Mixed Media – Background Technique

This is a great technique from Jann Gray – you can get so many different effect, just by varying the papers you use, the colours of glimmer mist etc. Love it!

You will Need:

  •  a base – Jann used chipboard as her piece will be used as a cover on a mini-album
  • a variety of papers - dress making tissue papers, stamped images on tissue paper (using a permanent ink), paper lace, scrapbooking papers, punched images, book pages, pieces of fabric
  • gesso
  • paint or foam brush
  • glimmer mist – Jann uses suede, burnt red, moonlight
  • mod podge
  • heat tool
  • paint
  • stamps
  • permanent ink like StazOn or Archival ink
  • sanding tool


  • coat the base with a layer of gesso to help adhere the collage pieces. This helps in two ways, firstly giving the surface teeth  – making sure the glue, paint etc will adhere easily and secondly it gives an even base especially if you are using products other than cardstock e.g. an old book cover, wood, chipboard etc.
  • using the mod podge, begin layering your paper, tissue paper etc.
  • when you are happy, give it a good final coat of mod podge
  • before it dries, spray the cover with glimmer mist. the colour pools in the crinkles and adds interest to the cover by highlighting the texture
  • dry the cover with a heat gun
  • stamp on the cover using a permanent ink
  • neaten the edge using sandpaper – use a downward stroke on the edge until the paper tears away.
  • use paint dabbers to go around the sanded edge to finish it off.


  • don’t stop at the edge – let your collage go over the edge and you can then trim it later

Jann created such a great look for this cover, and I think her advice at the end of the video is so important – don’t try to plan too much and believe you can’t make a mistake – just keep playing until you’re happy. Every time you use this technique you will get a different finished product. So much fun!




Filed under: Mixed Media

Like this post? Subscribe to my RSS feed and get loads more!