By Sharon Wolf
Marcie is a baby mouse in a “nappy” (aka diaper). She is a quick and easy project for all levels involving floating and dry brushing techniques. Marcie can be painted on many different surfaces, such as coasters, napkin holders, and table mats, as well as various ornament shapes.
Sharon has taught this project many times over a span of 15 years. Marcie has been a gift to many family members, as well as being sold in Sharon’s booth at various craft fairs from time to time. Marcie has helped in fundraising activities for stem cell treatment for Sharon’s daughter who has MS.
MDF heart, bauble ornament, or shape of choice (can be ceramic, glass, or any other surface.
Note: MDF is manmade wood, which is compressed wood shaving; Masonite may be used
1/8” and 1/4" Deerfoot
No. 2 or 3 Round
Liner brush 10/0
Small detail brush 0/0
Small flat brush (optional for whiskers)
Acrylic paint: (DecoArt Americana)
Coral Blush DA292
Dark Chocolate DA065
Honey Brown DA163
Milk Chocolate DA174
Prussian Blue DA138
Soft Black DA155
Titanium White DA01
True Red DA129
All Purpose Sealer DS17
Snowflake stamps (www.inkylicious.co.uk) or stamps of choice of snowflakes
White graphite paper
Stylus (for tracing pattern with graphite paper onto surface and creating dots)
Glitter of choice
Fine grit sand paper
Wet Palette (preferred choice is Masterson Sta Wet)
Note: Use a brush size suitable for the area being painted unless otherwise specified.
STIPPLE: Using a 1/8” deerfoot brush, pick up a small amount of paint and lightly tap on the palette to ensure it is evenly distributed through the bristles. For example: For light and airy stippling for foliage, load brush with green and lightly tap some of it off onto paper towel. Test the brush on a scrap of paper first before trying on the surface.
PAINTING WITH STAMPS: To load a stamp with paint, use a flat brush to thinly paint a flat surface with Titanium White. While the paint is still wet, lightly tap the stamp onto the paint to load it and immediately use the stamp to create snowflakes.
1. Seal with All Purpose Sealer and lightly sand (if surface can be sanded).
2. When dry, basecoat with background color of choice. (DecoArt Traditions Prussian Blue can be used, if desired, to be like the one photographed.)
3. Paint background color on both sides and allow to dry.
4. Using Titanium White, randomly stamp snowflakes on the back.
5. Transfer the mouse pattern with white graphite paper. Click >>HERE<< for the pattern.
6. With a small round brush, paint the various parts of the mouse body with Dark Chocolate.
7. Using the 1/8” deer foot brush loaded with Milk Chocolate, stipple each limb.
8. Wipe off the Milk Chocolate paint with paper towel and add some Honey Brown to the same brush to stipple all the limbs.
9. Using a tiny amount of Buttermilk, highlight on all limbs using a very soft light touch. Blend the colors well to avoid stripes but do not over blend.
10. Lightly add more Buttermilk to base of arm, head and edges of ears.
11. Use a mixture of Coral Blush, Honey Brown, and a touch of Buttermilk (3:3:1 portions), paint the tip of the ear.
12. Use a fine detail 0/0 or tip of a liner brush to paint the tail in the same mixture (as mixed in No. 11).
13. Shade the base of the tail where it meets the body by floating with Milk Chocolate.
14. With ¼” deerfoot, stipple Honey Brown and Titanium White on mouse “nappy”.
15. Use liner brush and Titanium White to make a spiky edge to mouse “nappy”. (See first step image).
16. Use a No. 8 flat brush to float Dark Chocolate to bottom of face, ears, and feet.
17. Shade inner ears with Dark Chocolate.
18. Use the small round brush to undercoat the Santa hat in Titanium White.
19. When Titanium White is dry, paint the Santa hat True Red in multiple coats, if needed. 18. The fur trim and pom-pom can be stippled in Honey Brown and Buttermilk; continue with lots and lots of fine liner brush strokes in Titanium White, leaving some of the background color showing through.
20. Add facial features, eyes, nose, and eyebrows with a liner brush with water thinned Soft Black. Add a teeny tiny dot of Titanium White to the eye; if done too big, the mouse will look scary. If this happens, use a small amount of Soft Black to blot out a bit of the Titanium White leaving a tiny bit of white showing – often achieving a better tiny highlight this way.
21. If leery of doing super fine whiskers, apply a coat of matt varnish. Keep a clean damp flat brush close by. Use Titanium White on a liner brush, thin with water to create whiskers. If whiskers are too fat, simply use the flat brush to slim them down or remove completely to start them again.
22. Use a liner brush with Coral Blush and a little Titanium White to highlight the mid-tail section where it curves.
23. Use a ¼” dry deerfoot brush to loosely base in the clouds with a little Titanium White; wipe the brush on paper towel and pick up more Titanium White. Make one of the clouds, preferably the bottom one, more dominant by allowing it to be a stronger Titanium White. Note: Titanium White always seems to dry less white, so repeat this step, if necessary.
24. Float stronger Titanium White highlights, if desired.
25. Use a stylus to indicate snow dots in Titanium White.
26. Add foliage by stippling an Avocado background, keeping it light and airy.
27. Add True Red berries with stylus, and when dry, add very small Titanium White highlights on the True Red dots.
28. Add clusters of Avocado leaves using a stylus.
Varnish with a satin varnish, and when dry, add glitter of choice. If using powder glitter, paint a little All Purpose sealer in the areas of choice and sprinkle a little while it is still wet. Glitter glue can just be painted on in desired areas. Add some glitter to the hat trim and the pom-pom.
A note from Sharon: Marcie, the Christmas Mouse, is copyrighted. Permission to provide a one-line drawing to each student is given to teach it, but I must be acknowledged as the designer.
“Happy Painting”, and I hope you enjoy!
Sharon lives and teaches in the UK where she loves to spread the passion for decorative painting with others of all ages. For her, teaching is the best job ever because of the delight she sees on her students’ faces when they achieve more than they expected. She states it is especially pleasing when they say 'I can't believe I did that!' From folk art to fine art, she loves it all. Please go to Sharon’s website to view more of her delightful creations: www.st-art.rocks