A lot of artists like to paint their horses realistically, but painting decorators is a great way to unleash your creative side. With two fun holidays at the end of winter, let’s go over a few techniques that could be used to create some fun decorators!
Decoupage is a fun and easy way to add a unique finish to a model. For this technique, you’re going to need: white glue, a paintbrush, scissors, and your paper of choice. Tissue paper is used in this example, but you could use newspaper, pages from old magazines, or any other thin craft paper.
To start, cut the paper into strips or squares. You can go with larger pieces on larger models, but you’ll need to make them smaller if decoupaging a small model.
Cutting some pink tissue paper into squares. I'm going with a single color here,
but you can use multiple for a more varied look.
Once that's done, use a paintbrush to apply a layer of white glue to an area of your model, and then immediately put a layer of paper over that. Brush additional glue over the paper to smooth it out and make sure it sticks. You’ll want to work in small sections, so the glue doesn’t have time to dry before you can apply the paper.
|Applying glue with a paintbrush.
I’m using Mod Podge, but any craft glue
that dries clear will work.
|Applying a layer of glue over added tissue paper.
You’ll likely need several layers of paper
to get the desired look.
Keep in mind that when using tissue paper, the color of the model underneath will show through. You can paint your model white beforehand to get the most vibrant color, but I chose to go with a metallic chestnut model to give my Valentine’s Day decorator some gold undertones. Regardless of base color, the more layers of tissue paper you add the better the color will come through.
Once you’ve finished applying your paper of choice and are happy with the results, let your model dry completely. At this stage you can leave your model as-is, or you could put on additional details with paint, markers, glitter, fabric flowers, or stickers. The sky’s the limit!
Using a fine-tip permanent marker to add hearts
and the word “love” to my decoupaged model.
|My finished Valentine’s Day decorator.|
If you want to add a subtle hint of sparkle to your decorator, nail polish is an excellent way to do it. It’s easier to apply than glitter, is considerably less messy, and comes in virtually any color you could want. Quite a few even have glitter or tiny shaped confetti (such as stars or hearts) right inside the bottle!
Applying nail polish to your model is exactly the same as applying it to nails: simply brush on the desired amount of polish and let dry. You can go with a single coat if you prefer, or layer it for added sparkle or color. Regardless of how many coats you do, be sure to let the nail polish dry thoroughly between each.
Applying a clear, glittery nail polish to the tail of a Stablemates model.
Adding glitter to a model can be a bit messy, so be sure to lay down some paper to protect your work area. Apply some white glue to the area(s) you want to add glitter, then sprinkle the glitter over the wet glue. You can use a wide paintbrush to apply glue to large areas (such as the mane, tail, or entire body), but a fine detail brush (or even a toothpick!) will be helpful if trying to apply glue in a very precise pattern. Applying glue right out of the bottle to draw lines or letters may take a little bit of practice, so try it out on a scrap piece of paper first until you get the hang of it.
|Using a toothpick to carefully shape
the glue into a clover.
|Sprinkling glitter over the white glue.
Be sure to use enough glitter to
completely cover the glue.
You can apply a single color of glitter to an area, or mix and match different colors to create interesting transitions. Be creative! Once you’re done applying the glitter, let the glue dry thoroughly and then shake off any excess.
The finished St. Patrick’s Day decorator, created with nail polish and glitter.