If you are a plan ahead – plant ahead person then you might have some seedlings growing somewhere in your house or green house. These are the only seedlings I have at this point but I must say they are looking quite healthy.

This is a digital stamp designed by my daughter and available in her etsy store Echidna Studios. I printed it so that it just fitted on an A2 card front but I think it might be nice to print it larger and feature only one or two pots on a card front with the shoots and leaves coming off the edge of the panel.

I printed on hot pressed watercolour paper and used my Sennelier pan paints for all the colouring. I used a mix of greens for the greenery and a mix of blue and brown for the pots. I really like blue and brown combos these days, something that I wouldn’t have imagined a few years back.

The sentiment is from Simply Graphic’s ‘English Sentiments’ set; I like the handwritten look and the size of the words. I know I could be handwriting a few sentiments myself here and there but I always add the sentiment last and by that time I don’t want to mess up a otherwise completed card with a crooked or uneven sentiment. That being said I think I should try a few handwritten sentiments on upcoming cards…

(Compensated affiliate links from Foiled Fox, Scrap n Stamp)

Old Stone Doorway

Isn’t this a sweet front path and door? It makes me want to head inside or wander around the garden. This digital stamp is another design by my daughter which is available in her etsy store, Echidna Studios. I printed it on Arches cold press watercolour paper. You know I generally use Fabriano hot press watercolour paper but I am trying to ‘use what I have’ so I pulled out the Arches for a change. I like how the texture of the paper adds texture to the front of the house.

Using my Sennelier watercolour paints I painted a wash of brown over the brickwork, blue over the door and grey for the stonework. I also mixed a bluey green for the hedges. Next I switched to watercolour pencils and added shading to the bricks and stones, coloured the leaves and painted from the tip of my pencils to make the window and door frames grey and the reflections light blue. The sentiment is from Simply Graphic and is stamped in prize ribbon sketch archival ink

I almost stopped a couple of times as I wasn’t happy with the colours I had chosen and the lack of detail in the washes. I did keep going though and it pulled together. One thing that helps is that I didn’t use too many colours and I like the way the watercolour fades away at the edges. There are little white patches where I didn’t touch up the painting and I think they work too in adding a highlight here and there. I have printed another one out because a red brick house might also be fun to do.

The designer of this stamp is coming over for dinner tonight so I will ask where this door is in real life…

(Compensated affiliate links used when purchasing from Foiled Fox)

Herbal Thank yous

I have teamed up with the Foiled Fox again to bring you some sweet herbal die-cuts. The little stems are from Simply Graphic. The coriander stem is a single die; the thyme and the rosemary are in a pack together.

Both cards have a fairly neutral colour scheme with the contrast coming from the turquoise cardstock and the mulberry (which looks brighter in real life)

I used ink and stamping to create a ‘ribbon’ across the base of the beige panels. I masked the area then blended ink on one card and stamped text on the other.

The twine details continue the neutral theme and the panels are attached to white cardbases.

There are more details on the Foiled Fox blog and more lovely nature dies from Simply Graphic in their store. I hope you pop over and enjoy a browse in both blog and store.

Now a post including two herb themed cards would not be complete without some chit chat about my herb pots would it? I have three large galvanized tubs for my herbs and the crop is growing very well. Despite the slow start to summer I have had oodles of basil along with oregano, rosemary, parsley, lavender, sage, mint and Thai basil. I picked enough basil for a homemade pesto the other night and was very proud of myself!

Let me know if you make any favourite recipes with homegrown herbs.


Beach Squares

I am having fun with the Foiled Fox again today showing you all four stamps from the Simply Graphic’s seaside set. I used the lighthouse and the beach huts stamps in Wednesday’s cards. Today I arranged all four stamps in the stamp positioner then stamped with versamark on cold pressed watercolour paper before embossing in gold powder.

I used zig clean color real brush pens for all the colouring in the squares. The pens are highly pigmented so a little dab goes a long way. It doesn’t matter so much the exact colours I used to paint the squares but I took care to repeat the same colours in more than one square so the group looks cohesive. I used the same blues in all four squares, yellow in three of the squares and grey on the lighthouse and the bird. (Zig pens used: light blue, cobalt blue, blue, green, yellow, light brown, brown, light gray, carmine red)

Once all the colouring was done I popped up the square panel on a few pieces of cardstock then attached to a 4¾” square cardbase. Make sure you pop over to the Foiled Fox blog and shop for inspiration and more lovely clean designs from Simply Graphic.


Beach Scenes

This sweet little beach hut is from Simply Graphic, the set is called ‘the little squares – seaside’. Shauna, from the Foiled Fox introduced me to Simply Graphic and when I saw this set of beach themed squares I was delighted. There are four stamps in the set and I have featured two in today’s cards. Make sure you pop over to the Foiled Fox to hear more about these cards and see other elegant stamps from Simply Graphic.

For both cards I completed the watercolour backgrounds first by smooshing distress inks on a glass mat, spritzing water and swiping hot pressed watercolour paper through the ink. I swiped more than once and tilted the panel so the inks could move. I tried to keep the yellow and the blues apart to avoid making green so there are a few gaps between the inks which looks like sea foam.

The second background was completed using the same method but I made sure the ink covered the whole panel and while dry I dabbed some off with a kleenex to make the appearance of clouds.

The images I have added over the seaside backgrounds are stamped in paradise versafine clair ink onto hot pressed watercolour paper.

I cut the stamped squares out by hand as the edges are not straight then popped them up on a couple of layers of cardstock. I was tempted to colour the beach huts because they are generally painted in beautiful bright colours. I saved that idea for another card and kept these ones simple with sentiments added from the Simply Graphic ‘English sentiments’ set.

Make sure you drop in to see the Foiled Fox blog for more info inspiration

Before I end this post I will mention the Cape Wickham lighthouse on King Island. You might not have heard of either the lighthouse or the island but I was born on King Island and the CapeWickham lighthouse is the tallest in the southern hemisphere. Here’s a pic of me in front of the light.


1 Bike + 3 Oxide Inks

I am over on the Foiled Fox blog today with these sweet new stamps from Simply Graphic. The Foiled Fox has just brought in a lovely selection of cool stamps and dies from Simply Graphic and they shared a video on Wednesday introducing them all.

I went simple and graphic with my first two card layouts by blending oxide inks in stripes on both white and kraft cardstock. I stamped the ‘Spring Bike’ stamp in versafine clair nocturne above and embossed with Brutus Monroe alabaster powder below. I love how the white pops on kraft.

I thought I had finished after these two cards but the three oxide inks, rusty hinge, picked raspberry and salty ocean all wanted me to try a watercolour technique. I embossed the bike in clear powder on watercolour paper then smooshed the inks on my glass mat, spritzed with water, then swiped some watercolour paper through the inks several times to fill it with colour.

You can see I did get some grey and brown in the mix but I thought it worked well to define the bike and suggest some ground behind. When I saw how it looked on half the tire I mixed some more and painted the whole tire. I also filled the basket with blue but other than that the inks landed where they landed!

I finished all the cards with sentiments from the ‘English sentiments’ set. What sweet simple stamps these are. Make sure you visit the Foiled Fox to see the rest of their Simply Graphic selection.