Author Archives: Katrina Alana

Chalkboard Art Tools

I made my chalkboard art piece for Orange Karinderia last December and I’ve been eager to make another one using different chalkboard art tools so I can experiment with other materials. I planned to make a smaller piece since the last piece was about the size of a poster. I wanted something that we could put at the start of a buffet table or snack corner during parties, workshops, and events.

Eat Drink and Be Merry Chalkboard Art

Eat Drink and Be Merry

I chose “Eat Drink and Be Merry” since it was one of my favorite phrases. I like how this version of the expression gives a very welcoming message to guests. I made my initial sketch on paper then transferred the design on the chalkboard by lightly tracing it.

I didn’t want to order the popular chalk pencils I saw online since I really wanted to make the piece immediately so I decided to go to Art Friend at Plaza Singapura and asked the shop assistant whether they have any chalk pencils in stock. She pointed me to the Cretacolor White Chalk Pencil. I just snapped it up together with the small chalk board. I didn’t want to make my own chalk board using chalk paint since this is just an experimental project and I didn’t want to invest in so many materials.

Hoechstmass Chalk vs Creatacolor White Chalk Pencil Chalkboard Art Tools

Hoechstmass Tailor’s Chalk vs Creatacolor White Chalk Pencil

Lex and I were discussing how to do this project the night before I bought the supplies and he mentioned that maybe tailoring chalk would work so I went to Sing Mui Heng, which is a sewing and jewelry supply shop at People’s Park Centre, to look for some tailor’s chalk that would work with this project. I saw the Hoechstmass Catridge Chalk Set and decided to try it since I also have a sewing project I wanted to try and I knew the it would not go to waste.

Testing Phase: Chalkboard Art Tools

I tested both chalk materials on black paper and on the chalk board since I wanted to see how both performed using different surfaces. I have been planning on incorporating chalk art with calligraphy in another project.

Brand Derwent Black Paper Generic Chalk Board
Hoechstmass Tailor’s Chalk ($12)  - Looked greasy however it did not write a solid white line but writes easily. - Worked better for filling in the design since it gave a solid fill.
Creatacolor White Chalk Pencil ($2.50) - Wrote solid white markings on paper. Worked best on paper. - Worked better for outlining the design since it wrote a solid line but was more difficult to use when filling larger areas.

Conclusion

With the generic chalk board, a combination of both the Hoechtmass and the Cretacolor pencil worked best to produce the fine lines. I don’t think that using just one brand would have given me the effect that I wanted since each material served a specific purpose as discussed in the table above. Using the pencils were definitely a thousand times easier than using a regular stick of chalk but for larger pieces you might want to outline using the Hoechtmass Tailor’s Chalk then fill in with the middle portion with regular chalk sticks.

Eat Drink and Be Merry Chalkboard Art

My Precious

I am so happy with the final piece that I don’t think I would erase it. Time to get another chalk board. I’ll be fixing it permanently with a spray solution. I didn’t like how hairspray reacted in the Save Room for Dessert piece so I will be trying either a fixative spray used for calligraphy that I’ve been eyeing on or a matte spray paint recommended by Minifanfan. I’ll write another post about it when I decide which spray to buy.

Please leave a comment below if you have any recommendations for chalkboard art tools or if you would like to share your own chalk art projects. We would love to hear from you.

Art Friend:

Sing Mui Heng

  • Art Friend Website: www.singmuiheng.com
  • Operating Hours: 09:00 am – 06:00 pm (Mon – Fri) and 09:00 am – 06:00 pm (Every 1st & 3rd Staurday of the month)

Interview: Elise from Botanicase

Elise from Botanicase

We met Elise from Botanicase at one of Public Garden’s flea markets last year and bought one of her pressed flower casings. We wanted to feature her lovely pieces and get to know more about her.

1. Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

My name is Elise Aw and I am currently studying Environmental Systems in the University of Sydney.

2. How did you come up with your shop or brand name?

Surprisingly, it did not take me long to come up with my shop name. Amalgamating the word botany, which means plant life and the word case, I came up with Botanicase.

3. What got you into crafting/arts/illustration?

During my 1st year of university, I was taught how to press flowers. After more practice, I gradually fell more and more in love. With inspiration online, I started to make my own pressed flowers phone casings.

Botanicase

4. What do you make and why do you make them?

I make pressed flowers phone casings. Everyone who knows me knows I’m a huge fan of plants. By pressing flowers, I am able to seal in the beauty of the flowers and bring them along simply on my phone case!

5. Do you have a favorite item that you created? Is it sold or still available for purchase?

My favourite item would be my personal iphone casing. I customized it with the flowers my boyfriend gave me, it is meaningful and special. It is not for sale.

Elise's Favourite Botanicase Piece

Elise’s Favourite Piece

6. Are you a full time artist, designer or crafter? If not would you like to be?

Unfortunately, I am not a full time crafter. As I am pursuing a BA in Environmental Systems, I would love to secure a job as a soil scientist or anything related to the soil studies.

7. Do you have any favorite blogs or resources that you can share to our readers?

My personal favourite blogger would be theclothes.blogspot.com
Her name is Rebecca. Her photos are often taken out in nature which I really enjoy looking at. & I find it terribly cute that she takes most of her own photos using her tripod!

Botanicase

Goody Goody Gift Swap 2014

I participated in the Goody Goody Gift Swap hosted by Jenna Cantagallo last Christmas but I was overseas until January for an extended vacation with my family. I got my package when I came back at around mid-January. I really wanted to share what a lovely package I got from my swap buddy so even though this post is very late I still wanted to share it with you.

From Memphis to Singapore

Susan from Susan Simpson Home, sent me a lot of lovely presents.  She is a designer, stylist and curator. I loved the package she put together for me.  I pulled out, item after item out of the box wonderful goodies she sent me.

Goody Goody Gift Swap just for me

My presents include:

  • A six piece set of letter-pressed note cards with a sea theme from Charleston
  • A book mark with the Ouroboros design
  • A card from Susan
  • A number 2 buttons
  • A button with the Memphis map on it
  • A vintage eraser
  • A small notebook
  • A book of Fairytales by Hans Christian Andersen.

I’m looking forward to signing up for the swap this December. You can check out Goody Goody Gift Swap on Instagram to see what items were exchanged and sign-up for the mailing list so you can receive an update when the swap begins.

Modern Calligraphy Workshop in Cebu Philippines

We our hosting our second workshop in Cebu on March 28. We’re excited to hold this event in our hometown. Please check out the registration form for details. Should you have any questions about the event, feel free to contact us via the Contact Form or send us a private message via our Facebook page.

If you would like to join our Modern Calligraphy Workshop in Cebu Philippines, please fill-up the form below and make payment either by Paypal or by Metrobank bank transfer.

Reviews:

Marix from Scrappalific:
And it was worth it! I signed up from Katrina Alana. I liked the materials they provided, very detailed! She's very knowledgeable in this field and quite experienced so you get to know tips during the class. The class was hands-on and she's helpful in doing a demo.

Jael from Instagram:
With @katrinaalana :) well organised, packaged and paced class. Highly recommended

Kristinel from Instagram:
ending Jan2015 wit smudges participated in Modern Calligraphy Workshop by @katrinaalana today and learned a whole lot from it. While it's good that you do you own researches and watch tutorials online, nothing beats the teacher-student kind of learning. the practice sheets are the best! just what i exactly needed. and oh, that left hand technique revived my almost dying interest in calligraphy... thanks so much Lex and Katrina! hope to see you around. :)

Elle from Hey Jayel:
“It was also great because the class was held in smaller groups so Katrina could provide us feedback and advice as we practice our strokes. During the first part of the workshop we covered the differences between Modern and Traditional Calligraphy and also the different materials needed. I loved the tips that she gave us about nibs, inks and pen holders. I learned more in that half hour she was talking then when I did my research online!”

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Sign-up for our Modern Calligraphy Workshop

Level: Beginner
Hours: 3.5 hours
Participants: limited to 16 people
Fee: PHP 2,800
Payment Mode: Paypal or Bank Transfer (immediate payment only)
When: March 28, 2015
Time: 1:30 pm
Where: Choi City Seafood Restaurant at the Banilad Town Center

Who is this workshop for?
This workshop is ideal for beginners who would like to learn about Modern Calligraphy. Our goal is to equip you with the basics and the provide you with tools so you can continue learning and practising on your own even after attending our workshop. Our class size is limited so we can allot time for some one on one instruction if necessary.

This class will cover the basics:
- Types of Holders
- Nibs
- Inks
- Papers
- Where to buy supplies
- Exercises
- Writing letters and numbers

Supplies included in the workshop:
- 2 Nibs
- 1 straight holder
- 1 pen bird pen rest
- 15 guide sheets
- 1 practice notebook
- Katrina Alana Modern Calligraphy Alphabet
- 2 bottles of ink
- 1 rubber bottle base

Steps:
1. RSVP to the Facebook Event:
Facebook RSVP

2. Fill-up the registration form and deposit/transfer payment:

Your Full Name (required)

Name to Print on Name Tag (required)

Mobile Number(required)

Your Email (required)

***Please check your spam folder if you do not receive a confirmation email.***

Handedness:
 Right Handed Left Handed

Workshop Schedule:
 March 28 - 1:30 pm - 5:00 pm

Payment Mode (immediate payment)
 Paypal Metrobank Bank Deposit / Transfer

Option 1: Click here to pay via Paypal in SGD $
Option 2: Bank Deposit / Transfer (Please make payment within 24 hours and reply to the email you will receive with the following information)


Bank Transfer Reference Number :
Bank Transfer Date :

Bank Transfer Time :

Bank Name:

Bank Account Number:

***Bank Deposit / Transfer Conditions:***

1. Payment must be made immediately. We will email you to confirm your spot.
2. Please send a photo of the receipt or transaction number with the date and time of transfer.

***Bank Account Details:***

You will get the bank transfer instruction and account details on the email you will receive after filling-up this form.

Occupation (required)

Blog/Shop Name

Do you have any comments, suggestions or questions?

Your Message

Terms and Conditions:

We reserve the right to modify the venue, date or time of the class or cancel the class due to unforeseen circumstances. The organizers reserve the right to decline the registration any participant.

Katrina Alana shall not be responsible for and disclaims all liability for any loss, damage or personal injury of any nature whatsoever which may be suffered by you as a result of or which may be attributable, directly or indirectly, to participation in this activity.

Payment must be made immediately to confirm your slot. If you need more time to complete the payment, please email us at katrina@katrinaalana.com so we can hold the spot for you for 1 day.

Participants who are not able to attend the workshop on the day itself or stay for the entire duration workshop will not be refunded in full, in part or receive store/workshop credits. To receive a full refund, the notice of cancellation must be made at least 5 business days from the event date.

All materials and instruction are copyright of Katrina Alana. Any step-by-step instructions or original course content on the workshop must not be posted online as this is a violation of our intellectual property rights and compensation will required as deemed fit by Katrina Alana.

You authorize Katrina Alana and the event partners to publish photographs taken on this event for Marketing and other company publications for print, online and video formats. You acknowledge that there is no financial compensation for the use of the photos of your name, image or craft creation and release any reasonable expectation of privacy or confidentiality with the associated images.

By participating in this activity, you agree to all these terms and conditions.

Do you accept these terms and conditions?

Confirmed Participants List:
1. Xy-na
2. Laarni
3. Melissa Diane
4.
5.

Peeling Boiled Eggs

I’m always looking out for ways to peel boiled eggs better. I making egg sandwiches but I hate peeling boiled eggs. I’ve tried adding baking soda into the water used for boiling and it does help make peeling the boiled eggs easier but I’ve never tried this extra step. Watch the video to see this fun step.

The method used here is interesting but I would never do this if I was making the egg sandwich spread for other people. What do you think? Would you try this method?

Modern Calligraphy Workshop Reviews

It gives us great fulfillment whenever we receive good reviews for our workshops since we sincerely want to impart what we’ve learned to our participants. We don’t want to conduct workshops for the sake of doing so. Our primary objective is to always add value.

Here are some reviews from our Modern Calligraphy workshop participants in our workshops in January:

1. Jael

Jael from Instagram:
With @katrinaalana :) well organised, packaged and paced class. Highly recommended

2. Kristine

Kristinel from Instagram:
ending Jan2015 wit smudges participated in Modern Calligraphy Workshop by @katrinaalana today and learned a whole lot from it. While it’s good that you do you own researches and watch tutorials online, nothing beats the teacher-student kind of learning. the practice sheets are the best! just what i exactly needed. and oh, that left hand technique revived my almost dying interest in calligraphy… thanks so much Lex and Katrina! hope to see you around. :)

If you have attended our workshops and you would like to give us some feedback or suggestions, please email us. We will greatly appreciate hearing your voice.

Save Room for Dessert Chalk Art

A few weeks ago, we finally had the chance to eat at Orange Karinderia at La Guardia Street in Lahug, Cebu City. Our family had been raving about this place for a long time but, because of our busy schedule whenever we’re in town, we haven’t had the chance to go until last December. My brother is crazy about Betsy’s Chicken while I just love the crispy-but-melt-in-your-mouth Ginabot.

Mikko Pato Orange Karenderia

By Mikko Pato

The cool chalk art on display is actually the work of Mikko Pato, one of the owners. I just love how the display adds character and charm to the restaurant. I was honored when they asked me to do a board for the restaurant. I was asked to incorporate the text “Save room for dessert” on the piece.

Concept

Sketch Concept

One of their best sellers is the Brazo de Cups which is Brazos de Mercedes served in a cup. I decided to represent the meringue with flourishing and make sure that the distinct shape of the dessert is captured in the design.

Transferring the Design

I drafted the design on the chalk board using light strokes to place the major components before going over and filling-in the design. An easier way to transfer the design would be to use a projector to flash the design on the board and just trace over it.

Working with Chalk

Chalk is so much fun and easy to work with. I used Q-tips soaked in water to erase small sections from the board. It is also a good way to sharpen the edge of the design if needed.

Sealing the Board with Hairspray

I wanted to use a clear matte based sealant like Kryon so that it doesn’t smudge easily but I couldn’t find any aerosol-based sealant available locally so I did some research. I knew that some calligraphers use hairspray to seal their work and wondered whether it would also work for chalk. When I checked online, it turns out hairspray is widely used to to seal chalk art so I bought a can of Dove hairspray and tested it on a piece of card. It prevented smudging but it also caused tiny bits of chalk powder on the lines to drop off.

You need to mist the spray at least a foot away from the piece. If you apply too much hairspray you could end up blowing off some of the chalk at it will look patchy. The chalk color looked dull while the hairspray was wet, but once it dried up the chalk color became vibrant again.

Chalk Art Harispray

After applying hairspray

After cleaning up and reapplying chalk over my design, the hairspray actually acted as a good base for the chalk and I managed to get more vibrant and crisp lines.

The downside to using hairspray is that it leaves a shiny spot on sections where the hairspray is concentrated. You can remove this by soaking cotton in water and gently wiping the hairspray away.

Finished Piece

Finished Piece

I’m happy with how the final piece turned out. There were some frustrating moments when the the hairspray reacted with the chalk piece but going over it with chalk saved the day.