Delighted with Daisies

This is the second card I’ve created with the new Darkroom Door background stamp ‘daisy delight‘. Once again I ended up using the whole stamp because it is just so happy and bright. At some stage I must try cutting a strip or some squares because I’m sure that would look pretty too.

Using the stamp in a positioner with hot pressed watercolour paper I first inked the centres of the daisies with an orange ink cube. I wasn’t careful to ink only the circles; I just gave each daisy a twist of orange ink then stamped. I cleaned the stamp and inked sections with raspberry fizz ink then stamped and finally inked remaining sections with bright buttercup ink. I gave it a spritz of water to help the inks blend before stamping the last time.

To fill the petals I smooshed the same three inks on my glass mat then used a paintbrush and water to paint loosely inside the petals and centres. I also mixed new blends with the pink, orange and yellow inks.

To put the card together I die cut a rectangle from the centre of the panel, popped in up on three layers of cardstock and wrapped some white and silver twine around it before attaching it to the card base. The sentiments are from the DD ‘Christmas bush’ set and they are perfect for many occasions; possibly a birthday this time.

Did you know Darkroom Door has a blog where they post oodles of inspiration for using their huge range of stamps and stencils? They also have a newsletter so you can receive emails full of inspiration.

Thanks for joining me today, see you again soon.

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Handwoven

Today’s cards feature the new ‘handwoven’ background stamp from Darkroom Door it two quite different ways.

To create this first card I inked the handwoven stamp with blue and green papertrey ink cubes, spritzed the stamp then pressed it on hot pressed watercolour paper. The result was some green areas, some blue areas and some pretty blended areas where the inks overlap. The blue-green background created a pretty pattern as it was and I could have just added a sentiment and called it complete but I decided to take the risk of adding some flowers. I would understand if you wish I had left it flower free because it is a busy panel but I like the look of a patterned geometric roof or canopy over the flowers.

The flowers are from the new DD set ‘you are everything’ as are the words. The words in this set are great; there are eighteen negative space words that can be stamped and cut out to make countless sentiments. I embossed both the flowers and the words to give them more prominence over the busy background.

The second card I am planning to use as an Easter card. Filling the spaces of the handwoven pattern with pearlescent paint reminded me of a stain glass window so I looked through my sentiments and found this one in the DD ‘Christmas bush’ set and decided it works for many occasions, including Easter. I stamped the handwoven stamp on black watercolour paper in versamark then embossed in clear powder before painting all the little spaces with Coliro paints and a fine point brush. It did take a while and I didn’t do it in one sitting as the fiddliness factor was high!

I matted both the patterned circle and the sentiment in gold shimmer cardstock and embossed the front of the card base using the ‘subtle’ embossing folder from SU.

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Freshly cut flowers

I’ve teamed up with the Foiled Fox again to share a post on their blog. If you pop over there you can read all the process details for this floral card featuring a stamp and a die from Penny Black.

This stamp is called Fresh Cut and it is a rubber cling stamp of five long stem roses. I did some masking and partial stamping to fill the corner of my panel with eleven orange roses. I guess I should have added one more to have a dozen!

You might recognise the background style on this card; it is inspired by some of Jill Foster’s amazing cards for Penny Black. Because all those roses make the panel a little busy I separated the stacked die-cut words from the roses with a piece of vellum, just to make it easier to read. Don’t forget to visit the Foiled Fox blog today for all the details and while you are there browse awhile for more inspiration.

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2021 BuJo – February pages

We are still in the thick of winter here in Canada so I chose a northern lights theme for my February journal pages. Like last month I masked a shape and did all the blending inside the shape. This time I masked a square and positioned a hilly mask to create a horizon. I used Papertrey Ink cubes and makeup brushes to blend the sky.

After blending a bold blue, green and purple sky I moved the horizon mask lower to lightly blend a snowbank shadow then positioned a die-cut mask for a deer and blended blue, then black through that. I did film the process just to give you an idea. It’s portrait orientation for instagram and it is 4x normal speed but you can see the steps.

Below are a couple more February pages completed using the same theme. As you can imagine the combination wish list and to-do list took a lot of ink blending which ended up being visible through the paper on the next page. Maybe they bled through because I used more ink on this page for greater depth of colour or maybe these inks are juicier than distress inks; I’m not sure but you can see the bleed through if you look at the February calendar page in the next photo. I’m not too worried about the bleed through, once I have recorded things on the calendar page it will be less obvious I imagine.

I used Stabilo point 88 finelines for the lettering once again but do intend to try some other pens I have on hand (confession – I have many types of pens and markers on hand!)

Last month I did a modified version of the traditional 7 x 6 grid for the January calendar page and a separate habit tracking page. This month I combined the calendar and habit tracker on a list style page. I will record any appointments and outings (you know, the exciting ones like the grocery store) on the left hand side and note down what we cooked, how much water I drank and whether I took all my vitamins on the right hand side. Do you struggle to drink enough water each day? I am the worst in my family but I have become much better since I put a reminder app on my phone. I also am quite good taking my supplements at breakfast but not so good the rest of the day!

I have a couple more pages to get done for February which I hope to share next week. Thanks for dropping by. Let me know if you are a bullet journal user; I’d love to hear what you use it for.

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Wish upon a star

Shaker cards are very very rare around here: I think I’ve only put one on the blog before today. I bought the nesting star dies recently on whim (I think they are discontinued but other companies make similar dies ). This card is for a little girl who turns five next week so I thought a little shimmer and shake might be fun.

I had the plan in my head with a starry sky watercolour panel for either the front of the shaker panel or the background then decided both would be best. I had pretty micro beads in six different colours so I thought it would be cool to co-ordinate the sequins, beads and inks.

Making the watercolour panels was very straightforward; I smooshed Papertrey ink cubes on the glass mat, spritzed shimmer spray (homemade water + gold pearlex powder) on the inks then swiped the panel through the ink several times until it was mostly covered. I finished the coverage using a paintbrush to add ink here and there. There was masking fluid already on the panel before I started so that added to the night sky look.

Once I started doing the ‘shaker card’ steps I remembered why I don’t make shaker cards. For me this one had an extreme fiddliness factor! I will happily spend hours no-line watercolouring an intricate flower but taping around all the points of five stars to seal the shaker area of each one was above and beyond! But then I put the micro beads, sequins and stars in each section, attached the watercoloured background, turned it over and…happy sigh, it was as cute as I’d hoped.

I won’t describe the process for making a shaker card; I think you would be better off watching a video from someone who has made more than two! I know there are many ways to build them up but my layers were: die-cut star watercolour layer, acetate layer, foam layer with star die-cuts then watercolour background layer. When I had all the layers stuck together I attached it to a square of shimmer blue cardstock and die cut the PB ‘make a wish’ sentiment from the same cardstock three times for stacking. I realise now I should have cut it from a brighter colour but the glue is stuck!

I’m happy with how it turned out and I love how it shakes (the micro beads move a lot while the sequins cling to the acetate) but I think it might be another five years before I make another one. How about you, do you whip up the occasional shaker card?

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No-line Watercolour with Karin brushmarkers

I’m happy to be teaming up with the Foiled Fox again to bring you some more Karin brushmarker experimenting, this time I put them to work on no-line watercolour. I was pretty sure they would do a good job and I wasn’t disappointed. I also discovered that Papertrey Ink’s ‘soft stone‘ ink works well as a base stamping ink for no-line watercolour. To begin I stamped the same Penny Black poinsettia poem stamp on two pieces of hot pressed watercolour paper. On the design above I used only three Karin brush markers (red 209, teal 377 and henna 105) When colouring the leaves I inverted the red marker tip to tip with the teal before colouring to create the more browny green you see on the leaves.

I painted the petals one by one as is usually the case with no-line watercolour and I used the Red 209 marker. I used a slightly different methods for each card. On the above panel I barely touched the marker to the paper in each petal then blended the ink with water to fill the petal. On the panel below I painted a petal with water first then added a dot or two from the marker which flowed into the wet area. The effect is similar but the petals are paler where I applied water first and marker second.

On the second card I used magenta 170, lush green 228 and sepia 074. Once again I did a bit of tip to tip colour blending for the leaves and berries. It takes a bit of trial and error plus some scrap paper for testing to get the right mix of colour when doing the tip to tip blends. After adding ink to a marker tip the first strokes of colour will be the most intense and as you continue to apply ink to paper the intensity will decrease as the colour returns to its original tone. Make sure you visit the Foiled Fox blog where I provide even more detail about today’s projects.

I used a textured shimmer green cardstock to create a die-cut frame for the card at the top of the post. It is easy to cut a narrow frame by using two rectangle dies from the Waffleflower A2 layer dies. For the second card I used mulberry cardstock to create a co-ordinating mat and stamped with both versafine clair tulip red & chianti to stamp the sentiment in a matching colour. When I don’t have the exact ink colour for a sentiment I try a combination of two inks, something a stamp positioner makes quite straight forward. I stamped the sentiment on the first card with my beloved memento northern pine ink. The sentiments are from Penny Black sets, Christmas feeling and frozen vista.

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Lighting the way

If you have been visiting my blog for a while you might remember I used to create a lot of cards using sponging techniques. I’ve been returning to those techniques lately but putting my blending brushes to work instead.

To create the one layer card above I masked off four sides of my neenah solar white card base then blended papertrey ‘berry sorbet’ ink over the panel. I switched to papertrey ‘Americana’ ink next but avoided blending the top middle area then finished the perimeter of the space with ‘enchanted evening’ ink which is a blue ink. Blending the dark blue over the brownish red made a dark brown, perfect for the night sky. I stamped the Bethlehem stamp from Penny Black’s lighting the way set in versafine clair nocturne ink.

The second colour scheme is also a combo of papertrey ink cubes: lemon tart, lilac grace, plum pudding and royal velvet. I finished both cards with a sentiment from the PB holiday snippets set and stars drawn with a white gelly roll pen. I enjoyed doing these so much that I looked through my stamps and did more with a different silhouette stamp set. I’ll have them ready to show you soon. I don’t know that the blending brushes are any quicker than sponging but I find them easier to use and the results are very smooth.

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Mini Snowscapes

I found myself needing a few more Christmas cards this week so I spent a pleasant couple of hours creating mini snowscapes with a handful of stamps. I taped a piece of hot pressed watercolour paper that was already splattered with masking fluid in quarters and kind of worked on the four panels at the same time. I used some of the techniques featured in my new WINTER WONDER online class but on a smaller scale.

The snowscape above features just a fraction of the PB quietude stamp stamped over a painted ink sky. I painted deep snowbank shadows in front of the small trees and then added a bigger tree from PB nature’s friends set in the foreground.

For the mini snowscape above and below I cut circle masks from painter’s tape and positioned them in the top right corners of my quarters before painting inky blue, purple and grey skies. The mini snowscape above features a tree of PB tannenbaum trio set and the one below is from nature’s friends.

Again on the panel below I painted the sky first and stamped the tree over the top. I’ve listed all the inks I used in the supply list below.

Once all the panels were dry I removed the tape and masking fluid, trimmed them all neatly and popped them up on a couple of pieces of cardstock to create a little distance and shadow from the luxe white card bases. I pulled out an old favourite sentiment set, holiday snippets for greetings in the perfect size.

Thank you for your encouragement yesterday as I announced my involvement in this year’s Dressember campaign to raise funds for ending slavery and human trafficking across the world. If you would like to learn more about the campaign or the International Justice Mission please click the links provided to find out what it is all about. As a Dressember Canada advocate the money I raise will be used by IJM in their work around the world investigating trafficking crimes, fighting legal battles against offenders and creating safe places for the recovery of survivors. Click here to donate

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Bell & Berries

Over the summer I kept reaching for the blues and greens; they were refreshing in the hot weather. It appears that my fascination with them is continuing into the winter! I created this wintry panel with the Penny Black ‘bell & berries stamp and the versatile PB ‘fragile beauty’ set.

When I started this panel by stamping only the branch section of the stamp at the very top I chose only blue, grey and green inks. Choosing green over red for the berries helped to create a fresh frosty look. After stamping only the top branch I repositioned the stamp and stamped the whole image then finally a bit more branch on the right hand side. The extra twigs were added in dark blue.

I inked the leaves with papertrey ‘enchanted evening’, a dark blue and ‘stormy sea’, a grey blue. I used the olive toned ‘prairie grass’ for the berries. When I spritzed the stamp before stamping on the hot pressed watercolour paper the inks began to blend. I did further blending on the paper with a paint brush and water but didn’t blend every part of the image, some leaves and berries I kept unblended to show the texture of the paper and stamp.

The paper had spots of masking fluid splattered over it before I began which caused the white dots you see in the finished panel.

I stamped the bell in a mix of stormy sea and true black ink and also added ‘blue silver’ pearlescent paint from the Coliro ‘ocean’ set so there is a shimmer to it in real life.

I used a piece of dark blue cardstock for a card base then stamped the ‘bell & berries’ on both an insert panel and the envelope.

I woke up to the frosty look of fresh snow on autumn leaves this morning; it’s pretty but it can go now!

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Art de Fleur

This card is the cardmaking version of going down a rabbit hole. I know how easy that is on the interwebs, but apparently it is possible with a card as well. What started out as a vintage style two layer card became a little more than that. I just kept thinking of stamps and papers and techniques I wanted to add.

I decided an insert would be nice; I don’t usually put anything on the inside of my cards so an insert is quite the departure. An insert turned into two inserts which is more like a little book when you count both sides of the pages!

The front panel, which was initially going to be the whole deal features several Darkroom Door stamps: scratches background stamp, sheet music background stamp, global postmarks, art de fleur vol 1.

For the whole card I stuck with four Papertrey ink cubes (listed below); I used them for stamping, watercolouring, splattering and blending with a blending brush.

The inside pages are not watercolour paper but handmade paper from a Hanji gifts in Toronto. It is handmade paper with rose petals embedded in it. It was very white straight out of the packet so I smooshed some brown and pink inks on my glass mat, diluted with water then swiped the paper through the ink. This resulted in the colour I wanted but removed the sizing and wrinkled the paper. I ironed it, which did the trick then added little bits of stamping on every page. I used a couple of sentiments and some quote stamps, all from Darkroom Door and reused the same background stamps plus the floral stamps from the Art de Fleur set.

To join it all together I poked holes and used some fine twine for a little ‘book binding’. With all the ‘vintaging’ I did on the front panel and pages the card base itself looked very stark so I swiped that through some smooshed ink too so everything would co-ordinate.

I was so deep down the rabbit hole by this point I realised an ordinary envelope was just not an option so I pulled out another sheet of the handmade rose petal paper, inked it, ironed it and used my envelope punch board to create an custom envelope, which I failed to photograph. All in all a very satisfying but surprising creative project. Now, back to work!

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