I have a lot of creative hobbies. So many, in fact, that it can be like having a peanut gallery of demands inside my head whenever I have free time to create. “Let’s crochet! No, draw in yer sketchbook! Or…maybe I should do some watercolor? How about sculpture, or painting – or painting a sculpture!!”
Well, this week, I decided on card making.
I’ve been into card making for about a year now. It started with a demo at Paper Source on embossing powder! I was hooked immediately. I bought all the supplies needed, including embossing powder, a heat gun and some stamps. Then, my interests in this craft blossomed from a desire to have more of a warm, hand-made touch on my thank you cards to prospective employers. I even ordered a custom stamp of my professional design logo!
Fast forward to now: Lately, I’ve been more interested in staying up late, making, rather than going out to drink and dance. I’ve even tried to convert my friends in old lady crafters like me. Alas, this is a somewhat futile endeavor, and my favorite person to create, craft and make stuff with is ultimately my mom, Darlene. I raided her stamp collection this weekend and found the perfect stamps to make cards for some members of my family.
My god-father and uncle Mike had his 70th birthday this week. (Wow!) He’s a huge fan of the outdoors and an accomplished archer. He even has a few arrows he’s split in two from his precise ability to aim and shoot. His entire home is decorated with evidence of these passions and when I think Mike, I think Minnesota wildlife. Below is the card I made for this occasion!
With this card, I first manually embossed the brown paper with an embossing template that my mom picked up at a garage sale. We don’t have an embossing press, so I just used a rolling pin and a hammer to get the same definition (lol, it was noisy but fun)!
I used black embossing powder on the front and inside (on “Have A Great Day!”) to create a professional look and feel. Then, I used gel pens to fill in the negative space on the stamped image of the loon. I have these amazing little tools called Souffle pens, and I used a lot of white to fill in around the feathers and beak. They set with a beautiful 3D, flat finish.
On the loon’s eye, my standard red marker wasn’t quite popping on the paper like I wished it to, so I laid down a layer of white Souffle pen here as well, waited for it to dry and then added another layer of bright red in my standard marker. This technique was just what I needed. I also found that the Souffle pen ink takes on any color of water-soluble ink laid down beneath it, so I thought that was a neat discovery! I filled in the cattails with a layer of brown Souffle ink, followed by gold from Sakura’s Metallic gel pens. While waiting for those inks to set, I filled in the water ripples with another line of gel pens, in a glitter finish, called Stardust pens. Each set of Sakura pens are available at my favorite art store in Minnesota, Wet Paint!
My aunt Annette just welcomed her second grandchild into the world a week ago. I happened upon the perfect stamp in my mom’s collection to use for making Annette’s card. It read, “Welcome little one”. (d’awww.) – Check out the card I made for this very new, very sweet little girl.
For the die-cut flower border, I used Fiskars AdvantEdge™ Punch System Starter Set. (My mom has had this system so long, she forgot all about it, haha.) It worked like a charm! I decided to embellish it with manual embossing before cutting, and used markers to add some additional color after cutting. Some jewel crystals were the perfect final touch to each flower’s pollen bulb. It’s also interesting to see the very same jewels on the more masculine design above. The versatility in materials is endless.
I found a pre-cut and printed butterfly in my mom’s craft vault and used Scotch® Indoor Mounting Tape Squares to mount the decal on top of the die cut border. These are a great tool to have on hand because they’re so versatile. They can be stacked or cut to suit one’s design needs.
For the butterfly stamp image on the inside of this card, I used the same embossing powder and Souffle pen technique described above. Although it doesn’t show so well in the photography, the pink heart and flower were filled in with the clear color of the Glaze® 3-D Glossy Ink gel pens, also from Sakura. The ink set completely transparent and glossy. It was a fun experiment, however, I initially purchased this pen for the purposes of creating a resist in watercolor and ink paintings!
Well, that’s all for now. I’m also currently working on 24 really intense, yet wonderful little icons for a project at my 9-5 job. I’ll post some progress shots of those soon, including sketchbook renderings of my ideas!