Saturday, 5 August 2017
Our new Christmas Card Throwdown is here! The challenge is "Tropical Christmas".
I am very frustrated as I got most of the way through a card last weekend, but when I came to finish it today I couldn't find it! We're having a massive sort out for building work, so it must have got caught up in something we've tidied away - it'll turn up eventually. Here's the photo of where I'd got to.
So I found myself this evening with a card to make from scratch!
Fortunately, I received a happy parcel in the post yesterday - 6 distress oxides! So I've had a play with those.
Using watercolour card, I applied cracked pistachio, broken china, fossilised amber and fired brick directly to the card, then spritzed with water to move it around - it really is amazing how they change and react to water. I dried with the heat gun, then applied the colour to an acrylic block, spritzed, and applied over the card. I dried again, and repeated. As the colours are opaque, they build up nicely.
(No photos of the stages I'm afraid, I was trying to be quick!)
I cut the card down to size for a 6x6 card blank, and added more red in a pale area. I stamped a lily into one corner - a very tropical flower! - using archival black ink. This is a wooden block stamp I've had for ages. I painted the lily with wilted violet, then added a bit of fired brick, mixing the two on a craft sheet. Once dried, I added fossilised amber in the centre.
I stamped the Clarity ribbon Merry Christmas above the lily, and painted the letters with fired brick and wilted violet. This is where I found how forgiving the distress oxides are. Where I went outside the lines, they lift off easily with water, and once dry I could paint outside the letters with the background colour and the opacity disguised the overshoot.
To finish off, I went over the lily with a permanent black pen, as I wasn't happy with the stamping, edged in black sharpie, and added clear sparkle pen to the centre of the lily and the letters.
So, a quick and simple card, hopefully the tropical colours (which the camera has bleached a little) and lily meet the challenge criteria!
I was having so much fun with the oxides I decided to keep going, and made a thank you card for some friends who we'd seen while they were visiting from the states in May, and who'd subsequently sent a far too generous parcel for our daughter.
I made two more backgrounds in the same way as above, adding the wilted violet into the mix.
I stamped the Clarity ribbon Thank you onto one piece (using the Tim Holtz stamping platform, which is as well as it didn't stamp well on the first go). I painted in the letters as before, then trimmed it down to a small square. I trimmed the other piece to a larger square to back it. One side of the larger piece was a little plain, so I added more of the wilted violet with an acrylic block. I edged both pieces with the black sharpie and mounted. I added the sparkle pen to the letters again.
It looked a little flat at this point, so I got a small amount of white gesso and painted a tiny amount around the letters, to the right and underneath, and smudged it in. It added a bit of dimension and just lifted the letters a touch.
Inside the card, I stamped the Thank You again, using a mixture of the oxides.
I realised as soon as I'd done it, that using the stamp platform would have made this a lot easier and by doing multiple stampings I would have avoided risking contaminating my ink pads. Ah well, live and learn, I'll remember next time I hope!
To join in with our Tropical Christmas challenge, head over to the Christmas Card Throwdown. You have until midnight BST on Friday 18th August to enter. I look forward to seeing your interpretations of our theme.