We’re at it again with one of our favorite media, the gloss spray! This time, we’re giving Rumpelstiltskin a run for his gold-making skills by creating our very own gilded accents, using a variety of techniques paired with Gilt gloss spray!
Can you spot the golden elements in this layout? You’ll notice that there are several gold accents on these pages, from the title sticker to the faux ribbons made from glitter paper. If you look closely, you’ll also see a few of these pennant-like tags.
While photos can’t capture the golden effect in all its glory, trust us when we say that these tags have a beautiful golden luster that compares to illuminated, gold painted manuscripts!
The ornate little tags on this layout started off a French Vanilla color and were transformed with just a little bit of gloss spray and a sponge.
Did you know you could paint with gloss spray? Give the bottle a nice shake, make sure you hear that little ball inside hit against the sides mixing the paint up, and then spray a small puddle onto an all-purpose mat. Cut a wedge out of your trusty round sponge and use it to apply the paint to your project. It’s that simple! This technique makes it easier to get a uniform application of gloss spray rather than the random splatters that you get when spraying.
The more obvious use of the gloss spray here is where we sprayed it along the top of the left page and the bottom of the right page, creating a gorgeous golden glare-like effect.
If you inspect these pages a bit further, past the obvious sprayed areas, you will find that we also used the Gilt gloss spray to accent some of the paper embellishments, using another painting technique.
In the case of this layout, we used the tip of a stylus tool to lift the paint from our puddle and paint small dots in the center of bows, inside scallops, and in a floral shape.
The paperclip-like accent along the top photo on the left page was transformed from its original French Vanilla color to the stunning gilt by sponging it with the gloss spray.
And like in the second layout, we added a couple of gilt dots to the right page with the help of a stylus tool.
Gloss sprays are truly one of our current favorites! There are countless ways to use this game changing medium, and as we continue to discover them, we will continue to share them with you!
In the video below, Close To My Heart President Monica Wihongi shares even more ways to use the beautiful Gilt gloss spray to create your very own gilded accents. She even recreates some of the effects from the Christmas Story scrapbooking workshop using different techniques than what we’ve shown you so far. Follow along and see for yourself!
Download your free Christmas Story scrapbooking workshop guide, here!
Your artwork is one-of-a-kind, and that makes it priceless. Each of your creations represents a part of your own vision and an expression of your artistic self, and this is something to be celebrated! With this in mind, we’re here to show you how you can use one of our favorite stencil packs in your own artwork pieces, and how these seemingly static tools can be utilized for superb customization as you put your creative identity on the page! The stencils used in our showcased art today are from Stencil Pack 1, available in our 2022–2023 Core Products Catalog. Each of these stencils is used to great effect with an array of Distress Oxide™ ink pads, which can be applied in a variety of ways to beautify your artwork!
For those of you who may not be familiar with our stencils, let’s take a moment to go over some of the basics of what makes them great! To accommodate a wide variety of crafting interests, we create stencils in a variety of sizes, ranging from sizes to fit a standard card all the way up to 12” x 12” scrapbooking stencils! We manufacture all our stencils out of clear acetate material to ensure maximum visibility and control as you use them to apply colors and patterns to your artwork. With no guesswork involved, our transparent stencils are precise and easy to use, too! Stencils can be used not only to apply patterns, colors, or words over a large area, but they can be used to create smaller borders as well, which is a standout feature of our showcase artwork today.
We love to see all the amazing ways stencils can be used, and we’re excited to share a few of the incredible things stencils can do! One very specific detail we’ll be focused on today is how to layer stencils to achieve unbelievable effects! Let’s jump in and check it out!
Our first piece is a single 12” x 12” scrapbook page with a woodsy, exploration theme. One very unique aspect of this page is that all the details added to the background, borders, accents, and photo mats were done using stencils and Distress Oxide™ and Exclusive Inks™ ink pads. This page doesn’t use any stamps, stickers, and with the exception of one small tab at the top left corner of the page, there are no die-cuts, either! Each detail is unique and can easily be achieved with just a few applications of color through a couple of layered stencils.
To start off, we’ll take a look at the simpler elements of this “Explore” page. At either side, you’ll see a row of bold stacked arrows forming strong borders on either side. These borders help to frame the page and create a great foundation to build the page on. Moving in, we see that two photos form a major focal point of the page. One thing that really helps these photos stand out prominently from the background is the detailing on the photo mats behind the pictures.
These photos are mounted on Mink cardstock, and a wood grain pattern has been applied using one of the single layer stencils in Stencil Pack 1. This detail is subtle enough to not overwhelm the photos, but it still catches the eye and draws attention to the pictures. Just below the photos is a small section of stars applied using Salvaged Patina and Speckled Egg Distress Oxide™ ink pads. We love how this small and simple inclusion has helped to further offset our photos and round out this page.
In addition to these more simple elements, our “Explore” page plays host to a variety of more involved stenciling techniques; the first one we’ll pick apart is the line of aspen trees behind our main title (more on the title in just a minute!).
To create this incredibly lifelike background element, we applied our base layer of color with a Pewter Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pad and our selection of Blending Brushes. Once this layer has dried, we’ve taken our secondary layering stencil and applied additional detailing with Charcoal ink. With this element, the transparent quality of our stencils comes in clutch, as the ability to see where the base layer is in relation to our secondary detailing layer allows for more precise alignment and a more polished end result!
Just in front of our treeline, we’ve got a gorgeous color-tiered “Explore” title, which is another primary focal point of the page! To create this title, we used a total of four layering stencils and ink pads to create this awesome effect! To start off, we applied the treeline you see along the bottom of the title, then layered in the rest of the title, using first the full letter stencil, then the half letter one, and finally the quarter letter stencil. Each layer was applied using a slightly darker color of ink to achieve the ultimate tiered look! To avoid smudging your artwork in progress, make sure to wait until each individual color layer has fully dried before applying your next layer.
The final standout feature we want to zero in on from the “Explore” page is the sunrise accent positioned along the right edge of the page. This piece was created using a single stencil, but rather than layering stenciled images, we’ve layered our colors using the masking technique. For this particular example, we used our 1” Masking Tape to block of ½” sections of color to prevent ink colors from bleeding into each other. Using this technique allows for a striped effect and a standout accent to finish this scrapbook page off! By combining so many beautiful stenciled elements, our “Explore” page is a great example of how a simple tool can be used to stunning effect!
Our second piece to review today is another travel-themed two-page layout, though this one is for more urban adventures!
Like our previous page, the photo mats on these pages have been detailed with stencil work, this time with a city-grid map pattern.
These photo mats were initially cut from Shortbread cardstock, with the pink coloration added by sponging Abandoned Coral Distress Oxide™ ink across the cardstock through the stencil. This stencil allows for a great deal of color to be applied through it, leaving thin lines of the original color to peek through. Once again, this unique appearance is a wonderful way to help draw attention to the photos without overpowering them.
As with our “Explore” page discussed above, this layout also incorporates a layered stencil border at the bottom edge of the pages, this time adding a city skyline to the page! To create this effect, we applied a light layer of Sapphire ink, and then used the two layers of the cityscape stencil with a combination of Pewter and Charcoal Exclusive Inks™ stamp pads. With this combination, we are left with a well-defined, dimensional skyline border to tie the pages together.
In the spaces above and around the photos, we applied a handful of stenciled stars and bursts, along with a few dots of Silver Liquid Pearls™ to break up the open space. (While the Liquid Pearls were not applied with the stencils, they still add a cool dimensional effect to the page!)
The final stand-out features of this layout are the suitcase accent, the ”Live, Love, Travel” title, and the 3-D continent feature, all of which were created using various stencils.
For our well-traveled suitcase, we applied a base layer of color with our grid stencil, then added our tags and corner-pin accents with other layered pieces of our stencil set. Once we finished applying our color and accents, we carefully trimmed the suitcase from the larger White Daisy cardstock piece to create an accent we could add wherever it suited us! The presence of this piece is a great way to reinforce the theme of the layout and provides a playful touch to these pages.
For our 3-D continent feature, we selected the corresponding stencil and placed it over our base page, attaching it temporarily with washi tape to keep it in place. Once we secured our stencil, we turned to an old friend, Opaque Matte Texture Paste.
To apply the paste to our base page, we picked up small amounts with a palette knife and applied it to the base page, through the continents section of our stencil, which leaves us with a section of raised continents. We left the stencil in place until the paste had dried, after which we revisited it to add color over the top with a Shortbread ink pad and a sponge. This technique allows you to easily build and vary the color throughout for an even more unique experience!
The “Live, Love, Travel” title was created with a combination of texture paste and cardstock, with the addition of black ink sponged over the texture paste, and Shortbread ink applied to the cardstock lettering. Just like the continent feature, we applied our texture paste lettering through our selected title stencil, allowed it to dry, and then applied color with a Black Soot Distress Oxide™ ink pad to help it stand out. For additional flair, we then used our stencil and a pencil to lightly trace “TRAVEL” onto a piece of White Daisy cardstock, cut out the letters, and sponged Shortbread ink over them for a light color. (You could also trim the letters out of Shortbread cardstock for a similar effect.)
Once we had finished preparations for our cardstock letters, we placed them over the texture paste letters, placing them just off-center to give them a drop shadow effect. With all of these effects combined, the “Live, Love, Travel” layout becomes an unforgettable addition to this art piece! Hungry for even more artwork examples featuring stencils? Check out another stencil technique on page 87 of our Core Products Catalog, with this vibrant 2-page “Love You” layout:
The bulk of this layout was detailed using a floral stencil option from Stencil Pack 2. By sponging and blending color from multiple Distress Oxide™ ink pads, we achieved a delicate ombre effect across both pages. Thanks to this ornate background, we were able to keep the remainder of this layout fairly simple, with just a few other pieces of layered cardstock and a handful of acrylicshapes, die-cuts, and clear sparkles making up the rest of this layout’s design. With the stenciled section covering such a large area, the “Love You” layout is another beautiful and unique example of what stenciling can do.
Whether you layer them, apply them to large areas, or use them to create small accents, stencils are a truly sensational way to add out-of-this-world detail to your artwork. We’re always excited to see all the amazing things crafters do with our stencils! Which stencil detail from today’s post was your favorite? Leave a comment below and tell us all about it!
It’s time to celebrate, because National Stamping Month is officially underway! Around here, September is all about stamping! The art of stamping is one that is extremely close to our hearts. (Yes, pun INTENDED!) When Founder & CEO Jeanette Lynton first started this business under the name D.O.T.S. (Dozens of Terrific Stamps), the entire business was based on this wonderful art form. A lot has changed over the years; we’ve expanded our stamp offering, pioneered the use of transparent stamps and clear, interchangeable stamping blocks, and diversified our interests to include materials for memory keeping, cardmaking, and papercrafting projects. While we have become known as one of the premier providers of top-quality papers, cardstock, and embellishments, stamps will always be at the center of what we do. To this day, we continue to innovate and push the boundaries of stamping, whether it be in memory keeping, cardmaking, or papercrafting projects, while also building a strong presence within the worldwide crafting community.
With this in mind, it’s no wonder that National Stamping Month is one our favorite months and reasons to celebrate over the course of each year. To help us get into the stamping festivities, we have designed a brand-new selection of stamps and stamping-related projects, allowing everyone from our long-time crafting buddies to our newest friends the option to celebrate this amazing artistic medium and create along with us! You are going to love what we have to show you today, as we take you on a journey through this year’s National Stamping Month exclusive offer, Card Creativity. Let’s dive straight in!
Card Creativity is all about expressing your artistic vision through the cardmaking medium, which allows you to more readily share your creations with friends and family! With this central purpose at the heart of Card Creativity, we’ve created three stamp sets with coordinating Thin Cuts metal dies and stencils, and one set made up entirely of sentiments for the interior of your cards.
Each stamp set has its own unique feel and can be incorporated into countless designs for maximum creative output, and with so many interior sentiments to choose from, your cards are always sure to be a delight, not only for the recipients, but for you as you make them, as well!
Today, we’ll be focusing on the ins and outs of six particular designs, pictured below; all of these cards can be created by following the instructions in the Card Creativity Cardmaking Workshop Kit. (To download these instructions, click here! For our friends in Australia and New Zealand, click here!)
A hallmark of the Card Creativity cardmaking experience is the inclusion of coordinating background stencils, a method which can be seen in all six of the cards we’ll look at today. As crafters familiar with Close To My Heart will know, many of our stamp sets come with coordinating Thin Cuts metal dies, designed to cut die-cuts from plain paper that can then accommodate a stamped image from its coordinating set. Incorporating Thin Cuts into your stamp-based crafts can be a great way to bring additional dimension into your project. For Card Creativity, we’ve created three coordinating stamps and Thin Cuts, but we’ve also designed special stencils to layer in with the stamps and Thin Cuts. As you will see later on, these stencils can be used to create background patterns or to add color to accent elements more at the forefront.
Another standout feature of this cardmaking extravaganza is the inclusion of the Cloud, Stitched Swirl, and Circle Lattice Background Thin Cuts metal dies. These metal dies are each designed to fit a standard 4¼” x 5½” card, and they are a great way to create engaging backgrounds, card bases, or decorative overlays. These die-cuts are designed specifically to coordinate with our Card Creativity stamps, Thin Cuts, and stencils—to achieve some pretty impressive effects!—but they can be used as standalone Thin Cuts in a variety of other projects. The only limit is your imagination! Each one of these metal dies has been used to create the cards we’ll be looking at today, and we can’t wait to show them off!
The first two cards we’ll examine today are an adorable and light-hearted pair of birthday and greeting cards. Both cards were made using the Floating By Stamp + Thin Cuts + Stencil set (CC9225) and are a delightful blend of whimsy and good old-fashioned animal cuteness. (After all, what’s cuter than animals and colorful balloons? 🥰)
In our sweet little mouse birthday card, you can see the Cloud Background Thin Cuts (CC9228) used to great effect; not only has the main component of the metal die been used to create a simple, yet beautiful base, but the interior shapes from the initial cut have been incorporated as well. This inclusion gives the card an additional level of dimension befitting an expansive, cloudy sky for our mouse to float in. The mouse and its balloons top everything off, along with a hand-trimmed pennant for our sentiment, and a few Clear Sparkles!
For our “Floating By to Say Hi” greeting card, we begin to see how the stencils and Thin Cuts can work together for seamless coordination and application. Rather than using the Cloud Background Thin Cuts die as a base, we used the cloud stencil, Peacock Feathers Distress Oxide™ ink, and a sponge to apply light blue clouds to a plain white cardstock base. Over that, we layered a few of the interior cloud cut-outs, some strategically ripped cardstock, and of course, our animal friend and balloon! (For a fun twist, we stamped our sentiment on the balloon die-cut itself!) We’ve also added a few Clear Sparkles for a fun bit of shine, and with that, our “Floating By to Say Hi” greeting card is complete!
The “Hello Fabulous” motivational card showcases the use of not one pass with the stencil, but two! To create our multi-colored base, we sponged one color of ink with the stencil on one side, then flipped the stencil around and sponged a different color of ink onto the card base, perpendicular to the first round of color! This technique allows you to enjoy the dual-color effect while also enjoying the convenience of only needing one tool! (Just make sure to wipe the stencil off before going in for your second round of color to avoid smudging your card!)
After applying our stenciled colors to the card base, we cut an overlay piece using the Circle Lattice Background Thin Cuts metal die, and then sponged it with coordinating colors to match the stencil work we did on the card base. Once our colors were applied, we finished this card off with our stamped, die-cut sentiment, a few pieces of black and white cardstock to accent it, and a handful of our trusty clear sparkles for some subtle shine. When it all comes together, this vibrant card is a beautiful way to not only express and exercise your creativity, but is a great way to show someone special that you care!
Our other Hello Fabulous card doesn’t incorporate our background stencil, but does sport some pretty snazzy colors with blended Distress Oxide™ ink on the Circle Lattice Background die-cut piece. We love adding all sorts of bright coloring with Distress Oxide, and it’s always a treat to see what can be done with it!
With our “Thank You” card, we’ve gone for a more minimalistic approach when it comes to the base design, selecting a clean White Daisy base. To give it some extra pop, we’ve taken the Stitched Swirl Background Thin Cuts and used it to cut the distinctive stitched swirl patterns into our base. Once the base is in place, we added a 3¼” x 4″ piece of black cardstock, topped with an additional 3″ x 3¾” White Daisy piece, which has also been treated with the Stitched Swirl Background Thin Cuts die. This die is a great tool for adding subtle pattern and texture that contributes visual interest to your background without becoming too distracting. Once the base has been created, we get to the more involved, colorful parts of this creation process!
To add hues to our stamped die-cut flower patch, we went in with Blue Turquoise and Alpine Green TriBlend™ Markers and used the trio of shades in each to add some delicate color. However, it’s in our dragonfly’s wings where we really get into some coloring fun! For this elegant insect, we used our coordinating Dragonfly Wishes stencil to add color to the wings sections. This delicate blend of colors not only makes the dragonfly stand out but brings a more realistic touch to the overall aesthetic of the card. With the addition of our sentiment and a neat row of sparkles, this gorgeous dragonfly “Thank You” card is complete!
Our last piece we have to show you today is a fun dragonfly birthday card, complete with another stitched swirl background and a fun twist on the blended Distress Oxide™ ink blending techniques we’ve showcased in a few of our previous cards. Our “Wishing You a Wonderful Birthday” card starts off by running our base piece through our Die-cutting & Embossing Machine with the Stitched Swirl Background Thin Cuts. Next, we applied a pink and blue ink blend, adding a few water splatters for a watercolor effect.
Once the ink colors have been applied to our card base, we layered a small stamped image of cattails, matted with black cardstock, over the colored section and also popped our sentiment onto the card base, trimmed to a pennant shape for some additional flair. We’ve topped everything off with a pair of beautiful, iridescent dragonflies with delicately colored wings. Once again, we’ve used Distress Oxide™ ink pads and the Dragonfly Wishes stencil to achieve this appearance, and added a few Clear Sparkles to finish the look. (It’s amazing to see what a difference even a small embellishment can make!)
With so much crafting potential packed in, Card Creativity is the ultimate cardmaking experience and a great way to express your own love for stamping! We’ve loved showing you these incredible cards to give you an idea of the artwork that can be made with this amazing collection of products, and we’re looking forward to seeing all the awesome things you create with it, both for Card Creativity and beyond!
Karen talks about how to color your stamped images, and also shares some tips for using Stickles™ glitter glue. (If you’d like to duplicate our card exactly, we used Silver and Christmas Red Stickles™ glitter glue, and Dull Green, Earth Brown, Light Yellow, Pale Pink, and Fair Skin TriBlend™ markers.)
The first thing Karen will show us in the video below, is how to recreate the beautiful sky background of this card using a simple sponging technique. For this step, you will need a blank card base, Carolina and Bluebird stamp pads, a round sponge and scissors, sticky notes, and several cut-out cloud shapes. (We made our clouds using Cricut® shape #M412A0C, from our Artistry Cricut® collection.)
If you’re all set (and even if you’re not and just want to watch a video for some inspiration) here’s our friend Karen recreating the Love You Gnome Matter What card:
We love using colorful inks to create cool backgrounds on cards. Today we are showing you how we made the vibrant gradient background on the card below.
Let’s get started!
First, we picked our colors. We needed a full spectrum to create a rainbow effect, so we used Candy Apple, Raspberry, Nectarine, Lemon, Willow, Bluebird, and Pansy from our Exclusive Inks™ collection. The next thing to do is to prepare your sponges.
We took one of our round sponges and cut it into wedges, one for each color. (Daubers also work, if those are your preference.)
Firmly hold your paper on your work surface. A little bit of rolled up washi tape on the back of your cardstock should do the trick for when you can’t hold it in place with your hands. Now, to the fun part of sponging on the colors!
With an inked sponge wedge, start off by applying your first color with light pressure and in a circular motion. Continue to apply the color until reaching the desired level of saturation. As you switch colors, slightly overlap each for that blended look.
After all of our colors were applied we splattered our background with Spritz Cleaner to achieve a water “damage” look. First, we unscrewed the top and dropped fat drops of Spritz Cleaner onto the ink straight from the tube. Then, we replaced the top and sprayed the card for smaller droplets. We suggest using Spritz Cleaner instead of water because the ink will separate better and create the desired effect without warping the paper like water will.
We finished the card by heat embossing a sentiment and cute balloon in white.
One of the great things about this technique is that you don’t always have to sponge your ink on a solid color piece of paper. Take a look at how we used this same technique on patterned paper to create this other card:
It also looks great with just one color:
What do you like about this sponging technique? And if this isn’t new to you, what are some ways that you do things differently? Please share your creative thoughts with us in the comments below!
If you’re a stamper, then chances are you are no stranger to the wonders of inky fingers! But no matter how much exposure you’ve had, there are probably some things about working with ink that may still be a mystery to you. Today’s topic is Inks 101, and by the time you’ve read this post, you’ll be well on your way to becoming an ink expert!
1. Not sure which type of ink you should use for a project? Click on this handy infographic to figure it out!
2. Just like our cardstock, we offer dye and pigment stamp pads in all of our exclusive colors…meaning you’ll always have ink to match your cardstock! Easy color coordination is the name of our game. 🙂
3. Our Exclusive Inks™ stamp pads have one of the largest surface areas on the market. Plus, they’re super easy to open, thanks to the magnetic case design!
4. We designed our stamp pads so that the pad is on the lid of the case. This way while your stamp pad is sitting around waiting to be used, the ink is settling on the surface of the pad so you’ll always be able to get a crisp stamped image.
5. Is your stamp pad getting dry? That happens with a lot of use over time. But the good news is that instead of buying a new one, you can buy the coordinating re-inker and use it to replenish your pad. To re-ink a stamp pad, gently squeeze the re-inker evenly over the surface of your stamp pad while moving in a zig-zag pattern, top to bottom. Repeat until your stamp pad is properly saturated again (you won’t even need to use the whole bottle!). Just be sure to give your ink some time to soak in before using the stamp pad.
6. Is your stamped image darker than you thought it would be? Don’t worry, that’s normal! Dye inks need a little bit of time to cure, which means that they need to fully dry before they turn the right color. This shouldn’t take too long, but a craft heater can certainly help speed up the process.
7. When using our mini pigment ink stamp pads, dab the stamp pad lightly onto the stamp rather than trying to press the stamp onto the stamp pad.
8. Pigment ink sits on the surface of your paper, which is why the colors are more vivid than dye inks. However, this means pigment ink takes longer to dry. Give images stamped with pigment ink time to air dry, or use a craft heater to dry them right away.
9. If you’ve got the painting bug, then you’re going to love painting with our inks! Start by squishing the lid of your closed stamp pad all over. This will transfer some ink from the pad onto the other side of the case where you can pick up the ink using a slightly damp waterbrush or paintbrush, and then paint away!
10. If you want to create a splattered paint pattern on your artwork, then our spray pen is your friend! Simply fill your spray pen with some water and add a bit of ink from a re-inker bottle, shake, and then spritz onto your artwork. Raise the spray pen higher for a subtler splatter and closer to the paper for a more concentrated splatter. If you want the ink to dry faster, try using rubbing alcohol instead of water.
12. In addition to our Exclusive Inks™ stamp pads, we also offer the VersaMark™ ink pad. Use this ink pad to create watermark images, or add embossing powder over the stamped image, shake off the excess, and heat set for an entirely different look!
Just over a week ago, we released our latest idea book—Seasonal Expressions 2! If you haven’t checked it out yet, you can look through an online version or even download it as a PDF here. We know you’ll love it!
One of the paper collections in this idea book is called Little Dreamer, and it’s all about unicorns, magic, and dreams…which got us thinking about a certain sponging technique we love that adds a dream-like magic to all your artwork. Since it is so perfect for this collection, we just had to share it with you!
In a nutshell, here’s the technique: Use titles or shapes cut with your Cricut® machine or with Thin Cuts metal dies as stencils for sponging ink onto your pages.
First, use a bit of adhesive to attach your title or shape to the page. Next use a sponge dauber or the round sponge to add ink over your title or shape, and then fade the ink into your paper. Once the ink is dry, carefully remove your stencil (if there is any adhesive residue, it’s a cinch to remove with our Rub & Remove™ eraser).
For our artwork, we found it worked best to use both the round sponge and sponge daubers. We used a sponge dauber for a more concentrated look, like you can see immediately around our title, and then the round sponge for fading the ink into the page.
Sponging Tip: If you haven’t used a round sponge before, you’ll want to cut out a pie-shaped wedge from the sponge rather than using the entire sponge. That way your sponging will be more precise, and you can get more use out of your sponge!
We recommend playing with the round sponge and sponge daubers, as well as various amounts of ink, on some scratch paper before sponging onto your artwork.
This stenciling technique is a great way to create unique backgrounds for your artwork. For this page, we attached three clouds to the page and sponged around them. After allowing the ink to dry, carefully removing the clouds, and removing any adhesive, we cut three more clouds and sponged around the edges. Then we popped them up with 3-D tape to give the page dimension. The final look sure is dreamy!
You can incorporate multiple colors into your stenciling! Here we used a scalloped piece for our stencil, and then sponged on a rainbow of colors. There are SO many possibilities!
We hope this post has inspired you to try stenciling on your artwork. It really is such a fun way to get in touch with your inner artist!
Which page is your favorite? Tell us in the comments below! 🙂
You’ve probably photographed dozens of picturesque nature scenes— ember-colored sunsets, mountains mottled with snow, a bee hovering over a bluebell—but have you ever thought about creating nature scenes in your artwork? Aristotle said, “Art takes nature as its model,” and who are we to argue with Aristotle?
Our inspired artist gathered bunches of stamp sets to create the colorful meadow on the page. A corner from the Brushed paper packet makes a perfect patch of grass here, but our favorite feature has to be the faint sky in the background. How did our artist create this look? If you guessed that a sponge was involved, you are correct!
First, our artist cut out a cloud shape from some scratch cardstock. Then, she placed the cloud on the page and lightly sponged around the edges with our Glacier Exclusive Inks™ pad. The result is a soft, subtle texture that has us floating away to crafting paradise. A similar technique was used to create this mountain scene:
The great thing about using a sponge is that it can give any artwork textural variety and layers of color, which you can really see on this card. Our artist first sponged on the sky and soil. Next, she traced the mountain range from the My Acrylix® Campfire Lifestyle stamp set onto a scratch piece of cardstock and cut out the shape. This time she placed the cardstock with the mountain shape cut out of it on the card and sponged on the mountains using both the Pacifica and Gypsy Exclusive Inks™ pads. Finally, for the trees, she first stamped the image, and then, squeezing the sponge to create a narrow surface area, carefully dabbed a little more ink on top of the tree to create a softer look.
Isn’t it amazing what that little sponge can do? These pieces of artwork are lovely odes to nature. Albert Einstein said, “Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.” So, browse through your photo stash for pictures of nature, or better yet, step outdoors for some fresh air—we know you will be inspired. Then, pull out your handy dandy sponge, and let your creativity run wild!
12″ x 12″ Life is Beautiful Page Reflections: Sampler—Captivating Corners™ (with alterations)
C1599 My Acrylix® Pretty Petals, C1589 My Acrylix® Lifetime of Happiness, D1616 My Acrylix® Have a Happy Day, C1612 My Acrylix® Shower Flowers, D1627 My Acrylix® Your Own Kind of Wonderful, D1646 My Acrylix® Finding the Words, D1613 My Acrylix® Best Christmas, B1432 My Acrylix® Love This, X7190B Brushed Paper Packet, Z2031 Paper Fundamentals Enchantment Assortment, Z2641 Glacier Exclusive Inks™ Pad, Z2191 Sunset Exclusive Inks™ Pad, Z2153 Sweet Leaf Exclusive Inks™ Pad, Z2197 Pear Exclusive Inks™ Pad, Z2155 Topiary Exclusive Inks™ Pad, Z2135 New England Ivy Exclusive Inks™ Pad, Z2642 Flaxen Exclusive Inks™ Pad, Z2643 Canary Exclusive Inks™ Pad, Z2644 Pixie Exclusive Inks™ Pad, Z2118 Desert Sand Exclusive Inks™ Pad, Z2111 Chocolate Exclusive Inks™ Pad, Z2640 Thistle Exclusive Inks™ Pad, Z2193 Cotton Candy Exclusive Inks™ Pad, Z2105 Black Exclusive Inks™ Pad, Z2454 ShinHan™ Touch Twin ™ Leaf Green Marker, Z2463 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Sap Green Marker, Z2451 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Clay Marker, Z2462 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Peony Purple Marker, Z2012 Sequins Gold Assortment, Z1979 Marvy® Uchida® LePen™ Journaling Pen, Z697 Round Sponge, Thread
Anyone craving a sip of a refreshing stamping technique? Slide your glass over and we’ll pour you a drink. Today we’re bringing you a behind-the-scenes look at the technique our artist used to create this cool drink of summer. (Look familiar? That’s because this comes straight from page 28 of Seasonal Expressions 2!)
Here’s what you’ll need to mix up this cooler:
• B1478 My Acrylix® Ice-Cold Summer
• Z2644 Pixie Exclusive Inks™ Pad
• Z2641 Glacier Exclusive Inks™ Pad
• Z2172 Whisper Exclusive Inks™ Pad
• Z2640 Thistle Exclusive Inks™ Pad
• Z726 Sponge Daubers
• Z1091 Finishing Files
Ready? Let’s get stamping!
Step 1: Using Pixie ink, stamp bottle image on pad so the top ¾” of the image is not inked. Once inked, achieve a second generation stamp by stamping the bottle first onto your desk pad (or other scratch piece of paper) and then onto your tag.
Step 2: Next, use a sponge dauber to lightly ink the edges of the bottle stamp with Whisper ink. Use another sponge dauber to ink the top of the bottle stamp with Glacier ink. Now stamp this image over the original Pixie bottle image on the tag.
Step 3: Using Whisper ink and a sponge dauber, lightly apply a small amount of ink to the bottom of the bottle stamp in an oval shape. Stamp bottle image again over previous image.
Step 4: Using Thistle ink, stamp straw image onto the bottle, allowing it to rest at the bottom left of the Whisper oval and exit through the top of the bottle.
Step 5: Use a sanding file to softly rub away a line to the right of the straw. This will give the bottle a highlight, creating a more glasslike appearance.
Voila! You have now stamped one delicious beverage. Enjoy! We hope your artistic thirst has been quenched. 🙂
*For the materials needed to create the rest of this tag (including those mouthwatering lemons), please consult our handy recipe guide.