Sunday, 6 March 2011

Embellishments for Vintage Book-Style Birthday Card

Having got the pages printed, I was able today to start on the embellishments. I made 3 cream roses, two for the card and one for the lid. These were cut from white card, which I then inked with Old Paper Distress Ink, by rubbing the ink pad on my craft mat, spritzing it with water and moving the pieces around until both sides were coated. The card got pretty wet, and I was annoyed that while I was swirling them around, one of the pieces with the slit in it split into two halves, but it was a simple matter to construct the rose as usual, just adding a dab of hot glue to attach the broken part. Anyway, I dried the pieces with my heat gun, and inked the two centre pieces of each rose with Frayed Burlap Distress Ink spritzed with water on my craft mat, and dried them again. These two centre pieces for each rose were darkened at the edges by applying Tea Dye Distress Ink directly from the ink pad. I then proceeded to assemble the roses as with the pink ones, and the black ones for the other card. The final step was to spritz them lightly with pink glimmer mist for added sheen, and to tie them in with the pink theme.

10 Cream Roses

When I printed the page pieces out, they came out rather pink, which was actually rather pretty, but not quite the effect I wanted, so I proceeded to ink the edges of each one with Old Paper Distress Ink (appropriately!), taking care to ink the top piece only very lightly. The bottom piece was inked with Frayed Burlap Distress Ink to make it quite a bit darker, to give a more dimensional feel to the finished project, and the middle piece likewise, only more lightly. I inked carefully down the centre of the top piece with Old Paper Distress Ink to give a bit more shadow where the “binding” of the book would be.

Each of the page pieces needed to be curved to give the impression of an open book, and I did this round my rolling pin. These days I haven’t got the energy for much cooking at all, let alone baking (and anyway, both my hubby and I only have to look at a cake or pastry and several more inches appear out of nowhere around our waistlines!!) so I didn’t think I’d be using my rolling pin any time soon – until I saw someone on Youtube curving their book card pages with one!! So it’s been reprieved…

I decided to make the largest, back, piece flat, and back it with another piece of card to make it stronger, to form the base of the card. This back piece is made of dark brown card, the edges of which I inked with Vintage Photo Distress Ink, and just a touch of Black Soot Distress Ink on the very edge. After this, I hand-embossed (de-bossed) all around the edge onto a piece of funky foam, to form a border, and then hand-painted the pattern with gold Perfect Pearls and water, using my craft mat as a palette and using a fine brush. This was to simulate the tooled leather binding of an old book.

11 Base Piece

When this was done, I was able to back it with another piece of card to strengthen it. This piece I inked with Old Paper Distress Ink quite a way in, but darker at the edges.

The other day on Create and Craft on TV, someone had emailed in to ask if they had any suggestions as to how to use peel-offs more imaginatively. I suppose many crafters start off with peel-offs and then graduate to more interesting stuff, and I am sure I am not alone in having quite a stash of them which never get used, so I was interested in what they had to say. One suggestion was to apply the peel-off and use it as a mask, to ink or spray over, and then remove, and this is what I did on the back of this card. I placed the “Happy Birthday” peel-off onto the centre of the card and inked over it – having experimented on some scrap card first, I discovered that if you rub with a felt pad, the peel-off tends to lift, which isn’t very satisfactory, so I used my stencil brush instead, tapping ink onto it from the pad, and stippling over the peel-off. I started with Spun Sugar Distress Ink which is a very pale pink colour, and then graduated through Milled Lavender and Victorian Velvet, gradually taking the colour outwards to meet the Old Paper Distress Ink. Finally, I used a tiny amount of Black Soot Distress Ink, which is very strong and needs to be used with caution, on my stencil brush, stippling off the excess onto a piece of scrap card first, and then applying it gently just over the peel-off to give a tiny bit more definition to my sentiment. The final step was to remove the peel-off with a fine pair of tweezers, and it was ready to have a personal message written. I had to do this at this stage, because it would be very difficult to write on the back of the card when it was complete.

13 Back of Card

14 Back of Card Detail

I decided it was high time I used my Spellbinders dyes again after a long time. I’ve only got two sets of nestabilities – a scalloped oval set and a plain rectangular set – I shall probably use this latter one on the other book-style card. I bought them shortly after I started doing this sort of thing in earnest, and then after I got Jiminy Cricut they became a bit redundant, but I thought it would be fun to use them again. I cut a frame from my boring gold card - remember my boring gold card? This is where it makes its first appearance:

http://shoshiplatypus.blogspot.com/2010/07/hand-made-cards-boring-gold-card.html

Back last year, I decided to try and pep it up a bit and found loads of interesting things to do with it, and remembering that it takes embossing very well, I dye-cut and embossed the frame to great effect – it looks like metal! The piece cut out of the middle also got embossed in the process, and I decided to use that for a smaller frame for the other “page” of the book, adding a piece of decorative paper also cut and embossed with the spellbinders oval.

The following pictures show a mock-up of the card so far. The left-hand “page” is complete but I still have some work to do on the right-hand page.

15 Card Mock-Up

I found a rubber stamp with a cluster of roses, and stamped this using Versamark, and heat embossed it with one of the new embossing powders I’d bought at the craft show – a nice pinky colour with a bit of iridescence. I coloured this image with some Marvy le Plume water-based markers, cut it out, and stuck it with spray photo mount onto the decorative paper, and added a bit more heat embossing. I matted this onto the gold oval, curving the piece as I went, to match the curve of the page, and then glued it down with photo mount as before.

16 Left Page

Unfortunately the decorative paper in the frame hasn’t come out too well on this photo, which makes it look like a solid bright turquoise colour, when it is actually darker, and a lot more subtle, and tones with the rest of the project quite well.

I stamped a couple of rose leaves with green dye ink and cut them out, picking out the veins and adding a bit of shadow with a Marvy le Plume marker. One of them I hand-embossed from the back, onto funky foam, and glued onto the card with Pinflair glue, and the other one I left flat. Finally I glued three roses, one cream and the other two pink, along the bottom of the frame.

To make the bookmark, I cut a length of pretty pink ribbon, and attached the end to the underside of the bottom page, so that it will be sandwiched between that page and the base piece. When the card is finished, I shall probably twist the ribbon and attach it down in a couple of places.

The main gold frame is not attached yet. I shall curve it to match the curve of the other page and before I stick it down, I shall have to decide what’s going in it – it’s crying out for a nice big “90” but my mum has said she doesn’t want a fuss made of this birthday and wants it treated like any other, although we are all saying that it’s a great achievement to reach 90, especially in such good health as she enjoys, and it should be celebrated, but she’s adamant, and says she doesn’t want everyone to know she’s 90! If I put “90” on the card, she’ll end up not showing it to anybody!! So what am I going to put in the frame? I haven’t a clue. Mulling time, I think. I shall sleep on it.

So that’s as far as I’ve got. Still to do: finish the embellishments, stick the edges of the curved pages down to the ones underneath, mount the whole thing on the base piece, and finally, make the box. I was planning to make the box from a sheet of A4 card, but the roses on the card make it rather thick, so I shall probably make the box slightly deeper, which will mean I shall have to cut it from a sheet of 12 x 12, or perhaps A3. I’m going to make an acetate window in the top, and decorate it with more roses. Then I need to make a stand for the card for when it’s not in its box.

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