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Going Beyond!

The first class I took in Level 2 of the Altenew Educator Certification Program was called Beyond Basic Backgrounds. WOW! What a super course, I highly recommend it to anyone wanting to learn new ways to create beautiful backgrounds for your cards. The two cards I’m sharing today use techniques that I hadn’t seen before so I was really excited about them. Lots of FUN!!

This first card is one of my favorite. The lesson this day was about a way to make your own “designer ‘perfect spaced’ papers” that you can replicate over and over and not be afraid to cut. I really found the experience to be peaceful and can imagine using this technique a lot in the future.

Since we’re near Valentine’s Day, you’ll see a bit of that feel in my cards.

Before you get started, make sure that you have a gridded ruler that you can see through.

Here’s the first:

To create the background you’ll want to use the gridded ruler and a pencil to mark lines which you’ll stamp on. To start off, lay your ruler down as in the image below:

  • Top side of the ruler in the top corner

  • Bottom side of the ruler in the bottom corner

Once it’s lined up, gently draw a line on the top side (the left in the image above). Then do the same on the other side so you have an X. Next, you’ll want to stamp one of the images you’re going to use right on the center of that X. This will help you determine which grid line you prefer to be your guide for all the rest of the lines. I used the small heart from the Faux Veneer Stamp & Die set. After you determine the grid line, keep lining it up and lightly drawing your pencil line until the page is filled. The final step is to start stamping your image. Line it up in the cross point, being sure to also get the edges, the top, and the bottom. For the hearts on this card I used Altenew Crisp Dye Inks in Coral Berry, Ruby Red, and Frosty Pink. NOTE: BEFORE YOU ERASE the pencil lines, make sure your ink is DRY!

I know this description is likely a bit hard to follow so here's a short video to show you (there is no sound):

Once the background is finished, you can use it for any type of card you want. For mine, I cut a heart out of vellum using the Halftone Hearts Nesting dies and the Hello sentiment from a stash glitter and a black cardstock using the Waterbrush Hello die. I embossed the “sending love & hugs” sentiment in white from the Adore You stamp set. To put it all together, I inked up the edges of a slightly larger panel with Coral Berry around the edge and then adhered everything together.

After I did this for my planned card, I used the same technique on a “landscape” view of the cardbase and a full 8 ½ x 11 sheet. I had a lot of fun listening to an audio book and stamping all those lovely flowers on a full sheet. I also decided to whimsically add some leaves in all about. It was a very relaxing evening!

You can see the pencil grid lines in the images below

Below is a full 8 1/2 x 11 sheet

My second card uses the technique of Mat Watercolor Resist. Most of the time when we do resist types of things, we emboss the card and that leaves a raised and often shiny place where the resist occurs. This method leaves a mat space that's the resist and it's flat on the card... no raised area.

Take a look:

The first thing you need to grab, which might not be right at your craft space, is a sheet of waxed paper. You also need something that gets hot - a laminator, a Minc machine, or even an iron. (tip: for the iron option, I tested it out on the "Silk" setting. I recommend starting low on the heat, moving the iron around, and checking periodically to see if it's adhering. If not, slowly start increasing the heat. Remember to keep checking.)

To begin, select the die you want to use and cut the wax paper (with the wax side facing the cutting side of the die). Remove the wax paper cut from the die and place it on a piece of watercolor paper. Be sure that the wax side is facing the paper because you want it to melt onto the paper. Regardless of the heat method you use, be sure to put the panel inside of a folded piece of paper! You'll also want to check it to make sure it looks all adhered as if you'd glued it to the watercolor paper.

Before you begin to add color to the paper, cover the entire panel well with water (tip: if you add water to the back side as well it will help reduce warping while you work and help the paper stay steady on your work surface.) For my card, I started in the upper right corner with color from my Altenew Watercolor Brush Marker Purple Wine. I put some of the color on a bit of craft mat and then used a brush to add it to the cardstock. I put it on pretty liberally in that corner and that was all the color I added. From that point on, I continued to wet my brush and drag the color down the card to give it a bit of the ombre effect. I love this rich, bright color!

Once the watercolor panel is dry, it's time to remove the paper from the panel. To do so, use your heat gun to heat it up a bit and slowly peeled it off. You may need to heat a little, and pull a little but the finished piece is so much fun! Again, you can then create any type of card you like. It might be great to make up several of these panels for use another day - you can fold the waxed paper in half when your die cutting so that you can cut two at once. Also, if the paper that you pull off remains in one piece, you can glue it to another card for a totally different look.

To finish my card off, I went back to the Faux Veneer Stamp and Die set and stamped both size hearts in a couple of colors (Momento Lilac Posies and LuLu Lavender). Next I cut another heart out of vellum using the Halftone Hearts Nesting die set. I stamped the heart with the sentiment from the Hello Sunshine stamp set using Obsidian Black. Since this is a pigment ink, it stays wet and I was able to emboss it with clear powder. I put a bit of liquid glue behind the Hello Sunshine sentiment so it wouldn't show through the vellum and glued that to the watercolor panel. I added the hearts around and called it finished.

The following are links to the tools I used for these projects.

Please note that some contain affiliate links which means I may earn a small commission when you click and purchase - at no additional cost to you! This helps to support my blog. Thank you!!

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Unknown member
Feb 09, 2022

Your cards are exceptional, Libby! So good! Thank you for submitting your beautiful work.

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