Smiles Required – Mixed Media Card
by Judi Kauffman
When it comes to mixed media, everything is fair game. Among the tools and supplies I pulled together for today’s card are the ModaScrap Poppies die set, A Way With Words ‘Play’ die, A Way With Stencils ‘Dotty’, Prills in two of my favorite colors, half of a mailing label that originally said ‘SIGNATURE REQUIRED’, a library card from the days before computers, a small metal folder tab, an office supply store label maker, strips of Kraft brown cardstock that were next to the paper trimmer, and a scrap of sequin waste encrusted with paint.
The project began with the strips of cardstock and the library card. Though you may not have precisely the same bits and pieces, as long as you keep in mind the letter ‘H’ or a ladder you’ll be able to make your own version!
I’m going to include what I call ‘Design Strategies’ along with the instructions. This is the ‘why’ part of design; the instructions are the ‘how’ part. Beginners: I hope this is especially useful to you!
(Experienced cardmakers – scroll through the photos and head straight to the supply list.)
DESIGN STRATEGIES (notes in italics) and INSTRUCTIONS
1. Cut a piece of cardstock to 4.5” x 6.5”. Cut a bunch of .5” x 7” strips of the same cardstock. (9 or 10 will suffice.) Choose your own color or stick to Kraft brown as shown.
2. Use Clear Double Sided Tape to adhere the narrow strips at wonky angles, working with a horizontal strip and then a vertical strip to create the illusion of weaving. Three of the horizontal strips are closer to the bottom, only one is angled at the top. Three of the five vertical strips are clustered toward the right side. Trim the strips at the sides of the rectangle. If you squint at the card, you’ll see the letter ‘H’ or a ladder!
3. Go over the surface with one or two dye-based inks, applied with a craft sponge. Darken the corners and edges more than the other areas. Darker edges form a visual ‘frame’.
4. Position the Dotty stencil over the rectangle and use a cosmetic sponge wedge to add reddish brown ink onto the surface. Largest dots will be at the top and bottom. Use acrylic paint if you want a stronger dot pattern.
5. Distress a library card with ink. Cut it into pieces and adhere the pieces at wonky angles so they appear to be coming out from behind the narrow strips. Trim at the edges. Note that the lighter pieces of the library card are positioned above the halfway point, the darker pieces are toward the bottom. The lighter color pulls the eye upward.
6. Die cut the word ‘Play’ from another library card. Also cut a small strip from the library card to fit into the metal tab. Note: Library cards are available in a variety of colors. I chose pale yellow. If library cards aren’t available, substitute a lined index card.
7. Die cut Poppies from bright yellow cardstock, or a color that coordinates with your version of the card. The key is to stay within the same color family, only brighter for strong contrast!
8. Add a ring of Berry Nice Prills to the center of the full-bloom Poppy, using a clear-drying glue with a fine point applicator. Brush off excess after the glue dries. Repeat with Power Outage Prills to fill the center of the Berry Nice ring. Set aside to dry. Using two colors is what Mother Nature would do if she had Prills! The bright red in the Prills was chosen to repeat the bright red in the mailing label scrap, an intentional choice – not accidental. Prills also add texture.
9. Use Clear Double Sided Tape to adhere the rectangle to a 5” x 7” side-fold Kraft brown card base and ink the edges with the same ink as used with the stencil. This keeps the background monochromatic. Or choose a card base in whatever color you prefer.
10. Complete the mixed media collage by arranging and attaching all of the elements as shown or as you prefer. Note that the stem of the Poppy at the left is tucked under the sequin waste and that the stems on both Poppies are tucked into the flourishes of the word ‘Play’ to help hold the fragile stems in place. Note that the word ‘Play’ and the stems of the Poppies reinforce the letter ‘H’ that was created with the cardstock strips.
11. Use snippets cut from Tombow Power Adhesive Tabs to hold the flower centers and the word ‘Play’ in position. Use staples to secure the sequin waste. The label maker strip is self-adhesive, as is the metal tab. Use Clear Double Sided Adhesive Tape to hold the ‘REQUIRED’ scrap. Note that the words toward the top also reinforce the horizontal bar of an imaginary letter ‘H’ or ladder and help the card from being too bottom-heavy!
12. Optional: Stencil the Dotty pattern onto a mailing envelope (not shown). Because of the tab, a slightly larger envelope is required. Omit the tab to mail in the standard envelope that comes with pre-made 5” x 7” cards.
Elizabeth Craft Designs:
Tombow Power Adhesive Tabs
Nonstick scissors (to cut Power Tabs)
Tombow Mono Liquid Glue
Kraft brown cardstock (or color of choice)
Dye based inks in shades of brown and teal (or colors of choice)
Ink applicator tool
Cosmetic sponge wedge
Mailing label scrap (or other collage materials)