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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.

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A Foxy Christmas Tag

You can find more of my Christmas Gift Tags from over the years by checking out #inkyandstampytags on Instagram, or my dedicated Pinterest board

OK, I definitely went out of my usual comfort zone for this tag – not only are there no foxes here in New Zealand, I also strayed away from my favourite traditional Christmas colours by using the Burnt Orange. Luckily gold goes with practically everything!

This tag really is a simple one – mostly die cutting using products from Honey Bee Stamps, Taylored Expressions and Lawn Fawn.

I chose to use watercolour cardstock, even though I didn’t paint anything, because I like the natural texture.

I have listed all products used at the end for your reference.

The Taylored Expressions Little Fox has two dies – one for the fox body and the other for the white accents – it cuts the two cheeks, nose and tip of the tail at once. I went through my scrap folder (click here to see how I organise my cardstocks and coloured scraps) and chose some burnt orange and cream cardstock. I did not worry about trying to colour those teeny weeny eye pieces, rather filled those tiny gaps with black Nuvo drops. I did colour the nose with a black copic marker.

I wanted my gift tag to have a little bit of a difference to all my others, and decided the Honey Bee Stamps tag set with a vellum centre layer would be just the thing. I realised two things through trial and error. One, best to stamp and heat emboss any images first, so I put his wee gift a little to the left, plus the To/From and my logo on the back. Two, liquid glue was difficult to get a smooth finish on the vellum, but Gina K’s adhesive dot roller worked best to adhere both white circles on either side of the vellum.

Lawn Fawn Winter Gifts

The little gift is from a discontinued Lawn Fawn gift tag stamp set – but search your stash for a suitable little gift image.

FYI: the tag die is still available, and was used in my Christmas Gift Tag Class – Night Skies Ink Blending.

I used the Large Lawn Fawn Wreath to cut the greenery sprigs from scraps of green cardstock found in my stash, and placed them leading out to the right. The little fox is adhered on top using little foam squares and liquid adhesive. I cut the bow from the Lawn Fawn Wreath set out of Gold Vellum and put it together using Glue Dots. A Glue Dot secures the bow to the top of the tag nicely.

I searched through my Christmas sentiment stamps – I do have all my Christmas stamps stamped out into a binder, making this easy to flick pages to find the perfect sentiment to fit. You can view my stamp storage and binders here.

I white heat embossed the sentiment onto black cardstock and cut them as thin as I dared! The sentiment strip was placed with a foam adhesive strip directly beneath the fox and the gift.

I finished the tag off with Lawn Fawn Gold trimmings.

This completes my cute 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 Christmas Gift Tags from over the years by checking out #inkyandstampytags on Instagram, or my dedicated Pinterest board

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.

Tour my Craft Room

You can check out how I store my stamps and dies, inks and cardstocks.

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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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