! 🙂

 

Art and Craft,
00no comment

Other posts you may like:

Oshun dress
Cultural Appropriation in Fashion. Should it really matter?
September 7, 2017
  If you know me, then you’ll know I am a person who happily trundles on in life, getting on with things as pleasantly as I can, doing as much as possible to avoid drama or confrontation. However, I think someone linked to a blog post I wrote over year ago, as I’ve come back from holiday to a flurry of angry comments on the post called OSHUN – THE STORY OF MY CLOTHING BRAND, AND THE YELLOW DRESS INSPIRED BY BEYONCE’S IN LEMONADE. I thought I would respond to those comments in a blog post, rather than reply to them individually, as hopefully I will explain myself and my opinions in a more complete and thought-through way. So to understand what I’m about to talk about, you might want to have a look at that post first and have a read of the recent comments below it. In summary though, it was written at a time when Beyonce appeared to be channeling the ancient African deity, Oshun, so I wrote a bit about her for those who hadn’t heard of her before, and explained how I came to choose her to name my clothing business and a dress after. I wrote a brief message a couple of days ago addressing this on my Threads of a Fairytale website, and if you don’t mind, I’ll quote it now as an introduction: “Hello! I’m back from holiday and had a wonderful time exploring the Acropolis and other ancient remains and ruins around Greece and Albania and have come home full of inspiration. Three new goddess dresses influenced in design by ancient Greek attire will be appearing in the Threads of a Fairytale shop very soon – one in pink, one gold, and one in a mottled green and grey – all pure silk chiffon. I will continue to be inspired by religions and cultures from all around the world; ancient and modern, because that’s the way art grows, develops and nourishes one’s soul and interest. The term “cultural appropriation” seems to be more in fashion than fashion itself at the moment….If you’re a regular visitor to this page, you’ll know that I changed my clothing business name from Oshun to Threads of a Fairytale a couple of months ago and explained my reasons here. And no, the change had nothing to do with cultural appropriation because I’m sorry, I simply don’t agree that it’s a problem here. We have been influenced by our neighbours of all colours and heritage since time began and I think that’s a wonderful thing. Segregating oneself and not allowing this to happen comes from a place of ego, not from a place of good”. If you are going to comment here or on facebook (or anywhere), I would appreciate it if you take the time to read this whole piece to fully understand where I’m coming from, and hopefully even take a minute to think about some of my points. I haven’t written this to try to get anyone to change their opinions – of course we’re not all going to agree, but I want to say at the beginning that I have listened to your comments; looked into them further, and really given it some thought from all points of view before writing this……
how to make a rustic advent calendar
How to make a simple beautiful rustic advent calendar
November 27, 2017
I don’t know about you, but I’ve really struggled to find nice (and affordable) advent calendars in the shops this year. I haven’t seen any from Cadbury at all in Tescos, so I don’t know if there’s a general shift away from the chocolate advent calendar, or whether there’s just a short supply in my area. Anyway, it doesn’t matter too much to me, because I’d already planned on making a rustic pretty advent calendar for my kids. (By the way – this last point is a “blogger lie” ie. I made it last year, but was too late to write a blog post about it!) This one is pretty quick and easy to make, and is really effective….

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.