Sunday, 24 June 2018

Start with wood...

Oh dear, I'm late again with my 52 Christmas Card Throwdown card.

Andreja has chosen "Wood Background" as the stash challenge for June, so our design team have come up with some really lovely, natural looking, cards for inspiration. 

Here's my contribution.

For my wood background, I used kraft card and the wood design embossing folder from Sheena Douglas' textures collection.

I tried two approaches. I painted one sheet of kraft with white gesso first, the other I left plain. I added distress ink to the folder before embossing - brushed corduroy and crushed olive on the gessoed card, then the darker walnut stain on the plain kraft.

Love this! I've used the plain card this time, but I love the white washed look too, this would go well with dark red toppers.

For these cards I use iced spruce - I love this colour, a neutral that isn't a neutral, so pretty and versatile.

I firstly stamped this great scene from Hobby Art, using distress ink. I then used a water brush to add shade, picking up the same ink from my craft mat.

For my other cards, I used the distress oxide in iced spruce to stamp. I cut each image out with a die.

I didn't use all of these today, but the spares have gone in the  stash for another time.

For each card, I cut the wood background to size, then mounted onto white card, with an iced spruce edge. I wrapped lace and string round, then added the toppers using foam tape to lift above the string. I then added the lot to square card blanks - 7x7 for the two Christmas cards, and 8x8 for the birthday card, which is for my husband's aunt.

Simple and clean, showcasing the wood background and the gorgeous image.

A mixture of images here. I added a bit of foliage to the dragonfly (a Sheena stamp), masking the outside to give a straight edge, to add interest to that square. The sentiment is die cut from a spare scrap of the wood background.

Very simple, using a square stamp as it comes (I don't know the make). I think this one would look good in dark red on the white washed wood background.

To join in with this challenge head over to the 52CCT blog. As there are 5 Saturdays in June, you have two weeks, it closes on Friday 6th July. Enjoy playing and experimenting, I'd love to see what you come up with.

Monday, 18 June 2018


I'm a bit late posting my 52 Christmas Card Throwdown card this week - the photo went up on Saturday, but not the blog behind it.

Andreja has chosen "Wreaths" as her theme challenge.

I wanted to do a multicoloured repeating pattern with this, but time wasn't on my side this week - lots on at work and at home!

So I went for a simpler design - not sure I'm that taken with the result, although the idea could work better with a few more tries I think.

For the wreaths, I made a black and white background to die cut. I used sentiment stamps, mostly from Clarity, and memento black ink, first, second and third generation.

For the background, I wanted bright colours to contrast, and square shapes to contrast with the round curly wreaths. I looked for my abstract squares stencil from Clarity, which has lots of different size squares and rectangles, but couldn't find it - that's the second one I've realised is missing. Hopefully when I eventually organise my stash they'll turn up!

So I used the framework squares instead, the result wasn't quite the same though. I used brushed corduroy, crushed olive and aged mahogany distress inks, with a Clarity stencil brush.

I edged the background with a black sharpie.

I arranged the wreaths on the background, cutting off the overhang and using it on the opposite side.

To finish I used my favourite tattered lace sentiment die, cut simply from black.

To join in, head over to the 52CCT blog. This challenge ends on Friday 22nd June.

Saturday, 9 June 2018

So simple in the end!

This week's challenge on the 52 Christmas Card Throwdown is colour:

I have to admit I really struggled with this one. I started (went quite a long way) down the road of texture paste words with various mediums over them - this is where I got to:

Four cards nearly done, I like elements of all of them, but none of them quite right. And too tired and uninspired to "rescue" any of them - maybe I'll come back to one or two later!

So I went for something simple.

A brusho background in yellow, orange and brilliant red:

And a Clarity stamp in fired brick distress oxide:

And there's my card, so easy but I like it a lot more than the ones I'd been working on for ages!

If you'd like to have a go with these sunny colours, head over to 52CCT - the challenge closes Friday 15th June.

I hope you get on with them better than me!

Sunday, 3 June 2018

Gel plate sketch

I'm a little late posting my card for Andreja's first challenge as host of 52CCT this month.

As usual, we kick off with a sketch.

I had such a fun session last Monday, making backgrounds with my gel plates, acrylic paints and some stencils. 

But I couldn't think how to use these for the sketch immediately, so made some more in more uniform colours.

And then I ran out of time, and was away for a few days, so have only just got around to finishing the cards!

In the meantime, I've had an idea of how to use the multicoloured backgrounds without it all being too much - use black!

I cut strips of black card to make the vertical and horizontal banners, then used dies to cut the circle (I didn't have concentrical oval dies!) and sentiment (an old favourite from Tattered Lace - I must get the Happy Birthday equivalent).

I then cut the sentiment again from gold and layered as a drop shadow (or highlight) to help the sentiment stand out.

I layered onto black to frame, then onto a 6x6 card base.

I like the drama the black creates.

Not wanting to waste the other backgrounds, I did make up the card with the green and purple backgrounds (the other multicoloured ones are in the stash).

I cut the green for the base layer and oval, then the purple for the banners and sentiment.

I edged the banners in purple stazon ink,and the base with a purple sharpie.

I cut the sentiment from black to give a drop shadow again.

I also cut another oval from black card to frame the green oval - I drew round the die and cut by hand.

This one went onto a 5x7 card base.

I'm not so sure about this one!

To join in with our sketch challenge, head to the 52 Christmas Card Throwdown. You have until Friday 8th June to share your card with us.