Friday, March 6, 2015

I Thank My Lucky Stars for You

As I mentioned in this post, I received one of the tags Sandy Allnock created as part of a challenge. She white heat embossed a few images on each white cardstock tag, then sent them to card makers to use in a card. Since I have only one shot at getting the tag coloring right, I've been doing a little practicing. Since the tag is just cardstock, watercoloring is out. So I've been working with blending Distress inks instead. This card is the result of Experiment #2.

I began by choosing the newest sketch from Operation Write Home:

I decided to go with a star/space theme for my card. To create the background, I stamped a piece of 140 lb. watercolor paper with the Hero Arts/Basic Grey "Tiny Star Background" stamp, using Versamark ink. I heat embossed that with Ranger Super Fine Detail White embossing powder. Then I used watercolors to paint a night sky background. The different colors don't show up especially well in the photo, but I went with mostly purple, blues, and black; with a touch of yellow in a few spots for contrast. Then I set that aside to air dry.

After die cutting a tag from white cardstock with one of the dies from the "Blueprints 13" set by My Favorite Things, I stamped one of the greetings from this stamp set in Versamark ink. I white heat embossed that, then stamped 2 of the stars from the same set several times around the greeting. I sprinkled on more white embossing powder, and melted that with my heat gun. Next, I blended Distress inks in Salty Ocean, Chipped Sapphire, and Seedless Preserves onto the tag. I felt the Salty Ocean was too light, and the Seedless Preserves a bit too overpowering, though. So I ended up going over the whole tag with the Chipped Sapphire, to try and bring everything together more. Finally, I spritzed it a few times with water in a mister bottle. I also sprayed some water into the palm of my hand, and flicked it onto the tag. Then I blotted that with a paper towel. I did that a couple more times. The water kind of "bleached" the Distress inks, causing water spots, which I feel give a nice visual texture. I then set that aside to dry while I worked on the rest of the card.

I used a 5/8" star punch by Recollections to punch a total of 10 stars, 5 each from 2 different patterned papers I have in my (overflowing) scrap stash. I used those in place of the 8 squares or banners the sketch calls for. I had to add a couple extra stars (10 rather than 8), because of the way I butted them up against each other.

By this time, my background had dried, so I matted that with a piece of light blue cardstock. I marked where my punched stars would go, and glued them down, alternating the patterned papers. For the strip running alongside those, I cut a piece of white cardstock, and inked it with Hero Arts' Navy mid-tone shadow ink. After I glued that down, I adhered the tag next to it. Finally, I inked another piece of white cardstock that I'd cut to 4.25x5.5", with the same Navy ink. I used that to mat my card front, then adhered that to an A2-size card base. I will be sending this card on to Operation Write Home.

I'm also entering this card in Operation Write Home's "Sketch #249" challenge, Virginia's View Challenge #13: "Embossing," & Hero Arts' "Nature" challenge.


  1. The stars in place of the banners are genius. Love your sentiment panel!

  2. Oh my gosh, Andrea! You've certainly put Sandy's tag to great use! (I'm sure she'll get a big kick seeing it again in your OWH package.)

    Love your use of stars in your interpretation of the sketch and really appreciate the explanation of your techniques used.

    Thanks so much for joining our OWH Sketch Challenge.


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