Friday, 18 October 2019

Nature's Beauty gets the feminine touch

Add a feminine touch to the Nature's Beauty stamp set by using a piece of floral Designer Series Paper. This is from the Perennial Essence collection, which has a distinctive impressionist vibe.

This is the gorgeous Nature's Beauty stamp set - buy this and you'll be supporting Mental Heath Europe, which will receive £2.50 from the sale of each stamp set sold in Europe. If you're in a different market, ask your demonstrator which mental health charity will benefit.

Don't attempt to glue your ribbon down – it looks more natural when it's appears to be free. I simply taped this piece of ribbon at the back, then tied the embellishment around it using linen thread.

Wednesday, 16 October 2019

#Simplestamping for Christmas with Peaceful Boughs

Peaceful Boughs has definitely become my go-to stamp set for Christmas projects.

We used it at my Crafty Friday session last week to make this beautiful shaker dome pizza box but it's just as good for simpler projects such as this one. This would be a great design for mass producing Christmas cards as it's just one layer, stamped, with some ribbon around it, stuck onto a pre-cut foil-edged card. Quick and easy, but pretty effective.

If you want to create the one-layer look, use a fairly pale green ink for the boughs; I've used Pear Pizzazz here with Soft Suede pine cones stamped on top. I've tried all of the darker greens and the pine cones don't stand out enough. 

Monday, 14 October 2019

Pizza box with shaker dome lid

Let's start the week off with an over-the-top, complicated project, shall we? Actually it's not as complicated as it first appears; it's just that I've overstuffed my dome and didn't have enough pizza boxes to make another one.

In fact, the hardest part of this project was cutting out the dome shape from the lid of the pizza box as you have to get through quite a lot of layers and the inside of the box has a plastic coating to make it food safe. Once that was done, it was just a case of assembling the pieces in the right order.

When die-cutting foil, you need either a really unblemished cutting plat on top, or a piece of scrap paper to protect it. Otherwise you will get imprints from the plate in the delicate foil surface. 


Sunday, 13 October 2019

Nature's Beauty: masculine/feminine

Oops, looks like Friday’s project didn’t post! Anyway, better late than never and yes, I know I've shared a card with this very same design before but I just can't get enough of it and wanted to show you how it can look in different colourways.

Here I made a masculine version using Come Sail Away Designer Series Paper as the background, and a feminine version using polka dot pink paper from Bird Ballad. In both cases, I sponged around the edges and bottom of the DSP to give it some depth.

Even Sahara Sand was a little too dark for this project, so I stamped off onto scrap paper first. Using the Stamparatus meant I could line the stamp up perfectly to repeat the image and create a subtle background for my woodland creatures.

Wednesday, 9 October 2019

Simple Stamping with Animal Outing

As a Stampin’ Up!® demonstrator, you can imagine that I have a pretty impressive stash of craft supplies and the temptation is always there to as much as possible for each project.

But sometimes it’s good to scale things back and show that crafting doesn't have to be complicated at all. These little cards (they’re half-sized so you get four from a full sheet of cardstock) use just stamps, ink, cardstock, watercolour pencils and blender pens... and that last item is optional. Ok I confess I used the Stamparatus, too – but I was making a LOT of these!

If you're not sure where to add shading when colouring an image, be guide by the original artist. Look for the shading on the stamped image – under the chin, between the legs, etc – and add your darker colouring there. 

Monday, 7 October 2019

Peaceful Boughs with Feels Like Frost

The fact that I have pine cones in every project photo should give you a clue that I love woodlands... which is why Peaceful Boughs was the first stamp set to go on my shopping list when I saw the Autumn/Winter catalogue back in August.

I’ve patiently held off with the set until now as I know my customers’ enthusiasm for Christmas projects doesn’t start quite as early as mine, but this is my stamp set of the month for October so there's no more holding back!

I’ve been creating lots of projects with this beautiful bundle. I can’t show many just yet as they are for classes and events to be held this month but this is one that didn’t make the cut. I’ve used the gorgeous Feels Like Frost Designer Series Paper (every sheet has a silver foil design on the reverse) and the new Hammered Metal 3D Embossing Folder, too.

When using embossing paste, be aware that it soaks up any ink beneath it. One way to reduce this is to apply a thin layer first and allow it to dry before applying thicker paste on top. 

Friday, 4 October 2019

Shabby chic Nature's Beauty cards for a team celebration

I’m still getting lots of mileage from the Nature’s Beauty stamp set - which is raising money for Mental Health Europe and other mental health charities around the world.

I used it here to celebrate my team members this month and combined it with Countdown to Christmas - can you even tell I've used a festive stamp set?

I've repeated the background stamp in Mint Macaron on the card base of the same colour. By twisting and turning the stamp, it doesn't matter if I overlap or the image doesn't quite fit because it gives it a vintage “shabby chic” look. 

Wednesday, 2 October 2019

Rusty old cogs with Garage Gears dies

I've wanted to have a play with these cogs for a long time but couldn't justify getting the whole bundle - and this is one case where three of the dies just wouldn't work well without the co-ordinating stamps.

Downline to the rescue again! One of my team members, Ian, kindly die-cut some cogs for me so I could make this card for a cyclist friend's birthday.

I used a really fun technique which was demonstrated by Kim Fee at OnStage Birmingham last November; the technique stuck with me and I've been eager to try it.

You start with a cog - mine was made from Crumb Cake cardstock - and sponge in your chosen colours. I used Early Espresso, Copper and Cajun Craze. As you go along, you add some Versamark and clear embossing powder, then brush some off, randomly. Repeat and you get this lovely rusty effect.

The cogs can be cut apart if you’re careful. The small cog looked a little ropy when I detached it from the main die-cut, so I simply hid the ropey bits behind the greeting. Nobody will know unless you’re like me and tell them!

And I've said it before but don't feel bound to stick to Suites and products designed to co-ordinate with each other. For the background of this card I used an image from Countdown to Christmas – you wouldn't know it was a Christmas stamp set. 


The small print

This is my personal blog and my sole responsibility as an Independent Stampin' Up!® demonstrator. All images are © Stampin' Up!® All content including photographs, projects and text are © Helen Read, unless otherwise stated. Please feel free to copy my ideas for your personal use and inspiration - if you are a SU demonstrator you may use these ideas for your events but please give credit where it is due. Please do not use my ideas for monetary gain, competitions or publication. The images on this blog - including blog buttons - should not be copied and used elsewhere on the internet or on CDs.