It’s funny how often something I did in school many years ago sparks an experiment in my craft studio. They’re not always successful, but earlier in the week I created a really fun background that was just perfect for my Design Team contribution for this week’s What Will You Stamp/ Challenge #WWYS177 – Enjoy Life.
As luck would have it the Just Us Girls Challenge this week is #JUGS449 – Watercolour Background, and the Global Design Project challenge this week is #GDP147 – Country / Farm Life, so it was obviously meant to be.
I can’t tell you how pleased I am with this little 3″ x 3″ thank you card which started out as a 3″ x 6″ piece of Watercolor Paper soaking in a bowl of clean water. I must have left the paper there for a good 10 minutes, making sure that the paper was really saturated. It needed to be if my little experiment was to work.
In the dim and distant past I seem to recall an experiment in school where we put a strip of paper into a liquid and as it was drawn up the paper it created bands of colour, and that was what I was trying to create here.
I squeezed some drops of Lemon Lime Twist Ink Refill in a line on a small tray and then took the Watercolor Paper from its bath, let it drip for a few seconds and then propped up the paper in the line of ink. Straight away the wet paper started to draw the ink up creating a really nice effect.
I let the paper sit there for a while and when it seemed like the ink would travel no further I carefully picked up the paper and added some drops of Old Olive Ink Refill to the line of ink and set the paper back down.
A few minutes more went by and I repeated the process, this time adding some Mossy Meadow Ink Refill. I left the Watercolor Paper in the ink for about 20 minutes and by then the wet paper was pretty much dried out and a hard line had formed at the top of the dark green ink on the paper.
I washed the remaining ink out of the tray and replaced it with a little clean water, once again resting the edge of the Watercolor Paper in the liquid. This time the water started to draw the ink out back of the paper at the bottom edge and it created a greyish band reaching up about 3/8″. I took the paper out, washed and dried the tray, and then set the paper back on its edge in the dry tray so that the piece could dry completely.
In fact I left the piece about 24 hours, by which time it was pretty, but rather buckled. To flatten it out I placed the Watercolor Paper between two sheets of white copy paper and placed it under a heavy box containing some of my old steel rule dies. And there it sat for another 24 hours until I was ready to create today’s project.
With the help of my Stamparatus positioning platform I began by stamping the cyclist image from the Enjoy Life Stamp Set three or four times using Memento Tuxedo Black Ink. Being able to stamp the image multiple times in exactly the same place allowed me to get a really crisp black image on the textured paper.
Taking the piece off the Stamparatus I then used Mossy Meadow ink to stamp the grass image a few times along the bottom edge, followed by the small flower silhouette image with Shaded Spruce ink.
Turning the Watercolor Paper over I added the grass and flower silhouette images along the bottom of that side. Then I stamped the them along the bottom on both sides of a Whisper White 3″ x 3″ Square Envelope too.
At this point I decided that I didn’t like the ‘white’ sky so I pulled out my Aqua Painter, and having pressed onto the lid of a closed Pool Party ink pad, used the ink that had been deposited inside the lid to add a light wash of blue very roughly over the dry Watercolor Paper. I had to be careful here as I didn’t want the water from the Aqua Painter to affect all my previous hard work.
Once I was sure that the paper was properly dry I used Tuxedo Black ink to stamp the ‘Thank you kindly’ sentiment from the Enjoy Life Stamp Set in the top right corner of the piece, again using my Stamparatus so I could over-stamp it several times. I could now use the Detailed Trio Punch to round the four corners on the open card.
All that was left was to score the Watercolor Paper at 3″ using my Stampin’ Trimmer, fold it along the scored line and sharpen the crease with a Bone Folder and my mini masterpiece was complete.
Oh my goodness, this may be a small card but I love how it turned out. My favourite part has to be the fact that the ‘scene’ continues onto the back of the folded card and on the inside! I must try that more often.
But what do you think was my experiment successful?
So here’s the three challenges I mentioned.
First, the What Will You Stamp? Challenge #WWYS177 – Enjoy Life. Check the blog for more inspiring Design Team projects. We’d love for you to take up the challenge and create your own project using the Enjoy Life Stamp Set. Don’t forget to upload it to our gallery, you might be our weekly winner and receive an invitation to be our Guest Designer on August 6th.
And then there’s the Just Us Girls challenge #JUGS449 – Watercolor Background. There’s so much scope in that challenge don’t you think?
I used two different techniques to create my watercolour background but there’s lots of other ways too.
Finally the Global Design Project challenge #GDP147 – Country / Farm Life. There’s a lot of scope there.