Saturday, 28 November 2020

Gilded CASE


Gill's final November challenge at 52 Christmas Card Throwdown, and our last "regular" challenge for 2020, is a stash challenge.

Gilding flakes or foiling is what we're looking for.

I CASEd one of my own cards from 2017 for this. I'd forgotten this technique until I looked back!

The base is champagne modelling cream, brayered over the card. I then stamped in brown over the background. I used adirondack ink initially, as below. In my previous post I said this dried fine - I must have left it for a while as this did not dry, even with a heat tool! So I started again and used archival ink. Presumably the first one will dry eventually and can be used.

Next I applied bronze modelling paste through a stencil, and added gilding flakes over it while wet. I had to be careful not to squish it.

And the same again with a stag head stencil.


When the paste dried, I wiped off the excess gilding flakes to reveal the stencil design, with random metallic flecks over the bronze.

For the sentiment I used an offcut of the card and embossed with copper powder. I wiped a little bronze paste around the edge. The mount has dark brown stazon ink added.


I cut the base to size, and sponged the archival brown around the edge. I then edged with the stazon dark brown for a stronger frame.

Quite a vintage look to this one, with a shabby chic vibe too. But the shine gives a bit of a festive, celebratory feel too.

I do like these layerd cards, built up from plain white piece of card!




To join in with our technique challenge and top up your card stash ahead of the main event, visit us at the 52CCT blog.

You have until Friday 4th December to play along.

Saturday, 21 November 2020

Winter Wonderland

 Gill's theme choice for the 52 Christmas Card Throwdown is:


I wanted to create a snow scene with a bit of fantasy and sparkle.

The idea for this card started out as a 3D card, inspired by the gorgeous designs from our fancy folds challenge a few weeks ago. However, it's busy time of the year as we have a birthday as well as the run up to Christmas, so it became a flat card.

The background is violet, ultramarine and cobalt blue brushos. I stamped into them with a tree stamp and snowflakes, although it doesn't really show.

The die cuts are in Centura Peral hint of silver card. The dies I used are a tattered lace reindeer, Tim Holtz trees and large snowflake; I'm not sure of the brand for the smaller snowflakes.

The frame idea came from the original 3D plan. I saw a beautiful mixed media piece with a stamped background outside the frame, so used the same idea here.



As always, the camera doesn't capture the shine on the card, or how pretty the brusho background is - I think this is lovely in real life!







I hope you are inspired to play along with this challenge. There's lots more inspiration from my design team colleagues on the 52CCT blog, as well as the link to enter. You have until Friday 27th November to join in.

Saturday, 14 November 2020

Leafy impressions


Gill has chosen a very traditional colour combination for us to play with at the 52 Christmas Card Throwdown this week:

I wanted to try a technique I'd seen online for this. It uses a die cutting machine to press leaves to imprint onto cardstock. I tried ivy first, as we have loads in our garden and it's Christmassy. Holly, as well as not growing in our garden, is too thick and waxy for the techinique. However, it turned out ivy is too! So I gathered other leaves from the garden and found the dogwood worked best. It also has a red stem, so is perfect for this challenge.

I arranged the leaves on watercolour card, and laid another sheet on top, and ran it through the machine to get two impressions. I didn't get the clear print of veins etc that I'd seen online, more experimentation may be needed. But it's pretty nonetheless.

I splattered old paper distress ink over for more detail around the leaves.

For the sentiment and base layer, I inked more watercolour card with aged mahogany and barn door distress oxide. I spritzed to soften the colour, to match the subtle leaf impresion better.

I die cut the sentiment (an old favourite from Tattered Lace) from the centre of the card, then used it for the base.

For variety, I made one portrait and one landscape.


Simple design and (relatively) simple to make.

To join in with this week's challenge, head over to the 52CCT blog. You have until Friday 20th November to play along.

Saturday, 7 November 2020

Santa sleigh sketch


Gill is our host for November on the 52 Christmas Card Throwdown, as Christmas gets closer!

This is the sketch she has chosen for us to play with:


This ended up being very last minute for me, what with everything that's been going on with lockdown 2.

So no process photos this time.

The panels on the card are inked with antique linen distress oxide, with a light touch of fossilised amber and vintage photo. I splattered with water to bleach.

The images are stamped in gothic purple stazon ink. The houses are from Clarity, the sleigh is a set from a magazine that I hadn't used before. I wasn't sure what the quality was like, but it stamped beautifully.

The background is also an antique linen base, then I stamped baubles and stars in potting soil archival ink all over. I embossed with a Spellbinders folder, then sponged vintage photo distress oxide over, which picked up the embossed detail.

I finished it off with ribbon and lace, and a clock face embellishment from Craft Box. I don't often use embellishments, but they seemed to be what was needed here.

This isn't at all how I imagined this turning out! I really like the background but battled with positioning the panels - I had a stamped sentiment to finish it off, but changed my mind!


To join in with this challenge, visit it us at 52CCT. You have until Friday 13th November to enter your cards.

Saturday, 24 October 2020

You can't go wrong with snowflakes


Majda's choice for her technique challenge at 52 Christmas Card Throwdown is

I'm sharing a card I made at another of Angela Simpson's online workshops. I was very unprepared for this one so grabbed some old favourites to use - a blue colour scheme and snowflakes!

The background was made with Elf explosion powder from Pretty Gets Gritty. It gives a gold shimmer.

The snowflake stamps are from Simon Says Stamp - I saw someone use them on a challenge card and lovely hubby ordered them from the states for my birthday. I used distress ink/oxide in weathered wood, chipped sapphire and faded jeans, and gold pigment ink. The sentiment is from Clarity. The solid blue layers are inked in faded jeans. Everything is edged in chipped sapphire.

This is the front:

The bow was added to hide a line where I scored in the wrong place! But I do like it so we'll call that a happy accident.

Opening the front to the left shows:


And then, opening the final section to the right, you see:


The middle section has a blank area to write a message.

This was a fun project and a fun workshop!

To join in with our fancy folds challenge, please visit us at the 52CCT blog. You have until Friday 6th November to enter - two weeks this time as there are 5 Saturdays in October.

Have fun creating!

Saturday, 17 October 2020

Grungy Christmas jumper


On the 52 Christmas Card Throwdown, Majda has chosen Winter Sweaters as our theme for the week.

I had an idea for this ages ago, but hadn't made it. Then my daughter's bubble at school closed, and I've been homeschooling all week! So I swapped for a simpler design.

I used my gel plate and an embossing folder with a knitted design, as well as a jumper stamp.

I stamped the jumper then ran the card through with the embossing folder.

I then loaded the gel plate with acrylic paint, in shades of green and blue.

I brayered the paint to mix it, and pressed the embossed card into the plate, to pick up paint. I restamped the jumper - I'd used the stamp platform and had the stamp still in position.

Only at this point did I notice the embossing folder had an up and a down - so this one has the pattern the wrong way up!

I reloaded the gel plate and pressed an A4 embossed card into it, then also pulled a print with the paint remaining on the gel plate.

I stamped the jumper onto these.

I fussy cut all the jumpers - I think they look really cute!!
I used a white gel pen on the labels, and added ribbing on the cuffs and collar of one.

For the background, I also used the gel plate. I brayered dark red and dark gold onto the plate, cleaning the brayer onto another piece of card - on the right below. The print I pulled had lots of left over paint in it, which I love.

Using the gel plate as a palette, I used the gold paint to repeat stamp sentiments across the backgrounds.

I had a bit of a play with what was left on the gel plate, adding more red for a print, then adding teal stamping from the plate, and more red to pull what that left. This gave me two more backgrounds.

For the sentiment, I printed "Warmest Wishes". This was meant to be in greens and blues to match the jumpers, but my printer is out of yellow ink!

I mounted the sentiment on offcuts of the "knitted" card, and added to the card.

I have only put one of the cards together, for time, but have the rest to make at my leisure.

I think the card could do with some finessing, if I took more time, maybe something to the top right, maybe a drop shadow. But I do like the grungy jumper!

To join in with this challenge, pop over to the 52CCT blog. You have until Friday 23rd October to enter.

Saturday, 10 October 2020

A krafty blue deer

Majda has chosen blue, white and kraft for her colour pick on 52 Christmas Card Throwdown.

I usually struggle to use kraft card, and end up die cutting it. This time I went for a different approach and used the kraft as my base.

Starting with two pieces (in case one went wrong), I stamped across each in gesso, using a wooden tree stamp I bought second hand.


I added a moon with gesso on a sponge, masking the trees. I used two different sizes of moon mask to see how they looked.


For the blue, I dabbed distress oxides out onto my craft mat - broken china, faded jeans and chipped sapphire. I spritzed then swooshed the top of the card through.

I wiped the ink off the moon.

When they dried, I stamped a holly deer from Clarity onto each in versamark, and heat embossed in white. The different sized moons meant I had to position one higher and one lower for them to look right.

At this point I wasn't sure I liked them, they didn't have the feel I'd anticipated. However, when I cut them down to size (17x11.9cm for a 5x7 card blank) they came together somehow.

I framed each with a snowflake border wooden stamp. I mixed the gesso and heat embossing for a less uniform look.

I decided for the sentiment to use a blue drop shadow behind white embossing. Should be easy! However, I couldn't get the cobalt archival ink to dry - it must have been the surface. So the embossing powder stuck to my drop shadow as well as to the versamark. I brushed it off and tried heating to dry it, then left it overnight, then used my antistatic bag (which to be fair is nearly empty). In the end I had to leave it for a day then smother it in talcum powder to get the powder just where I wanted it.

To finish, I edged in the cobalt archival and mounted on the card blank.


These have ended up with a delicacy that I think is pretty, and are quite atmospheric. I don't often make scenes, this is the closest I get!

To join in with our colour challenge, head to the 5CCT blog. This challenge is open until Friday 16th October.