Episode 63: Using Watercolors on Crepe Paper with Sarah Simon

Season #3

Learn how you can improve your painting techniques and create stunning crepe paper flowers with advice from a watercolor expert and author Sarah Simon of TheMintGardener 


If you’re unfamiliar with watercolors, you may be intimidated to try them on crepe paper. Do you have visions of a soggy mess when you think about it? Or maybe you’ve tried combining the two and didn’t get the results you wanted. 

Here’s the good news: both crepe and watercolor are fairly forgiving mediums, and the end results can be absolutely fantastic for your paper flowers. To get those beautiful results, though, you may have to go through quite a bit of trial and error. Luckily, there is help out there to get you started on the right track and save you from some heartache. That’s why we chatted with a watercolor expert in our latest episode of Papertalk

Sarah Simon of TheMintGardener is an artist, illustrator, and designer. Her gorgeous botanical works are simply amazing. On top of her artwork, she teaches watercolor workshops and is the author of three books. We discussed all of these different facets of her work on the podcast, and you’ll glean so many insights about how to improve your paper flowers and your business. 

Here’s a little taste of what she taught us: “The biggest tip that I can give when you’re combining watercolor plus the crepe paper, work with tube paint.” That’s just the beginning of her very useful advice.

Whether you’re new to the game or have been in business for years, pricing is something you need to constantly consider. As Quynh said, “No matter how long you’ve been in business, how you’re pivoting, how you’re changing what you are to where you want to be, you have to think about the price in the future. You always have to set your expectation: what do I want to accomplish this year?”


Here’s what else you’ll learn when you tune in: 

  • Tips for using watercolor on crepe

  • How to improve your teaching, including virtually

  • Behind the scenes of writing a book and promoting it

  • Details about Sarah Simon’s amazing new watercolor book


And if you want even more tips about using watercolors for paper flowers, we have exciting news. Quynh and Sarah are putting together a course for this year’s virtual Flowerstock. More details will soon be available on Holly Chapple’s website, but until then, listen to the podcast to start improving your watercolor techniques.


Sarah Simon is the Designer, Artist Illustrator, and Author at TheMintGardener. Finding inspiration in the ever-blooming variety of textures and colors in her urban garden, Sarah creates and teaches lush Watercolors inspired by the diverse variety of herbs, flowers, and trees grown in her yard. With a continually blooming following of botanical and art lovers alike,

Sarah shares her teaching talents in Seattle, Washington, of the USA, where she regularly instructs Watercolor Classes to students of all skill levels. Her teaching has received international attention with her online painting courses in the Watercolor Summit and on Skillshare. Sarah's work has been featured in many publications and blogs worldwide and has been celebrated in the form of commercial product design, stationery, textiles as well as wholesale and private commissions.

Just a few of her clients include: Target, Nordstrom, Country Living, Facebook, The University of Washington, Sakura of America, Blick, Estée Lauder, and Sur La Table. Her books "Modern Watercolor Botanicals" and "The Plant Lady" Coloring Book were released in November 2019, and are best sellers on Amazon. She is currently working on book number three and enjoys hosting the #FlowerPaintingClub for an online community of painting-lovers.

Sarah loves to garden with her partner Colin and their two little girls on their urban farm. She enjoys seeking quiet moments for sketching and painting, making small bouquets of flowers and herbs, or reading. She loves Jesus,  exploring new places, and enjoys anything that includes the sea, friends, and food; and yes, as a Pacific Northwest native, she does enjoy the gloomy gray days a bit more than the hot, sunny ones. Follow Sarah at @themintgardener or check out her art and online courses on her website.


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