That’s right I have a Christmas card for you. I totally subscribe to the twelve days of Christmas deal; I am in no hurry to take down decorations or make resolutions. When I look at this card though, I realize it could definitely work for the new year. We woke up to a very merry & bright scene as the world is once again covered in white! Both these stamps are favourites of mine as they will be useful year round and of course, they feature trees!
No watercolour paints or techniques were used in this card, I know, it’s a bit of a departure but I love the crisp images I was able to get stamping on bristol cardstock. I stamped the winter woodland stamp with memento London fog ink on bristol then switched to versafine clair rainforest ink to stamp the ‘before the snow’ tree and the sentiment in the foreground. I matted with a co-ordinating green cardstock then a white cardbase.
I made a couple of these cards but might make a few more in preparation for next Christmas or even change the foreground image to make them suitable for year round. It’s a quick but effective design inspired by the beautiful work of Julia of Derkleineklecks blog.
Happy New Year! Thank you for spending time here on the blog with me this year; I look forward to sharing more projects in 2020. How about the neatness of that 2020; I like it!
The pine needles and pine cone stamps I used for this card are from Darkroom Door and I love how realistic they are. The stamps are quite large and there are several sizes and shapes of cones which makes for lovely feature images and fillers as well. I used one pine cone stamp but two of the pine needle stamps and worked on hot pressed watercolour paper which had been splattered with masking fluid. If you look at the close up below you can see large white dots as well as tiny ones; they’re all made by the masking fluid.
I stamped the pine cone three times using a stamp positioner and four different brown distress inks. A spritz of water started the browns blending and I did a little blending with a paint brush as well.
I stamped the green pine needles with forest moss and evergreen bough distress inks and the fine needles in the background with iced spruce. I added some green splatter then some gold splatter using one of the gansai tambi starry colours. I used the ‘jumbo joy’ die from Penny Black to cut out the word joy from the stamped panel and cut three layers from shimmer gold cardstock as well so I could stack them up just a little offset so the gold peeps out on the side.
I stamped the rest of the Christmas carol lyric using a stamp from Ink to Paper’s ‘season of joy’ set and some gold embossing powder. The overall pattern may be a little messy but it reminds me of what I see if I look up into the branches of the very messy pine tree in my front yard, which is currently covered with snow but not gold splatter!
I have been blessed to receive some beautiful handmade Christmas cards in the mail this week and I am enjoying them on my window ledge. I hate to say it but as yet I have not sent a single one! As I’ve said before there are twelve days of Christmas so I haven’t run out of time yet!
I have a less traditional colour scheme for you today featuring pink and purple on this pretty poinsettia stamp from Penny Black. I wasn’t set on being non-traditional when I started but it headed that way as I progressed. I started by smooshing tumbled glass and blueprint sketch distress stains on my glass mat, adding water then swiping a piece of hot pressed watercolour paper through it to create a soft background. Once it dried I used my stamp positioner to stamp and emboss the ‘poinsettia poem’ stamp in silver embossing powder.
I smooshed papertrey ink cubes onto my glass mat to use as watercolours and painted the flowers in scarlet jewel and royal velvet, the leaves in pine feather and the berries in winter wisteria. I used a gold gel pen to colour the centres. The card is not quite so bold as the photo suggests but even so I wanted some light and bright features alongside the painted panel so I framed it in silver and added some die cut holly to the white card base.
In keeping with my resolve I stamped inside the card and on the envelope with winter wisteria ink and add the sentiment in the same.
You know I love tree stamps so when this beauty from Penny Black appeared I had all sorts of plans for it. My first inking was to create these peaceful scenes to share here and on the Foiled Fox blog. The background stamp is called ‘winter woodland’ and the foreground stamp is from an older set ‘spread cheer’.
Both these cards were made on smooth bright white bristol cardstock which shows off the detail of the tree stamp beautifully. I made an improvement the second time I made this card so I will share my ‘better method’ with you here. I suggest stamping and embossing the child and sled first, that way any inking and blending done after will be resisted because of the embossing. When I tried just stamping in black after blending the sky there was a difference in the blackness of the child image because of the blended ink underneath.
After stamping the foreground image I positioned a torn post-it note mask over lower portion of the panel and stamped the winter woodland stamp in hickory smoke versafine ink. I love the different trees in this image; it is so like the scenes around here. I punched a small circle from masking paper and positioned it over the trees to make a moon. I used Papertrey ink and blending brushes to do the sky and a trick I learned from Jennifer McGuire. Doing blending on a glass mat makes sense because the ink you waste by starting off the panel is on the glass mat and can be picked up by the brush and transferred to the panel. I started by blending a strip of scarlet jewel ink along the horizon of one panel and an even smaller section of harvest gold ink on the other panel. I kept the blending light around the moon in blueberry sky ink and darker around the edges.
After I removed the moon mask and then horizon mask I repositioned the torn edge lower down to add some more snow banks with a pale layer of ink still in the blending brush. I finished the cards with a sentiment from PB ‘merry up’ in hickory smoke ink. Make sure you click over to the Foiled Fox blog for more tips about this card plus a blog full of inspiration from other designers.
I have two more wreaths to share today; I don’t think I’ve ever made so many wreath cards. This year I did them in a class and I’ve done them here at home more than a few times with little stamps and big stamps. The fact that Penny Black came out with such beautiful wreaths this year kept the inspiration going.
The stamp above is called ‘conifer wreath’ and the stamp below ‘homespun’. I used the same technique for both. Working on hot pressed watercolour paper (psst Foiled Fox has Fabriano in stock now!!) I splattered masking fluid over the paper before I started stamping or painting so I would have dots of snow appear at the end. Once the masking fluid was dry I used my glass mat and spread some pine needles, evergreen bough and gathered twigs distress stain over the mat. I diluted it with water then swiped both panels through the stain to pick up pale green and brown blurry colour.
Once the background ink dried I used the stamp positioner to stamp the wreaths colour by colour using pine needles and forest moss distress inks for the foliage, gathered twigs and black soot for the twigs and pine cones and chipped sapphire for some added depth. I drew a few berries on the wreath below with a festive berries marker then painted over them with red from the finetec pearlescent paint set.
To add a little snow to the pine cones I used a white gel pen then splattered some green and brown ink around the wreaths. Once all the ink was dry I removed the masking fluid then added some texture to the panel with the clever SU embossing folder ‘subtle’.
To add a sentiment to the conifer wreath I die-cut a few ‘joy’ words with the PB die, ‘merry & joy’, stacked them and added them over the bottom of the wreath. Now what I really need to get done is a wreath to hang over my fireplace!
I am thrilled to be over on the Foiled Fox blog again, sharing these sweet little birds. They are from a new Penny Black set, ‘Misty Melody’ and I’ve paired them with one word from the PB ‘…bright’ die for a wintry scene. By the way there happens to be a 15% discount sale happening until the end of Dec 2 so now is a good time to visit.
I worked on hot pressed watercolour paper as I planned to do a bit of blending on the birds. I made a mask for the birds on the branch by stamping it on some masking paper and cutting it out. For someone who dislikes fussy cutting I seem to have warmed to it a little. With the stamp in my positioner I stamped the birds on branch stamp on the watercolor paper in smokey gray versafine ink and on masking paper.
I chose the Papertrey ink cubes that I have been using over and over to stamp little wreaths and foliage patterns. To watercolour with them I squished dark chocolate, Americana and scarlet jewel onto the glass mat where I could add a drop of water and pick up colour with a paintbrush. I found an image of a European Robin as my guide and painted the breast with the two red inks, the Americana was too brown, the scarlet jewel too pink but the mix was ideal. For the wings and tales I used a mix of Americana and dark chocolate and the rest of the body I painted with distress hickory smoke. I went over the beak and eyes with a black micron pen and then painted the branches in a mix of dark chocolate and black soot. Once that dried I went over the birds’ feet with the micron pen.
With all the bird and branch painting done I had to decide whether to paint the background sky or blend it with blending brushes or sponges. As I had the mask ready to go I chose blending brushes and positioned the mask to protect the painted birds and branch. I splattered masking fluid over the whole panel and let it dry. To create snow banks in the foreground I tore the edge off a piece of post-it note to mask just under the birds.
I stuck with the Papertrey ink cubes for the blended sky using mainly ‘blueberry sky’ and a bit of ‘royal velvet’. As I blended over the masking fluid I could see I was going to have a nice snowy sky. Once the sky color was a deep blue I repositioned the torn mask lower down three more times and blended over it for a soft ‘snowbank’ look. I didn’t have to pick up more ink as there was plenty still on the bristles of the blending brush.
Once all my painting and blending was complete I removed the masking fluid gently by rubbing it with my fingers; it is always very satisfying to see the snowy sky appear. To finish the card I cut two layers of the word MERRY from red cardstock backed with stick-it adhesive sheet and stuck them over the snowbanks. As you can see the letters come out of the die individually, I used the negative piece of cardstock and my magnetic ‘staytion’ and ruler to position them all correctly.
Thank you for dropping by today, all the supplies I used are linked below. I will be back here and on the Foiled Fox blog very soon.
At the risk of boring you silly I will mention once again that I have a booth in an art market in four days! One of the items I wanted to make for the market was garlands. I thought the new ‘snowflake tag’ dies from Penny Black would be lovely with some sparkly beads and they are but it took me a lot longer than anticipated to put it all together. I almost left it at one but decided a pair might be nice; the second one was much quicker as I had thought it all through.
I used white cord with a silver thread through it, clear facet cut beads, a mix of shimmer silver and white cardstock and a spiderwebby silver fabric (from France).
I ended up with six snowflakes on each garland with clear beads grouped on the twine in between the snowflakes. Each snowflake is actually double sided so the twine is glued in between the two and for some I glued a contrasting snowflakes on each side.
The spiderwebby fabric is apparently interfacing for dress making but its silver colour makes it perfect for adding a little shimmer and shine to paper craft projects.
Despite being photographed in a tree the snowflake garland is a delicate thing and should not be used outdoors!