In recent visits to the card shop I’ve noticed the “high end” cards are extremely simple. A white card with a paper cutout, maybe some ink here and there and not much else. Oh but you do get a plain white envelope and a sales receipt for five dollars. Make your own cards, exercise your creative side, and wow the people you’re sending greetings to.
This kind of project utilizes some basic materials many crafters will already have in their arsenal. A black inkpad, foam tape or dimensional adhesive of some kind, rubber stamps, glue, and scissors. For coloring purposes you can use what ever you are comfortable with. Chalk pastels, colored pencils, crayons, watercolor paint or pencils, even markers. A final touch of a plastic jewel, a sequin, or anything else that catches your eye completes the project.
You can create your own note size card by cutting a standard 8 ½” x 11″ piece of cardstock in half, the long way or the short way, it doesn’t matter. Fold the half sheet in half. You can also buy prepackaged blank cards with envelopes ready to be embellished at your local craft store. Colors tend to b e seasonal. For Valentine’s Day you may luck out and find a craft store with leftover red from Christmas on clearance.
Step one of this extremely uncomplicated task is to stamp your image in the middle of the card with the black ink. The more simple the stamp the more your piece will look like the ones in the store. You can eyeball it, measure it, or you can even use a Stamp-A-Majig if you’re obsessive about placement. I just lay the cards out and stamp away like you see in a movie. This particular stamp is from the Olive You set by Stampin’ Up®.
Step two is where colored markers can be useful but are not necessary. You need to stamp the same image again on a white card stock. I didn’t like the black ink with this particular stamp because the pimento would have been black and that was just unappetizing to me. With dark green marker in hand I colored the appropriate colors onto the olive part of the stamp. Green olive, red pimento, stamp on white. Because I used the markers I only colored the olive part of the stamp, as that is the only part I needed. If you are using an inkpad you may have to stamp the entire image.
Now you have your colored outline of the olive ready for color. With your choice of coloring implement you’re on your way. I used Stampin’ Up® Stampin’ pastels which are chalk. I applied them with a miniature pom-pom held in an alligator clip on a dowel. Of course you could use the old standby cotton swab if you’re so inclined. A little green a little red, done. Again the simplicity of this item is what makes it attractive so the less complicated the color pattern the better.
Now I cut it out, just the olive. I left the slightest white boarder around the piece. This will help you not cut into the image and it will give an added depth to the card when you mount it. I used foam tape cut a tiny sliver of it to fit on the back of the olive and placed it right over the olive already stamped on the card. Pop-up glue dots are another popular dimensional tool.
Step back look at your work. Amazing isn’t it? I bet it was more fun than handing over your five dollars and getting a receipt too. You’re almost finished. I used some plastic gems I had laying around that were just the right size and shape as part of the stamp. With my favorite adhesive I stuck one over the black heart outline. It was perfection. If you don’t have a jewel you can use glitter, dimensional colored glue, a paper punch, or a sequin. Again, the big idea is to keep it simple and neat.