Encaustic Decorative Panel

Artful Maven

Have you ever wanted to try your hand at one of the oldest art forms...Encaustic Wax? If so, this is a good piece to teach you the beginning steps of creating with heated wax.


  • 12x12 Styrofoam Brand Panel: 1 Inch Thick
  • Prima 12x12 Sew Paper
  • Ranger Tim Holtz Distress Paint: Black Soot
  • Dictionary Paper
  • Ranger Tim Holtz Distress Stain: Peacock Feathers, Festive Berries, Mowed Lawn, Black Soot, Scattered Straw
  • Ranger Collage Glue Stick
  • Sakura Gelly Roll Pen: White, Black
  • Scissors
  • Ranger Melt it Art Wax Pellets in Clear or Natural
  • Ranger Melt It Melt Pot
  • Hake or Natural Bristle Paintbrush
  • Ranger Heat Tool
  • Tim Holtz Idea-ology: Mini Numerals, Chit Chat Stickers, Big Chat Stickers

Peel the backing off of the Styrofoam Panel and lay the paper on top.

Paint the white exposed sides of the panel with Black Soot Distress Paint. Let dry.

Using the dictionary paper, rough cut four house shapes, complete with extra windows, doors, roofs, and chimneys. Paint each house a different color with Distress Stain, and paint the extra pieces as well.

Glue the house together with the Glue Stick, and doodle around the houses with Black and White Gel Pens. Do not glue the houses on.

Choose the words you want to go on the panel, and glue them onto Dictionary Paper. Cut these out, and have them ready for the next part.

Add the pellets to the Melt It Pot up to the fill line, and turn the pot to 180 degrees. It will take about 5 minutes to heat and melt the wax. Place a hake brush in the wax and completely submerge it. Have your piece close by, so you don't drip wax too much. Starting at the top of the panel and working horizontally, begin brushing on the wax line by line in a slow rhythmic way. When you reach where you want to put your sentiment and where your houses will go, brush the wax on and quickly lay the words and houses in the wax. It's okay if they are not submerged in the wax. That will be fixed in the next step.

Each time a layer of wax is added, you must fuse the wax with a Heat Tool to makes sure it bonds with the layer underneath. To do this hold the Heat Tool about two inches away from the wax and move your hand in a circular motion. Do this until the wax looks a little glassy, and then move to a new spot. Be careful not to move your wax too much or it will puddle off the panel and look uneven. You want a very smooth and ice skating rink kind of look. The wax will look cloudy until it's totally cooled down, and then it will clear up.

Add another layer of wax, again slowly and rhythmically. When you get to the part where you want your numbers to go, brush the wax on, and gently push them in.

Once this layer is on, again fuse the wax like before.

Once the whole piece is cooled, you can shine the wax to a super shine with a Kleenex Tissue working in circles. This is how to clean your piece. Hang or display away from heat sources and bright windows to maintain your wax.

Categories: Altered Art, Home Decorating
Tags: altered-art, encaustic-art, home-decor, paper-crafts