John says:

“The ability to make my own faux stone plaques, tiles and shrines allows me to create pieces of mixed media art and assemblage with an aged, weather worn appearance. 

Using three main materials, a substrate, Stone Art Powder and Powertex hardener with the addition of Bister spray and a little layered dry brushing, I was able to give the appearance of a thousand year old piece of eroded iconography made from stone and bronze.

I find it easier to work with thinner pieces of polystyrene and build them up, this way I can create a niche by simply cutting an aperture in the topmost piece. To give an eroded look I used a pencil to remove sections of the surface.

To create the faux bronze embellishments, I made an air-drying clay by mixing equal volumes of hardener and powder, once mixed I added more powder until the texture was that of a stiff cookie dough. This clay can now be used in a mould, as with the Buddha head, or used freestyle with stamps to create great embossed textures.”


Stamps John used...

  • Creative Expressions: Doodled Art Background UMS777; Spring Trail UMS706

Other materials...

  • Powertex Hardener: Bronze; Ivory
  • Powertex Bister: Red; Black; Brown
  • Powertex Stone Art Powder
  • Powertex Powercolor: Green; Titanium White
  • Powertex Colortricx: Copper
  • Powertex Easy Varnish
  • Polystyrene circle 30 cm x 2.5 cm (12” x 1”)
  • Small wooden pieces
  • Brads
  • Powertex metal stand


Step-by-step… Powertex Stone and Clay Creation

1 Mix hardener and powder in equal amounts. Knead into clay, adding extra powder until it’s the consistency of stiff cookie dough.


Roll out clay before cutting into desired shapes and add texture using stamps, dowel and a paintbrush.

Using a mould of your choice, make a dimensional centrepiece using clay. Allow clay to stand for an hour before removing from mould.

Cut out aperture in centre, rub away edges of polystyrene to create texture and attach any embellishments.

Dab on hardener with paintbrush and cover with powder. Press powder gently into liquid, make sure all liquid is covered before rubbing away loose powder.

Using your fingertips, gently buff off all loose powder. To brush cracks, use a stencil brush or a stiff toothbrush.


Attach clay embellishments by applying a little hardener to the back of your pieces and pressing gently onto your main piece 

Using three shades of Bister spray, colour your piece, working from darkest on the distressed areas to lightest on the flatter surfaces. Dab off excess liquid.

Working in the order of green, white, copper, dry brush all clay pieces. Dry each layer between colours.


To finish the project: Place the piece somewhere flat for 24 hours to allow the clay pieces to adhere fully. Once dry, apply a coat of matt varnish to seal it. I like to put the finished piece into a nice ornate frame or use one of the Powertex metal stands, depending on where it will be displayed.


This project first featured in the May 2017 issue of Craft Stamper magazine