Friday, April 29, 2011

Pop-up Card with On the Edge dies Tutorial

Here is a pop-up card made using the Tim Holtz Townscape On the Edge die. As their name suggest, these dies are designed to provide a decorative edge to pieces, but I found a way to use them to do pop-up inserts for a card.
The insert consists of two parts: The front art piece that is attached to the inside bottom of the card, and a brace that is attached to the inside top that actually pulls the front back when the card is opened. For illustration purposes I've used manilla cardstock for the front, and kraft paper for the brace, but you can imagine the possibilities. Various shades of blue alcohol inked glossy card stock covered with Rock Candy Distress Stickles cut against the snowflake die, anyone?
Another view showing how the brace attaches to the art in the back. The brace is attached to the back of the art and cut as the same time, so any cutouts line up perfectly.
Here's how to do it step by step. Start with the front and brace pieces. They should be 5 1/2 inches wide, and about 3 includes long. Basically about the same size an On the Edge die. Some of the top will be cut off, and we need to include some space at the bottom for tabs to attach to the card.

Now get your On the Edge die, and find a line that includes 1/4 to 1/3 of the top of the part that is actually cut. You can see here the Townscape die is ideal for this because I can include all of the roofs.
I placed a pencil mark on the side of the die so I could know where that line is, then I measured from the top of the foam pad to the mark. This is so I know how where to score my brace in a next step.
Using the measurement obtained on the die, score and fold the brace,
Now glue the top part of that brace (only) to the back of the front piece. Make sure to get right up to the fold on the brace with the glue. This is part the actually pulls against the front to bring it upright. You should end up with a piece that looks like this.
Now cut the piece with the On the Edge die through your die cut machine. Align the top edge with the top of the foam in the die so that the fold is in the same location as your measured. Note that in this snowflake die, the small flakes on the side don't attach to my brace, so I'm actually going to remove those parts of the brace. You could leave them on if you wish.
Now I score and fold the bottom of both the front and the brace. Where you score the front depends of how much of the uncut part you want showing. I actually trimmed a bit from the front and brace. You don't need a massive amount to attach to the card. The front and brace should the scored at the same place relative to the first fold you made. So if the front is folded one inch below the first brace fold, the second brace fold should also be one inch from the same point.
If you didn't measure in the last step, make sure the measure now the distance on the brace between the first fold and the second fold. I'm actually measuring the distance here on the front instead of the brace.
The measurement obtained previously is how far out from the fold on the card the front should go.
Glue the folded of the front piece to inside bottom to the card.
Now attach the (second) folded part of the brace to the top of the card. To do this, bring all of the brace and front flat against the bottom of the card and put some adhesive on the folded part of the brace.
Close the front of the card and press against where the glued part of the brace is and let dry. When you open the card, the brace should be attached is just the right spot.
As I mentioned previously, the snowflake die is a little tricky because it doesn't have a brace on the smaller flakes, so they doesn't pop up quite as much as the middle. This should be too much of an issue.
Once you understand this technique, it should be easy to apply to other dies as well. There's an insert that was made with a Mover & Shaper word die that was made put by cutting a piece of folded card stock and then folding the attachment pieces on the top and bottom.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

On the Edge Pop-up Card Prototypes

Prototyping some pop-up cards using the Tim Holtz Sizzix Alterations On the Edge dies to cut the actual popup up part.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Halloween in Wonderland Shadow Box

I hadn't considered doing a project like this before, but Eclectic Paperie included a free small Tim Holtz Configuration box as a bonus with my last order, and I hadn't done anything with my Graphic 45 Halloween in Wonderland paper set yet, so I figured why not combine the two. The result is this Configurations shadow box. The fragment charm chain in the front is detachable for use as a charm bracelet.
What amazed me about doing this project was how it all came together/evolved as pieces got done. I started with a general idea about the background for each section and then as I built them I'd come up with something to add. In other cases, I started with a small piece like a fragment charm, and then figured out how to use it once it was done.  It was a fun project, but my workspace was barely able to contain it, so lessons in organization for next time.

The outside is the G45 playing card background, covered with Rock Candy Distress Crackle and then inked with Tea Dye and Vintage Photo. I wanted to keep the "Halloween in Wonderland" theme itself toned down in the piece and make it more of mature Alice piece.
The floors of the compartments were made with kraft paper, Distress Stains and stamped with a complimentary Distress Ink. I really like the speed with which a background can be coloured with the stains.
The Mad Hatter "timepiece" was built from 7 Gypsies optical lens, with an Ideaology game spinner over the top. I wanted to use a Tim Holtz pocketwatch, but Archiver's didn't have any. In the end, I think the minimalism of the lens works a timepiece. The pocketwatch might have been overpowering.
Miniature "Drink Me" potion made with Tim Holtz corked vial and some Distress Reinker and water. The attachment points for the chain are done with Memo Pins. Hitch Fasteners would have been ideal here.
Miniature tea cup and showing the continuation of the hatter from the background on the side. I left most of the sides blank in the piece, but the tea party section I did the sides.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Color Wash and Distress

This week over at Simon Says Stamp and Show, it's Simon Says Stamp and Show a Lord Tim of Holtz Technique! My set of Color Wash and Distress Stains arrived today lightening quick thanks to Crafts to Favor. I guess the featured technique here is Color Wash. I used Color Wash for the background with some Distress Ink in Vintage Photo and Walnut Stain around the edges. The plant is Peeled Paint Distress Embossed with some Distress Stickles for highlights. The bird is Broken China Distress Stain underneath Archival black. The sentiment done with Perfect Pearl.
Speaking of Distress Stains, I stained some tags and cut out 1/2 inch circles using a craft punch and glued them to the top of the stain containers so I could identify them easily. They fit perfectly.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Studies in Black and Gold

My local favourite coffee shop just got their own rubber stamp for using on bags of coffee beans they repackage and sell. Rather than just plain old black on brown paper, I thought I'd do some samples of how it could look if they did some embossing and/or distressing to make it a bit more interesting. Their theme colours are black and gold, so I ended up using a comparable stamp and doing some studies in different techniques and combinations of those.
The left is Queen's Gold embossed over black acrylic. The right is Heirloom Gold Perfect Peals over black acrylic. These ended up being a little too "clean" and literal, but I like the subleness of the Perfect Pearls.
The left is clear emboss over black acrylic, then overpainted with gold acrylic, aka Shabby Chic. I'm still getting to grips with this technique. When it works, it looks great, but sometimes it doesn't. The difficulty is getting the acrylic off of the embossed areas, while leaving enough of it on the background. I think they key is a bold stamp so you get lots of embossed area as really get that glossy enameled look like on my previous tag. The right is clear emboss over the manilla background, then black acrylic.
The right is Scattered Straw Distress Embossing powder on black acrylic. The right is regular black embossing, then coloured with Scattered Straw Distress Ink.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Quick Shabby Chic

I guess winning the Ranger Ink Easter Egg Hunt inspired me to get back to some stamping. I didn't even know about it until 20 minutes beforehand, thanks to reading about it on their Twitter feed. I don't yet know what my prize is.

I decided on a simple shabby chic tag since I don't do a lot embossing. One of things that strikes me getting back into distress techniques the the variety of options to achieving a similar/same result. For instance, instead of leaving the clear embossing on, I could have remelted and lifted it, as in the faux batik technique. Instead of pigment ink to stamp the sentiment, I could have used acrylic paint. Or Perfect Medium with Perfect Peals if I wanted something subtler.

Entering this in Simon Says Stamp and Show: Some Distressing
Also in Stampman Challenge #20: Embossing