I can’t believe it’s already time to submit my work for the Level 1 Final Project! For this assignment, our goal is to take things we’ve learned in our first 10 classes and apply them to a couple sets of cards. Here are the rules:
Make 2 sets of cards with 4-6 cards in each set. One will be a feminine set and one will be a masculine set of cards. There should be a coordinating color and theme within the set of cards, but not duplicates of each other, including between the 2 sets.
Incorporate and describe at least 3 techniques learned in the first 10 classes.
For my techniques, I knew I’d do variations of techniques but the ones I wanted to showcase were from the Clean and Simple Boutique, the Easy Die Cutting Techniques, and Let it Shine courses.
From the Clean and Simple Boutique class, I wanted to keep things… well, clean and simple! This typically calls for more white space in the background with smaller moments of color. I did a Clean and Simple for both card sets, but with a little bit of a different technique on each - one being just a streak of color for the ladies’ card and then for the men’s card, I filled in pieces of the geometric shapes with water & colored pencils.
For the Easy Die Cutting Techniques, the focus I wanted to use here was showcased in the women’s cards with the intricacy and full design cut of the dies. They allow the smallest of inner pieces to be cut through without us worrying about trying to get scissors in there. This allows for things to be shown from underneath to give depth to the cards. For the men’s cards, I used the Crystal Frame dies to imprint a unique stencil onto the stamping foam allowing for subtle coloring to be done. I also used the same dies to cut out the shape in vellum to use as masks for ink blending.
For the Let it Shine course, I love using embossing powders for sentiments. You can use glitter powder to give things a sparkle, you can even use a shiny powder to give it a reflective quality without glitter, or you can even use white or clear embossing powder when you want to have ink resist an area of your project. It’s also quick and easy to just cut some glitter cardstock to give a quick splash of color and shine!
I always find working on the feminine cards to be a much quicker process for me. That’s probably because Altenew has great designs with the floral stamps. Since we needed to focus on making this set unified, I decided to focus with the Fragrant Florals Craft Your Life Project Kit. These kits are amazing with all the coordinating materials, including the stamp, stencils, dies, and an embossing folder.
This very first card was the Clean and Simple Boutique technique. First thing I did was to randomly tear two pieces of paper. I laid down those two pieces of paper on the outside edges of my paper leaving a vertical stripe through the card. I ink blended with Razzleberry until I was pleased with the shading. I removed the scrap papers from the edge and then inked the outline image in Jet Black to give it a sharp outline against the ink blending. At this point, I just inked up my sentiment from the same Fragrant Florals kit and was good to go!
For my second card, I wanted to try my hand at ink resisting. To do this, I stamped that same large outline image, but this time I used VersaMark watermark ink. After sprinkling anti static powder on my card to be sure the embossing powder only stayed where I wanted it, I set the stamp off into the corner and pressed down the image. I then poured white embossing powder onto and tapped off any excess powder from my paper. After heat setting the powder, I just started ink blending the Razzleberry onto the cardstock. Once the colors were the way I wanted, I rubbed around the outline stamp to be sure the ink was wiped off the outline image. I then gold embossed the sentiment directly onto the cardstock. However, this didn’t set well. So I just took a piece of scrap paper, die-cut it for fancier edging and ink blended it to match the rest of the card. I put down the sentiment from the Forever in Love stamp set and then layered that onto a piece of glitter cardstock for a splash of pizazz. Now it was all set to put this panel onto a card and this was made complete!
Cards 3 and 4 are definitely made as a set. I stamped the large outline stamp onto a big piece of cardstock. I then used the coordinating stencils and colored everything in Razzleberry and Sweet Leaf for the leaves. Then, I used the coordinating die to cut out the large flower bunch and, let me tell you, this die is incredible! It got all those little pieces in the middle of the flower bunch so you’re not left with a lot of extra white space. At this point, I cut this flower bunch down at a little over the halfway mark to be used for the 2 different cards.
For card 3, I wanted to do my first shaker card. To complete this, I used 2 rectangular dies to cut out the front edging. I also cut out a larger rectangle from a piece of transparency film to be my window piece. I attached the frame to the window piece and then attached foam pieces to all 4 edges. I laid down some pink seguins onto my card front and surrounded them by the raised rectangle. I also put some foam pieces under the flower bunch so that it’d be the same height as the shaker portion. I attached that to the front, embossed a sentiment from the Forever in Love stamp set at the top and Card #3 was complete!
Now it was time to finish up card #4, which I think turned out to be my favorite. If you recall, I have that larger flower bunch already done from getting ready for card #3. I knew I wanted this to come off the side of the card panel, but it just looked so empty. So, to draw a little extra attention to the flowers, I used Mango Smoothie ink on the Diamond Pattern Play background stamp and it was just what I wanted! It didn’t detract from my flowers at all. I used foam pieces to elevate the floral bunch from the background and because of the intricate die cutting, you’re still able to see some of the diamond stamp through the flowers. I stamped on my sentiment from the Crystal Frames stamp set, trimmed up the panel and attached it to my card. Just like that, the 4th card is complete and so is my set for the Ladies!
Now, it was time to refocus and work on the card for the men. I’m always one to hit a roadblock for these cards, so I appreciated the push once again for these cards. My focus here was going to be using the Crystal Frames Die and Stamp set and also focusing on blues and purples for my color.
For card #1, I wanted to do the Clean and Simple card. This was just taking the Crystal Frames stamp and setting them onto the card. I wanted to focus on the rectangle pieces in the middle. Once I had done a crisp stamp with the Jet Black, I decided I wanted to use a watercolor pencil to color in the spaces on the edges of these shapes. I took both a purple and blue pencil and also a watercolor brush. I got some water on my bristles and then rubbed onto the pencil. This allowed for some color to transfer onto the brush and I used that to paint into the white spacings. At one point at the very end, the brush accidentally dropped some color onto the card. Instead of starting over, I decided to flick a couple extra color splats onto the card for a little splash of color while still trying to keep the card simple. I added the sentiment from the Crystal Frames stamp set and went on my way!
For card #2, I still used the Crystal Frame stamps, but this time I stamped them with the VersaMark ink and prepared to emboss the outlines with silver embossing powder. I then ink blended the panel with Sea Breeze, Starlight, and Sapphire. Once the colors were laid down the way I wanted, I gently rubbed the embossed outlines to clear any color but yet not tear off any glitter. But the embossing powders set well and everything stayed put. I inked the sentiment from the Never Stop Dreaming Craft Your Life Project Kit with Sapphire to tie in the very darkest color used in the ink blended background. I attached this panel to a card and was able to move onto the next card.
Now onto card 3. I wanted to use the Crystal Frames die to make a stencil using stamping foam. I did this in another class project and really love both the technique and the finished result. After heating up the stamping foam with the heat gun, I pressed it on top of the Crystal Frames dies. Then I took the Sea Breeze, Starlight and Ultraviolet inks to smear a blend of blues and purples onto the stamping foam. I then pressed the foam directly onto the panel. I trimmed down the edges and attached it to a dark blue piece of cardstock. I took one of the shapes from the die set and cut it out in the silver glitter cardstock. I trimmed down another white piece of cardstock and trimmed it even shorter to fit into the glitter piece. I stamped the sentiment from the Forever and Always stamp set again in Sapphire to tie in the darker cardstock. I attached that sentiment piece to the main panel using foam adhesive - one of my favorite adhesives! I love that it gives just that little extra lift! Done!
For the final card in this set, I wanted to use a bokeh technique for the background. I had previously cut all the Crystal Frames shapes out of vellum to use as stencils and masks. I chose my shape and lightly ink blended onto the card. I took turns between the Sea Breeze, Starlight and Ultraviolet inks. Since I knew I was going to layer the shapes, I didn’t put down too much color at once. I went back and forth over the front to fill in shapes from the stencil until I was happy with the color intensity. I then took out this amazing “thanks” from the Mega Greeting stamp set! I wanted something extra with it, so I used the VersaMark ink to stamp it down and then followed behind with Black Detail embossing powder. This left a nice shine on the “thanks” sentiment. I then used the “FOR EVERYTHING” sentiment in Jet Black to give a simple completion to the sentiment. Just like that, card #4 and the set for the men are done!
The final step in this project was to package the 2 sets all together but it needed to be done using a recycled element. I looked around my office trying to figure out what I could use and then finally found this folder that held my checkbooks when the bank mailed them to me. This would be perfect! I found some great papers from a paper pack that I had at my desk and was able to even find coordinating images that would work well with my card sets. I folded up the edging of the checkbook holder so that it formed smaller pockets on the inside. I used foam adhesive to close off the edges and also give space for the cards to fit into. I cut the papers all down to the appropriate sizes, including the gold edging that wrapped the spine of the card package from the outside and up into the small pockets on the inside. I stamped a simple Altenew sentiment from the Never Stop Dreaming Craft Your Life Project Kit on the front of the packaging which just seems to wrap it up nicely… Never lose a chance of saying a kind word. This seemed like the perfect sentiment for a set of cards!
I truly hope you were able to stick through reading this crazy long blog! Detailing so many cards in this project surely took some time, but I really wanted to still share with you the “hows” and “whys” I chose to do what I did! I’m excited to see what’s in store for me with Level 2 of the Altenew Educator Certification Program and hope you’ll join me for the adventure!
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Stamps & Dies
Craft Your Life Project Kit: Fragrant Florals by Altenew
Craft Your Life Project Kit: Never Stop Dreaming by Altenew
Crystal Frames Stamp and Die Bundle by Altenew
Pattern Play - Diamond Stamp Set by Altenew
Forever and Always Stamp and Die Bundle by Altenew
Forever in Love Stamp Set by Altenew
Mega Greetings Stamp Set by Altenew
Mango Smoothie from the Four Scoops Crisp Dye Ink Oval Set by Altenew
Sea Breeze and Starlight from the Deep Blue Seas Crisp Dye Ink Oval Set by Altenew
Sapphire from the Glacier Caves Crisp Dye Ink Oval Set by Altenew
Sweet Leaf from the Green Meadows Crisp Dye Ink Oval Set by Altenew
Razzleberry from the Cherry Blossom Crisp Dye Ink Oval Set by Altenew
Jet Black from the Green Fields Crisp Dye Ink Oval Set by Altenew
VersaMark Watermark Ink Stamp Pad by Tsukineko
1/4 inch Double Sided Foam Adhesive by Scrapbook.com
Glitter Cardstock by Altenew
Stamping Foam by Simon Hurley for Ranger Ink
Transparency Film by Amazon
Fine Watercolor Brush by Altenew
Vellum by Amazon