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Holiday Gate-Fold Card Using Embossing and Dies

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Hi All,

I’m back with another card for OCC Merry Making. For today’s card, I created a gate-fold card that was inspired by a project shared by Jennifer McGuire. She used a gorgeous detailed die to create her background image. Unfortunately, I don’t own very many background dies, so I decided to go with an embossed background instead. To create this background I used a Darice birch wood embossing folder. The folder is really narrow and measures 2.5″ wide so I had to use it twice to create this background. To give some emphasis to the embossing I used Tim Holtz distress ink in Iced Spruce to give a light shadow to the embossing.

The interactive part of the card is very simple. To open the card, you have to remove the red belly band that has a simple holiday greeting. I also stacked several layers of a reindeer head silhouette. Both the sentiment and reindeer are from a Hampton Art set.

The reindeer silhouette was attached to just one side of the folded card so that it opens up to reveal the sentiment, but also closes the card nicely.

I added the coordinating sentiment to the interior of the card and then die-cut it to give it a bit of a border.

To finish off the entire card I added a tiny red gem to the silhouette of the reindeer.

Hope you enjoyed reading about the process of creating this card. I’ll be back tomorrow with my last and final project for OCC Merry Making.

Holiday Card Using Non-Traditional Stamps

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Hi All,

Welcome back! Today I’d like to share a card I made for OCC Merry Making. This card was inspired by a card demonstration in the class that used non-traditional images to create a holiday card. The demonstration used some non-traditional colors as the card base and I wanted to give that a try as well.

For this card, I used images from 3 different stamps sets. The gold floral embossed image is from Inkadinkado Flowers stamp set. The background tone-on-tone images are from Altenew Vintage Roses and the sentiment is from Little Yellow Bicycle Faith (CSS-104).

I love adding extra embellishments with white gel pen and typically do so by just creating lines or faux stitching. This time I took a note to try some scattered dots similar to the card demo as well. I think using the white is a simple and easy way to bring in some nice contrast.

Here’s a closer look.

Thanks so much for stopping by and I’ll see you again real soon with another project.

Holiday Card Featuring Stamped Background

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Hi All,

I’m back to share another card featuring a technique from Merry Making. It’s is a very simple technique that is simple to do, but it is more focusing on the overall aesthetic than the technique.

The technique shared featured a layered stamp image that crosses over solid white score lines.

I wanted to give this a try, but I put a bit of a twist on mine. I went with an outline stamp from Concord & 9th and colored it in with my pencils.

I used several different hues to achieve this look. I also made sure to keep my strokes in the same direction so that you could see the veins of each petal.

Here’s a closer look.

Yesterday's #whatsonmydesk for #occmerrymaking was some Christmas florals using pencils and score lines. 🖌

A post shared by Handmade Cards and Paper Goods (@joliesamuel) on

To finish off the card I added another layer of cardstock trimmed at the opposite angle and a simple holiday sentiment.

Holiday Card Featuring Bokeh Watercoloring

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Hi All,

This past weekend marked a “Hallmark Holiday” like no other – International Card Making Day! For many in the crafting world, it is a great way to share and encourage one another. For me, it’s a fun way to see what other cardmakers are up to, and in the process, I tend to find some products that I may feel like trying out. It’s also a great way to meet some new folks and in on some craft themed conversations.

This holiday also marks the start of the holiday card making season. It’s a time when it seems new products are widely released and available. Now I’ve got to be honest and say I’ve started my holiday cards a few weeks ago. I’m not much of a Halloween card maker, so I just seem to skip right over that and go directly into Christmas. One thing I like to do around this time of year is to join a holiday-themed card class. Typically that involves taking a course over at Online Card Classes. Call it a type of continuing education of sorts – I love what they share over there and it sparks the start to so many more ideas! This class is called Merry Making and it has already taught something I didn’t know – Bokeh! Upon googling the term, I realized I knew the look, but didn’t have a word to define it. Have you ever had that? Where you know what something looks like or how to describe it, but you don’t know the technical term for what it is your describing? …Well, that’s how I felt immediately after looking this up!

I wanted to give the technique a try and recreate an image I saw in my google search. It had a gradient of greens to blues and a bokeh filter on top. I thought it would be a gorgeous background for a simple sentiment.

I decided to use Tim Holtz Distress Inks in the colors Shabby Shutters, Evergreen Bough, Peeled Paint, Forest Moss, Peacock Feathers, Salty Ocean and Chipped Saphire. I made sure to blend the inks very well and use a light hand in the process as well. Here’s a look at the inks all blended and highlighted (I shared this picture over on my Instagram)

To create the bokeh pattern I used some clean water and my no.4 Silver Black Velvet watercolor brush to paint circles. Since distress ink reacts with water, the inks pooled up and then were removed with a dry paper towel. I painted several layers on top and besides one another to achieve the look you see. I wanted to define the circle and used a silver gelly roll pen to draw those in.

Here’s a closer look at the shimmery pen details.

It is very subtle but makes all the difference.

Thanks so much for stopping by and I hope to see you again real soon with another holiday project.