Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Learning to use Copic Markers

I LOVE to color. Markers, crayons, colored pencils, paint, any medium makes me happy. I have a fairly large collection of Copic markers, and I'm pretty good at one-dimensional coloring, but I'm not very good at blending. And that's kind of what they are for, right?

I'm a big fan of Jennifer McGuire's cards; she does the most beautiful coloring! So when she announced that she was doing an online Copic class at http://onlinecardclasses.com/with a few other artists, I signed up that very day. It started this week and it is SO FUN! I've spent the last three evenings watching videos, reading up about techniques, and coloring my fingers off. Here are some of my practice pieces from the last few days.

Day 1: Blending Basics
Today was the intro, get your feet wet and learn the basics. I apologize in advance for some of my color choices!  I had better luck at blending some colors then others, but it just takes more practice.
Copic Class Practice Sheet, Day 1

Day 2: Blending Tricks
Today we learned additional methods for blending colors, especially blending colors from different families. I don't know how well I did with some of the birds, but I LOVED coloring the butterflies. I can see myself doing a few more sheets of those! My first one, the purple/blue one, I had some issues. But I think I got the hang of it on the last two!!
Copic Class Practice Sheet, Day 2

Day 3: Get More Mileage Out of Your Markers
Tonight, we learned what a difference it can make to add a little gray. I have a couple of the gray markers, but I haven't really known what to do with them. As an example, my first two cups in the top row use the same colors. The one on the left is three RV markers, a light, medium, and dark. The one on the left, I used the light and medium RV markers but added gray to make the shadow. They both are pretty, it just depends on whether you want a brighter cup or one that is a little more photo-realistic.
Copic Class Practice Sheet, Day 3

That's what I have to show so far. We still have 10 days of lessons to go; I can't wait to see what else I will learn! If you are interested, you can still sign up; all the materials will be available even if you sign up after the "live" class is finished.

Friday, September 5, 2014

Gift Card Holder Tutorial

It was brought to my attention recently that I never posted the tutorial for the gift card holder from this post.  So sorry!!  Here it is, I hope it helps!

Downloadable PDF:  Gift Card Holder Tutorial


Monday, September 1, 2014

Embossing Folder Background

Howdy!!  I know it's been a long time since I posted; I've spent a lot of time collecting these past several months and not as much time crafting.  But I spent Labor Day getting my craft on, and boy was it fun!

Today I wanted to share a fun way to make a background using embossing folders and ink.  I love embossing folders; they add a lot of dimension to cards.  But you can also use them to make colored backgrounds for your cards; it's fun and easy!!  

Here are three examples I made, using different Stampin' Up! embossing folders, each with a different color combo:
Colors used:
Honeycomb folder: Crushed Curry, Tangerine Tango, and Real Red.  
Vintage Wallpaper folder: Crushed Curry, Old Olive, and Midnight Muse
Stylish Stripes folder: Rich Razzleberry and Midnight Muse

To do this technique, you will need the following:
  • Embossing folder
  • 1 or more Ink pad
  • Sponges or ink daubers
  • Spray bottle or mister with water
  • Watercolor paper
  • Paper towels
And here's the instructions:
  1. Determine which side of your embossing folder you want to use.  If you aren't sure what it will look like, you can experiment first with some paper towels to get an idea of what it will look like.
  2. Using a sponge or ink dauber, tap ink onto the inside of your embossing folder.  You can use a single color, or you can mix two or more colors that blend well together. Make sure you work from the lightest color to the darkest, to avoid color transfer to your daubers or ink pads. 
  3. When you are happy with how the folder is inked, mist it lightly with water.  Make sure it is wet enough to activate the ink, but not too wet.  If you get it too wet, the pattern will blur.
  4. Place the watercolor paper in the folder and close the folder.  Rub it all over with your fingers or a brayer.
  5. Open the embossing folder and carefully remove the paper.  Depending on how saturated you would like the color, blot the paper with a paper towel
  6. Let it dry, and you have a beautiful background!
You can get different looks, depending on whether you blot the paper and how long you let it sit before you blot:
The longer you let the ink sit before blotting, the darker and more saturated it will be.  If you blot it as soon as you remove the paper from the folder, you will have a more muted, pastel look.  

Finally, each embossing folder can do two different looks, depending on which side of the embossing folder you use: the embossed side or the debossed side.  Both can be fun, it just depends on what you need for your project!! 
I hope you enjoyed this technique.  Happy crafting!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Stampin' Llamas Holiday Blog Hop!





Welcome to the Stampin' Llamas Holiday Blog Hop!!


Happy Thanksgiving!  Merry Christmas!  OK, it's a little early for that.  But it's time to start thinking about holiday cards; if I don't start soon, I won't be mailing them until after New Year's!

Following the order of the seasons, I will show you my fall/Thanksgiving card first.

 
Stampin' Up! products used:
Stamps: French Foliage, Day of Gratitude.  Cardstock: Riding Hood Red, Old Olive, Pumpkin Pie, Very Vanilla.  Ink: Riding Hood Red, Old Olive.  Accessories: Antique Brads.  Tools: Watercolor Wonder Crayons, 3/16" Corner punch, Decorative Label punch.
Other products: twine.

I love, love, love the French Foliage set.  And I had so much fun playing with this set with Watercolor Wonder Crayons.  For this card, I used the crayons directly on the stamps.  I used Real Red, Cajun Craze, a tiny bit of More Mustard, and some Old Olive and Garden Green and blended the colors together to look like fall leaves.  After you've colored the stamp, lightly spritz it with water to activate the watercolors and stamp on watercolor paper.  It takes a bit of practice to figure out the right amount of water to use; too much and your image is blotchy.  Too little, and not all the color transfers.  So if your first try doesn't look right, don't give up.  Practice a little and you'll soon have beautiful leaves!



This next card uses the Christmas Lodge set from the Holiday mini.

Stampin' Up! products used:
Stamps: Christmas Lodge.  Cardstock: Brushed Silver, Night of Navy, Whisper White.  Ink: Versamark.  Accessories: Silver Stampin' Emboss Powder, Whisper White Organza Ribbon.  Tools: Big Shot, Top Note Big Shot die, Heat Tool, 3/16" Corner punch.  

I heat embossed the lodge stamp and the Happy Holidays stamp with Silver Stampin' Emboss Powder.  When you stamp the lodge on white paper, the "snow" is the correct color.  However, on the Night of Navy paper, it doesn't look like snow.  So I used Dazzling Details to color in all the snowy areas.  I think it's perfect since a new snow glistens anyway!  I used the Top Note die to cut both the Night of Navy and the Brushed Silver cardstock.  I then carefully cut along the dotted line on the Night of Navy piece so that I could mat it with the Brushed Silver.  For the Happy Holidays piece, I used the corner rounder punch so that it "matched" the flowing lines of the top note die.  It looked a bit naked on its own, so I used a bit of Whisper White Organza ribbon to help set it off.



My last project is a gift card holder!
 Outside:

Open the first fold:

Fully Opened:

Another angle, to see the fully opened card:

Stampin' Up! Products Used:
Stamps: Forest Festivities.  Cardstock: Old Olive, Real Red, Tempting Turquoise, Whisper White.  Ink: Black StazOn, Daffodil Delight, Early Espresso, Old Olive, Pumpkin Pie, Real Red, Rich Razzleberry, Soft Suede, Tempting Turquoise.  Tools: Simply Scored Scoring Tool, 1-3/4" Scallop Circle punch, 1-3/8" Circle punch, Word Window punch, Sticky Strip, Blender Pens.  

I used several images from the Forest Festivities set and colored them with Blender Pens.  I will post a (free) tutorial later this week on how to make this gift card holder.

I hope you enjoyed my projects!!  Next up on the Stampin' Llamas Holiday Blog hop is Jackie!  Thanks for visiting and have a great day!

Friday, September 9, 2011

Stampin' Llamas First Blog Hop!

Welcome to the second stop on the Stampin' Llamas Blog Hop!  We will be working our way through the Stampin' Up! 2011-2012 Idea Book and Catalog (IB&C).  The hop is just beginning, so we're still in the first section of the catalog, the Hostess section!  Enjoy!

My first card was made with the Simply Soft stamp set.  This is my favorite stamp set in the entire catalog.  These images just beg for coloring!  I cut a circle from watercolor paper with the 3" Circle Sizzix die.  I stamped an image from the Simply Soft stamp set on the watercolor paper with StazOn ink and colored it with Watercolor Wonder Crayons and an Aqua Painter.  The scallop circle layer was cut with the Scallop Circle #2 Sizzix die.  I stamped another one of the Simply Soft stamps (I call it the dandelion stamp) several times on Very Vanilla cardstock with Crumb Cake ink to make a background for the Thanks (from the Thank You Kindly stamp set).

Stampin' Up! products used:
Stamps: Simply Soft, Thank You Kindly; Cardstock: Island Indigo, Tangerine Tango, Very Vanilla; Ink: Black StazOn, Crumb Cake, Island Indigo; Ribbon: Lucky Limeade Ruffled Ribbon; Tools: Aqua Painters, Blender Pen, Watercolor Wonder Crayons, Big Shot, 3" Circle die, Scallop Circles #2 die

I wanted to have a "dandelion" on the inside of the card as well.  I didn't want to use watercolor paper on the inside, but I still wanted to watercolor my image.  So, I stamped on Very Vanilla cardstock and used blender pens with the Watercolor Wonder Crayons.  I really like the effect; it is a bit softer, more like colored pencils. 


My second card was made using the Faith In Nature stamp set.  I wanted some randomly stamped leaves behind the sentiment.  Old Olive straight from the ink pad would be a bit dark behind Early Espresso and make it a little hard to read.  To lighten up the color a bit, I double-stamped it.  I inked up my stamp and then I stamped once on my Grid Paper to remove some of the ink.  Then, without reinking my stamp, I stamped on the Whisper White.  That gave me a lighter shade of Old Olive that doesn't overshadow the Early Espresso sentiment.

For the frame, I found it easier to cut my paper before I emboss it.  I cut out the center of the Old Olive cardstock with a craft knife.  I carefully centered the frame on my Perfect Polka Dots Embossing Folder and ran it through the Big Shot.  I made a bow with the Whisper White Organza Ribbon and wrapped the ends of the bow around the frame.  Finally, I used Stampin' Dimensionals to pop the frame off the page.


Stampin' Up! products used:
Stamps: Faith In Nature; Cardstock: Early Espresso, Old Olive, Whisper White; Ink: Early Espresso, Old Olive; Ribbon: Whisper White Organza; Tools: Big Shot, Perfect Polka Dots Embossing Folder. 
Other produts used: Craft knife, cutting mat

That's all I have for you today!!  The next stop on the hop is Martha over at matilliestamps.blogspot.com.  Have a great weekend!