Customer Use

WHERE’S THE WHITE??

Here at the Marker Supply warehouse, one of the most common things people come looking for are opaque white ink pens for writing on paper.

Unfortunately, we always have to say that these types of pens are still practically non-existent.

The main reason?
The type of ink required to make a functional white ink pen has been very difficult to produce. It would need to be both thin enough to flow through a pen tip AND thick enough to stay a visible white once it’s marked onto paper.

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Pigments vs. Dyes

There’s a little illustration we’ve heard that can help explain a big difference between two types of ink- Pigments and Dyes:

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First, take 2 glasses of water.

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In one glass, pour in some sugar.
In the other glass, pour in some dirt.

Both begin to cloud the water as you stir them up.
But notice what happens after just a minute when they settle..

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The sugar is still there, but has fully dissolved into the water
and everything returns to a totally liquid state.
The glass with the dirt still has solid particles everywhere
and a thick layer of mud has collected on the bottom.

 

Most pen inks are colored with dyes (like the water example with the sugar), which are either liquid, or in a solid form that quickly dissolves, and then can easily flow through the pen. However, this property can also cause the ink to either leak through the pen tip too quickly, and/or soak completely into porous surfaces like paper and become transparent- meaning that this type of white ink won’t be seen because the ink isn’t thick enough to keep its color visible on top of an absorbent surface.

What helps some colors to show up the best when making ink is to use pigment. Pigments (like the water example with the dirt) are dense, finely ground particles that stay solid as they add their color. They don’t dissolve into fluid, but are rather just suspended in it. To get a good, opaque white, you need a LOT of pigment. When you try and put too much into a pen however, it won’t flow through the tip like a normal ink without clogging or drying up.

(Fun Fact: The most common pigment used to create the color white is Titanium Dioxide.)

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Gel Ink

The marking pen world made a big step in the creation of white pens with the invention of Gel Ink. Originally marketed in 1984 by Japanese company Sakura, it finally allows a roller ball pen to use a white ink.

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(Fun Fact: As researchers worked to develop gel ink, they tried a wide variety of materials to get the consistency just right, including yams and egg whites!
For some more great history on the invention of Sakura’s Gelly Roll pens, read this interesting article:
https://www.gellyroll.com/history)

Gel ink is not quite the same as ordinary pen ink, as it is a lot thicker- causing issues like needing to move the pen more slowly as you write, and the marks taking longer to dry. Also, the roller ball tips still can occasionally clog. (If this happens, rolling the pen tip over a wet paper towel may help.) Despite their issues, we are still very happy to have them as an option for white ink!

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Find these white gel pens at Marker Supply:
Uni-ball Signo Gel Impact
Sakura Gelly Roll Classic Medium Tip
Marvy Gel Reminisce

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White ink comparisons on black paper

Other than gel pens, you can also find good white marking tools for paper when you look into pencils, oil-pastels, even correction pens! There are also valve-action markers that use more of a “paint” than an “ink”. Although paint markers tend to show up better on non-porous surfaces, such as glass or metal, some have been known to work adequately for certain paper projects.

Have a look at this comparison chart showing several white marking tools on plain black paper to see the ones that may work best for you! Find them all at MarkerSupply.com.

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As experiments continue in the pen industry, white ink is getting closer and closer to becoming more common!

But as for now, which white pen/marker have you found works best for you??

Let us know and feel free to share your white marker artwork on our social media pages!
www.facebook.com/markersupply
Instagram #MarkerSupply
Twitter @MarkerSupply

POSCA Art & New Sets!!

Some of our favorite and best-selling markers here at Marker Supply are the Uni Posca Paint Markers.

They are available in a variety of colors and tip styles- so you can always find just the right fit for each project you do!

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Poscas use water-based acrylic paint that marks on just about anything! Metal, wood, glass, plastic, chalkboards, stone, posters, canvas, fabrics, even things like surfboards!  The paint is opaque and can be applied over the top of other colors once dry. Marks will be permanent on porous surfaces like paper and wood. On hard surfaces like glass and chalkboards, the paint will be waterproof, but can be cleaned off with a standard household/glass cleaner. The paint in Posca markers is non-toxic, odorless, and Xylene-free,  so they can be enjoyed by kids too!

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POSCA ART AT PAPERWORLD / CREATIVEWORLD

GERMANY – JANUARY 2017

A few folks from the Marker Supply team attended the Paperworld & Creativeworld fairs in Frankfurt, Germany last month.

The Posca section had some incredible art on display!!

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We LOVE this giant “Heroes” collage painting done with Posca markers by the talented artist Ernesto Novo.

 

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A live-action Posca painting being done by French artist Nadège Dauvergne.

 

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You can easily get lost looking at this incredible mandala-style painting made with colorful Poscas..

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NEW SETS!

We’ve recently added several new sets featuring the Posca markers- making it quick and easy to start or grow your collection!

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Find them HERE at MarkerSupply.com!

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We are impressed time and time again by all the different artists we see using the Posca markers.

Are you a fan of these versatile paint pens? What’s your favorite surface to use them on?

Let us know what you think and feel free to share your artwork- we LOVE to see your markers in action!

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Instagram #MarkerSupply

Coloring Cards by Between the Evergreens

Greeting cards are fun to give your friends & family for special occasions, or any time.. just because!

While attending RAW: Nashville’s Holiday Rawk Artist Showcase this week, we came across artist Elizabeth Lang & her company between the evergreens.

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Elizabeth not only does wonderful watercolor paintings & artwork featuring various trees, but she also makes some really awesome greeting cards- that you can color yourself!

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Whether you want to be the one to color them OR if you’d rather give them as gifts for others to color, Marker Supply has some great markers to use with these cardstock cards.

We chose to color her “Sweetbay Magnolia” card with the Zig Clean Color Real Brush markers..

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With the real bristle brush tip, it feels like you’re painting! The very tip of the brush gets in the tiniest of spaces, or you can angle the brush to color larger spots. Try using multiple colors- the ink is very easy to blend.

(Note: If you have a card made with watercolor paper, you can add a little water on top of the Clean Color’s dye-based ink and move it around- creating a watercolor look!)

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MORE MARKERS TO TRY FOR CARDS..

Our other marker recommendations for cards, depending on what tip you like to color with:

*Bullet/Round tipZig WriterSakura Gelly Roll Gel Pens

*Slanted/Chisel tipZig Fine & Chisel, Sakura Permapaque

*Rubber brush tipZig Brushables, Sakura KOI

*Colored pencils: Prismacolor Premier Pencils, Faber Castell Polychromos

*or browse through some more at www.markersupply.com!

(Note: Use caution if you like to do your coloring with alcohol-based (like Prismacolor or Copic) or other permanent ink markers (like Sharpies)- the marks will likely bleed through to the other side of cardstock papers!)

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For more information on the art by ELang and between the evergreens greeting cards, check out:

*Her WEBSITE

*Her ETSY STORE

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And as always, feel free to share photos of your colored greeting cards on our social media!
@MarkerSupply #MarkerSupply

Gift Boxes, Bags, and Tags

The holiday gift-giving season is upon us, and all kinds of presents will be in need of packaging. But it’s not just for this time of year- try grabbing those markers ANY time you give a present to someone and turn plain ‘ol boxes, bags, and tags into unique works of art that help your gifts look extra special. 🙂

Some marker recommendations and projects that we tried this year at Markerland:

Ink Marbling

A super easy (and pretty fun) way to create one-of-a-kind marbling designs on paper surfaces is with Zig Kurecolor Refill Ink and shaving cream!

Just make a tray of foam shaving cream. Drop some ink here and there around the foam. Then swirl the drops around however you like!

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Then take your bag, tag, card, etc. (the thicker the better, to help it from curling up with the wet foam) and press the surface into the swirls. Pull it back up and scrape off the foam.

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You’ll be left with one-of-a-kind marbled art!

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Try it on craft bags, paper tags, cardboard ornaments, or handmade cards!

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Custom Ziploc Goody Bags

Take some simple Ziploc bags, doodle them up, and fill them with treats!

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Oil-based paint markers work best on these smooth, slippery surfaces, and will hold up when the bag wrinkles as it’s used.

Try the: Marvy Decocolor, Zig Painty, Pebeo 4Artist

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Re-Decorated Gift Boxes

Thrift stores usually have a ton of gift boxes- they just may not be the designs you want. Dollar stores have lots of them for great prices, but they are often only plain white or a single color. If you want to add a little more decoration, there are plenty of good, opaque markers that can cover the old box completely- letting you make your own custom designs for the occasion!
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Some markers we used for our boxes:
Marvy Easy Chalkboard Marker
Marvy Decocolor Acrylic
Sharpie Poster Paint
Posca Paint Markers

If you find an unfinished wooden box, see our Image Transfer Blog HERE to find out a fun way to customize it!

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Personalized Storage Boxes

Sometimes boxes can BE the gifts themselves!!

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We love this gift idea from Jennifer, for her daughter & friends’ Shopkins toys!

Again we found that using oil-based markers (like the Zig Painty markers used here) gave great permanent results on smooth surfaces like plastic.

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Have you made custom gift boxes, bags, or tags using markers?

Let us know how your project turned out!

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Instagram #MarkerSupply

And check out www.markersupply.com for PLENTY more markers and pens you can use to help your gifts stand out!

 

Featured Artist: @SignJay

We’re wrapping up chalk markers and chalkboard month at Marker Supply with another featured artist!!

Aside from party boards (as featured in our blog about LA Sign Design), and the countless chalk marker projects you can do at home (some of which highlighted in our last blog), another big area that you may notice the art of chalkboard signs is in stores and restaurants! Windows, displays, grocery departments, event posters, menus, and more can have such a nice appeal to customers after they’ve been decorated with chalk markers!!

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We Markerland folks are always very impressed by the talented people behind those signs, and we are excited to feature a chalkboard sign artist who is very active in doing store display and event poster chalkboards!

post7signsSome amazing work done by Rachel- a.k.a. @SignJay

Rachel Humiston is from Richmond, VA and has been doing professional chalkboard signs since 2008.

“I got a job as a sign artist at Trader Joe’s. I didn’t have any experience- I actually had just graduated with a math degree, but I wanted to do well so I threw all my energy into practicing and improving. I didn’t know at the time I would make a career of it, but it is a practical kind of art form and in retrospect- that fits my personality perfectly!

The first piece I ever did was a 24 x 41 inch display for roasted red pepper and tomato soup and some crackers at Trader Joe’s. I still remember sitting on the floor drawing and re-writing the layout trying to make all of the information fit. It took days but thankfully I had a very patient boss who had faith and I got the hang of it. Eight years later we are still a team and I’m very grateful!”

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RACHEL’S RECENT WORKS

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“I actually finished the largest piece I have done to date just this week! It was a series of different size frames covering an area of approximately 11 x 12 feet for an event called Creative Marketplace where local artists and makers come together to connect and share their wares with the community. I’ve done a couple murals that were physically larger but this was the largest typography design thus far.”

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 SOME CHALKBOARD ART TIPS FROM RACHEL

“The projects I take on usually require a lot of information in a relatively small space, so the toughest part of the process is finding creative solutions to dividing up the text so it is both easy to read and also beautiful.
Once I have a good design, the rest is pure fun!”

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Getting started:
“I typically start by looking at my source materials- packaging, logos, etc. and visualize some ideas in my head first. Then I will do 2 or 3 very loose thumbnail sketches, to make sure I have enough room for all of my elements, and select the best layout. The sketches are comically simple because I’ve found that fine-tuning is best done on the actual board. I’ll then do the sketch on the board and move things around as necessary- this way I can see the design to scale. The exception is when you work menus- you need mathematical precision, so those sketches are much more in-depth.”

Correcting mistakes:
“If it’s a small mistake, I can correct it when I add the background color, outlines, and shadows by simply drawing over it. If it is something that needs to be completely changed, I use 91% isopropyl alcohol to clean the area. That sounds technical but it’s just the stuff you find in first aid kits. You can buy it just about anywhere- it’s inexpensive and works well. “

Working on chalkboards vs. glass:
“Chalkboards have some grit to them that helps to slow down the marker and gives more control. The smoothness of glass means the marker moves fast and loose. It also affects how I hold the pen- on chalkboards I rest my arm and wrist on the board for stability, but with glass the marker is the only thing that can touch. The surface I prefer working on is chalk boards, but if I’m working on glass I will lean towards script fonts- as their flow is more conducive to the surface.”

Spacing tips:
“Draw rectangles around the rounded letters like “O” or “D”- it makes it easier to compare the corners to see if they are even. Invest in a clear drafting ruler that is divided into grid- it will change your life!”

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CHALK MARKERS : RACHEL’S PICKS
(and some suggestions from us!)

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“I am a huge Woodcraft marker devotee- the opacity, vibrancy, and ease with which you can do multiple coats cannot be beat! They are incredibly versatile and can be used on so many surfaces. I use a ton of Gardenia, a lovely warm white. I use the chisel tip and the Big & Broad size in equal measure.
The Woodcraft markers are actually quite permanent even without sealing them. I have interior signs that have been up for 8 years under fluorescent lighting and they have not faded, chipped, or cracked!

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More recently I’ve expanded to the Uni Poscas in the 1, 3 and 5m sizes because they are perfect for crisping up the edges of the letters, great for outlining, and they work great over or under the Woodcraft markers.”

If you are looking to do some art for a store, restaurant, etc., we have what you need at Marker Supply! Try these special sets that might help you get started:


chalk markersZig Posterman Starter Sets come in 3 different sizes and each feature Zig Posterman markers in a variety of colors and tip sizes for you to try, as well as a great chalkboard cleaning tool- the Scrubs do-it-all wipes!

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Perfect little starter packs of the Zig Woodcraft Markers, the Food Menu Sets feature colors specifically picked to match a different food group theme!

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Thanks again to Rachel for sharing your work and advice with us!
Check out Rachel’s Instagram to see more of her amazing chalk marker art!!

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**ALL CHALK ART PHOTOS ON THIS BLOG ARE COPYRIGHT TO RACHEL HUMISTON and we are thankful for her letting us use them to show off her talent! 🙂

Have any chalk marker artwork that you’d like to share? Tag us #MarkerSupply – we’d love to see!!!

 

Chalkboard Home Decor Projects

We’ve seen how chalk marker art can be great at parties and special events (with our last blog featuring LA Sign Design), and you’ve likely seen chalk markers used on windows/displays/menus at stores and restaurants (stay tuned for our next blog featuring another great chalk artist!), but there is also PLENTY to be done with chalk paint & markers at home!

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CHALKBOARD FURNITURE/CABINETS
You don’t always have to go BIG with the chalkboard theme in your house by covering an entire wall or door. (We’ve even seen refrigerators turned chalkboard!) Try just transforming a piece of furniture & other smaller household surfaces with chalkboard paint, like the Brush-On or Spray-On paints from Krylon!

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Chalk desks are an awesome way to cut down on paper notes, to-do lists, etc. (and you are less likely to lose important info if it’s written right on the desktop!) They are also a fun addition to a kid’s playroom! (Water-based chalk markers are safe for kids to use!) Using chalk markers instead of regular chalk keeps these projects free of dust and smudging!

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Keep helpful information handy when you turn the inside of your cabinet doors into a chalkboard notepad!

One of our new products from Krylon also pairs very well with chalk markers. Chalky Finish” paints are like chalk markers in a spray paint form- great for doing larger pieces that would be tough to do with just a marker tip. Also, since it’s a spray paint, it allows a nice, even coverage of color on curves, edges, and all those tricky little places.

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After you are done using the “Chalky Finish” paint to go over the entire object, use chalk markers to draw on some details!
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CHALKBOARD PICTURE FRAMES
Grab some inexpensive photo frames at yard sales, thrift stores, etc. and paint the glass with chalkboard paint. (Or you can also use Strathmore’s Black Chalk Paper– an item we love from our sister company Paper & Ink Arts.)

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Any frame can quickly become a fun way for displaying your own artwork and quotes, and makes a fun gift idea too!

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Make some signs for different areas of your house, or just use them as a canvas for some chalkboard style wall art!

DISHES
The Pebeo Porcelaine Chalkboard Paint is specially made for use on dishes and other heat-stable bases such as glass, ceramic, porcelain, etc. Once baked on, it is dishwasher safe! Create a re-writable chalkboard surface to give your dishes some unique designs and keep track of multiple drink containers that would otherwise look alike!

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Hint: Use Pebeo or permanent, oil-based markers to draw on the sections of art/words that you want to always be there.
Then use erasable chalk markers for the temporary parts.

CHALK LABELS
Whether permanent or temporary, labels are a handy way to remember what’s what! Chalkboard labels have a great look in whatever area they are used in! Try the Marvy Easy Chalkboard Marker to turn things like paper, wood, cardboard, or terra cotta pots into a smooth black chalkboard surface! (This marker is also great for making chalkboard-style cards & gift tags!)

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DO YOU HAVE CHALKBOARD / CHALK MARKER ART IN YOUR HOME?
Show us your projects & decor on our Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter!!
@MarkerSupply #MarkerSupply

 

Featured Artist: LA Sign Design

We are very excited about Marker Supply’s newest featured artist – Lacey at LA Sign Design!

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“My main passion is to keep the art of handwriting and cursive alive in the most creative ways possible.
I love technology but nothing beats handmade, in my opinion.
” –Lacey @ LA Sign Design

Lacey is the owner/artist behind her business, LA Sign Design, that creates a number of incredible chalk marker art projects- from store advertisements, to event posters, to menus, to our highlight of this blog: PARTY BOARDS!!

Handmade boards done with chalk markers are becoming more & more popular at birthdays, weddings, and other special events as a fun and unique way to decorate and display information to the guests!

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We asked Lacey some questions about her work as a chalkboard artist, specifically in the area of doing boards for special occasions:

How long have you been making chalk art boards for parties?
Professionally, since 2012, but I have loved to doodle since I could hold a crayon.

What objects do you use for your actual boards?
Mainly old wood-framed pictures I up-cycle into chalkboards. I purchase the picture frames from the local Savers or Goodwill, thrift sales, & auctions. I also cut sanded plywood in custom sizes for a variety of different projects.

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Are there surfaces that are easier or more difficult to draw on than others?
Since most my work is freehand, learning to write straight & evenly spaced on an already mounted chalkboard or surface is probably the most difficult to master. I create artwork on glass as well-this can be slippery & really test ones hand steadiness.

How big are your average-size boards and how long do they take to finish?
My mini chalkboards are popular as 8 x 10 inch picture frames. I’ve also created wedding programs that are 4 x 4 foot & photo-op standees that are 7 feet tall! Most signage only requires 1-2 hours of work (Prep, design, sketches, art, touch-ups, seal coat) but is determined more by the amount of writing & special designs required.

What do you use on top of a finished board to seal & protect it?
To really make a board last I offer my clients the option to seal coat with either a Matte or Gloss finish Mod Podge. Sealing is a great idea to preserve the ink from fading and really makes the writing stand out against the black chalkboard.

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BIRTHDAY BOARDS

Birthday chalkboards are stand-out party decor for kids AND adults of any age! Not only are they fun for the party itself, but they can remain treasured keepsakes to remember the event well into the future! Fill them with information from life at the present moment, and then you can always have a look back to your “time capsule sign!”

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We LOVE these colorful and customized kids birthday signs by LA Sign Design!!
(and congrats on the recent Blue-Ribbon-Win!)

You can also make chalkboard signs for different areas & activities at your party-
facepainting chalkcraft-busyboard

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WEDDING BOARDS

An elegant way to decorate for a couple’s big day!!

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Even simply using just white ink on a black chalkboard can still make beautiful pieces to introduce the wedding party, display the menu options, or have as backdrops for photos!

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“Wedding signage is becoming a fast trend and the markers seriously make all the difference on the big day. Brides are always so relieved to learn my “chalk” is actually water-proof & smudge-proof unlike regular chalk. I always have the option of Chalk Ink markers which are no-mess and dust-free in case they need the signage to be temporary. Doing the wedding program on a large chalkboard or refinished door is becoming super popular and cost effective compared to printing programs.” -Lacey @ LA Sign Design

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colorwheelLacey’s favorite marker picks:colorwheel

*Zig Posterman Medium and Big & Broad
*Uni Posca Fine, Medium, and Broad
*Sharpie Poster Paint Fine and Medium

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Sharpie Poster Paint (water-based) is the best marker I’ve found for white, red, and yellow colors. The pigment lasts and covers well over black surfaces. I like using Posterman and Sharpie markers so my chalkboard artwork is already smudge-proof & water-proof but not chemical-proof (ink can be removed with Windex). Postermans also work great on glass indoors & outdoors. Chalk ink (ex. Posterman Wet-Wipe) markers work perfect for a surface that needs to be reused or edited easily. The liquid chalk can be wiped clean with water and best part is no chalk dust!

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Lacey’s advice to those interested in chalk marker art:

“Make mistakes, fix them, & create some more!
My skills continue to develop over time with practice, studying new techniques, & faith in my freehand ability.

 If you are not as sure about your freehand skills, but really want to create a chalkboard sign, use this neat trick:
1. Find a quote, picture, or design online [or create one in Word] and print it off to fit your chalkboard.
2. Use a No.2 Pencil & cover the backside of this printed off picture with pencil.
3. Tape the paper to the chalkboard.
4. Use pencil to now trace pressing firmly over the quote & transfer the pencil from the backside to the board.
5. Remove paper & reveal a light outline of exactly where you need to color!”

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Thanks so much to Lacey for all of the insights into her chalkboard world! Keep up the good work!!

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To contact Lacey or see more of her artwork, check out her webpage HERE!
She also occasionally has giveaways for FREE mini chalkboards! Fun!!

©  ALL PHOTOS ARE COPYRIGHTED TO LA SIGN DESIGN.
Marker Supply appreciates her letting us use them in the blog!!

Featured Artist: My Perk Me Up Cup

Marker Supply has encountered a variety of amazing artists over the years! We’re very happy and thankful to have so many loyal customers that love creating art with our markers.

To help highlight the works of these talented folks and the drawing tools they use, we are excited to have a series of Featured Artists here in the Marker Supply Blog!

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Artist: Samantha @ My Perk Me Up Cup
Project: Painted glass & dishware
Products: Pebeo Porcelaine 150 and Vitrea 160 Markers
One of our favorite Pebeo-painting mug artists is Samantha at My Perk Me Up Cup. She creates custom mugs with a LARGE variety of free-hand designs including characters, colors, and clever couples’ sets!  Her work is a great example that whether your pieces are simple or elaborate, done as a business or a hobby, they will stand out either way as being special & unique works of art!

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Samantha has been awesome enough to share with us some insight into her craft- about the markers she uses, as well as some tips and techniques:

What made you decide to get started with this mug-making hobby?
I saw a dragonfly mug on a TV show that I was watching, and fell in love with it, but could not find one like it anywhere. After searching everywhere for it, I found that it was a prop from a different TV show and they are not sold anywhere. I really wanted a dragonfly mug after all of my searching, but couldn’t find anything that I liked. So I thought to myself, maybe I could make one. And it took off from there.

You’ve got such a variety of designs! Do you have any favorites? Which have been the trickiest to paint?
I have enjoyed making each mug so far! They have mostly been special requests, but I would have to say I love the dragonfly ones the best.
I would have to say the watercolor horse mug that was requested was the trickiest to paint.

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How do you prepare your mug surfaces before painting?
I wash the mug with soap and water first and then wipe the mug with a paper towel and alcohol to ensure a clean workspace.

Which markers are your go-to choices for mug decorating?
I really like using Pebeo 150 ceramic paint markers. I find myself using the black fine tip marker most frequently. The fine tip markers are great for detail and writing names or phrases on the mugs. If I am painting a larger area I prefer to use the medium tip. I have used both [the Pebeo Porcelaine 150 and Pebeo Vitrea 160] and found that they both worked fairly well on glass. I have just noticed that you may have to go over your work once or twice with the 160 markers to make the colors pop.

You’ve also used Sharpie Oil-based paint markers for decorating.. How would you compare them to the Pebeo pens?
The Sharpie Oil-based paint markers are slightly easier to work with, but if you want to microwave or put your work in the dishwasher, some of the colors do not hold up. The black Sharpie’s paint started to crack after going through the microwave.

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Do you use any other tools to create special effects?
To get the water color effect I dipped a cotton ball into alcohol, then I pressed the Pebeo marker down until it released a small amount of paint. I dabbed it where I wanted the color, and also blew through a straw lightly as I dabbed the paint on the mug to spread the paint out.

If you make any mistakes while painting your designs, how do you erase and redo those spots?
Pebeo paints are so forgiving if you make a mistake. All I do is dip a Q-tip in alcohol and clean up the area. I have a two-year-old who climbs on me while I am working half of the time, so I had to learn this quickly.

About how long does it take you to finish decorating a mug?
The amount of time it takes to finish a mug depends on the design I’m doing. Some mugs have only taken me about 5 minutes to do, and others have taken me an hour or two. You have to let the mug dry 24 hours before baking, and then follow the baking instructions. You may need to adjust your baking time or temperature slightly, some appliances can vary.

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Have you had any issues with the finished artwork coming off when the mug is used/washed?
I have not had any issues at all with the Pebeo paint coming off when used, microwaved, or washed. The main issues that I have had was the black Sharpie paint chipping, and the gold fading after going through the dishwasher and microwave. I made a test mug with all of the colors of the Pebeo, Sharpie, and Painted by Me brands to test how the colors held up through various types of washing and going through the microwave. Through doing this I found out that you should not use dish soap with bleach because it will clean your work off of your mug.

Any other tips or tricks you have learned from your experience with dish painting?
I enjoyed trying different surfaces to paint on. Definitely buy a few mugs and practice. I keep a paper towel handy when I am using the fine tip Pebeo markers, if they start to flow a bit too slow I just press down on the paper towel a few times to get the paint flowing again.

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Thanks for sharing your work and your knowledge with us, Samantha! 🙂

*Check out more of Samantha’s mugs HERE!*

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Do-it-yourself dish art is such a fun trend in the world of arts & crafts. Just take a plain ‘ol mug, plate, etc. and give it a unique design- great for personalizing your own items, or a wonderful gift idea!

Marker Supply always recommends using Pebeo Porcelaine 150 markers and paints for your dish designing. After being baked on in a regular kitchen oven, your artwork will be permanent- even through washing!

(See our related blog comparing the use of different markers on mugs!)

Try the Pebeo line of dish-decorating supplies at MarkerSupply.com!!
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Have any dish art that you’d like to share? We’d love to see!
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Flower Contest Wrap-Up

The month of May has come to a close and so has our “April Showers Bring May Flowers” contest.

Thanks to everyone who submitted their flowery artwork!! We have some awesome artists out there!!

Congratulations to Marcella in Louisiana, who was our randomly chosen Grand Marker Prize Winner! We hope ALL of you will enjoy getting your free marker gifts.

Stay tuned for our next Marker Supply contest!

SOME MORE OF OUR FLOWERY MARKER PROJECTS FROM LAST MONTH:

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Pebeo Vitrea Markers- specially designed to paint on glass!

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Grab an old canvas painting/photo and use it like a coloring book! Make your new “paint-over” image stand out with metallic or fluorescent colors!

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Making some flower collages on cloth books and bags with the Zig Decoupage Glue Marker: formulated to work well on fabric surfaces!

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Using the Zig Kurecolor Refill Inks for shaving cream marbling to try and make a Marigold garden card!

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 Oil-based paint markers (Zig Painty and Marvy Decocolor) for coloring on stones- makes great garden plant signs!

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A cute kiddo t-shirt made with the Zig Fabricolor markers!

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Flowers-tinThis old cookie tin got a fresh flowery face using the oil-based paint markers Zig Painty and Marvy Decocolor!

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There are so many fun marker projects out there!!
Feel free to let us know what YOU like to color!

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Overview of Watercolor Markers

Watercolor is a timeless style of painting and sketching. Using markers instead of tubes of paint, etc. is a quick, simple, and more mess-free way to explore this type of art! This blog takes you through the markers we have at Marker Supply that are dye-based and will easily blend with water (and with other colors) to create smooth color gradations, shadows and fading effects, and of course- watercolor art!

(*All of these markers are water-based and should not bleed through most papers. However, it is recommended that if you are blending them with water to create watercolor style art, you use a thicker paper designed to handle the moisture.)

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Zig Clean Color Real Brush Marker

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Colors Available: 80

Sets Available:
Set of 48 with Case and Bonus Water Brush
Color Tone Sets of 6
Color Scheme Sets of 4
Set of 6
Set of 12
Shade and Shadow Set of 20
Trend Set of 12
Grayscale Set of 20

Tip Style: Single-Ended, bristle brush

Currently a very popular watercolor marker, the Clean Colors have been recently featured on many craft blogs.  Its hair-like brush tip resembles more of an actual paint brush, which makes it easier to thin out the color as the stroke grows larger. Clean colors have awesome blending ability and plenty of light and dark colors to create gradation effects. Their color range also includes fluorescents and a variety of gray tones.

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Sakura KOI Coloring Brush Pen

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Colors Available: 48

Sets Available:
Set of 12 colors
Set of 24 colors

Tip Style: Single-Ended, Rubber Brush

A newer marker from Sakura, the KOI comes with its own fun and unique color palette. The brush tip is more of a sturdy, rubbery feel, but still flexible- allowing you to make thin or thick lines- but will quickly spring back to its original shape. This durable tip also makes these markers great for working with rubber stamps.

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Zig Art & Graphic Twin

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Colors Available: 80

Tip Style: Double-Ended, Fine Tip and Rubber Brush

A dual tip marker (like getting 2 pens in 1!) that has a rubber brush on one end, and a fine point on the other- a handy combo for coloring both larger and tiny spaces. Available in a wide variety of colors, very similar to the Clean Color range. The brush tip on these markers is a little longer and more “bendy” than the KOI. The ink is also very fluid when pressure is applied to the brush tip- making it a breeze to dab some color on a palette surface for blending just like real paints.

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Zig Calligraphy II Dye

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Colors Available: 15

Sets Available:
Set of 6
Set of 12

Tip Style: Double-Ended, 2mm Square and 3.5mm Square

Another double-ended marker that features 2 square (flat-edged chisel) tips in different sizes, common with writing many calligraphy font styles. The dye ink in this marker makes it possible to add some unique shadowing and other effects to your lettering!

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Prismacolor Watercolor Colored Pencils

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Colors Available: 36

Sets Available:
Set of 12 in metal tin
Set of 24 in metal tin
Set of 36 in metal tin

Tip Style: Sharpened pencil point

These special colored pencils from Prismacolor are water soluble and can create incredible blended effects and watercolor works of art. The pencil tip lets you apply pressures and shading techniques while drawing and writing that differ from what is done with markers.

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Sakura KOI Pocket Field Sketch Box

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Outside the world of markers is this handy watercolor tool- featuring 24 half pan watercolor paints, a water brush, dabbing sponges, and a detachable palette tray. It’s small and portable- perfect for painting anywhere you go! The lid forms an easel that holds postcard size paper- helping you capture the perfect little scene at the park, on the beach, or in the city!

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Blenders

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All of the above markers can be used with regular paint brushes and water, or try using them with any of these convenient blending pens!

Zig BrusH20 Water Pens: A refillable pen that holds water-  just squeeze the barrel and it flows out through the brush tip! Available in 4 sizes.
Zig Blender Marker: A dual tip rubber brush marker full of water-based blending solution. Works well for more subtle blending than using water.
Zig Art & Graphic Twin Colorless Blender: A dual tip (fine/rubber brush) marker, just like the other Art & Graphics, only this one has no color, just a clear blending solution.
Sakura KOI Colorless Blender Pen: A rubber brush colorless pen, great for blending and mixing colors. Sold as a pack of 2 pens.

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Techniques

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There are several techniques you can use to paint with dye-based markers:

-Use the markers to sketch out your drawing, then blend with a water pen to give it a watercolor look.
-Add a little water to the paper first, then soak in some color in places over the top of it.
-Briefly soak the color tip in water until the tip lightens. Then as you color, the shade will gradually darken.
-Touch the tip of a lighter color marker into the tip of a darker color until a little soaks in, then draw with the lighter tip for a smooth color-changing blend.
-Color a section with a darker color, then use a lighter color to blend it out.
-Dab the wet tip of a water pen over the colored marker tip, then apply to the paper from the water pen.

There are plenty more ways to create watercolor with markers! Let us know your favorite tips and tricks, and send us some of your painted watercolor works! We love to see what you markers are making!!

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