Ink blending has become one of my go-to techniques for adding color to die cuts, backgrounds, stamped images, and pretty much everything! I don't claim to be an expert at it, but there are a few tips I have picked up along the way that has helped my blending. I'll share a few of these tips with you in this post.
For the color on the background of this card, I blended some different shades of red together to create an even color to stand out behind this piece of vellum that was stamped and embossed.
The vellum piece on the card is embossed in some of Brutus Monroe's Gilded Embossing Powder, and the stamp used is Brutus Monroe's Rose Garden Background Stamp. I also added a piece of gold washi tape to one side that I die cut with a scalloped border die.
Ok, so on to the ink blending tips! I'm just covering a few questions that I most frequently hear asked.
Q: Do I need high quality cardstock to get a good blend?
A: Yes and No! I say this because YES, a high quality cardstock will get you a better blend because it will take the ink better, but at the same time NO, because ink blending is still possible on cheap cardstock. All the cards you see me create are built on cheap department store cardstock. Also remember that sometimes if you leave your paper for 10-15 minutes and come back, it may look a little smoother because you have given the paper time to soak in the ink.
Q: Why does my ink tool leave lines or marks?
A: Several reasons, one of them being that your foam blender may be new or not yet "broken in". Once you use your foam pad for a while, the fibers get broken down a bit and become softer. Also, as you use it, the fibers also become more saturated with ink, which will help to apply ink more evenly. Another way to avoid those lines is to start blending off your page and then to lightly blend into the paper coming in from the edges.
Q: Why doesn't my blending look smooth and seamless?
A: Again, there could be a few reasons here. One being the last question we covered, and two being that you may not have added enough ink! Sometimes to get a nice even blend you really have to work at it. My motto is, "Just Keep Blending!" (think like Dori!). Put some time and elbow grease into it and also try to add enough ink. When you start off on white paper, you might see some of those foam pad marks or lines, but as the paper gets saturated they even out.
Also, blending lighter inks can be more difficult than darker inks. Get some ink on your foam tool, tap it off on some scratch paper, and lightly start your blending. You can always go darker but its harder to go lighter!
I hope these have been some helpful tips for you! I have a video here of the card I made, and I also explain some of these tips. Enjoy!
If you have any wisdom to offer on ink blending, or if I forgot to mention something that would be helpful, please feel free to comment below! I love hearing from all of you!
More from Marie Nicole...
This card was created with a few items that I have not played with in a while. Sometimes I like to dig into my supplies and revisit some of my old favorites to get my creative inspiration flowing again! I also try to play around with different looks and styles than my usual feminine, clean and simple style.
This card is still quite simple, as it doesn't have a ton of embellishments, but the background makes it stand out.
I began with a Long and Skinny card base from Canvas Corp Brands. Then, I stenciled some Hickory Smoke Distress Ink over my TCW Gears Stencil. After removing the stencil, I added some Weathered Wood over the Hickory Smoke. It gave a grey-blue color that reminded me of metal gears.
Next, using my fingers and a paintbrush, I flicked on some water droplets to get the ink moving. After that was dry, Shabby Shutters Ink was blended over the top, highlighting where those droplets had been.
Then, to add just a little more interest, I also stamped some faded text using Black Soot Distress Ink.
Next, using some Lawn Fawn Circle Frame Dies, I cut out several different sizes of circles from vellum. The big circle was stamped with a polka dot stamp and embossed with some Brutus Monroe Penny Embossing Powder. I love this copper powder- it shines just like the metal!
I also embossed one of the frames to adhere around the circle so that it would make the big one stand out. The other circles where adhered in the background. They are very subtle, but the add some interest without taking away from the background.
The sentiment was also stamped and embossed in Penny, as well as a strip of black cardstock that was stamped with a striped pattern. To embellish, just a few bronze gears were added, and then a few gold sequins.
Like I had mentioned, its a different style than my normal girly cards, but I like it! It would be a great card to give to guys to celebrate and achievement.
Thanks for stopping by today! If you are interested in any of these items, please check out the links below!
More from Marie Nicole...
This stamp set from Brutus Monroe is just fabulous! It has this great floral image and a number of sentiments along with it that can be used for different occasions. I decided to go ahead and make two cards with this stamp, just to show that it can be used in a variety of creative ways.
For this first card, the florals were stamped out using my Misti and Raven Detail Ink. Then the image was colored in using Prismacolor pencils. After fussy cutting the image, I popped it up on some foam adhesive and layered it over some coordinating pieces of paper cut into banner shapes.
I also used some Hickory Smoke and Spun Sugar Distress Inks to add some ink splatters to the background, and then tied some white raffia in a bow at the top.
Stunning, yet simple!
Next, I wanted to make another clean and simple card but with a little different spin on the florals. This time, the stamp was stamped using some Versamark ink and then embossed in white embossing powder.
After the vellum was cooled, I fussy cut it out and set it aside while I prepared the background.
Using some light Distress Inks, Squeezed Lemon and Tumbled Glass, I blended on some soft spotlight colors and then glued the vellum flowers over it.
Lastly, I used one of the sentiment stamps from the set and added a simple black strip of cardstock with the sentiment on it over the florals.
That's it for now! Hope you enjoyed this look at this gorgeous stamp set from Brutus Monroe! Im sure you will see this stamp on more projects in the future!
Thanks for stopping by, and happy crafting!
More from Marie Nicole...
ATCs can be a fun way to create a lot of projects for your crafty friends at once. A typical ATC is 2.5x3.5 inches. They are little cards that you can decorate, either all the same or each one unique, and then send or give to friends.
For these ATCs, the Brutus Monroe stamp set, From Paris with Love, was used to give more of a vintage Paris feel. The base for these is some Canvas Corp Ivory Cardstock cut down to size. Then, some Damask Tissuestock was adhered down using Tattered Angels Clear Glimmer Glam.
Over the tissuestock, I used a French Script background stamp that was inked up with some Raven Detail Ink.
The sentiment and the Eiffel tower image are both from the Brutus Monroe stamp set. I stamped the Eiffel tower using my new, all-time favorite tool the Misti, then fussy cut it out and then colored it with some Hickory Smoke Distress Ink.
To add some glitz and glam, some glitter washi tape and a gold embossed vellum butterfly added just the right finishing touch.
These were so fun to create and send away to the rest of the Brutus Monroe Inspiration Team. There are so many more fun images on this stamp set and I can't wait to get my hands on them and create some more!
I'll also be linking this up with:
Simon Says Stamp's Monday Challenge!
More from Marie Nicole...
I've been on a little bit of a galaxy background obsession. Most of the time, I apply this technique to paper. I love taking a plain white piece of cardstock and applying all the colors to watch the background come to life. Below is an example of a card I recently did for Brutus Monroe featuring the galaxy background.
This card was created using a combination of Distress Inks, Brutus Monroe inks, and some Liquid Elements from Brutus Monroe, as well. If you want more details on it, hop over the the Brutus Monroe Blog where I have a description of the process as well as a video.
Since I was having so much fun with these backgrounds, I decided to take it a step farther and discover what other surfaces I could apply these galaxies to. I have a black mug in my craft room that I store my heat tool in. I thought it was the perfect blank canvas to do a little galaxy-ing to (yes, I did just turn the word "galaxy" into a verb).
I started by applying some Crystal Tattered Angels paint to the black mug. Then, since I am impatient, I sped up the drying process with my heat tool. The next step was to add some color which I did with Brutus Monroe's Chalk Ink. I decided to use this ink because it does become permanent when dry. Distress Inks would wipe off much too easily.
After I had some color down, the last step was to add paint splatters to give the impression of stars. I did this using more of the Tattered Angels paint and flicking it on with a paintbrush. Then, I dried the whole surface again with my heat tool.
I plan on using this mug in my craft room to house my heat tool, paintbrushes, and any other little craft tools that might need a home. If you plan on using your mug for drinking or eating out of, you might want to go ahead and find a food-safe and dishwasher-safe sealant to apply over the galaxy background. Without the sealant the paint and ink may rub off and would definitely not be something you would want to ingest.
Thanks for stopping by today and happy crafting!
Christmas is coming soon, and as much as we crafters and DIY-ers love to make our own home decor, lets not forget about our kids!
My toddler is getting to where he is curious about my craft room and the things in there. Doesn't bother me a bit! I think its fun when we can do a craft together, especially on a day that we are stuck inside.
This project is super simple and you probably have most of these inexpensive items on hand already. All you need is:
A paper plate
Glue (I used Aleene's)
Tattered Angels Glimmer Mist
A box, towel, or some other kind of table covering
Ribbon and embellishments
String or cord
Start by cutting a hole out of the center of the paper plate. Dont worry about making a perfect circle, you wont see it anyway after the cotton balls are glued on.
After your plate center is cut out, glue on the cotton balls to completely cover the surface of the plate.
Now comes the fun part! Spraying! I took a cardboard box to place our wreath in to contain the spray, but you could use an old towel, some kraft paper to cover your table, or even take it outside to spray. Go ahead and spray all over your cotton balls in any color you wish. I used Moss Glimmer Mist. I also sprayed a few single cotton balls using Lobster Glimmer Mist because I wanted to glue them on to look like berries.
Now, I will warn you, the cotton balls take a little time to dry. They are meant to suck up moisture so go ahead and spray them, let them dry, and come back later to finish!
I glued on the red cotton balls around the wreath and then took some red crepe paper to create a bow for the bottom. Then, all you need to do is punch a hole in the top of the paper plate and add a string to hang it by!
Super easy and its something the kids will enjoy! You can get creative with the different embellishments you put on the wreath. Try glittery ribbon, little Christmas bells, leaves, and anything else you have on hand! The kids will love using their creativity!
I think it would also be fun to add a photo in the middle and give it to the grandparents. Grandparents love this kind of thing, right??
I did take a video of the process while I was doing this craft with my son. My toddler is almost two, and this is totally appropriate for his age but you can also use it for older kids as well! With a little help with the glue and the spraying my son had no problems doing this (other than just being distracted by all the other cool toys in Mommy's craft room).
Hope you enjoy the video!
Thanks for stopping by today! I hope this gives you some fun ideas you can do with your kids or in your classroom.
If you are interested in theBrutus Monroe Chalk Ink that I used in the video, I've included a link below:
Brutus Monroe offers a great deal with the monthly Stamp Club. Each month, there is a special stamp designed by Christopher Allen and it is totally unique to the stamp club, so it wont be available in the store. December's stamp this year is this fun bottle and glass image.
I stamped out the image, fussy cut it out, and set it aside. Then I started building the base of my card. I stenciled some light pink circles on the card base usingBrutus Monroe's Polka Mixed Media Stencil. I thought the circles kind of looked like bubbles.
I then cut out a large circle from a chevron piece of vellum paper and layered it off to the side with a paper doily behind it. Then I added some fun washi tape. The gold tape I ran through my Sizzix with my Scalloped Border Die from Lawn Fawn.
I then adhered the bottle down over the washi tape. I stamped the word "congrats" on a thin piece of black cardstock, and embossed it in white. I stuck it down over the bottle using a few pieces of foam adhesive to give it some dimension. Then, I added the glass off to the side and over the sentiment strip, again using some foam adhesive.
The very last thing I did was add some tiny pieces of iridescent glitter to the background, and I also added some Stickles to the liquid inside the bottle and the glass.
I thought this was a really fun stamp set, and not only is it perfect for New Year's, but it can also be used all year long for weddings or other events that you might want to celebrate. This card ended up having a somewhat girly feel with the light pink and the glitter, so I think it would be perfect for a bridal shower or bachelorette party!
Thanks for stopping by today! Dont forget to check out the Brutus Monroe store and Stamp Club. If you are interested in any of the other items I used on this card, I have included a few links below.
I'm also linking up with:
Simon Says Stamp's Wednesday Challenge!
This is a card that I recently created for the Brutus Monroe blog. These reindeer stamps are in their store and when I saw them, I just knew I needed to stack them up and color them in!
I started by stamping the bottom reindeer, and then I also stamped it again on a piece of thin printer paper to create a mask. When creating masks, its a good idea to use thin paper, so you can still get a good impression when stamping over it.
After I had the mask cut out, I used some Tombow Removable Adhesive to adhere it over the image on my card base. With the bottom reindeer covered, I stamped the next one on top. I then repeated the process of creating masks and stamping each reindeer.
Once I had all my reindeer stamped on top of each other, I grabbed my Distress Inks and started coloring them in. I also added some embossed snowflakes and inked the edges of the card with some Tumbled Glass Distress Ink to give it a snowy background.
I adhered the whole scene onto a4x9 card base from Canvas Corp. I love these long and skinny cards for creating scenes, and the unusual size makes it that much more interesting!
Im also linking this card up with :
Simon Says Stamp's Wednesday Challenge!
Thanks for stopping by! If you are interested in this cute stamp set, head over to the Brutus Monroe store to place on order!
Did you catch my card last Wednesday over on the Brutus Monroe's blog? I used their November stamp from their stamp club as the inspiration for this project. Since the stamp is centered around photos and selfies, I felt it was perfect for adding a little something special to a Christmas card with a photo on it.
We love sending and receiving photos during the holidays, anyway, so why not just incorporate that idea into a card? You can "scrap" your photos on a card and send the whole thing off to your loved ones.
This particular card is on a 5x7 card base, so I love that if you wanted to, you could just place the whole card into a frame and set it on display. What Grandma wouldn't love that?!?
Anyway, if you want to see more photos and details on how I put this card together, you will have to hop on over to Brutus Monroe and read all about it there.
Thanks for stopping by and Happy Crafting!
I'm over on the Brutus Monroe Blog with these fun little Halloween tags! These were so fun and easy to make, and they have so many possible uses. I used them here on some Canvas Corp paper bags filled with popcorn, but you could clip them on candy bags, use them on cards, or they could be gift tags. Use your imagination and get creative!
If you want to see how I created these tags, go ahead and watch the process video!
I started out by using my circle punch and I punched four circles out of watercolor paper. Then, I stamped one witch face on each circle using Brutus Monroe's "Witch, Please" stamp set. I stamped each face out with Versamark black ink, and then quickly sprinkled some clear embossing powder over the ink before it dried. This gives me a nice black, shiny embossed image!
I then used Brutus Monroe's Shimmer Sprays to color each circle with a different color. I hit the Shimmer Spray with my heat tool to speed up the drying process and then grabbed my white gel pen to color in a few details on the stamped image. I felt that highlighting some of the details with the gel pen really made the image pop!
Next, I grabbed a sheet of Canvas Corp's Black and White Ribbon Stripe paper and punched out four scalloped circles slightly larger than my watercolor paper circles and adhered them behind.
Lastly, I stamped the sentiments on a little strip of paper and adhered them to each tag.
I also used some Canvas Corp Mini Clothespins to clip the tags to each popcorn bag. Super cute, easy, and sure to bring a smile to your Halloween guest's faces!
As you can see, my little munchkin couldn't wait to get his hands into the popcorn! How fun would these treat bags be on a Halloween buffet or candy bar? Let guests fill their own little bags full of treats and toys to take home with them.
If you are interested in more craft goodies fromBrutus Monroe, check out their online store HERE. They have tons of stamps, inks, sprays, papers, and more!
Ill also include links below to some of the other craft supplies I used for this project.
Thanks so much for stopping by and Happy Halloween!
So glad you found me! This blog is my little space where I can share bits about my life and my latest crafting projects (mostly handmade cards). My goal is to share, inspire, and to be a positive presence in the creative community.
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