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Skin Colour Combinations

I have taken a few colouring classes over the past couple of years, both free and paid, and a high priority was to learn to colour skin and hair. Here is a link to my Colouring Resources Page which contains links to classes and tutorials I have done and can definitely recommend.

Colouring people and other characters such as mermaids are super fun, but in light of recent events, it occurred to me that I had not yet extended my colouring palette to include people of different nationalities (or even a sun tan!). This is something I had always intended on sitting down and working out but hadn’t actually taken the time, which, when I think about it is very short sighted, as New Zealand is a very multi-cultural country! I hope that by doing this exercise I continue to have a more accurate and inclusive portrayal of people both in my own community and further afar.

Hair colours on the left, skin tone on the right
Hair colours on the left, skin tones on the right.

This is a page from the free Markers 101 Class at Kit & Clowder (suitable for all alcohol marker types). There are many other little freebie classes and digital images, I definitely encourage you to visit the Kit & Clowder community – either via Facebook or their website.

I had previously coloured the top four images as part of my original class. I still consider myself a beginner colourist, and have only been practicing my colouring on small images and stamps for cards for around 2 years or so.

So I got my workbook back out, tried out some colour combinations and filled in my final decisions for the bottom two images. My goal for now is to get out of my comfort zone of reaching for my habitual choices of colour and really think about what I’m representing in my projects.

Now to flex these skills!

Pretty Pink Posh have very cute people stamp sets with simple line designs, they suit many card occasions, and they’re the ones I reached for today in order to practice my new combinations.

Another stamp set I regularly colour are the MFT Mermaids, so I decided to colour one of these up as well.

Shimmer was also added to the Friends with the Nuvo Aqua Glimmer pen.

For this card, I stencilled the sky using Distress Inks in Worn Lipstick and then Squeezed Lemonade over the top of that, plus a layer of Gina K Glitz Glitter Gel.

I distress inked the grassy hill with Mowed Lawn and Twisted Citron. I added a bit of foam to the back of this piece, arranged my friends and stamped the sentiment. I added the little flowers which are included in one of the stamp sets, and scattered some clay hearts from Honey Bee Stamps.

Copics Used:
Skin: Girl 1 – E04, E11, E21, E00, E000; Boy – E27, E25, E23, E21; Girl 2 – E29, E27, E25, E23, E21;
Hair: Girl 1 – E59, E57, E55; Boy & Girl 2 – 100, E49, E59
Clothing: B28, B24, B21, G09, G14, YG06, V25, V22, V20;
Flowers: Y18, Y15, R29, R27, R24, C1, C0


This card front is die cut with the largest MFT stitched rectangle and an Avery Elle wonky rectangular frame was die cut a few times, stacked and textured pattered paper popped in for the background.

The same patterned paper was used for the top layer of Kindness. I also added shimmer with a Nuvo Aqua Glimmer pen to the people and the Kindness die cut.

Copics Used:
Skin: Girl – E27, E25, E23, E21; Boy – E04, E11, E21, E00, E000;
Hair: Girl – 100, E49, E59; Boy – E23, Y26, E55, E53;
Clothing: B28, B24, B23, BG57, BG45, BG10, RV66, RV17, V04

Unfortunately the Kindness stamp and die set has been discontinued by MFT but I was lucky and managed to find it at Frantic Stamper earlier this year. Frantic Stamper is a US retailer and brilliant for sourcing hard to find, discontinued stamp sets as well as all the current goodies. At the time of publishing this blog, this set was still in stock with them and I have provided a direct link below.


Images from MFT Mermazing

I love making cards with mermaids, and this My Favorite Things Mermazing set is definitely one of my most favourite. It is one of the first stamp sets I ever purchased from MFT!

I’ve coloured her up thus far, and will include her on a card in the near future.

Copics Used:
Skin E27, E25, E23, E21; Hair 100, E49, E57;
Clothing RV66, RV09, RV06, RV04;
Rock W9, W7, W5, W3;
Shell R85, R56, RV34;
Fish YR18, YR16, Y15;
Turtle G09, G05, YG06, YG03, YG67 YG63, YG61

This completes my cards and colouring skill practice today. Thank you for stopping by! Below are links to the products I have used – some are affiliate links (not all) which simply means I may get a small commission at no extra cost to you when shopping. Thank you for your support – it means I can keep creating and sharing with you.

https://linkdeli.com/widget.js?id=f5e8378456858c916708

If you have any questions regarding the putting together of any of these cards, please feel free to message me – I’m only too happy to help!

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Oh So Many Birthday Wishes!

20 to be exact! My daughter Stella is leaving her teenage years behind….

She has always been a fan of pandas, so a bit of artistic fun was had altering Bill the Bear from Honey Bee Stamps. I will show you below how I altered the stamp and coloured him up.

Before we start, I will point out that the background pieces I have used are from a previous alcohol ink lifting session – here is a link to Jennifer McGuire‘s blog (and video with lots of examples) showing this fun and incredibly easy technique.

I used the Lifted Ink panel on the bottom for the Panda card, and the top panel is on a bonus card featured at the end of this blog post.

I clear heat embossed the Simon Says Stamp Leaves & Berries stamp on my alcohol inked panel, spritzed with isopropyl alcohol (available from pharmacies). I then laid a piece of white cardstock on top and ran them through my die cutting machine (no dies were involved in this) – the ink transferred from the Yupo paper (top) to the cardstock (bottom).

This left me with two gorgeous inky backgrounds to turn into cards.

Of course, you can ink up any background panel you like, with any colours. Or even use patterned paper if preferred. The beauty of a black and white bear, is he matches any colour choice!

I stamped Bill the Bear on his own and marked out with pencil where I wanted to add the black markings to turn him into a cute panda bear.

Using my Copic markers, I used gentle flicks to add colour both from the bottom and from the top of the midsection. I started with C9, then added flicks of C7 and C5 to meet in the middle. This gives a bit of texture to his fur.

I then went back and started with 100 (Copic Black) and did a second layer of flicks, then C9, C7 and C5 again to add extra depth. The same was done on his legs and arms. I coloured his ears and eye patches with black and C9 markers.

Later in the project, I felt the line on the midsection of his tum was a little harsh, so I added further flicks of C9, C7 and C5 going downwards to soften it up a little.

I played with placement for my panda, and decided a frame with a nice large sentiment would work for this card.

I chose the frame (die cut and stacked three times) from Mama Elephant Snail Mail, and the gorgeous Oh So Many Birthday Wishes stamp from Picket Fence Studios.

Look at that smooth gold!

I heat embossed the sentiment not once, not twice, but THREE times (use your stamp platform or Misti for this). It is a complete sentiment stamp at a brilliant size to be a focal point on any project.

Embossing three layers of powder helps the sentiment stand out a little more from the colourful background. I love taking any opportunity to emboss multiple layers for impact and get that raised, but smooth look.

At this stage, I felt the panda needed a couple of accessories to make him look like he was actually enjoying the festivities. Bill the Bear stamp set does include a number of fun accessory stamps and they are aimed at the outdoorsy type with images such as log fires, honey collecting, fishing and even toasting sausages and marshmallows. There are even a couple of cute vest options and a bow tie to dress him up! As cute as those are, they didn’t fit the theme of my card today, so I did have to look through my stash for appropriate sized party type accessories.

The balloon string is tucked into the slit of his paw.

I added a balloon and a gift from the Ellen Hutson Bear Ware stamp set, and coloured them in bright red. I used R59, R29, R27 and R24. The bear die cuts little slits on the bottom of the paws, so it was easy to attach some crochet thread under his paw for him to hold his party balloon.

The gift is slotted in under his other paw. They are a perfect size to match Bill the Bear.

Final details are added, Nuvo Midas Touch gold glitter pen to the balloon and gift, glaze pens on the eyes and nose – I love the extra shine and sparkle this adds.

Double sided tape comes in a variety of widths from 0.25″ up to 6″ wide!

I use Art Glitter Glue for just about every thing when I craft, but I do like to use wide double sided tape when attaching my card fronts to foam and card bases. Sometimes inky panels have a bit of a kink in them, making them difficult to smooth out with just glue.

I put my tape as close to the edge and corners as I can, and this ensures an even adhesion with no bubbles along the edges of the panel.

Bonus Card

With the other inky panel, I decided to create this quick and easy card. I simply trimmed the panel down and adhered it to a card base with foam in between.

I cut the Mama Elephant ‘happy’ nine times – stacked three each and arranged them on the front with a tiny birthday sentiment heat embossed in white and added a few gems for sparkle.

This completes my festive party cards today. Thank you for stopping by! Below are links to the products I have used – some are affiliate links (not all) which simply means I may get a small commission at no extra cost to you when shopping. Thank you for your support – it means I can keep creating and sharing with you.

https://linkdeli.com/widget.js?id=f5e8378456858c916708

If you have any questions regarding the putting together of these cards, please feel free to message me – I’m only too happy to help!


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Just BEE Cause

A nice bright cheery card to send to someone, Just Because. It’s always nice to receive a surprise in the mailbox, especially when it isn’t expected!

Today’s card has a small colour palette – I have used just two colour families, Cool Greys and Yellows on top of a ‘white on white’ background.

If you are considering jumping into using Copic Markers, these two colour families would be a great start. Of course, you can use any colouring medium you are comfortable with to achieve a similar result.

I started off with the Honey Bee Stamps Hexagon cover plates – I used just the top two today (the very bottom layer is on a future shopping list).

I cut them from 80lb white cardstock and glued the two layers together. The card front is then adhered to my base – I prefer Neenah 110lb for my card bases, but you can use whichever you prefer.

I stamped and die cut my images, plus I die cut the letters for BEE four times each and stacked them together. This alphabet die set is a brilliant size, and beautiful font, I find I reach for it a lot.

The Busy Bees set includes dies for flower stems, I simply cut these without stamping the matching image and coloured them in green (YG09).

You can use any combinations of greys and yellows you have in your stash. For this project, I used C9, C7, C5 and Black on the buzzy bees, along with Y35, Y18, Y5, Y13, Y11. The same yellow combination is used on the letters and flower centres. Plus C3, C1 and C0 to add shadow to the flower petals and wings. You could cut the top layer of the letters from yellow or patterned cardstock too, which would be a fun result.


When colouring with Copic Markers, it is important to use the right cardstock – Neenah or Copic X-Press It are my top choices and they give smooth results, making it easier to blend your colouring as the cardstock can handle the amount of ink being laid down.

I start with my darkest colour and colour from the outside in with little flicks. The next colour is added by using the same small flicks over the dark colour and extending it out and same again with the lighter shade. Do the same from the other side of the section you’re colouring. If you leave gaps between your flicks, you can achieve a more textured look (think hair or fur), but in this case I wanted a smooth blend.

Copics are a bit of an investment, and it can be daunting when you’re just starting out with your collection. When adding a new colour family to your collection, try to add in groups of 3 – a dark, medium and light shade of colour. I will link here to some online colouring resources, (including free and paid) classes and charts for your reference.

There are a number of Copic suppliers in New Zealand – Gordon Harris, Ribbon Rose, Scrapbook Central are the main retailers that I personally purchase from – all three have online shopping facilities. Check your local craft supplier or art store too.

I also have further information about Copic Markers, plus other ways of adding colour to your projects here.


A close up of the stacked letters and their shiny, sparkly glory!

I added some sparkle with the Nuvo Aqua Shimmer Gloss pen and a layer of Nuvo Crystal Glaze for shine.

Wink of Stella pens and Ranger Glossy Accents or Nuvo Morning Dew Drops would give similar results if that’s what you have. I have linked both options below.

I stamped and white heat embossed the Just and Cause to add above and below to complete the sentiment.

The letters and sentiment additions are glued directly to the card front. The bees and flowers are attached to the card front with foam squares within the hexagon gaps. I glued the flower stems to sit underneath my flower heads, cut down to size – there was plenty left to spare from the two stems I had prepared.

Final touches include glaze pens and fineliner for the eyes, smile and tops of the antennae.

PRO TIP: Wait for your sparkle pen to dry before adding black glaze – I ended up with a bit of a feathered look on one of the bees and one of the antenna. Whoops!

I also added sparkle and glaze to the flower centres.

This completes my bright and cheerful card today. Thank you for stopping by! Below are links to the products I have used – some are affiliate links (not all) which simply means I may get a small commission at no extra cost to you when shopping. Thank you for your support – it means I can keep creating and sharing with you.

https://linkdeli.com/widget.js?id=f5e8378456858c916708

If you have any questions regarding the putting together of this card, please feel free to message me – I’m only too happy to help!

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Sweet Celebration Wishes

I’ve had my eye on this stamp set by Stacey Yacula for some time, and was pleased to finally have time to get it out and do some colouring! This card has been gifted to a crafty friend celebrating her birthday.

Supplies Used:

Sending Sweet Celebration Wishes
  • Tim Holtz Watercolor Cardstock
  • Glitter paper from stash
  • Lawn Fawn Mermaid & Black Licorice cardstock for card base and sentiment strip
  • Nuvo Silver glitter cardstock
  • Ranger Clear embossing powder, Ink on 3 Arctic White embossing powder, and Versamark Ink
  • My Favorite Things Diagonal Design Background stamp (retired)
  • My Favorite Things Stitched Rectangles STAX
  • My Favorite Things Sending Sweet Celebration Wishes Stamp and Die set
  • My Favorite Things Celebrate die
  • Copic markers: R24, RV14, R22, R20, R00, E43, E31, E41, E40, E59, E25, E23, Y38, Y15, Y21, BG49, BG45, BG53, G28, YG67, YG63, YG61, G43, G21, G40
  • Distress Oxide Inks: Tumbled Glass, Peacock Feathers, Mermaid Lagoon, Chipped Sapphire

I started off by ink blending with Tumbled Glass and Peacock Feathers, lighter in the middle and darker on the edges of the watercolour cardstock. I heat embossed the Diagonal Design background stamp (just about any background stamp would be suitable for this technique) with clear embossing powder, let that cool, and then continued inking with Peacock Feathers in the centre, Mermaid Lagoon and Chipped Sapphire, again getting darker towards the edges of the panel. Distress Oxide inks are great for this technique as the ink is opaque and you can add layers of colour very easily.

I buffed the ink with a cloth. The clear embossing resists the additional ink, leaving a cool flow of colour blending within the pattern.

I cut the panel down with a MFT stitched rectangle. I actually used a smaller rectangle from the nested set than I originally intended, and had to back the panel with some glitter paper in my stash! Whoops, but it turned out well in the end!

I had fun colouring these little guys and added fun fluff to their hats and the bunny’s tale using Neon Radiance Amplify.

I die cut the Celebrate three times from white cardstock, and once out of Nuvo Silver glitter cardstock and stacked these together for a little dimension.

I stamped and heat embossed the sentiment from the Sweet Celebration Wishes stamp set onto Lawn Fawn Black Licorice cardstock.

The critters were placed above the Celebrate using foam tape strips cut to fit, and the whole front is mounted onto the card base which completes the card.

If you have any questions regarding the putting together of this project, please feel free to message me – I’m only too happy to help!