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Norah Head lighthouse

Today’s card has been sent to my dad for his birthday but considering the time it takes for mail to get from Canada to Australia these days and my own postal disorder it did not arrive in time. He is currently visiting my brother so this post provides a sneak peak before the real thing arrives in his mail box. Happy Birthday, Dad! I chose this stamp from Darkroom Door for several reasons. When I first visited Darkroom Door in 2016 I enjoyed visiting and talking with the owners Rachel and Stewart. When my dad returned to pick me up he walked in, looked at all the DD stamps displayed and was drawn to two stamps in particular; this was one of them. During the same 2016 trip Dad and I went to the Norah Head lighthouse, featured on this stamp and not too far from my parents’ home. We went for a quick look and discovered there was a guided tour about to start so we joined in. We heard the history of the light and enjoyed the views from several vantage points.

To paint this scene I stamped the scene in distress inks, the top border, sea and light in stormy sky, the land around the light in forest moss and the foreground rocks in black.  I then used stains to paint the scene; I’ve listed them below. After painting I used a fine tip micron pen to re-draw the railing and details on the light then wrote a sentiment.

My father has been interested in lighthouses for years and has visited many around the world. I have a connection to one from very early in my life. I was born on King Island in Bass Strait, off the coast of Tasmania and home of the tall Cape Wickham lighthouse. Although I don’t remember the occasion I have a photograph Dad took of me in front of the light.

Supplies

Stamp: lighthouse (DD)

Inks: stormy sky, forest moss, black soot distress inks & markers

Stains: worn lipstick, mustard seed, salty ocean, forest moss, black soot, stormy sky, vintage photo distress

Paper: hot pressed watercolour paper

Tools: stamping platform

Also: micron pen .01

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Tulip Sympathy card

I have used an alcohol ink background to add colour to this tulip card. Deciding on a colour scheme and image for a sympathy card can be difficult but flowers are given and appreciated at times of joy as well as sadness. Out of interest I looked up what meaning if any, has been assigned to yellow tulips. Apparently the meaning has changed over time but yellow tulips now stand for hope and cheerful thoughts.

To create the yellow, orange and green panel I dropped alcohol inks on a craft mat then swiped photo paper through the colours. Sometimes it is necessary to swipe several times or add a bit of rubbing alcohol to get coverage over the whole panel. I inked the Darkroom Door tulip stamp with jet black stazon ink then pressed the photo paper panel down onto the stamp. To finish the card I wrapped some black ribbon around a textured white mat and added a sentiment also in black.

Supplies

Stamps: tulips, bright blossoms vol 2 (DD)

Ink: alcohol inks by Ranger, jet black stazon

Paper: neenah solar white, photo paper, textured white paper


Classic garden

A few weeks back I created two fairly glamorous cards with this fancy stamp, glamorous because of the platinum and gold embossing I paired with the very detailed stamp. Today’s card is simply stamped in one colour and embellished with another colour creating this classic navy, red and white combo.

I stamped on neenah solar white cardstock in chipped sapphire distress ink; it is a very detailed stamp so using a stamping platform helped me get good coverage.

Quite a versatile stamp I think…

Supplies

Stamps: flower garden, botanical script

Ink: chipped sapphire distress ink

Paper: neenah solar white, textured red

Also: stamping platform, red & white gingham ribbon


Wings & things

This is one of those cards that just evolved. I’ve had the butterfly stamps at hand while teaching a class with them. I did not have a definite plan; in fact, you may be surprised to hear it started with three butterflies stamped in rusty hinge distress ink. The panel sat around for a while then I decided to paint turquoise brusho and metallic sky liquid metal inside each of the brown butterfly outlines. I didn’t love that so I spritzed interference blue pearl-ex spray over all three butterflies to make the colour bleed into the surrounding area. Still not right, so I employed a technique one of my friends calls ‘drowning’ and spritzed the panel thoroughly. The result was a sparkly blue panel with muted butterflies now looking like background images.

I used pine needles and mermaid lagoon distress inks to stamp foreground images, more butterflies and some flowers. I framed the panel by sponging pine needles ink around the edges then splattered a little white gesso over it. As often happens with my cards I started thinking about a sentiment once there was no room left for one. Vellum to the rescue with an phrase embossed in silver.

Supplies

Stamps: wildflowers vol 1, wings

Inks: rusty hinge, mermaid lagoon distress ink, pine needles, versamark

Paper: hot pressed watercolour paper, vellum, neenah solar white cardstock

Paint: turquoise brusho, white gesso, metallic sky liquid metal

Also: silver embossing powder, interference blue pearl-ex powder mixed with water in a mister


Tea time?

This card was practically complete weeks ago including a handlettered sentiment written with pen and ink. Unfortunately after leaving the ink to dry overnight I brushed my hand across the lettering only to see it smudge across my one layer card! I cut the strip of teacups out of the ruined card front and set them aside as I had other projects to complete. When I pulled them out again I decided to create an embossed mat to frame the teacups top and bottom then stuck the teacup panel on the embossed panel and then onto a new cardfront. I added a sentiment from the ‘cup of tea’ stamp set and finally finished my card.

The teacups are stamped in versamark and embossed in platinum powder. After embossing one cup, I stamped and cut a tea cup mask, positioned it over the first cup then stamped a second and a third cup. I did all the colouring with tombow markers. When finishing the card a while later I tried my new versafine clair ‘monarch’ ink. I have always been happy with my versafine inks so I wondered what might be different about the new versafine clair inks. I have bought five colours to start with and so far I am very impressed with the sharp detailed stamping and no need for a second impression.

 

And by the way if you like a little sparkle, perhaps with embossing powder or something bolder, please check out the ‘Sparkle With Us’ challenge I’m hosting with The Foiled Fox. We’ve stretched it out for a wee bit longer so you still have a couple of days to join in.

Supplies

Stamps: Cup of tea

Inks: versamark, monarch versafine clair

Tombow markers: 679, 772, 515, 451, N75, N00

Paper: hot pressed watercolour paper

Also: WOW metallic platinum embossing powder


Peacock Feathers

I decided to try a couple of methods for colouring a peacock feather stamp, my first experiment with the ‘Feathers’ set from Darkroom Door. I look forward to trying all of them eventually but the gorgeous colours of the peacock feather prompted me to pick that one first.The colouring on this first card was zig clean colour real brush markers directly on the stamp. I used the stamping platform so I could add one colour at a time. I blended the centre a little with a brush to get solid colour then spritzed the stamp with interference gold pearl-ex spray and stamped over the marker image. This gave everything a little shimmer and blended the colours into each other a bit. My pearl-ex spray is homemade; I add a small amount (about 1/8 tsp into a small spritzer filled with water). I stamped ‘thanks’ over the feather with majestic blue versafine then embossed with clear powder. The border panel looks black but is actually blue to co-ordinate with the centre of the feather and the sentiment.

My second colouring method was brusho. I spritzed the stamp with the same gold pearl-ex spray then stamped on hot pressed watercolour paper. I dropped a tiny amount of ultramarine brusho at the top of the feather, also a little turquoise then olive green down the shaft of the feather then stamped again to activate the brusho with pearl-ex spray. I embossed a birthday sentiment in gold and framed the panel in gold shimmer cardstock.

My final colouring method was with Sakura Koi colouring brush pens. I kept the stamp in the stamping platform so I could ink then stamp a colour at a time. The Sakura pens are very bright so I thought they were a good match for the gorgeous colours of peacock feathers.

Once again I stamped the colours one or two at a time so I could keep the centre of the feather distinct. Once I had stamped both feathers I spritzed the gold pearl-ex spray over the whole panel which ended up doing two things: the barbs softened to look a little ‘hairy’ and the droplets of spray created a pattern of watermarks over the ‘eye’ of the feather.

I ended up using majestic blue versafine ink again to add a sentiment from ‘botanical script’ set and cut a mat  in the same colour. This card also has a slight shimmer to it so I added a gold cord for a finishing touch.

Supplies

Stamps: Happy Birthday, Thank you, Feathers, Botanical Script

Inks: Versamark, Majestic Blue Versafine

Markers:  Zig clean color real brush markers, Koi Coloring Brush Pens

Paint: Brusho (ultramarine, turquoise, olive green)

Paper: hot pressed watercolour paper, blue cardstock, gold shimmer cardstock

Also: stamping platform, gold embossing powder, clear embossing powder, gold cord, pearl-ex interference gold spray


Woodlands

I had a lovely time with this new photo stamp from Darkroom Door. It’s called Woodlands and was perfect for creating an autumn scene, a winter scene and a sunset. Step by step instructions and a complete list of supplies are available on the Darkroom Door blog

The autumn scene involved brayering and distress inks.

The sunset features the bright hues of colorburst powders over embossing.

The winter scene below, which might be my favourite, was painted with distress inks.

I used a cool technique with a stamp positioner to get a layer of snow on the branches; if you’re interested pop over to Darkroom Door and check it out.