Ten classes and over 40 cards later I have reached the first plateau!
This is the Final Challenge, Level One.
Select any 3 components for the Level One Classes:
1. Easy Die Cutting Techniques.
Die cutting in the past required a very large, expensive die cutting machine.
The costly dies could be as large as 8 x 10. They were made of wood, steel and foam.
Most of us would only cut dies provided at the local scrapbook store.
Now dies are easy to store and inexpensive. They have become an integral part of our craft.
Each of the cards below have a die cut element.
2. Irresistible Inking
Ink blending makes plain cardstock come to life. The cards below each have an ink-blended element. Altenew's monochromatic families of inks take the guess work out of blending from light to medium to dark. In some cards you will see ink blending with Altenew watercolor also.
3. Make it Shine
Heat embossing was the first technique I learned when I began stamping. For two years that was all I did with my little beginning collection of stamps. Seeing powder turn metallic when heated continues to be magical to me.
When a card seems to look not quite finished, a little shine usually solves the problem.
Metallic cord, sequins, Stickles or Wink of Stella can make all the difference.
Each card below has a heat embossed element.
Create a His and Her Card Set.
The cards in the His and Hers sets should have a similar and cohesive theme. The theme I've chosen for my His and Hers sets of cards is leaves. Why not? It's Fall. I love leaves. Leaves can be for either men or women.
Make packaging for the card sets. Include a recycled element in the packaging.
Two pieces of chipboard recycled from Amazon packaging were covered with cardstock. The front cover was stenciled with Berries and Leaves using Altenew inks to create a monochromatic background. The back cover was plain cardstock over the chipboard. I decided on gray tones for the man's cover and green tones for the woman's. To my eye the gray was slightly more neutral and more appropriate for a man's card.
Fantasy Floral Dies were cut from #110 white cardstock to give them stability. They were then sponged with Altenew inks. ( I am over the idea that a man's card should not have flowers.) Rock, Cool Summer Night, metallic silver and Green Fields were used on the Man's cover flower. For the woman's I selected more feminine Red Cosmos and Spring Bouquet.
The covers were wrapped with silver (Man) and gold (Woman) cord. "From me to you" (Heartfelt Sentiments) was stamped in Versafine then heat embossed clear. A Spellbinders die was used to cut the tag shape.
I used sparkle sequins on the woman's cover and matte finished sequins on the man's.
With the cards and envelopes sandwiched between chipboard covers, this should travel safely by mail in a small box or padded envelope.
These sympathy cards are traditional pinkish for girls, blueish for boys. The outline image of Leaf Canopy was stamped in VersaMark then heat embossed with gold. I used my Misti for this stamping so I could restamp a couple times. The watercolor paper is not smooth. It takes more than one stamping to get a complete image. I dropped water inside each leaf then added pink or blue Altenew watercolor in two shades and let it do it's thing. Sometimes it would fill the entire leaf and sometimes some white would be left.
The sentiment from Wild Flower Garden was heat-embossed gold.
Again I used my Misti to stamp VersaMark 2 or 3 times to get a good image on the bumpy water color paper.
The cards are double matted so there is an edge of gold to give the cards a more cohesive look.
I sprinkled gold Altenew Metallic water color on the card fronts.
Behind my studio door is this former Amazon Shipping box. I have used it for so many projects and so many colors that I almost get sentimental about it.
In the next cards I used color and texture to differentiate the man's for the woman's card.
The man's card is framed with a wood-grain cardstock that has been distressed with brown inks.
The woman's card has a crisp white frame.
Both frames are popped with double sided foam tape.
The Leaves and Berries stencil is colored with Altenew shades of browns and rust on the man's card.
For the lady's card I selected the more vivid greens and magenta.
The Misi made it possible to stamp the "You" at least 3 times so it would be totally solid and bold.
The heat-embossed sentiments are even different. "You Rock" just sounds more like a guy. "You Amaze Me" is something a woman might be more likely to say. The sentiment stamps are from Mega Greetings 2.
The strips are popped with double sided foam tape.
The envelope was `stenciled to match the card.
I again used the more traditional kind of pink and kind of blue to separate the men from the women.
This time the background medium was alcohol inks on Yuppo paper. Foil was applied while the ink was sticky. The blues were darker, more muted colors. The pinks and reds I selected were vivid and bright. Even the cardstock mats are grayed and then bright.
I selected gold metallic paper and embossing powder for the man's card because it is more dull. The silver on the woman's card is more shiny and bright.
The off-set panels allow for the big bold heat-embossed "happy birthday" from Birthday Builder. Technically I suppose the woman's font could have been more frilly. But on this card I think it worked because everything else was so girly.
At first I just die cut the Leaf Canopy in the metallic cardstock. Every time I looked at the card it just looked incomplete. I added the heat embossed edge to the die cut and it made a huge difference. Heat embossing a metallic embossing powder on a metallic cardstock is not something I have done before. If you telescope in to look more closely you'll see what I'm talking about.
In the cards below I used color and shape to differentiate the men from the women.
layered and multi-embellished. Extra postage is what they always cost!
So here is my hardest challenge . . . a single layer card.
I think the soft curve of the circle is more feminine while the strict lines of the square are more masculine.
Purple is more for girls and gray is more for boys.
I started with a piece of masking paper the size of a card front. On that masking paper I drew the squares and circles. I then die cut them out leaving only the area around the geometric figures still covered. Using a Ranger round ink blending tool I sponged the circle in Altenew shades of Purple and the squares in shades of Rock.
I heat set the ink then covered it with anti-static powder to make sure it was dry. Then I silver heat- embossed with the Leaf Canopy stamp.
I stamped the Heartfelt Sentiment in VersaFine then heat embossed it in silver. I cut it into a strip and adhered it to the card with double stick foam tape.
After all of the work of masking and blending and stamping I was not going to risk stamping the sentiment straight on the card front and making a boo boo.
I've stitched since I was very young. (I wonder what happened to all of those pillow cases and handkerchiefs?)
Now I love to stitch on cards. When Altenew came out with the release that included String Art Dies, I could not click on the BUY button fast enough.
This rectangle die has endless possibilities.
While wandering around Hobby Lobby looking for inspiration I spotted metallic embroidery thread.
I thought gold, Altenew With Gratitude leaves, fall and that was the beginning of this card.
When all of the holes had a string through them, I attached double-sided foam tape to the back of the frame.
I blended Altenew inks on white cardstock. On the finished card you will see I did the same on the background. However, on this piece I heat set it then tested it with anti-static powder to make sure it was totally dry before the next step. I stamped leaves from With Gratitude on the blended cardstock with VersaMark ink then heat-set it in gold.
Then I took it to the family room and watched tv while I fussy cut the leaves.I assembled the card adhering one leaf under the stitching and two on the frame.
The word "thankful" cut from the "Be Thankful" sentiment in With Gratitude was gold heat-embossed and adhered under the stitching.
Heed this warning: The bottom card on the right is the result of not keeping the frame straight when stitching. The frame is best stitched with a foam mat underneath. With each couple stitches lay the frame on the mat and smooth it out flat.
I always do something to the inside of the card and on the envelope that co-ordinates with the card front. Here leaves from the With Gratitude set were gold-heat embossed to match the His and Hers cards.
This completes my Level I final challenge. I look forward to my next classes. Most of all I am learning how versatile my Altenew stamps and dies are. The classes and challenges are helping me use them more and in many different ways.