Wednesday, January 29, 2014

2013 Trends in Mixed Media

Becoming a member of the Craft & Hobby Association - better known as CHA - has been a fascinating and exciting experience for me. Membership comes with a lot of opportunities...not the least of which is the ability to attend their annual trade show. But more than that, they provide support, education, networking, and a host of other services.

If you have been wondering what CHA is all about or are interested in finding out what membership entails, click here.

Soon after I joined as a Designer Member, I volunteered to be part of the Trends Team. Among other activities, the team puts together an annual report that reviews the trends of the prior year and predicts those to come. Not surprisingly, my focus was mixed media. The report also includes general crafts, paper crafts, home decor, beading/jewelry making, sewing/wearable arts, and fiber arts/needlework.

While the report in its entirety is available only to CHA members (yet another reason to join),  I wanted to at least share with you a summary of my findings regarding mixed media.

(special thanks to the folks at Art is You for creating this mosaic)

2013 has seen increased popularity in:
  1. Upcycling and recycling of nontraditional materials
  2. Use of stencils in innovative ways
  3. The manufacturing and use of stamps (rubber, cling mount, etc.)
  4. Zentangling, mark making, and doodling 
  5. Integration of hand-done and digital approaches
  6. The use of the Gelli Plate in expanded directions
  7. Adding faces to artwork via drawing, stencils, and stamps 
  8. Encaustic and faux-encaustic approaches
  9. Art journaling
  10. Online workshops
  11. Live workshops taught collaboratively by multiple artists
Any trends I missed? Add your thoughts by leaving a comment to this post...


Miss Marple said...

What about sprays and inks? And washi tape is still being big in (my) art journaling. Here in Europe now home decor companies and some other stores are bringing out their own washi ranges. - Irma

elle said...

I'm going to copy this out to make sure I'm doing some of most and also as a creative nudge when I'm tapping my finger. Faces, yes but I think I'm going to be sticking to silhouettes! :O I'm also switching to more stable sprays. Thanks for your insight.

Kathleen Harrington said...

I've been seeing the lines blurred between mixed media artists and the craft industry (i.e. Seth Apter). I have watched my friends in card-making classes expand their skills into papercrafting and mixed media configurations. Configurations have expanded into hybrids of shadow boxes combined with book and journal formats.


Renee said...

I think you touched all the high points with the exception of the spray inks, gesso & Pan Pastels. You really did hit the nail on the head. All of the trends you mentioned seem to be what everyone is doing. Amazing insight on your part.

Claudine said...

There are so many wonderful things in the area of mixed media and I think you touched on most of the trends. I love the all too. I am going to join CHA this year and see how it goes.

joanne sharpe said...

What about an interest in LETTERING? For journaling, artwork etc. That's a big subject you are missing my friend! :-)

Jen said...

Like the folks above have said, I'd add washi tapes (still big!) and lettering. Great to see art journaling making it's mark... er, pun wasn't intended.

Mary C. Nasser said...

Ahh...loving all these trends...and combining them in art!

Betsy Skagen said...

I'm seeing a lot of calligraphy. I'm thankful this trend doesn't appeal to me because that means I don't have to spend any of my crafting budget on it.
Betsy at

Crafty Humphreys said...

I'd agree with all, plus those in the comments, and I'd also add textiles. So much can be done with scraps of material to add texture & interest. So the big question now is what's going to be big this year?! Suz xxx