Today is the day I am sharing my video tutorial for using watercolor pencils! I LOVE watercolor- whether in the form of a tube or a pencil. Watercolor pencil is an easy way to get that beautiful watercolor effect! I love painting watercolor illustrations, I love the way the paint acts on the paper and how it interacts with the water.
You can really be an “artiste” by using watercolor pencils with the Everything Patterns! Don’t feel intimidated- my video will walk you through it, and at the end of this post, I’ve listed resources for supplies.
I’m working super-hard to get the Everything Patterns ebook done for next week…. my original plan was to release it October 4, but I may have to push it just a bit later. I’ll keep you up to date through my newsletter. Thanks so much for sticking with me!
For an introduction video to Everything Patterns, please click here.
For a few videos with embroidery tips and using Everything Patterns, please click here.
For a video about using coloring pencils with Everything Patterns, please click here.
I know that finding supplies when you are first starting out can be confusing, so here are the products that I use. These are affiliate links, which means that if you make a purchase, I will receive a small commission. These are all products that I use and enjoy myself. Click the photo or product name to go to the product page for more information and to purchase. (And remember- you don’t have to buy all of the supplies at once! You probably already have some of these things at home anyway.)
Brushes– this is a good, inexpensive starter set. You will get 4 basic sizes, use the large flat one for filling in large areas like backgrounds, and the round ones for details.
Pens for transferring designs and doodling- Pigma Micron or Sharpie Ultra Fine:
I like the Pigma Micron pens in sizes 005 and 01, in black and sepia. This is a excellent all purpose, fine point permanent marker.
Sharpie Ultra Fine is another great all purpose permanent pen, though not as fine as the Pigma Micron, and you may find that the ink “bleeds” into the paper if you don’t move the marker across the paper fast enough.
Paper ranges in price from inexpensive to very expensive:
This is an inexpensive “student grade” paper, which means that it will give you good, but not professional results. It’s great for starting out. You can tear off individual sheets from the tablet and use a lightbox or window to trace your designs onto the paper.
This paper is much pricier, it is the professional grade paper that I use for my artwork. It gives excellent results, and it’s my favorite. I use the cold press, with the green cover. It is on a “block” or tablet, which means that you leave the individual sheet on the tablet while you are painting, then you tear it off after you are done (this really keeps your paper from “buckling”). However, this means that you won’t be able to trace with a lightbox, you can transfer your designs with Saral (see below.)
Watercolor pencils- these come in sets, or you can buy individual colors. I use several different brands, these are 2 that I like. Derwent and Derwent Inktense
This is the lightbox that I use for tracing. I use it constantly! I think it’s a great investment, either for tracing embroidery patterns, applique patterns, coloring sheets, etc.
If you would like to transfer designs onto paper without a lightbox or window, try using Saral transfer paper. Unlike old-fashioned “carbon” paper which has a waxy residue which cannot be removed, this allows you to erase stray marks and smudges (like a regular graphite pencil.) It comes in several different colors, I recommend the graphite color. This is useful if you want to transfer a design onto a surface which you cannot see through, such as a watercolor block, or a yard sale find such as a wooden chair seat, box, etc.
I hope you have found this information helpful! Next time, I will show you some sample designs from the Everything Patterns ebook, tell you when it will be available (soon!), the price…. plus some other exciting news!!!
Very interesting and looks very nice, thank you!
Thanks for the great information! I recently found a free light box app for my iPad and love it for tracing smaller appliqué/embroidery designs. I don’t have enough counter space in my sewing room to leave a light table set up all the time – but there’s always room for the iPad!!
I have the sam problem with space…what is the name of the free light box app for iPads.
I would like to know the free app for the ipad too!
Hi Janan – Rebecca found one called LightBox trace. I’m not sure how it works but you could give it a try and see!
I intently watched this video to see if it might be something my sister–who has had a stroke–could do. It looks like the watercolor will be better for her because she does not have to carefully fill in all the color with pencils AND it can look softer. THANKS
Thanks for this tutorial. Very interesting and useful!
Wow, what a great tutorial! I will definitely have to try this out. I had no idea that watercolour pencils even existed. Thanks so much for making such a great video!
Great tutorial Jacquelynne! So enjoying your new adventure :*)
Great! I’ve had a small box of pencils for watercolor but never tried it. This will be ideal for me to give it a try.
Thank you so much… I am learning a lot… Always wanted to try watercolor painting… Now I will have something else to add to my creative endeavours. Love your videos, keep them up… PS. You are a wonderful artist and teacher.
Thanks for a great tutorial Jacquelynne! I have my watercolor pencils and will be trying your tips!
Can I follow your same instructions on fabric??
I have that same question. I am wondering if I can use watercolor pencils on my 100% silk ribbon for ribbon Embroidery
You know please if you can use the paper (saral) on transfers (fabric) and easily erase the drawing when the embroidery work is finished ?
choose what color to transfer on fabric ??
thnaks for your help and tutorial, it’s useful for me
Hi Brodine, I have never used Saral on fabric, however the package says that it can be used on fabric. I would test it first, and make that any smudges wash out. Generally, either use a neutral color for tracing patterns (such as the graphite or gray color), or one that matches your thread (such as red for redwork.)
thank you for your help Jacquelynne :)
Do you mind if I quote a few of your articles as
long as I provide credit and sources back to your site?
My blog is in the exact same niche as yours and my visitors would genuinely benefit from a lot
of the information you provide here. Please let me know if this alright with you.
Thanks a lot!
Have done some fabric painting, but like to learn more about the paint to use and different kinds I can use.