Penny Black Spring Celebration!

Happy Spring for those of you in the Northern Hemisphere! Today, I’m sharing a spring-themed card inspired by a card design of Heather Telford’s.


To begin, I stamped the Penny Black Sweetness [#40-208] background stamp on watercolor paper with Versamark ink and heat embossed it with white embossing powder. I applied several Distress Ink colors to the floral area. Any ink that went on to the embossed area was easily wiped away. After the panel dried, I ironed off the embossing. I cut the panel into squares, arranging them on a card base. I applied white embossing paste through a one-time stencil I created with one of the dragonflies in the Flutters [#51-006] die cut set. I finished the card with a sentiment stamped in gold ink from the Special Wishes [#30-229] set. I tried a couple of other color inks, including green and cocoa brown, before choosing the gold ink for the sentiment. I wanted something soft and elegant.

Did you know that Penny Black offers a free membership for all of their fans?  Simply join the Penny Black club by clicking HERE so you can get a first peek at new releases, blogging events, new card and scrapbooking ideas, and receive card ideas with step-by-step instructions.

I’m delighted to be sharing cards in an upcoming “Three Steps” feature to club members.

three steps


Penny Black Cityscape Scene

Ever since seeing Julie Ebersole’s fabulous card, using the Penny Black “A Day in Paris” stamp set, in the Online Card Classes CAS 3 course, I’ve been wanting to made a card with a scene.

Using stamps from the Penny Black Fashion Tweet [#30-233] set and a stencil made with the Penny Black Silver Linings [#51-033] die cut, I created a birthday card.


The car, the cake, a few of the windows, and the horizon line were painted with various stamp inks and a brush. I used as little water as possible since the card base is cardstock, rather than watercolor paper. For the clouds, I used a sponge dauber to apply ink through the stencil I made with the die cut. (It’s the smaller of the two clouds in the set.)

To finish the card, I stamped the “#celebrate” sentiment, included with the stamp set, on a red cardstock rectangle, which I adhered inside the card. This card makes me want to say “beep, beep”!

CAS3: Day Nine

I took the day off yesterday from the Clean & Simple Cardmaking 3 class. Well, technically, I tried a few things that didn’t work out the way I’d planned. One of those “fails” is incorporated into today’s card, which is based on the one shared in class by Debby Hughes.


I made a few changes with the way I created my card. Rather than stamp and color a butterfly, as Debby did, I die cut a butterfly (Memory Box Vivienne Butterfly) that I inlaid into the panel. I backed the front panel with a heat-embossed and watercolored panel using the Penny Black Sweetness stamp (that was a project from yesterday which didn’t go according to plan). The butterfly was also cut from watercolor paper onto which I had scribbled some Distress ink. The front panel was stamped with a sentiment from the Hero Arts “Enjoy Today” set. I adding embossing paste with a Simon Says Stamp stencil.

I made the white panel three times. The first time I added some spray drops, as Debby did, and I didn’t like the effect at all. The second time, I got embossing paste in places I didn’t want! Third time’s a charm I guess!

CAS3: Day Seven

I’m sharing a card inspired by one shown by Jennifer Rzasa in today’s Clean & Simple Cardmaking 3 lesson. Jennifer’s card featured a beautiful painted feather.


I wanted the simplicity of stamping (and wasn’t sure I could pull off painting a feather!). I stamped my sentiment, and then used a brush to apply some water to the paper. I colored the cityscape stamp with the Pitt Big Brush and stamped into the wet watercolor paper. The result was a subtle blur. I wanted to keep some of the cityscape detail. This is definitely a technique I’ll use for other stamps. From my brief investigation, it seems to work better with rubber stamps than clear ones.


Kristina Werner CASE – Lucky Leprechaun

I’m on a mission to improve my coloring of images, and lately I’ve been on a watercoloring kick. I’m absolutely in awe of the talent out there when it comes to coloring! I was delighted that Kristina Werner posted a card on her Color Wednesday segment using the cute leprechaun from Paper Smooches in time for Saint Patrick’s Day!


Kristina used Distress Ink markers to color her leprechaun. I used both markers and ink pads for the colors. She had more advanced coloring for the leprechaun’s coat and his beard, combining two colors. I stuck with just one color! I really appreciate having a project to CASE in which the colors are already decided, and I can watch a video to see how the color is applied.

CAS 3: Day Five

Okay, confession time – this isn’t a single layer card! I decided that I’d “cheat” a bit today to get the technique, shown by Jennifer McGuire in today’s Clean & Simple Cardmaking 3 lesson, under my belt without all of the work.


I cut the panel out of Distress Watercolor paper, heat embossed the sentiment (from the Hero Arts Fancy Basics set) and then applied Salty Ocean and Peacock Feathers Distress Inks with a brush. As instructed, I ironed the sentiment to remove the embossing when the panel was dry. I added some stitching to the panel with Lil’ Inker dies to give it a more finished look. Unfortunately, because the watercolor paper is thicker than cardstock, you can really see the lines from the edge of the die. I’d have to redo my embossing sandwich in order to eliminate those lines. Live and Learn!

I applied the watercolor panel to a panel that was heat-embossed using the Hero Arts Five-Line background stamp. I wanted a little texture for that base panel.


Penny Black Stenciling on Watercolor

When I saw Alexandra’s use of the Penny Black Verdant stencil on a watercolored background, I couldn’t wait to try the technique. She included her panel on a scrapbooking page; I adhered mine to a cardstock base for a card.


I created my watercolor background with a combination of Distress Inks in shades of blue. I picked the ink up from my craft mat, after diluting it a bit, and brushed the ink onto the watercolor paper. After the watercolor panel dried, I carefully taped the Penny Black Verdant stencil [#25-003] and applied Faber Castell Whipped Spackle. The embossing paste dries quite quickly. I die cut the “Hugs” from Penny Black’s Love Expressions [#51-025] set twice to give the sentiment a bit more depth.

What’s fun about this technique is that every card is different!

Card Concept Challenge #4

I’m playing along with the Card Concept Challenge – Use a Floral Theme with a CAS card. I was inspired by the coral color in the inspiration image, as well as the floral motif.


I colored watercolor paper with three colors of Distress Ink. I simply smooshed the ink onto my craft sheet and lifted the color with a brush that I had dipped in water. (I tried this technique on cardstock and it did not work nearly as well as with the watercolor paper!) After the paper dried, I stamped the Blooming Meadow stamp with Versamark ink and heat set it with white embossing powder. I added a sentiment heat embossed with gold powder on vellum and attached the panel to a kraft card base.


Tim Holtz November Tags

Since taking the Online Card Classes Tim Holtz Creative Chemistry 102 class, I am continuing to play with the techniques. For this month’s 12 Tags of 2013, Tim Holtz demonstrated the chalkboard technique we covered in class. I’m sharing two tags using this technique.

NovTag1For the first tag, I stamped the sentiment and fun retro snowflakes onto the tag. The Santa was silver embossed, cut with the matching Sizzix die, and added to the tag with dimensional adhesive. I finished the tag off with tinsel twine, trimmings, and a Christmas Muse Token.


For the second tag, I stamped the blueprint onto the black tag with Versamark, and again on Ranger watercolor paper with Archival ink. I colored the toy soldier with a variety of distress inks, both from the pads and from markers. I prefer to scribble onto my craft sheet and lift the ink off with a water brush, rather than put the ink directly on the paper. I added some Seasonal Chitchat that I distressed around the edges with Black Soot distress ink. For the top and bottom of the tag, I dry embossed red Core’dination cardstock with the Candy Stripes folder to which I’d applied Distress Embossing Ink in the way that Tim shows in this post. I heat set white embossing powder and then distressed it lightly with a sanding block.

Penny Black: Just Relax

Although I can tell fall is in the air and Labor Day is just around the corner (the unofficial end of summer), I wanted to create another card with the Penny Black Summer Fun 30-107 stamp set.

LawnChairsCardSquarewebI stamped the lawn chair with Versafine and heat embossed it with clear powder. Using Derwent Inktense watercolor pencils and Ink Potion No. 9, I colored the chairs in bright colors. In my previous card with this set, I used circles of different sizes to create variety. In this case, I used repetition to strengthen the design.

Have a terrific week and enjoy these last few weeks of summer!