Hello, crafty friends! Laura, here, on the blog today sharing two very different cards I made using the bold and beautiful Cuddles and Hugs Stamp by Concord & 9th, along with a few different techniques for working with the stunning Nuvo Gilding Flakes. And, if you can stick with me, I have a bonus card at the end!
I created this first card design when a friend asked if I had a Valentine’s Day card that was “black and grey… or something for a dude.” I’m sure you are all shocked to find out I did not. 😉 The intended recipient is into bikes and things with engines, so a card covered in cute lovesick critters with a witty pun was going to cut it with this guy. But because of this request, my end-product was nothing like I imagined it would be when I bought the gilding flakes and that amazing Concord & 9th Hugs and Cuddles Stamp from The Little Paper Tree. It wouldn’t have even crossed my mind to use the black card – but let me tell you, I think it really gave it a masculine, almost regal look to the card. The gilding flakes add so much texture and dimension. It’s a look unlike any other medium out there. I love that I can work with a product that has a beautiful shine but won’t scare off a man!
I cut an A2 panel from Bazzill Black Cardstock. Next, I ran my powder tool over the top third (or so) of the panel to remove oils from my paper, then used my stamping tool to stamp that bold ‘hugs’ in Versamark. Instead of sprinkling with embossing powder (as we would normally do at this point!), I used this really cool medium called Stamp N Bond. It works similar to embossing powder in that it will stick to a wet, stamped surface – and that it will melt when you hit it with your heat tool, but there is a big difference. This stuff gets really sticky, and it’s what allows the foil to stick to the stamped image. I found that this medium is quite quick to get to temperature and can overheat quickly – which causes it to lose its stick and you may find you have to stamp the image a second time. (This is where the stamping tool comes in handy as long as you left the stamp inside!) It is helpful to know that it also loses its stick quickly (regardless if its heated perfectly or not) so make sure you have all your foil out and ready to go.
The foil is so light and fluffy. WARNING: it will go everywhere!! So if you don’t like to create a beautiful mess, you will want to stay far, far away from this product! 🙂
When working with the foil, it couldn’t be any easier. Once you have a sticky surface, you generously smoosh foil down and rub with your finger to burnish. Simple as that! I work with a piece of parchment paper underneath me to try to contain some of the mess it creates. You’ll also want to refrain from sneezing, coughing or laughing. Ask me how I know. 🙂 I find that you can be quite rough and really work the foil into the sticky because once its stuck, its stuck. You can go behind with a clean makeup brush or ink duster to get any lose strays off the card.
To create the stripes, I used the easiest technique ever. I simply laid down Scor Tape in varying sizes where I wanted the stripes to go, put the desired colour foil down over it and burnished it into the sticky same as before.
If you look closely, you can see there are teeny-tiny specs of gold foil around the hugs sentiment. This is where I didn’t do a very good job of getting the stray/excess Stamp N Bond powder off of my card before I added the foil. It was fairly obvious as it was gold on black card, so I came up with a quick cover-up. I used a bit of gold metallic watercolour paint and flicked a few splatters over the whole card after I applied the stripes.
The hearts were a bit of a last minute add, and I know I said a manly-man card, but these hearts aren’t too bad, are they? 🙂 I used a nesting heart die to cut two sizes of hearts from a silver, slightly sparkly vellum and red cardstock. I used the same stamping and foiling technique (as used on ‘hugs’ above) to add foiling to the sentiments on a red heart and some black card.
I added the hearts to the card using Tombow and cut the black card down to be a banner to fit my heart. I attached that to the heart with black foam tape. I LOVE how this card turned out. The texture is super cool and my husband was really impressed! I glued the entire black panel to an A2 card base I made from Neenah Solar White.
For my second card, I decided to go in the complete opposite direction colour-wise. I paired up the same Cuddles and Hugs Stamp with Plaid Background, another Concord & 9th stamp. I adore this stamp as it can be used in so many different colour and stripe combinations, it can work for almost any occasion!
I used my stamping tool and stamped the Plaid Background stamp onto a piece of Neenah Solar White. I trimmed that down using my Tim Holtz Guillotine to 4” x 5.25”.
Quick tip: I find when using stamps that cover lots of surface area, it helps to use pigment inks. That is not a scientific point but an experienced crafter’s tip. 🙂 Today I used Distress Oxide Worn Lipstick – and it was a DREAM to work with! There were a few small patchy areas, but I was so happy with my initial stamped impression, I used it as, is since I was planning to cover that area up anyway.
For the gold lines, I was planning to use the coordinating thin-line stamps (in the set) but my gold inkpad ran out (and I just had to use GOLD!). So, I got resourceful and used a ruler and a gold pen to create the gold lines. Super simple – and honestly I think it was just as quick and easy to do since I used my craft mat to line up my ruler.
I prepped a piece of vellum for gilding flake application with my powder tool, then stamped the big ‘hugs’ in Versamark and covered with Gold Bullion Gilding Flakes. I used a Wonky Die (but you can use any die – or just use your trimmer!) to cut the hugs out, creating a see-through panel.
On a piece of Neenah Cardstock, I used Ranger Mini Ink Blenders with Distress Oxide Inks to blend Worn Lipstick with a bit of Candied Apple around the outside. Then I used the DIstress Spray Bottle to bring out that beautiful oxidation and blotted up the water after just a few seconds. I didn’t want the water drops to be too severe since I next stamped the rest of the sentiment (on the blended card) and heat embossed in white. I cut that down to a banner to fit my card front. I still felt like it needed something more, so I used an embossing pen to go around the edge of my banner and then foiled that also. I like how it accentuated the rest of the sentiment. I added that to the vellum piece, then added Tombow to the back of the vellum in any and all places that were covered by foiling or the banner, and glued to the top panel.
Since this was decidedly a feminine style, I added a few Twinkle Lights Sequins from Little Things by Lucy to finish off the design.
Now, for the bonus card! This one doesn’t use gilding flakes but I do use the Cuddles & Hugs Stamp, the Plaid Background Stamp, and the almost the same Distress Oxide Inks blended background.
First, I stamped the plaid (using Distress Ink in SpunSugar) onto a piece of Bristol Smooth that I’d cut down to 4” x 5.25”. Quick Tip: Another tip for stamping with large surface area stamps is to use Versamark on the stamp before you add the dye ink colour of your choice. I think the idea is it helps it to stick to the stamp. Distress Inks are notorious for being splotchy when used on stamps such as this, but I got this almost perfect impression on the very first go!
On a piece of Strathmore Bristol Smooth Cardstock, I prepped the area for heat embossing, stamped that fab heart graphic (from the Cuddles and Hugs Stamp) with Versamark and heat embossed with white embossing powder. Then, I did ink blending right over top of the embossed heart using Iced Spruce, Worn Lipstick and Candied Apple. Once again, I used the Distress Sprayer to distress the image. I let the water set for a bit longer this time (about 8-10 seconds) and blotted up the droplets with a paper towel. Then, I used my favorite Micro Tip Scissors to cut around the graphic, leaving a small border around the edge. I loaded up the back of that with 3M Foam Tape and adhered to my panel.
I prepped a piece of vellum for heat embossing, this time stamping the giant ‘hugs’ in white. There is a coordinating die for this set that will cut out the word for me, but since its vellum, I just did a quick fussy-cut around the outside of the letters. I glued all the areas that were covered by the white heat embossing and glued to my heart.
I wanted to create another banner, so I blended my trusty ‘ol Oxides again and heat embossed the rest of the sentiment in black. I added it on top of the hugs die cut using foam tape.
I made an A2 card base from Bristol Smooth and used my ink blender and Distress Sprayer to get a nice coverage of Iced Spruce around the edge of the card front. I used Tombow to glue my plaid panel to the card base. I added a few Nuvo Crystal Drops to finish it off. Quick Tip: Sometimes Crystal Drops can dry a bit translucent. If this is not the look you are going for (as it was my case here), squeeze a few drops in various sizes on a glass mat, acrylic block, etc and let it dry. Then you can use your craft knife to remove it and you can glue to your card as you would any other sequin or embellishment! I also like to do this so I can play around with where I want to place my drops so I don’t have “droppers remorse”!
Whew… You made it! I know that was a long post, and I certainly appreciate you sticking with me! 🙂 I hope you found a bit of inspiration from my projects. Happy crafting and see Y’all next time! xo
WANT TO FIND THESE PRODUCTS:
Concord & 9th Cuddles & Hugs
Concord & 9th Plaid Background
Lawn Fawn Heart Stackables
Versafine Onyx Black
Versamark Watermark Clear
Tim Holtz Distress Ink Spun Sugar
Bazzill Black Licorice
Neenah Solar White (for card bases)
Crafters Companion Vellum
Strathmore Bristol Smooth
Stampendous Stamp ‘N Bond
Ranger White Embossing Powder
Nuvo Embossing Pen
Nuvo Gilding Flakes in Radiant Gold, Silver Bullion, and Sunkissed Copper
Nuvo Crystal Drops in Silver Lining and Gloss White
Little Things from Lucy’s Cards Twinkle Lights Sequins
Hero Arts Pink Pearls
Tombow Mono Multi Liquid
ScorTape ⅛”*, ¼”, ½”
3M Scotch Foam Tape
Ranger White Foam Adhesive Tape
Scrapbook Adhesives Foam Squares
Ranger Mini Ink Blending Tool
Tim Holtz Distress Sprayer Spray Bottle
Tim Holtz Stamp Platform
Tim Holtz 8.5” Guillotine
Fiskars Micro-Tip Scissors
Tonic Nuvo Dual Blending Brush
Tonic Mini Blending Brush
Goodbye Anti Static Powder Tool
Marvy Jewel Picker