I have been playing with encaustics since I got a starter set as a gift. I have not done any real paintings- mostly cards and tags, but I have to say I really enjoy it and hope to take a live class sometime.
I thought this was a cute idea for a Valentine, even though I originally made a set of these for the Holidays. And it really only requires melted Encaustic Medium or Beeswax. You don’t need all the colored encaustic paints or lots of tools. Just the medium or plain beeswax, something to melt it in, and a paint brush. I know some folks have the Melting Pot that Ranger/ Suze Weinberg make and melt beeswax in that, and that should be fine.
Basically you are just going to coat a piece of burlap in encaustic medium or wax. Be careful when melting wax, that you do not get it hotter than 250 degrees F or the encaustic medium/wax can start to put off more toxic fumes. I always err on the side of caution and use a thermometer, and keep the temperature well below that- usually around 180 degrees F. Also make sure that your room is well ventilated.
I use a griddle with a thermometer control, and a small tin where I melt the encaustic medium. Then I paint the melted medium over the burlap until it is well saturated. After I remove it from the griddle, I let it cool on one of the Ranger craft sheets.
After the waxed burlap has cooled, it is stiff and can be cut using a wood- ruled die, or with scissors. I used an Accucut machine with this project, but the Sissix and any of the thick Tim Holtz dies should work equally as well.
I then used dimensional paint to add the trimmings to my little person, and glued his heart on, and voila!! A burlap Gingerbread man!!