As we approach the end of week 3 of lockdown, I thought a ‘thinking of you’ card might be appropriate to send to those you can’t visit at the moment. I know you can telephone and Facetime etc. to speak, but sometimes a handmade card means a lot. The monochrome colour scheme for this card makes it suitable for masculine or sympathy cards too so makes the stamp set, Stampin’ Up! High Tide, really versatile.
To begin, I stamped my images in Night of Navy ink on Whisper White card.
Whilst I waited for my image to dry, I cut a scalloped square of navy card and then used the frame to decide where I wanted my focal image and drew around the inside of the frame.
I cut out the square using my trimmer and then mounted the cut-out section onto the navy scalloped square.
I stamped some images on the liner and the envelope.
The front was mounted onto a Night of Navy card base and I used dimensionals to pop up the focal segment. The sentiment is from Peaceful Moments.
Lastly, I’ll leave you with the highlight of my garden this week – the blossom on the Conference Pear tree. It’s just stunning and the bees love it!
The Stampin’ Up! Butterfly Beauty die set has everything you need to cut out lots of butterflies. I particularly like the two large dies that can be used individually or layered on top of each other.
I started by cutting out the two layers in Whisper White and Lovely Lipstick and stuck them together.
To add further dimension and interest, I added Dimensionals on the back…
…and then mounted the whole thing on a Smoky Slate layer embossed with the Layered Leaves (retired) embossing folder and then onto a Basic Grey cardbase.
After making this card, I wondered how it would work making an inlaid butterfly, like I did previously with the retired (sniff!) dragonfly from the Detailed Dragonfly die set. As you’ve probably realised about me by now, I like a bit of ink blending so I inked up a panel in a rainbow palette.
Top tip for these dies: stick some double sided craft adhesive sheet on the back of your card before die cutting – it saves faffing about trying to apply glue to tiny pieces or thin strips of card.
Using Basic Black card, I cut out each of the two butterfly dies. The first one, I used black for the back layer and cut the top butterfly layer from the rainbow panel. I mounted this on a thick Whisper White cardbase that I had embossed with the planks embossing folder (also now retired!).
Then came to my butterfly rainbow jigsaw! So, this turned out to be much more of a faff that I had anticipated….locating all those tiny pieces.
I stuck the black butterfly top layer onto a white mat and then inserted all the pieces into their matching holes. This was then mounted on a Basic Black card base. It was a very fiddly operation and, to be honest, I’m not sure I’d do another one. However, the finished card looks super!
Having had fun doing the ink ‘smooshing’ technique for last week’s blog post, I thought I’d try my hand at some watercolour backgrounds this week, although I used calligraphy ink rather than watercolour paint. I’ve watched many, many YouTube tutorials on making water colour washes but it’s not quite as easy as it looks – well, not for me anyway! Using the Stampin’ Up! Thank You die, I wanted to use the positive and negative spaces of the background to make 2 cards, hence the 2-for-1 title. For an even speedier set of cards, use patterned paper instead of making a background.
I began by taking my piece of watercolour paper and wetting it thoroughly with clean water. I then painted stripes of pink and yellow ink and let them blend together. I then spritzed the piece with some Frost White Shimmer paint (mixed with isopropyl alcohol) for some shine, although the nozzle of the sprayer was a bit iffy so its more splotches than mist 😊
For my second sheet, I wet the paper and then just dropped in pools of blue, pink and yellow ink and sprayed with a little more water to get them to mix. Again, I spritzed (splotched!) Frost White Shimmer Paint on and then left to dry.
As the water colour paper got very wet, it was a bit crinkly when it dried but I was planning to run it through the Big Shot so that flattened it out a bit. I used the largest and third largest stitched rectangle dies to cut the background and a border and cut the Thank You from the central piece.
In the interests of using up as much of my inked background as possible and to give a co-ordinated look to the inside of the card, I cut the left over background ⅜” around the rectangular cut-out, cut this rectangle into 4 (2 tops and 2 sides) and then used these pieces to edge my card inner.
I adhered the negative piece onto my card base and then, whilst all the bits were still in the die, applied spray adhesive to the back and placed the die into the ‘hole’ on the card and pressed out the tiny pieces to make the words complete. This made card no.1.
Card no.2 was made by sticking the frame onto the card base and then adding the Thank You cut out to the centre.
These are the cards made with the second background using the same technique.
The sweet peas in the shot are called ‘Terry Wogan’ and are prolific flowerers. They’re providing me with many gloriously scented vases of flowers around the house at the moment!
I do love a silhouette! Trees, plants, buildings, birds, people to name but a few – they all make great silhouettes that are super to use for card making. Create a background by using your preferred method – sponging, brayering, watercolour, stamping, embossing – and put your silhouette over the top. When I spotted the Friendly Silhouette Dies in the new Stampin’ Up! annual catalogue, they were immediately put on my wish list. I mistakenly thought that there were 3 silhouette border dies in the set, and there are – sort of! More on that later though.
For two of my cards, I sponged a sunrise and a sunset. What I like about inking sky backgrounds is that you can’t actually go wrong! For example, if you look at a sunset there are so many colours, shapes and patterns, many of which you’d think were unrealistic if you saw them in a painting but there they are in real life. That’s one of the beauties of nature, it’s sheer randomness!
I began by sticking post-it notes along the card to make the horizon (1). Then I decided whether or not to have a sun. I had a sun in these so punched a circular mask from a post-it note and used both the negative (1) and positive pieces (3) at different stages. After I’d sponged the sun, I removed the negative mask (2) and then placed the sun mask over the sun (3) whilst I sponged the sky. I used Crushed Curry, Rococo Rose and Seaside Spray for my sunrise sky. I removed the masks and then coloured below the horizon using a Basic Black marker (4).
I cut out the floral border from Basic Black card and simply glued the border over the sunrise. At this stage, I didn’t like the black horizon I’d drawn in so I just covered it up with the border die.
For the second card, I used an ink ‘smooshing’ technique. I got my largest block and pressed my Blackberry Bliss ink pad directly onto the bottom third of the block, transferring plenty of ink. I repeated this with Bermuda Bay on the top third of the block. For the bit in between, I applied Night of Navy using sponge daubers.
Once the block was covered, I spritzed it with plenty of water and then placed the card onto the block, pressed well, then removed and left to dry. The great thing about these types of background is that they are fun to make and are completely unique!
The bull rush border (my favourite!) was used for this card and I cut out an additional border from vellum and stuck it behind the black card, offset slightly to give some extra visual interest.
So that bring us to the last die. Now I thought that this was a palm tree border so image my horror when this is what was left when I’d cut out my border! I even contacted demo support to check that the thing wasn’t faulty!!
Anyway, another demonstrator in Amanda’s team guessed (correctly) that it is designed so that you use the negative space instead of the cut out. So, you ink up your background scene, then cut out the trees and put your background on top of a black card base to give you the silhouetted look. Now call me picky but I think a background should be, well…you know, in the background and the thing that’s making the silhouette should be in the foreground. Maybe I’m thinking about this too scientifically! Anyhow, this is how it looks behind my inked sunset.
I’ve left all my cards without sentiments so I can use them for whatever occasion demands in the future.