Watercoloured leaves the distressing way

filigree leaf thinking of you Heather Telford

Watercolour and autumn were made for each other were they not? I went for a run this morning and there were deep red maple leaves lying on the path looking like mini masterpieces. I kept wanting to pick them up and bring them home to inspire some painting. I did not want to carry them however and there will be thousands (I am not kidding) in my yard over the next 6-8 weeks (again, not kidding).

I did a periscope comparing painting leaves with distress stains, ink pads and markers this morning. These cards use the same techniques I demonstrated on the video. The first one is my favourite distress technique, stamping with stains then moving the stain with a paintbrush to fill the stamped image. I added fine splatter to the leaves on this one but kept the next one fairly clean.

filigree leaf thank you Heather Telford

I used the same ‘stamp then paint and blend’ technique for the second card but inked the stamp with ink pads. The main difference is less liquid on the stamp and an image that soaks into the watercolour paper more quickly. The result once blended with water is similar but more of the stamped outline remains. Using markers gives a similar result to inkpads but transfers even less liquid on the stamp. With markers however you can apply colour to small areas of the stamp and have a more detailed and intricate colour result.

To finish I matched cardstock to the stamping for mats and die cut sentiments.


Stamps: Filigree Foliage, (Penny Black)
Dies: Many Thanks, Wishes (Penny Black)
Inks:Scattered Straw, Rusty Hinge, Gathered twigs distress stains & Antique Linen, Wild Honey, Forest Moss distress inks & Rusty Hinge distress ink (Ranger)
Cardstock:Cartiera Magnani 100% cotton hot pressed watercolour paper, Kazazz textured cardstock, Neenah Natural white cardstock

Home, sweet home

Home sweet home Heather Telford

I stamped all the houses for this little street with the same stamp. To make them look different I masked and changed the amount of stamp I used. It was possible to make it taller by drawing an extra window and a different doorway. I watercoloured with distress stains then added some extra shading with markers and pencils. To keep it all co-ordinated and warm toned I painted a very orange sky and sponged an orange edge on the natural cardstock mat.


Stamps: Uptown,  Sweet Home (Penny Black)
Inks:Ripe Persimmon, Aged Mahogany, Spiced Marmalade, Barn Door, Worn Lipstick, Fired Brick, Black Soot distress stains or inks (Ranger), Versafine Onyx Black (Tsukineko)
Cardstock:Fabriano 100% cotton hot pressed watercolour paper, Neenah Epic Black 100lb cardstock, Natural flecked cardstock
Also: Fabercastell watercolour pencils

Fall trees with bister

bister fall trees Heather Telford

Watercolour powders seem to be a perfect medium to use for fall scenes. The colours move and blend in similar ways to the colours on an autumn leaf. To create this scene I stamped the trunk and branches before I started on the leaves. I used two brown markers for the trunks and branches avoiding the circles on the stamp as much as possible. Next I cleaned the stamp and painted water onto the circles of the stamp and stamped again. It is not really necessary to use the stamp to apply water around the branches you could just add drops of water to your  panel with a paintbrush. With the water drops sitting on the panel I sprinkled yellow and red bister powder over the water and watched the colours activate. To achieve the amount of blended colour desired I added a little powder or water here and there until I was happy. I blended some areas with a brush and let other parts stay relatively sharp and unblended. To finish I painted the blue sky with tumbled glass distress stain then matted both the panel and a sentiment and attached to a natural coloured card base.

I have filmed a periscope of this technique. It is available here on replay.


Stamps:  Twinkling, Amazing (PB)
Inks: Distress gathered twig, ground espresso distress markers, tumbled glass distress stain (Ranger)
Cardstock: Canson 100% cotton cold pressed watercolour paper, burgandy cardstock, Neenah natural white
Also: yellow & red Bister powder

Farewell to summer: Beach

Beach birthday Heather Telford

This hand-painted card depicts one of my favourite summer activities, sadly one that I rarely get to enjoy these days. Growing up we had a beach holiday every summer. I don’t live anywhere near the beach now but I did enjoy a couple of trips to the lake during July and August. One trip was to Sandbanks on Lake Ontario. The lake is so huge that it looks like an ocean beach but the water just doesn’t taste right! Apparently the wind does whip up waves most days but when we were there it was flat, flat, flat.

The card above is based on my memories of Australian beaches. We would walk over a little or large dune and reach the beach, usually a surf beach, and check out how good the waves were going to be that day. I painted with distress stains over some masking fluid ‘white caps’ and added some grass with a stamp from the ‘so lucky’ transparent set.

This is the last in my Farewell to summer mini series, it will be pretty much autumn and winter themed cards for a while now!

Stamps:  So Lucky, Special Wishes (PB)
Creative Dies: A pocketfull (PB)
Inks: chipped sapphire, salty ocean, tumbled glass, broken china, pine needles, scattered straw, mustard seed, vintage photo distress stains, peeled paint, crushed olive distress inks (Ranger)
Cardstock: Fabriano 100% cotton hot pressed watercolour paper, Neenah avon brilliant white, green cardstock

Pumpkins aplenty

 Pumpkins 2 Heather Telford

Have you seen all the pumpkins lined up in the fields waiting for…well I’m not sure what they’re waiting for, to be bought I guess, or to be collected. It is a sign of autumn to see them all there in their orange glory. I have never been a fan of orange but the distress stain, spiced marmalade, has softened my opinions a bit, it is such a rich colour.

I have two very similar cards today because I watercoloured one as a practice and then broadcast on periscope the watercolouring of the other. I scoped it yesterday so it is still available to watch on the web here.

Pumpkins 1 Heather Telford

I used the same technique for both panels, inking the stamp directly with distress stains, spritzing it then stamping on watercolour paper. While the stain was still wet I used a waterbrush to pull colour from the outline into the pumpkins and leaves. Anywhere that I didn’t have enough stain to spread I picked up some extra from an acrylic block and painted it on.

Thanks for dropping by.


Stamps: Pumpkins, Snippets, Enjoy (PB)
Inks:  Spiced Marmalade, Rusty Hinge, Ground Espresso, Peeled Paint, Forest Moss distress stains (Ranger) Versafine Olympia Green & Spanish Moss (Tsukineko)
Cardstock: Hot pressed watercolour paper, Neenah natural white cardstock, Kazazz textured cardstock
Also: gold embroidery thread

Holly Tweet tag

best gifts tag Heather Telford

I usually whip up a few Christmas tags at the eleventh hour, simple, quick and nothing like this one. I began with a piece of watercolour paper splattered with masking fluid. The panel was larger than the tag size to give me options when choosing which part of the stamped image to use. I inked the ‘holly tweet’ stamp with with markers and stamped it twice so I would have extra leaves available to cut out. I used a waterbrush to blend the colour  then let it dry before painting blueprint sketch distress stain around the stamped images. Once dry I  removed the masking fluid and die cut it with the large tag die from the ‘Tagged’ set. I stamped a sentiment from ‘Believe’ in black then played around with my extra leaves. I know it probably doesn’t count as fussy cutting but snipping around the holly leaves felt like it to me! I popped some red and white twine behind the extra leaves and attach it all to the tag. To finish it off I threaded two pieces of lace through the top and tied a twine bow to hold it in place.

best gifts tag detail Heather Telford

It’s all about tags on the PB blog this week so drop by there each day to see what the other DT members dreamed up.

Stamps:  Holly Tweet, Believe (PB)
Creative Dies: Tagged (PB)
Inks: Memento teal zeal, cottage ivy, lady bug, rhubarb stalk markers, versafine onyx black (Tsukineko) black soot, stormy sky distress markers, blueprint sketch distress stain(Ranger)
Cardstock: Canson hot pressed watercolour paper
Also: Winsor & Newton masking fluid, red & white twine from Twinery, May arts lace, 

Farewell to summer: Hummingbird

cottage life Heather Telford

This card just says ‘cottage life’ to me especially as the few hummingbirds I have seen were at friends’ cottages. I inked the stamp with memento markers, spritzed, stamped then blended with water before another spritz to spread the colour further. To create a border I ran a watercolour pencil inside the masking tape which was holding the panel down then softened the pencil line with a paintbrush. In a surprising departure from my usual habits I sponged the card base through a stencil around the edges as well as adding a little text.

I hope you are enjoying some late summer like I am.


Stamps: Sweet visit,  HeartfeltFootnotes (PB)
Inks: Nautical Blue, Bahama Blue, Danube Blue, Paris Dusk, Olive Grove, Bamboo Leaves, Desert Sand, Rose Bud, Tangelo, Potter’s Clay Memento markers (Imagine Craft/Tsukineko)
Cardstock: Fabriano hot press watercolour, Neenah natural White, Teal
Also: Zigs & zags stencil (PB), Gold and blue machine embroidery thread


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