Chipboard Decorations

I have been creating collage panels with my many gel prints lately, most for Christmas cards. The striped and patchworked collages looked so pretty I decided to try the process on Grafix chipboard.

I collaged on both sides and love the way they turned out. I made a video of the process then made more chipboard decorations in different colours.

I used a serious chipboard cutting die to cut the ornaments. It is from Sizzix and I was pleased to see how clean the cuts were. If you have a digital cutting machine you would be able to cut the chipboard into any number of shapes.

After cutting out the shapes I used a gold gel pen to add stitching lines and gold paint to coat the edges. A crop-a-dile made quick work of punching holes so I could add ribbon to the shapes.

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AI Brussel Sprouts video

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.

You can see other cards made using this technique here and here.

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Carmine – No Line Watercolour Video

I hope you enjoy today’s no-line watercolour video. When I first saw this stamp I knew it would be perfect for the technique. There are a few little petals but most of the image is made up of open leaves and petals which are easy to see while painting. I used soft stone ink for the initial image on cold press watercolour paper and Sennelier watercolour paints for all the painting.

If you don’t always have a plan for the background you will see how I added one after all the painting was done. Take a look at the video below to see my process.

This is such a pretty stamp and might get inked up again soon to keep my stock of Christmas cards growing. I think it would look good embossed in white on a coloured background. Stay tuned!

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Beautify – Video

Today I have a second Christmas card featuring new rubber cling stamps from the Penny Black ‘Keeping Spirits Bright’ release. This one, ‘Beautify‘ is a garland shape but instead of stamping it across the card from side to side I have used it to create festive foliage hanging down. I love being able to use my stamps in multiple ways, sometimes the changes are through colour but other times I use part of a stamp or repeat impressions with a stamp.

I filmed my process while creating this card so you can see the step-by-step in the video below. As the foliage is all quite small I used distress markers for the inking then blended some leaves after stamping. I upgraded the berries from distress ink to pearlescent paint to give them more prominence and a little shine.

I’m sure you will see this stamp again perhaps positioned in a more traditional garland orientation. Looking at this stamp makes me want to make my own fresh garlands but I’m not sure that’s going to happen. Have you made a fresh garland or wreath? Did it have a high fiddliness factor? I even borrowed a book from the library with the how-to.

Although I have not made any fresh wreaths yet I have been designing, stamping and painting wreaths for my new online card class. It is nearly ready to share so stay tuned for all the details.

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Fine Flowers watercolour video

This pretty outline flower is from the Darkroom Door set ‘fine flowers vol 2’. There are six flowers in the set and I am working my way through trying out each stamp. I began inking and stamping this zinnia/dahlia style flower and was so happy with the colour combination I stopped stamping and set myself up to film. You can see the process in the video below.

I’ve exclaimed about inks that colour separate before( and go into more detail in my online class Colour Clues ) but one of my favourites in this regard is chipped sapphire distress ink. You can see in the close up below grey blue, navy blue, pale blue and purply blue. Hardly any effort required!

All the stamps in the set have the same sketchy style and tiny dots so I did not add any further fanciness. It really was a minimal supplies card in the end even though I did not start with that plan in mind.

By the way Rachel Greig from Darkroom Door is running a challenge throughout August called #artfulaugust. If you check her instagram you can see a list of prompts. I am going to join in as often as possible as it is an open ended no pressure challenge. I have already missed one day but I am not going to dwell on that I will just dive in when I can. Kathy Racoosin is also running the Daily Marker colouring challenge during August, another low pressure, designed for fun and relaxation challenge. I hope to participate in that when I can too. Let me know if you are joining in.

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Vintage Style Bookshelf + Video

This isn’t my first time stamping books with Darkroom Door stamps. This time I filmed the process so you could see how I made them look all old and vintagey!

The fun thing about the Darkroom Door ‘bookshelf’ stamp is its length (just under 12″) so I decided to wrap it around my cards for maximum effect. I worked on two cards at the same time giving them slightly different paint jobs and background finishing touches. Watch the video to see my process.

Because I inked the bookshelf stamp randomly the colours moved where they willed and left me with a mix of blues and browns. This second card has some extra scratches from the DD stamp of the same name.

The insides of the cards have random paint splotches here and there so I added paper inserts for a clean place to write a note. Now that I have made a wraparound card with this border stamp I might have to try it with the other DD one I own, ‘butterfly garden‘.

Thank you so much for your interest and discussion about the gel printing I shared last week. I really enjoyed the gel printing session which resulted in my last two videos and turning a few of the prints into cards and a journal page was very satisfying. Several of you mentioned wanting to get your gel plate out to try the techniques; I hope you do. I also hope you try this brown and blue vintage style on some of your own stamped projects. If you do be sure to let me know.

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Gel Printing with recycled cardboard

I posted a video last week featuring gel prints with stencils. In today’s technique video I use cardboard found at home. One piece was the packaging for eggs and the other a piece of corrugated cardboard.

The huge snowballs falling in the card above were printed using the large circles on the egg carton. I could have done more on the gel plate with extra colour or texture but I kept it simple which works well behind the more intricate sleigh. You can see my process in the video below.

The card below also features a gel print background made with an egg carton but I pulled two prints on the one panel both with green and white paint and egg carton circles.

The card below also features a gel print background made with an egg carton but I pulled two prints on the one panel both with green and white paint and egg carton circles. I stamped leaves from the Darkroom Door stamp set, ‘carved leaves vol 1’ over the bokeh-like circle background. To get the right tones of green in the stamping I used both shady lane and rain forest versafine clair inks one over the top of the other. The sentiment is from the ‘happy birthday’ sentiment strip.

In the video I also made prints with a piece of corrugated cardboard pressing it down on the gel press once for a striped pattern and twice for a grid pattern. I’ve turned a couple of those prints into cards which will be on the blog tomorrow. I hope you try gel printing with some recycling you find at your place. See you soon.

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Daydream Watercoloured Flowers -Video

Penny Black has a new release called ‘Daydream’ and it’s filled with spring goodness. I guess many of us start daydreaming about spring in February. The stamp featured in my card today is called ‘daydream’ and I’ve paired it up with a new die, ‘thanks & hello’.

I’m enjoying working with the Karin brushmarkers both for watercolouring line images and for inking stamps. In today’s video I ink the stamp with four markers but my technique is slightly different to my usual method and involves some ‘water stamping’

In the video below you can see why the juicy Karin markers are perfect for this technique. As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, a little ink goes a long way. I’m looking forward to trying this technique again on a different stamp with even less ink for a paler more subtle look.

I chose to keep the panel simple on a white background but you could add a pale wash before starting or do some second generation stamping for background flowers. Maybe I’ll try that next.

This blue which has a hint of purple is my favourite blue. It reminds me of cornflowers which featured in my bridal bouquet and was the colour of my bridesmaid’s skirts.

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Moving Alcohol Inks with Air – Video

I’ve had the alcohol inks out recently and spent some time trying to get soft wavy patterns on craft plastic. I have seen several artists who do this technique beautifully but I am very much still a beginner with it. I have a few cards to share today along with a video showing my process for two of the panels. I worked on white craft plastic from Grafix which is heavyweight and totally opaque. For most of the panels featured today I used only two alcohol inks plus plenty of 99% rubbing alcohol; each panel was created with a metallic and a non-metallic ink.

This first panel was made with turquoise AI and gilded alloy AI; I love the range of blues when diluted with rubbing alcohol. The ‘for you’ Penny Black die cut is two layers of turquoise cardstock topped with one layer of pale gold.

This warm toned card was made with honeycomb AI and mined alloy AI then die cut with a WaffleFlower square nesting die. I used the WaffleFlower additional square dies to cut a larger copper square then added the PB ‘light as a feather’ die cut and a PB birthday sentiment embossed in Brutus Monroe penny embossing powder.

You can see the process for both cards above in the video below.

As I am working on alcohol ink panels I am evaluating my process and working out what I want to try next. I just bought a cheap lazy susan to work on the blown flowers and I’m pretty sure I don’t need to use as much coloured ink when I make the initial drops. You can be sure I will let you know what I discover.

I have a couple more cards made off camera using the same technique shown in the video. The card above features juniper AI and statue alloy AI with the PB ‘many thanks’ die cut from antique gold cardstock and stacked twice.

When this panel was finished it reminded me of photos of the artic and far north where the icebergs and glaciers are made up of beautiful shades of blue. It’s kind of a cross section perspective where we can see below and above the ice the bears are walking on. I did use two blue inks plus a silver for this one, ranger turquoise and stream with pinata silver. The bear die is ‘polar bears’ from Penny Black.

We’ve been watching Cecilia Blomdahl’s youtube channel about her life on Svalbard, an island off the north coast of Norway. She lives in the world’s northern most town. Polar bears are definitely around so you don’t wander outside the village without your weapon!

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Oxide Leaves Video

There is no denying it anymore, autumn is in the air and on the trees and definitely in the cards. This week the weather has been lovely, the sun has shone and the frost warnings have gone. Can’t complain.

I really am a seasonal stamper; I’m inspired by what is going on outside in the world. With a few exceptions, like Christmas card prep, I like to stamp what I see in the garden and surrounds. The leaves on my trees are beginning to turn, nothing spectacular yet and nothing to rake (yay) but the signs are there. I chose oxide inks to blend several three coloured panels which I then cut up into leaves. The process and chit chat is all in the video below.

After the video was completed I looked at the wreath and decided it needed some brighter pops of colour and luckily I had some enamel dots which matched exactly. I added them before taking the photos below.

I really enjoy arranging all the elements on die cut cards like the two I’ve shared today but the gluing drives me a little crazy. Sometimes I use double sided adhesive but if the die cuts are not going to be sitting flat that doesn’t really work. If you have any suggestions for attaching fiddly little die cuts please leave them in the comments; I’d love to know. You might notice I try not to include much gluing in the video because it doesn’t make for very entertaining viewing.

I hope you are surrounded by some fall beauty where you are or perhaps enjoying some spring sunshine in the southern hemisphere.

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