Hey, so good to see you again! Today's post is packed full of cards and ideas, stamping creatively to make fun and interesting cards. Four of the cards use the same stamp, showing how easy it is to create unique cards out of a little and to stretch your tools. The final card utilises left overs from one of the cards, combined with other smaller stamps in my collection to create a pretty floral composition. I hope you find lots of inspiration and possible a new technique or two to incorporate into your next card.
It is a long post, but it's full of tips and inspiration, so what are we waiting for?! Lets get started!
Materials required for stamping creatively:
- Large stamp - outline stamps work well for this compared to large colour block stamps. I used Woodware Clear Magic Stamp Wedding Cake for this project.
- Fun foam - this is to place beneath your paper when stamping to get a good even stamped print.
- Embossing ink (Versamark)- if you don't want to heat emboss your stamped image you can use inks. However, for the examples where watercolouring has been used, you need the right ink for it - for example, versafine works well with watercolouring.
- Embossing powder - Powders used is these cards are: WOW Embossing Powders - Back Twinkle and Rose Gold, and Papermania Gold.
- Heat gun
- Water colour card - Here I have used both cold press and hot press.
- Acrylic blocks
- Distress inks
- Small acetate sheet
- Additional sentiment stamps and die cuts to finish the cards
- Double sided tape
- Foam tape/squares
- Card bases - sizes used here: 7"x5, 5"3/4 X 4 and 5"3/4 X 5 3/4
- Tonic Nuvo Drops
- Patterned and plain paper for decorating
Stamping creatively - card 1: Distress Ink Smooshing
For this first card, I used cold press watercolour paper to stamp my image on. You will not necessarily get as good a print when stamping onto cold press watercolour paper because of the texture of the paper.
However, for some styles of cards the texture works well giving added interest and a slightly distressed look. I stamped the image with versamark and heat embossed in Black Twinkle. You can either stamp the image before or after your have created the background.
ink SMooshing technique
Ink smooshing can be carried out in two ways; either by using a small sheet of acetate or apply the card directly to the acrylic block.
Acetate method: apply the colour of distress ink to acrylic block and spray with water. Using the acetate sheet pick some ink up by dabbing it over the top. When the ink has transferred, apply the ink to your paper by bending the acetate sheet and only allow small amounts of ink to touch the paper. Continue repeating with different colours until you are happy with the outcome.
Directly to block method: Apply all the colours of distress ink you want to the block and spray with water. Place your paper directly on top and press down. Lift up the paper up, and replace on the block in areas that are lacking any colour. Once happy you are happy with the outcome, leave it to dry.
The acetate method gives you more control on where the colour is and how much blending occurs. Either way, you will never get two backgrounds the same!
Once the background was completely dried, I fussy-cut out the image as I didn't have a matching die for this stamp. I also stamped a few matching small flower stamps on the remaining background and cut these out. Due to the texture of the watercolour paper, the middle of the stamp had not printed clearly. However, I was able to cover this with the additional flowers and foam mounted these to give dimension.
To finished this card off, I mounted the image onto a white card base, allowing the bright colours to stand out. A simple sentiment was stamped in versafine black onyx ink, centered under the print. In addition, I added a couple of contrasting strips of paper to help lead the eye down the card and to give added interest. Black tonic nuvo drops finished off the card by adding cascading element off the cake.
Stamping creatively - card 2: Distress ink watercolour background
This card is a similar technique to number one by using distress inks to create the background however, the application is different. Again, I used a cold press watercolour paper to give added texture and interest.
Before I added any colour to the paper, I applied water directly to the paper itself, completely covering the space. Be careful though as we don't want to over saturate the paper, as it could dry patchy with pigment pooling in areas.
I applied distress inks to an acrylic block and sprayed with water. Using a brush, I painted the inks onto the paper, allowing the water to mover the pigments and blend the colours. Once dried, a soft blending and vibrant background was created perfect for stamping on.
I again stamped and heat embossed with Black Twinkle and created additional flowers from the remaining background once trimmed down for size. The sentiment was stamped onto black card and cut into a pennant flag. To finish the card off, I foam mounted the background onto the card base and added sequins for a touch of sparkle..
Stamping creatively - card 3: Heat embossing and watercolouring
For this card I switched to hot press watercolour paper - this has a smooth surface which was perfect for the delicate watercolour finish I was going for. The stamp was heat embossed with Rose Gold embossing powder which pairs with soft pinks to look soft and elegant.
Instead of colouring the whole print, I painted only the flowers and leaves. I applied a soft light colour to the whole flower, and before it had dried added in a dark colour blending this out. This helped give dimension to the print.
I kept the rest of the card clean and simple to reflect the elegance of the print. To create a matching card base, measuring an "1/2 larger than the print, I heat embossed the border in matching colour and foam mounted the print onto this. I use a foiled die cut sentiment, applying with foam squares to embellish the front. To find out how to make these sentiments, read this post HERE. Lastly, I added a cascade of Morning Dew Tonic Nuvo Crystal drops to add further dimension which dry clear.
Stamping creatively - card 4: Matching stamped background
This card started out very similar to card number 3. I heat embossed the stamp onto hot press watercolour paper in gold, and watercoloured in the flowers. However, I created matching patterned paper using the additional small rose flower that came in the stamp set. By choosing a soft pink, to correspond to the pink tones of the painted flowers, I repeatedly stamped the rose. I heat embossed these flowers in gold to add cohesion throughout the card.
To prevent the card from appearing to busy with the patterned paper against the print, I layered the print onto plain gold card to add contrast and to lift the print off the card. This allows the card to to flow and match without it appearing to busy. I finished the card once more with cascading clear Tonic Nuvo Drops and foam mounted the sentiment.
Stamping creatively - card 5: Layering die cut stamps
For this last card, I wanted to use up my left out backgrounds and stamped images. I had several left over stamped roses and thought why not use it to create a floral composition on a card. After going through my stamp stash I had selected a variety of sizes and styles of leaves and flowers.
To create depth with such a vast array of pieces, I foam mounted several pieces and overlaid them to give the illusion this was growing naturally like this. By choosing different sizes of flowers and leaves, I was able to design a realistic looking arrangement with plenty of depth. To finish the card off I used a simple clean sentiment and clear Tonic Nuvo Drops add an appearance of freshness to the flowers.
Wow that was a jam packed post! I hope you enjoyed it and found plenty of inspiration and new techniques to try out!
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Till next time,