If you are a little baffled by the title of this post don’t worry no brussel sprouts were harmed or eaten or even incorporated into the making of this video! But would you agree that the little patterns formed inside the circles on the panel look a bit like brussel sprouts?
You will see in the video I didn’t set out to make a brussel sprout pattern; I actually changed track part way through the process. The video shows the technique I started with along with stencil technique I ended up doing. So it’s basically a 2 for 1 deal.
There are several ways to use a stencil with alcohol inks and this is just one. Make sure you check out Ardyth’s youtube channel for more ideas. I mentioned in the video that some alcohol inks tend to be a bit pushy and end up taking over a colour scheme. The lime green did so on this card but I’m glad there are some blues tones still visible at the base of the card.
I finished the card with die-cut letters and a single word from Paper Rose Studio’s So Extra sentiment strips.
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In my last post I shared a Christmas card featuring loose watercolour; the style of this card is even looser and was done with a few of the distress stain daubers I still have in my stash. Although I used techniques I’d devised years ago, this card was inspired by a card I saw on Pinterest recently. I followed the link and read through the whole post on the Tattered Nest Designs blog and combined some of her techniques with mine to create this very vintage floral birthday card.
I worked on hot pressed watercolour paper with gathered twigs and seedless preserves distress stains. I still have those two colours in the daubers but you could use ink pads or spray stains on a glass mat or craft mat to get similar results. Check out the Tattered Nest post to read how she did it with spray stains. I inked the PB ‘companions’ stamp with both distress stains and stamped on the corners of my watercolour paper panel. I dried the stain with a heat tool then started blending loosely with water and a paintbrush. If the ink was too intense I would use more water or dab it with a paper towel, if too pale I would add more stain with the paintbrush.
Once the flowers were loosely blended I inked the PB script background stamp with the same inks, spritzed it and stamped off on scrap paper. I spritzed it again with water before stamping a diluted print on the panel. You can see I also added splatter and created a sentiment on a small piece coloured with the same inks.
To finish the card I added splatter and some extra painting with rose gold pearlescent paint. You can see the gold border around the little tag in the close up above. Inspired by the Tattered Nest projects I sewed around the edge of the panel and then tore a strip of fabric to make a frayed ribbon sash.
Progress continues on my new online class; I’ve been gazing at the computer screen for days. I’m excited to share it with you very soon!
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After months of work behind the scenes and a few weeks of hints here on the blog I am happy to open registration to my new online class FLORAL FAVES. As the name suggests this one is all about flowers; stamping them, painting them, arranging them (on paper) and turning them into card sized works of art.
Once again my videographer son Ben has filmed and edited while I have designed, uploaded and scripted the content on the Coursecraft platform.
I hope you are inspired to join me in pairing your floral stamps to work with watercolour techniques. Every project is taught through video along with downloadable instructions, photos, tips and complete supply lists. We will work with different styles of stamps including background, outline, silhouette and brushstroke. We will pair all the favourite stamps with all the favourite mediums; dye inks, watercolour markers and watercolour paints .
As summer unfolds I’m sure you will be spending plenty of time outdoors, maybe in your garden, but when you need a quiet creative hour or two I hope you will join me in creating some bright and beautiful floral cards.
Registration is open now. Once registered you will have access to the introduction and supply pages. All the lesson content will be accessible on Wednesday May 26.
If you haven’t entered the giveaway yet click over to yesterday’s post.
When I get the alcohol inks out I always have a stack of panels at the end of the session. Some sit around and never amount to much but others wait for inspiration to hit. This one was created on white craft plastic (Grafix dura-bright white) with ginger and burgandy Ranger alcohol inks and Pinata magenta. I added gold foil using the minc well after the inks had dried.
Sometimes it is possible to make the foil stick soon after finishing the inking. There is a sweet spot as far as letting the ink dry enough that it is not gooey but not so much that it is dry to touch. The sections that will hold the foil are the ‘seams’ between colours where the ink is thicker. If you press foil on these areas when they are a bit tacky you can get it to stick with just a bit of burnishing. If the panel has dried it sometimes possible to get foil to stick by running the panel through a minc or laminator using some heat. This can be risky as sometimes the foil sticks to more of the panel than you expected.
When I ran this panel through the minc I was happy with most of the foiling but there were a few sections that didn’t look great so I just used the part that looked good and covered the rest with this pretty poppy edger from Penny Black. I finished the card with a gold embossed sentiment from the PB ‘only you’ set.
This second panel amazes me because it was created with only black alcohol ink plus rubbing alcohol. The blue and burgandy tones appeared when the black ink was diluted. Cool huh? I pressed the blue foil onto this panel at just the right time to get it to stick when the seams were tacky. It is hard to get it to show in the photo but there are small sections of blue foil here and there across the sky.
The inking on both panels was pretty experimental, a drop here and there some rubbing alcohol and tilting and blowing the ink to make a random pattern. I cut the Penny Black metropolitan die from both black and blue cardstock then stacked blue on black without removing all the window cut outs. I ended up using spray adhesive on the back of the blue die cut because gluing is not my gifting.
The sentiment is from the Concord & 9 ‘all the birthdays set stamped in black and embossed in clear then stacked up on two layers of black cardstock. More alcohol inks next week; I’m having fun.
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For some reason the images did not want to display on this list but if you click the word Supplies, above, you will get to the complete list.
I’ve teamed up with the Foiled Fox again, as I love to do and I’m sharing two cards featuring the Colorado Stamp Company’s ‘daisy & dahlia’ stamp. I made a couple of cards last year with this stamp using a very different colour scheme.
On the card above I wanted to show you how much depth and variation you can get from single Karin brushmarkers. I was so happy to see the light and shadow I could achieve on each petal with one or two dabs of ink from the marker then blending with water. The blue flower on the right which is barely showing was coloured with a bold dark blue but as you can see it was possible to dilute it to a pale blue. I used the following Karin brushmarkers on the panel: black, henna, cool grey , rose wood, cyan, turquoise, royal blue.
It’s not easy to see but you might notice a white on white embossed image on the card base; it’s the same stamp providing a bit of texture. You can learn more about my process by visiting the Foiled Fox blog today
I kept some of the colours but went for a bolder look on my second card embossing the same large stamp in white on black cardstock. As you can see this stamp works as a coloured image and and a black and white image. White on red, red on white, blue on white, there are many colour combos which I’m sure would also look bright and beautiful.
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This bunch of flowers is a single large stamp from the Colorado Craft Company and I’m over on the Foiled Fox blog today describing how it inspired me. It’s called ‘daisy & dahlia’ and it is from the ‘big and bold’ collection.
For this square card I chose autumn tones, because despite that sprinkle of snow we had last week it is definitely still autumn. I used Papertrey ink cubes which are very juicy and blend well with water after they’re stamped on watercolour paper.
I used one of the inks from the floral panel to stamp a bold birthday square with one of the stamps from Concord & 9th’s ‘all the birthdays’ set.
On my second card I used a similar colour scheme but threw in the contrast of purple paint. I embossed the stamp on a rectangular panel with platinum embossing powder then sprinkled four different colours of brusho powder strategically on the panel.
If you have used brusho powders at all you will know you can’t really be very strategic; it goes where ere it will! I still ended up with a red flower, an orange flower and a purple flower but my favourite bits are the ends of the petals that ended up multicoloured.
Once again I chose stamps from the C&9 ‘all the birthdays’ set to create a purple sentiment band trimmed in quartz shimmer cardstock.
An idea I have yet to try with this big beauty is to stamp it in one colour to highlight the detail of the design. Make sure you pop over to The Foiled Fox for more details and tips on these cards and techniques.
Even as my flowers fade and disappear I am still inspired to make floral cards. I’ve teamed up with the Foiled Fox today to share a blog post here and over there. If you are looking for all the creative process details pop over to the Foiled Fox blog. Today’s card features the C&9 ‘all the birthdays’ set again. It has only been in my house a week or so and already it has helped me out several times. Having one set with at least ten different ways to stamp happy birthday is a winner. There are probably more than 20 combinations when you look at all the separate word stamps and single letters in the set.
I wanted to combine a background image with a sentiment and ended creating my own background by repeat stamping with two stamps from the Concord & 9th ‘meadow blossoms’ set. Before heating the panel I stamped the word HAPPY from the new C&9 ‘all the birthdays’ set. I embossed with copper powder then coloured with ink from Papertrey ink cubes. The ink cubes are very juicy so I often smoosh them on my glass mat then pick up ink with a paint brush.
I filled the background with a grey zig clean color real brush pen and blended it with water. To complete the card I matted with with the dark blue cardstock I keep reaching for and finished the sentiment on a strip of the same blue. Having this new birthday set has got my birthday card production back on track. I have no excuses for not sending out birthday cards. Thank you Foiled Fox!
I made a short stack of birthday cards yesterday with a new Concord & 9th set, ‘All the Birthdays’. I pulled out several prints from earlier gel printing sessions and chose some which would work as panels for birthday cards.
On the card above I used ranger blue embossing powder and the card below versafine tulip red was the perfect match for my printed background.
Some were printed using the petite set A gel presses so they were already shaped as squares. Others I cut from larger prints. I used stencils and lace to make the prints and a range of acrylic paints.
One of the stamp combinations from the C&9 ‘all the birthdays’ is a pair of stamps that overlap to spell ‘happy birthday’; there are outline stamps that frame the solid letters also. That is what I used on the card below with gold and brown inks then clear embossing powder.
I also added some texture to a few of the card bases or mats with embossing folders and stencils.
The printed panel below included such pretty blues and purples I wanted to match them in the sentiment so I stamped with archival dusty concord and faded jeans then, before the ink dried embossed in clear powder.
The card below features rose gold embossing powder; it looks a little darker than expected on this panel, maybe because of the depth of colour in the print.
I really enjoyed pairing sentiments from the C&9 set with my leftover gel prints. I did have some embossing challenges though; I’m just not an embossing champion. Stray powder, over heating, underheating, even when I use a powder tool and preheat the heat tool I still make mistakes. This lot took me all afternoon but I am very happy with them and I’m pleased to have boosted my birthday card stash. Now if I can just remember to send them…
I completed another page in my art journal a few days ago; not the one that inspired a recent card, that one is still to come. This one I started, stopped and restarted again.
You can see there are some shadowy flowers in the background. They are the first flowers I stamped and painted straight on the journal page. The journal isn’t watercolour paper so diluting and painting with ink didn’t work well. I tried to fix it by drawing black outlines and then white gel pen highlights but that didn’t look good either. I like to think of the art journal as a place I can try techniques but sometimes those experiments don’t end up looking pretty.
When I’ve wanted to paint on other pages I have prepped the pages with absorbent ground first; it makes the surface more conducive to ink and water blending. Adding one layer of absorbent ground covered the surface but not the images underneath. When it dried though, I liked the misty images in the background and decided not to do another layer. Instead I proceeded to stamp again with the same inks (listed below) and this time blending the inks with water was more successful. To stamp on the uneven book pages I used acrylic blocks and the Wendy Vecchi ‘perfect stamp positioner’.
Once I finished stamping and painting the PB floral stamps ‘unfolding’ and ‘dainty whispers’ I stamped the delicate ‘a little secret’ stamp repeatedly in old paper distress ink to fill in some grass. I blended broken china ink directly onto the pages to fill the sky area and splattered water over it to break up the flat blue expanse.
Finally I chose the quote from a favourite author, C.S. Lewis and used the C&9 ‘simple serif’ alphabet stamps and some tiny stamps I bought long ago at Hanji gifts in Toronto. I’ve since found out C.S. Lewis did not say this; I guess I should have done a fact check before stamping it all in my journal.
I do like the effect of coloured images under a layer of white. I might do it on purpose next time!
I’m not sure if I have ever posted a baby card on my blog; if I have it was so long ago I can’t remember! This one is a commission for a friend; she asked me months ago and I totally forgot. When she texted the other day to see if it was ready I admitted it was not but I would make sure it was by the next day! I was happy to have thought up a concept all those months ago and my idea came together without hiccoughs.
I painted pink, yellow and orange paint on watercolour paper, added water then let it blend and bleed together. Once it was dry I used the Penny Black ‘Balloons!’ die set to cut three balloons then cut the strings and bows from unpainted watercolour paper. I added stick-it adhesive to the back of some peach coloured cardstock then cut two sets of letters to stack for the words using the C&9 ‘simple serif alphabet’ dies.
To create the cloudy sky I cut post-it masks using the cloud die from C&9 ‘city stacks’ die set then blended over the edges on a background panel and an envelope using Papertrey ink cubes in ‘sweet blush’ and ‘lovely lady’. I cut a very narrow mat of pale rose cardstock to frame the panel and attached everything to a cream card base.
I wondered about cutting more balloons to put inside but instead painted some of the same pink, yellow and orange paint on my glass mat, spritzed it generously to dilute it then placed an extra panel of watercolour paper on top to pick up a pale wishy-washy print.
Seeing that I rarely make baby cards this might become my design of choice when I do need one; I’ll just change the colour scheme to keep things interesting.