Category Archives: Painting

Matryoshka Dolls

On a trip down the Volga River in Russia in 2003 I looked in vain for old fashioned folksy nesting dolls. At each stop there were stalls and shops filled with things for tourists to buy. Alas, the nesting dolls they had were modern with curly eyelashes and sparkly paint- not at all what I had in mind.

Here are my Babushkas, collected over the years from all over. See the two sets that are vintage…

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I found some blanks online and also at Urban Outfitters of all places. It’s fun to paint your own! Some little friends of mine painted the ones in the last picture.

Faux tiles

Faux tile patterns are fun to paint. Inspiration for them is everywhere. Here I’m using acrylic paint on canvas pretreated with Gesso. The background paint looks best if it’s a bit thick and lumpy, showing the brush strokes. I lightly mark off the squares with chalk and ruler, but try to keep it freehand as possible.

IMG_3910 IMG_3912 Faux tiles

Painting wooden bangles steps 2 and 3

I decided the glossy Mod Podge didn’t look right. It was too shiny and felt sticky. The matte looks much better. I sealed the wood first inside and out with White Lightning white stain and sealer, but had to do it outside. Even though it’s water soluble it still has fumes and that gives me a headache fast. I used an emery board to smooth rough spots, but didn’t go too crazy with that. Some colors needed two coats, others three and then touch ups before the surface design step.



The orange and pink ones are finished with Mod Podge matte, the middle one with glossy.