Hello crafty friends! I’m super thrilled to share a very special card with you today – mainly because I think this is one of the best cards I’ve ever made. I wish I could also claim that I thought all of the techniques up myself, but the coloring on this card was inspired by the fantastic Marika Rahtu and it’s an homage to her amazing skills and great video tutorials.
I started out by stamping the floral arrangement with Altenew stamps on my card base using Versafine ink. At that time, I didn’t have either my Letterpress (in a moving box) or the MISTI (bought as an alternative) so I had to use Versafine to ensure that my first impression would be perfect and deep black. In order to not smudge this pigment ink, I first placed the mask for the flower on the card base, then stamped the leaves around it, removed the mask, and fitted the floral image in the empty spot.
Next, I stamped the same arrangement on a piece of watercolor card stock, this time using my ZIG Art & Graphic Twin Markers to color up the stamp. You can use Distress Ink Pads or your Zig Clean Color Real Brush or Tombow Markers for this technique as well – I knew I was going to watercolor, so I used a watercolor medium which I could blend out. If you are going to use Copics, use a super light Copic friendly ink (Grout Grey from My Favorite Things works really well). I elected to color up the flower in a color that would match the coloration I had in mind and the leaves in green, but if you have Antique Linen Distress Ink – it’s great for super light stamping and it will blend out perfectly (watercolor).
I knew from experimenting that I needed to use third-generation stamping to get a light enough impression for my no-line coloring image. I used the Stitched Tags 1 dies by Pretty Pink Posh to die cut a part of the stamped arrangement, knowing that I would later mount it on top of the black-and-white arrangement. Then I simply (cough I practiced for a week cough) used this technique showcased by Marika to color in my flower: I started with a very light wash of watercolor, then added the tiniest bit of dark watercolor for shading, then added some lighter color to bring back the warm tones, and at the very end added some pencil lines for details.
Here’re my suggestions to all of you who want to give this a try:
- You need to practice. As I said, I spent a week practicing this technique and figuring out why my flowers didn’t turn out as great as Marika’s.
- Use very little color. I’m serious. Start out with tiny specks of color and blend those out, let it dry, then see if you need to add more color. My first few attempts all failed because I used to much color from the get go.
- Keep watching the video. I had the video up on my iPad on my desk and kept referring to it, rewinding, rematching sequences to really see everything Marika did and then tried to copy it.
- Keep experimenting. If you find that one petal of the flower didn’t turn out right, write down which colors or mediums you used and in which order. Then try something different on another petal. Keeping notes of what didn’t work is as important as noting down what worked.
Once the coloring was done – and it does take time, I need about 90 minutes now – I foam mounted the beautiful tag on my card base and added a few sequins. I mainly wanted to show off the Rose Gold ones for which I had selected the colors of the flower.
Thank you for stopping by today! I hope you got inspired! This card goes off to Simon Says Stamp “Flowers”.
I’ve listed the products used for this project below. If possible, I link to Seven Hills Crafts for all European Crafters. Alternative shopping outlets linked to are Amazon US and Simon Says Stamp. Click here to learn more about which companies I am affiliated with.