Christmas in July

Happy Christmas in July! I told you that I’d find a way to sneak some Christmas in. I love starting my Christmas cards in July because it’s low pressure and the crafting companies start debuting their Christmas products.

This year more than ever, we need a little Christmas cheer. Let’s get in the Christmas spirit with a few fun cards.

Tim Holtz poinsettia 3d embossing folder

Tim Holtz released this fabulous 3d embossing folder with his chapter 3 release. It stands alone and is perfect to get creative with. Let me show you what I’ve done with it so far.

For this first card I embossed it using my favorite mixed media paper (go take a look at that blog post). Then I water colored the image. These 3d embossing folders are perfect to color in. I started by wetting the paper first then adding color, this method spreads the paint nicely. Once dried, I continued to layer the color. I didn’t do a lot if shadowing because I was afraid of coloring outside the lines but I definitely will next time! Afraid, really HAHA. It’s paper and water. Once complete I attached it to a layering piece and adhered to the card front.

Next up is much more simple. I embossed using shiny paper. My layering piece here is bigger as it’s a 5×7 card. I used some dollar tree ribbon glued that down. Any ribbon practice I can get, I take. TIP, tie the bow before trimming from the spool.

All done! There are a million more ways to use this folder and I can’t wait to try more. Tell me what you have done for Christmas in July by leaving a comment below. Hop on over to my Instagram or Facebook @sewmuchglitter to check out what’s going on. If I have inspired you, tag me #sewmuchglitter with your version of what I have shared.

Have a great week and spread some Christmas cheer. I’ll be back this week with some great kitchen creativity.

Sewmuchglitter

Blend it out

Thanks for joining me today! If you’ve missed any of my previous posts, go check them out and leave a comment to let me know what you think. I think it’s important that we inspire each other and let our creative sides show! My last post focused on my favorite (and not so much) papers for different mediums. This one will focus on ink blending. So, let’s GO!

Let’s start with the latest Distress Oxide release……SPECKLED EGG! Distress Oxide is one of my favorite inks to blend with because it blends so well and looks great (it also has some special talent that I’ll share later). Color technique escape me sometimes but I do have a color wheel to cheat (this tells me what colors compliment each other, but ultimately when in doubt. YouTube! These color combinations were inspired by Kristina Werner, one of my go to YouTubers (when I’m in doubt of my color combos). The color combo on the left is: speckled egg, seedless preserve, and picked raspberry. You may notice my two ink cubes are distress ink and not oxide, but I used what I had and they blended well. Distress inks: dye ink, dries quickly. distress oxide: dye and pigment making it a hybrid, dries slower. The color combo on the right is: speckled egg, peacock feathers, and chipped sapphire. This color combo blended more smoothly because they are all similar colors but both combos will be great backgrounds. I did use my Canson XL mixed media paper and color blending brushes. Let’s see what’s next!

For these next backgrounds I used heavy card stock (80lb) from The Stamps of Life, this tends to pill (paper peel) because it can’t handle water or being worked over multiple times. I wanted to experiment how it would hold up, and it didn’t completely disappoint me but I will save this paper for other card making techniques in the future. For these backgrounds I used a stencil in two different ways. Remember I told you that Distress Oxide has a special talent….It’s water reactive! Let’s start on the right side: ripe persimmon and peacock feathers. I blended these two colors together then placed the stencil over the paper (secured with washi tape) and pressed a wet paper towel (a baby wipe works well too) over the stencil, as much as my paper could handle. When I removed the stencil, this was the result. It added another dimension to my background. The right side: twisted citron, worn lipstick, and dried marigold. For this technique I secured the stencil on the paper first and then blended over it. I like to use a glass mat or a craft mat when blending because it is easy clean up and I can start off the paper first for a seamless blend.

I hope you enjoyed these techniques sprinkled with tips and tricks. Let me know what your favorite color blends are in the comments below. If you try these techniques don’t forget to share to your social media and tag @sewmuchglitter and hop on over to Instagram @sewmuchglitter to see what I’ve been creating, leave me a comment and let me know what inspired you.

Oops! I almost forgot to share the details of my last technique. I used Distress Crayons on my mixed media paper and blended them out with my fingers, used the wet stencil trick on top and then die-cut the background. Making backgrounds in bulk is fun and satisfies my creative itch. Die cutting my creations creates extra elements for my projects and allows me to stock up for future card making.

Thanks for stopping by and I will be back soon with my favorite blending tools! You don’t want to miss out so remember to subscribe to the blog and find me on Facebook/Instagram. See you soon!

Let’s talk paper

Thanks for joining me. I hope everyone is safe and well. Just as we thought 2020 couldn’t get anymore challenging, we are faced with sad circumstances. On a positive note, it is great that we can still still come together to witness the revolution of space exploration. I grew up during a time that NASA was embraced and it’s exciting to see that become a reality again.

I’m not here to create a forum about our differences but here to create a place where we can share our creativity and gather inspiration. So, on that note……LET’S TALK PAPER!

We all create things differently and have different design tastes, but we still use the staples, like paper! I am a big paper crafter and have realized that not all paper is created equal. We see some retailers or influencers tell us that the paper doesn’t matter but the other products do, and we have some tell us only the paper matters. So which is it? We kind of have to figure that our on our own. I am here to share my experience with you and hope it helps guide you the next time you are walking the craft store isles.

FIRST, let’s talk watercolor paper. In my experience, this DOES matter. Water generally breaks down paper and eventually rips it. The thicker the watercolor paper, the better. There are different textures, hot or cold pressed. I’m not a scientist so I will share that Strathmore watercolor paper cold pressed 300 series is my favorite. It is thick enough to take on a lot of water and allow the colors to remain as vibrant as you want them. I am a stamping water-colorist because my free hand skills aren’t great. This paper can handle it all and remain intact. Water coloring on regular card stock, no matter how thick can be a mess. This is my best recommendation. The price point is a bit higher but so is the quality (get your coupons out!)

NEXT up let’s discuss mixed media paper. There is a world of mixed media paper to be discovered. I don’t just watercolor, so mixed media papers are my go to. Especially when Michael’s has BOGO! I’ve experimented in this area a lot. My work horse has been Canson XL mixed media paper 98 lb. I can watercolor without the paper pilling as long as I do not stay in the same area for too long (it’s not Strathmore but it’s versatile). I can use my prismacolor pencils and gamsol on this paper and I can use my alcohol markers without a problem. The price point is great too, that’s why it’s my most used.

Another mixed media paper I have tried is also a Strathmore, but mixed media (98lb) I got this at Target. Now that Target has spruced up their craft section I always have to look. This price point is a little more than the Canson XL and the quality does NOT hold up. I was very disappointed. The paper pills with very little water and it smears other mediums. I do not know if the quality was subpar because it was sold at Target or if it is just that paper. Either way, there are plenty of other products to spend your money on. Let’s talk about those!

As we keep moving along, lets address marker paper. I’m specifically referring to alcohol markers when discussing this paper but the marker world is large, so please share your experiences with me in the comments below. Ok, We’ve rounded back to Strathmore again. I LOVE their marker paper 400 series 50 lb. It is smooth, spreads the color beautifully and does not soak it in. Your projects remain vibrant and clear. Again, another great Micheal’s BOGO opportunity! This price point is comparable to that of Canson XL, so even without a sale, you get your money’s worth. On a side note, I have used Crafter’s Companion alochol marker paper and really enjoy that too. It is harder to find in retail but is sold online and HSN. I feel the better deal is the Strathmore because Hey, I make mistakes and throw things out sometimes. I don’t feel like I’m loosing with the Strathmore when that happens.

OK, those are a few of my favorite papers. I hope this helps you. The options can be overwhelming. Please share with me your favorite papers in the comments below. Don’t forget to checkout my Instagram/Facebook: @sewmuchglitter for the projects I have completed with these papers. And tag me #sewmuchglitter in the projects you have used or tried because of my recommendations. I realize this was long-winded but chats can be that way.

If there’s a project you’d love to see, tell me in the comments below. I’ll be back very soon! Checkout Instagram for sneak peeks.