Saturday, December 3, 2016

8 Days of Holiday Cards! - Day 3: Ombre Lights!

Welcome back! For day 3 of my 8 Days of Holiday Cards series, I'm sharing two different techniques for stamping ombre images.

I learned the first technique from the incomparable Jennifer McGuire. I find that I learn so much from her video tutorials, and am always impressed with her super crisp, clean, and professional finished products!

For both cards, I used the Reverse Confetti Merry & Bright stamp set. For the first card, I cut a 3.75x5.5 inch panel from Paper Source Superfine White coverweight paper for the main image, and cut and scored a piece of Paper Source Black Coverweight paper. I love Paper Source's papers, but sometimes want to have a vertical fold card, so I make my own by cutting an 8.5x11 inch sheet in half lengthwise, making a 4.25x11 inch sheet, and then scoring at the 5.5 inch halfway point for the fold. I then got to stamping with my MISTI tool - seriously, the BEST crafting purchase I've ever made!

For this first card, I found three die inks that coordinate well together (My red die ink came in a set with stamp carving tools from Yellow Owl Workshop, the blue die ink is the Lawn Fawn Fish Tank ink pad, and the green is the Hero Arts Neon Green ink pad)., and found my ColorBox Frost White Pigment Ink as well. I positioned my clear stamps on the MISTI tool lid, and positioned the paper where I wanted it, securing it with the MISTI magnets, and then started my stamping!

To create the ombre effect, start by stamping the entire image with your one color. Then, ink up just a portion of the stamp with that same color (in this case, I inked up a little more than the tip at a diagonal of each light bulbs). Before stamping it again, I took a paper towel and lightly tapped/rubbed it along the diagonal line made from the ink on the stamp, in order to make less of a harsh line when it is stamped again. Once you have the ink where you want it, you then stamp again in exactly the same spot. This is where the MISTI is a life safer! By keeping the stamps and paper in position, you get a perfect image each time! :) You can repeat this process multiple times to get the desired look you're wanting to achieve. Essentially, every time you add more ink to the stamp, it darkens that part of your final product, creating that ombre effect.

Set these panels aside to dry (in my case, I sped up that process using my heat tool to help the ink dry faster). Once dry, reposition the panel on the MISTI again. This time, ink up the opposite side of your stamp (in this case, the larger part of the lightbulbs) with the white pigment ink, and use the paper towel to soften the edge again. Then, stamp it on top of your original image, and repeat if necessary. This helps lighten the area opposite your darkened area from the previous stamping, finishing the ombre effect.

After the lightbulbs had dried, I used VersaMark Ink to stamp the lightbulb base, and embossed them with silver embossing powder. I finished the card off by adhering the panel to the card base with my tape runner (and now that I'm looking at them again, am debating adding in strings to the top of the bulbs to make them look like they're hanging down, and not floating...).

For my second card, I used three ombre ink pads from Hero Arts, which made the process go much more quickly. :) These were stamped directly onto the A2 Paper Source Superfine White folded card, which also reduced the additional steps of making my own folded card and panel. I also drew in a string to connect the three bulbs so they look like a string of lights. Both processes ended up making fun results, and I appreciate that I've learned how to make an ombre effect without using ombre ink pads.

I'll be back again tomorrow with another holiday card. :)

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