Warmth on a cold day

Roses Heather Telford

When it’s -25°C outside the best thing to do is stay inside and make pretty things. The weather here continues to be bitterly cold and I keep reading of places in the states where the kids have had a week of snow days. A week! No snow days here. My daughter caught the bus to work this morning and said if she kept her eyes open they froze but if she closed them the skin on her eyelids stung too much!

I used the rose from the new transparent set ‘Efflorescence’ to make this card and it will be a bit tricky to give you all the how-to details. I stamped and painted, left it, came back, spritzed it, left it, came back, stamped again…you get the idea. Basically I stamped with distress stains to give me a wet outline image from which I pulled in colour to fill the petals or leaves. I spritzed the painted images to let some of the colour bleed into the background. I let it dry before masking the first rose so I could stamp a second behind it plus some extra leaves. I wanted a little rosebud in there too so I painted my own. I created the border with a watercolour pencil then added a splatters of blue and orange before adding a little sentiment and a matching mat.

I don’t know about you but I have had to look up a few of the new PB stamp names in the dictionary. Efflorescence means the action or process of developing and unfolding as if coming into flower. Effulgence means  radiant splendor. Ebullient means having or showing liveliness and enthusiasm. So there you go; stamping is expanding my vocabulary.


Stamps: Efflorescence, Snippets (PB)
Inks: Ripe Persimmon, Iced Spruce, Chipped Sapphire distress stains (Ranger), Memento Paris Dusk marker (Imagine Craft/Tsukineko)
Cardstock: Fabriano 100% cotton hot pressed watercolour paper, Navy paper, Neenah Natural White 110lb cardstock

Summer birthday

Lakeside happy birthday Heather Telford

My husband and I both have February birthdays which meant hot summer days for the first 35 years of our lives. Now we celebrate in the bleak mid-winter!

For his birthday card this year I have gone with the warm tones of summer for inspiration. I managed better with this card than the anniversary card; I wrote in it and gave it to him before posting it here on the blog. To create this scene I started by flicking masking fluid onto my small watercolour block. Even though this isn’t a wintery scene some little flecks of white add interest and dimension to the scene. After the masking fluid dried I wet the whole panel and painted the trees and reflections in the distance, the sky and the water with brushes. In the foreground I stamped several stamps from the ‘sprigs’ set onto the wet paper and let them bleed into the surrounding area. When the paper dried a bit I stamped a couple more sprigs which stayed more distinct. I die cut a tag and splashed some of the same colour over it before adding a sentiment and ribbon.


Stamps: Sprigs , Sprinkles & Smiles (PB)
Creative Dies: Tagged (PB)
Inks: Dried marigold, forest moss, frayed burlap, crushed olive distress inks (Ranger) Versafine Spanish Moss (Imagine Crafts/Tsukineko)
Cardstock: Fabriano hot pressed watercolour paper, Olive green cardstock & ribbon

Watercoloured Sprigs

Watercolour Sprigs Heather Telford

I had a card idea in my head yesterday and I did several trials and variations with the stamps from the transparent set ‘Sprigs’ but my original idea did not end up working. I set the experiments aside and designed a totally different card. Today when I looked at yesterday’s experiment I came up with the card you see above. The problem with the panel before I die cut dragonflies and a sentiment out was that is did not really have a focal point. The colours were pretty and some of the watercolour effects were pretty (others were messy) but it all looked too similar. By cutting the dragonflies to reveal the blue cardstock behind, the focus is taken away from the watercolour panel and transferred to the bold images and letters. I could have just as easily popped dragonflies on top but I like the cut-away look. The features I liked in the original panel are no longer trying to be the stars, they work better as back up. Next time you cast aside a stamped panel because it’s not working the way you thought consider whether it just needs to be in the background and let another element take centre stage.

To create the panel I inked up three of the ‘sprigs’ stamps with a mix of blues and greens. I inked each stamp with one colour using a large stamp pad then added another colour with a marker. I spritzed each stamp, stamped them on watercolour paper then, when I had stamped all the images, spritzed the paper.

I can’t always turn my experiments into finished cards, often the watercolour panels just get turned over so I can use the other side. Sometimes I wonder if the recipients of my cards ever see the backs of some of my panels, hopefully the adhesive holds and the rejected side stays hidden!


Stamps: Sprigs (PB)
Creative Dies: Deco Frame, Flutters (PB)
Inks: Nautical Blue, Teal Zeal, Cottage Ivy, Bamboo Leaves Memento ink (Imagine Craft/Tsukineko)
Cardstock: Fabriano hot pressed watercolour paper, Blue cardstock

The Sweetest Sound

 finished card Heather Telford

Now that the new Penny Black release, Bring on the Happy, has been revealed, the design team is sharing projects and tutorials featuring all the wonderful new products. I am kicking things off with a photo tutorial using ‘the sweetest sound’ brushstroke stamp. Brushstroke stamps will be featured all this week on the PB blog.

To create the card above I started with a panel of my favourite watercolour paper from Fabriano. I splattered a fine mist of masking fluid over it and let that dry before taping it down on all sides. Next I painted water onto the right hand side of panel. I pressed Memento Nautical Blue and Cantaloupe inks onto an acrylic block as a palette then picked up some ink with a paintbrush and dropped it onto the wet paper. I kept adding ink with a large brush until I was happy with the background colour.

sweetest sound 1 Heather Telford

While the paper was still wet I inked only part of a branch on ‘the sweetest sound’ stamp with espresso truffle and olive grove memento markers. I stamped it in the top right and bottom right corners of panel and let the inks bleed into the wet background.

sweetest sound 2 Heather Telford

I let the panel dry then inked the stamp with the following memento markers:
espresso truffle – branches, beaks
olive grove – leaves
nautical blue – bird bodies
bamboo leaves – bird backs and tail feathers

 sweetest sound 3 Heather Telford

I spritzed the inked stamp with water then stamped onto the watercolour panel.

sweetest sound 4 Heather Telford

Using a water brush I blended the colour on the birds and added detail to the eyes with the espresso truffle marker. I then covered the birds with my hand and spritzed water over the branches to make the image bleed.

Sweetest sound 5 Heather Telford

To finish I splattered olive grove and nautical blue ink around the panel. I added a little more definition to the branches with the fine tip of the memento markers. When the panel was dry I removed the masking tape and rubbed off the masking fluid before adding the sentiment from ‘snippets’ set.

Sweetest sound 6 Heather Telford

I completed the card by matting the panel in a green then popping up the panel on a cold pressed (textured) watercolour paper card base.

Thanks for dropping by. I hope you are enjoying the new release; I will be sharing more projects with brushstroke stamps later this week.

The new One Layer Simplicity Challenge is up on the blog and is hosted by Susan this month. Pop over and check it out.

sweetest sound detail Heather Telford


Stamps: the sweetest sound,  snippets(PB)
Inks: Nautical Blue, Cantaloupe, Olive Grove, Espresso Truffle, Bamboo Leaves Memento ink (Imagine Craft/Tsukineko)
Cardstock: Fabriano hot pressed watercolour paper, Strathmore cold pressed watercolour paper, green cardstock
Also: Winsor & Newton masking fluid

A reason to celebrate

Watercolour skyline  Heather Telford

This is a repost of a card I made this time last year. After I had posted it I put it away for the right occasion. Today is the right occasion and my husband is the recipient. We are celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary by spending four days in New York; the trip is a gift from our children. I am very excited!

All the details about the card can be found here. I hope to post a few picture of our trip on instagram and my other blog. Have a good week!

Warm wishes for a cold winter’s day

Birch trees Heather Telford

These birch trees are my favourite element of the intricate Winter Song stamp so I decided to isolate them for a scene of their own. I inked them with a weathered wood distress marker and left the rest of the stamp uninked. Weathered wood is a pale grey which is perfect for painting and drawing over the top. As usual I stamped on Fabriano hot pressed watercolour paper. The background colour is distress stains painted on with a waterbrush. I defined the edges and markings on the trees with a black marker, painted some grey shading on the trunks then added the sentiment in black. I am fussy about the cardstocks matching so I mounted this panel on a thin burgandy card then made the card base from cold pressed watercolour paper which is the same colour as the panel but adds some texture.

Thank you for the kind Christmas wishes left on my blog and in my inbox. I appreciated them all. I hope your new year is off to a good start; mine has been pretty busy with a bunch of stamping and creating I can’t share with you just yet!


Stamps: Winter Song, Joy Filled (PB)
Inks: Barn Door, Dusty Concord, Victorian China, Aged Mahogany, Weathered Wood distress stains (Ranger) Tuxedo Black memento marker (Imagine Craft/Tsukineko)
Cardstock: Fabriano 100% cotton hot pressed watercolour paper, Strathmore cold pressed watercolour paper, burgandy cardstock


Dressember Heather Telford

Today’s post is quite different from my normal posts for two reasons. Firstly, there is a person stamped and coloured on my card; that rarely happens! Secondly, and more importantly, this post is to let you know about a non-stamping challenge I have taken on during the month of December hoping to raise funds for a very important cause. The fact that the girl on the stamp is in a dress is significant. I have joined in “Dressember 2014” which challenges me to wear a dress every day in December. I am aiming to raise awareness and funds for the International Justice Mission which works all over the world to rescue thousands, protect millions and prove that justice for the poor is possible. The heart of Dressember is dignity for all women so I thought I would share it with my readers, all of whom I appreciate for their support and kind comments, their interest in paper crafts and the enjoyment I get from being part of such a great online community.

I have created a fundraising page. on the Dressember site, just click HERE to visit, look around and, if you are able, donate to the cause. Money raised around the world during Dressember will help stop human trafficking. I will be providing occasional updates on my other blog, Sentient, as well as posting my daily dress on Pinterest and Instagram.

Perhaps there will be more dress cards during December; I could do with the practice! The one above is my second attempt and I had difficulty knowing how to finish it as a card. You can’t tell in the photo but it is matted in a dark blue/gold paper which does co-ordinate with her dress. I even tried a few sequins but they didn’t make the final cut. The image is stamped in Memento Angel Pink and coloured with water colour pencils.

Thanks for visiting today, I appreciate you taking the time to read about a different interest of mine.


Stamps:  Reflection (PB)
Inks:  Memento Angel Pink (Imagine Crafts/Tsukineko)
Pencils: Albrecht Durer watercolour pencils (Faber Castell)
Cardstock: Fabriano hotpressed watercolour paper, dark gold paper, Neenah solar white
Also: gold wink of stella pen


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