Hello all, thank you so much for stopping by. And a big welcome to the new followers - great to have you with us - particularly as today I'm very honoured to be presenting my first ever Guest Designer project. It's for Top Tip Tuesday and their One Layer Card challenge.
I was absolutely thrilled to be picked out as having Caught their Eye over at Top Tip Tuesday with my Big Top, and then I realised that it meant I would be invited to do a Guest Designer spot for them - even more exciting - if a little scary! It got even scarier when they told me that the Challenge for the fortnight I'd be playing would be One Layer Cards. I have done one for a Less Is More challenge, but the required simplicity is the complete opposite of the project I won with and, as regular readers will know, I'm generally a more-layers-the-better kind of girl!
A One Layer card generally seems to be defined as a folded piece of cardstock with the image(s) stamped directly onto it; minimal embellishments are allowed, but I do welcome a challenge, so I decided to be a purist about it.
Okay, without further ado, let me show you the One Layer wonders I came up with. Yes, that's plural - three, in fact, I'm afraid... well, if you're going to restrict me to one layer, I'm going to end up with more than one card!
As you can see, these three are variations on a theme... well, variations on a stamp, I suppose. With CAS (Clean and Simple cards) I think it's highly advisable not to put all your eggs in one basket, at least not if you're a CAS novice.
With layered work if something goes wrong you can always stick something over the top, or add a layer of paint or tissue tape to distract the eye. With one layer, if something goes wrong, you're pretty much done for. If you've read my previous CAS post, you'll know I speak from bitter experience!
Far better, for me anyway, is to have a number of things on the boil, and then you've got a fallback position if disaster strikes!
These were all part of my insomniac creativity a few nights ago... evidently 4 a.m. is a pretty productive time!
The stamp is one I got on ebay for silly money - £2.99 for this beautiful 12.5x12.5cm stamp by Magenta of Canada - I'm so glad nobody else seemed to want it! It's one of my very few wood-mounted stamps. While they're absolutely beautiful objects, the clear stamps are so much better for storing - you can fit many more of them in to the same space!
The first one I worked on has a potential Top Tip - a refinement to one of my favourite ways of applying ink to a stamp.
Rather than all one colour, or the precision of colouring the stamp with Distress Markers, this method has the deep pleasure of unpredictability built in.
You apply a sweep of a number of different Distress Ink pads (colours you've selected to complement one another) direct to the craft mat, and then take the stamp on a little wiggly walk across them, pressing down to pick up ink several times.
You can then give them a light spritz of water or, as I did, breathe heavily across the surface of the stamp.
The moisture allows the inks to blend a little on the stamp. I find the spritz a bit hard to control - you can end up with a very watercoloury effect... pretty, but with a stamp of this detail not so good. So, for a detailed stamp, the hot breath does the job really well.
To be honest, given the time of night I was playing, I can't remember exactly which colours were swept onto the mat... Vintage Photo is there, and Broken China I think, and maybe Bundled Sage?
For the Tim Holtz sentiment, I applied the same (again... I think they were the same!?) colours direct from the ink pad to the stamp.
For the next I stamped all in one colour, Forest Moss. I decided to have a play with the Distress Markers, colouring in, and was kicking myself for not having stamped in Archival since now I wouldn't be able to use water with the Markers without messing up the stamped image.
It turned out - as it so often does - that this was a happy accident. I enjoy turning the Markers to watercolours, but in this case they've been left with the full concentration of colour, and I really like the end result.
I built the blending in from the edge using Antique Linen and Vintage Photo leaving just the centre section with a wholly white background.
Funny how the one I was just messing around with ended up being my favourite of the three!
And then the last one was made with one of my favourite techniques, and colours I love. It's stamped onto white cardstock using Versamark Watermark, and then embossed with Stampendous Detail Clear embossing powder. I thought it would be necessary to go with the Detail powder as the stamp is so detailed.
I then inked over using a blending tool, with shades of Faded Jeans, Bundled Sage and Peeled Paint. I don't have the Peeled Paint ink pad, so instead I coloured a patch of ink from the Distress Marker onto my acrylic block, and used that with the blending tool too.
So I think, in the end, I'll offer this one up as my Top Tip. If you've succumbed to a full set of Distress Markers, but don't have all the ink pads, you can still blend with any of the 37 Distress colours by using your acrylic block (or any non-porous surface) as a palette.
The sentiment was key on this one, as it really is what I was doing in the early hours of this particular night. It's from a Personal Impressions set, Creative Thoughts, designed by Lindsay Mason. And since I loved the sentiment, I chose to stamp it in my favourite blue - the Chipped Sapphire.
The whole card still looked a little naked somehow. It needed finishing off. My gut said a border was needed, but it needed several deep breaths before I set off with the Chipped Sapphire Distress Marker and my trusty wooden ruler. As I said, if you get it wrong on a one layer card, there's no going back - it's back to the very beginning.
Thankfully, I was very happy with my fine, delicate border. I like that it adds one extra frame to the concentric squares of the stamp (though my border is not precisely concentric, as it doesn't share the same centre as the rest - sorry, that's my inner word-pedant leaping out to cause trouble!).
Many thanks for joining me today here at Words and Pictures, and I hope that I've given some inspiration for creating One Layer cards. Do hop over to see what the Design Team at Top Tip Tuesday have got to offer - it's fabulous! Plus there's a brilliant tutorial full of great ideas and inspiration too... and do join in the fun yourself this fortnight.
I am only one, but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something; and because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do something that I can do.
I'm entering the middle card in CAS-ual Fridays' challenge this week, which is Square Cards
And I'd like to enter the third card into Twisted Tuesday's challenge Are You Blue? - with a twist of one other colour