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A Beary Christmas Tag

You can find more of my Gift Tags from over the years by checking out #inkyandstampytags

Each year I like to make Christmas Gift Tags as gifts for teachers and other support people important to our family.

I actually stamped and die cut these bears last year, intending to create a tag for my 2019 collection – but creator’s block got in the way! So I sat and stared at them for months. I had coloured just the bears thinking inspiration would come, but every tag idea, colour combo, sentiment match, just didn’t do it for me. So they sat in the box and I told myself this was OK. Didn’t make it any less stressful :/

It’s interesting what a difference a year makes in terms of crafting skill and ideas! I was disappointed with my bear colouring efforts from the year before and had a go at re-colouring them. As a result, I have ended up with darker bears than I’d usually like, so I paired them with deep rich red and emerald green tones for the gift box. The following photos show you which Copic markers I used.

The tag itself was masked off with a strip of post-it tape along the bottom, and I heat embossed the MFT Christmas words background stamp in White Satin Pearl embossing powder.

I stamped the sentiment along the bottom of the tag, and popped the bear on top with foam tape.

I added Glaze details to the eyes and nose of the bear to finish them off.

I added a further mini tag from the MFT Tag Builder 5 with a To & From and tied the two tags together with red and white thick Baker’s twine.

Such a simple tag after a full year of agonising!

This completes my cute gift tag for 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.

This completes my little gift tag 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

You can find more of my Gift Tags from over the years by checking out #inkyandstampytags

For more in-depth information about the best value supplies for your craft table, from cardstock to the handiest tools, check out my Best of the Basics series.

Follow me on my social media channels:

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Night Skies Ink Blending

I had a brilliant day back in the classroom at Scrapbook Central today! 10 people came along to learn ink blending techniques and together, we made a cute set of Christmas Gift Tags.

ALERT: We will offer this class a second time on 14 November 2020 if you or a friend missed this! Please let Philippa at Scrapbook Central know, as we will only run this additional class if there is genuine interest. Contact Philippa directly here.

We used a small palette of Distress Oxides to ink up four different night skies, plus we added extra features to our skies with splatter, and also by lifting colour.

All products used today were from Lawn Fawn – the Everyday Gift Tag, Say What Christmas Critters, Stitched Hillside borders, the Little Town Border, and the Mini Snowflakes die set.

Check out some of the photos of the day below!

Along with the Distress Ink Combos, the class had a quick introduction to masking and colour lifting, and their blending onto the tiny spaces was stepped up for each tag – they had to blend FOUR colours onto the top half of their last tag – a challenge they all stepped up to!

After the ink blending part of the class, there was stamping, die cutting, colouring and heat embossing to be done. Even fluffy hats were made!

Check out the gorgeous tags made by all participants – everyone did an amazing job with their ink blending and even though we used the same colours, everyone had beautifully different results. Plus the added fun of splattering pigment, and revealing crisp white moons!

There were borders and images to be added for finishing, plus glittery snowflakes – aren’t they cool??

I was absolutely impressed with everyone that came along today – such enthusiasm and lovely results with their ink blends.

Promised Links

As discussed today, here are some of the links we talked about:

Ranger Ink labels – they do have a range of different ink organisation products you can download, including for Distress Inks and Oxides. Click here to visit the page.

Kristina Werner is a pro at Distress Oxide Blending, and she has a BUNCH of colour combinations for you to try out. Click here to visit her blog post for Combo Set 6 (you can search her blog for all 7 different combination blog posts, well worth the visit.

Last year’s Gift Tag Class held at Scrapbook Central, where we used Shimmer Powders and cute dies to create a set of gift tags. Plus, the Bonus blog post with further tags.

Visit my Christmas Gift Tag Pinterest Board to see other tags I have made over the past few years – there will be a bunch more added in the weeks to come as I share this year’s collection.


Bonus Projects

I also created a couple of extra projects using the same Lawn Fawn products used in class today, and here they are:

Snowy Hillside Card

I used the same blending techniques we went over in class to ink up this sky.

I stepped up the technique by adding subtle rays of light in the sky and created a full sized card to fit all the cute critters from the stamp set.

I created the rays by cutting masks from full sticky backed Post-its and arranged them to splay upwards. I carefully inked over them with the same colour blend we used in class today. I removed the masks, and repeated my inking over the top. This leaves a subtle change in colour over the sky, lighter where we had the masks, giving the impression of extra light.

I completed the card by cutting stitched hillside borders and arranged them to suit. I lifted the top two with foam tape for extra dimension.

I heat embossed the sentiment both at the top and along the bottom with gold embossing powder.

The critters are stamped, coloured and cut and placed within the hills.

I added some Nuvo Blizzard along the top edges of the hillsides and directly beneath the critters to ground them and add extra sparkle and dimension. Finally, a little fluff added to the penguin’s hat, sparkle pen to the critter’s accessories and tiny snowflakes scattered around the top half of the card.


Snowflake Circle

This time, I inked up another sky, but rather than filling the entire card front, I focused the imagery on a central circle.

I inked in stripes to try and mimic the Northern Lights, although this time I used Distress Ink rather than Oxides. You can see a difference in colour even though I used the same colour palette as we used in class.

The Mini Snowflakes set is a brilliant set where just one or two passes through the die cutting machine gets a whole bunch of snowflakes to place. I arranged the snowflakes over my circular inky piece, and trimmed the edges with scissors.

I cut the hillside border from another white circle to fit in the lowest part of the inky sky.

I wanted a few trees, and this little tree featured here is from the Lawn Fawn Home for the Holidays set – a teeny little set that has matching dies and a brilliant price point. I heat embossed the trees in gold and arranged them on the hillside.

The critters are stamped, coloured, cut and placed on the hillside – added fluff to the penguin’s hat again. Can’t resist that Neon Amplify!

To finish, the sentiment is the Lawn Fawn Happy Add-on, and I stacked the ‘Merry’ four times to bring it up to the same depth as the circular piece, also popped up with foam. The ‘christmas’ sentiment is white heat embossed on black cardstock and I added tiny dots of the Neon Amplify within the snowflakes to fill in the gaps (but did not heat them).


Say What? Tag

When the Say What Christmas Critters were released last year, this cute little tag set was also part of the release.

It cuts the tag itself, and a frame, along with speech bubble and a couple of other handy elements for your gift tag creations – all perfectly sized to match the little critters.

I simply inked the tag, added a sentiment to the speech bubble and stacked a couple of frames to give the tag a bit of depth. The penguin and his cute fluffy hat sit atop.


Shaker Tag

Now of course, with that frame option, you can create a shaker!

Shaker tags are super special and easy to make. I chose to use some bright rainbow paper I had in my stash for this one, as I have a small daughter who utterly adores Unicorns, and the associated rainbows!

Attach a piece of acetate to the back of the frame. Use foam adhesive strips on the tag around the entire edge, ensuring there are no gaps. Pop a little spoonful of confetti, sequins, seed beads, even tiny buttons can be effective shaker elements. I coloured the unicorn to match the rainbow paper, and have him/her sitting on a Lawn Fawn Puffy Cloud border inside the shaker. The possibilities are endless with Shaker Christmas Tags!


Thank you to all class participants today – it was a great day spent with you all. If you are interested in any of the products featured today, you can visit Scrapbook Central to place an order.

I’d appreciate it if you hit Follow below, and/or follow my Facebook page so you’ll be kept up to date with upcoming classes. I regularly share other cards, along with tips, hints and ideas.

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For more in-depth information about the best value supplies for your craft table, from cardstock to the handiest tools, check out my Best of the Basics series. Plus, you can Tour My Craft Room!

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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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Happy Mother’s Day!

Happy Mother’s Day! Here in New Zealand, we are still in Level 3 Lockdown – meaning we can’t travel out of our region, retail shops are not open although online retailers are shipping. So today’s plan is to have cake with both mine and my husband’s mother via a Zoom meeting. Sounds fun right? Three cakes were ordered, but only one has made it to its destination so far – the couriers in New Zealand say their current workload is like Christmas on steroids!!

Anyway, back to the card my mother received in the post (sent in plenty of time for arrival prior to today!).

Close up of the rainbow sunflower – can you see the shine?
Adding colour to the die cut sunflower, this doesn’t need to be tidily done as it will be hidden by the layers.

I was inspired by Laura Bassen @laurafadora and her card made with the sunflower stem from Simon Says Stamp. I loved the rainbow idea and bought this die solely to create my own.

I cut the sunflower five times, and left the petals intact in one of them so I could colour my rainbow for the bottom layer. I used copic markers, but you could use any medium you prefer.

Three die cuts, with the petals punched out were glued on top. I used my Art Glitter glue for this as I really like the super fine tip. If I had thought ahead, I could have applied stick it adhesive to my cardstock first to make the job of sticking the delicate die cuts together easier!

I also coloured the petals with my Nuvo Glimmer pen, and then added Nuvo Crystal Glaze for extra shine.

The final die cut sunflower was added to the top for a nice clean and crisp finish.

The background is the Simon Says Stamp Festive Berries stamp, heat embossed with Hero Arts Satin Pearl embossing powder.

The sunflower panel is raised with craft foam. I used the MFT stitched rectangles on both the card front and sunflower panel to get a nice stitched border.

I added the sunflower to the front and found a suitable Happy Mother’s Day sentiment in Mama Elephant’s Mini Messages. I heat embossed in white on Hero Arts Pitch Black cardstock and carefully cut the ends to create the little banner.

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!