Monday, 13 February 2012

Valentine Card for my Hubby

Following on from yesterday’s post, I have now completed the card for my hubby for Valentine’s day, based on the digital layout I did last year, using Serif CraftArtist:

The first thing I did was to cut out the three layers of card with heart apertures, using Sheba, my Black Cat Cougar cutting machine. Since learning from Black Cat forum members that setting the blade higher results in better cuts, I cannot believe how much better Sheba is cutting, and how much less force I am needing. I am now setting the blade two CDs’ thickness above the media on the mat. Of course, the card I am using has proved itself to cut very well – I have used 3 colours from the Tim Holtz Distress Core’dinations stack, not because I want to avail myself of the benefits of Core’dinations paper, but because the colours were more or less what I wanted – Aged Mahogany, Victorian Velvet and Milled Lavender. The effect is slightly less mauve than the digital layout.

I printed out a background on some 100 gsm paper, from the same digikit that I did the layout from – “Valentine’s Day 2011,” and cut a small piece from that, which I stuck behind the aperture in the Aged Mahogany paper, which is the back layer. (I also printed out a sheet of this background on some heavier card to go on the back of the finished card, to counteract the weight on the front of the card, and to finish it off nicely.)

I cut out some small hearts from red cardstock that I had – from an online paper mill, unknown weight but cuts really well – I cut 3 different sizes, ranging from 3/4 in down to just under 1/2 in. Some of these would be stuck down, and others would float above the surface on narrow acetate strips.

I thought I was going to have to make some new flowers for this project, but I had four pink roses left from my mother’s 90th birthday card that I made last year, and also various odd flowers that I’d made at various times, and with the addition of a few leaves and some dark red and white feathers, these would provide the embellishment for the bottom of the card.

Here’s a mock-up of the card pieces and the flowers.

Assembling the card was interesting. I wanted a good, deep dimensional feel to this card, to follow through from the digital layout inspiration. I used a double thickness of double-sided foam tape between each of the layers, and when they were all stuck together, I ran some double-sided tape around the edges and adhered some narrow pink satin ribbon with pretty picot edges to cover the rather unsightly edges.

Before I stuck it all together, I stuck some of the small hearts onto the background paper in the central heart, and stuck the rest onto narrow acetate strips, which I then glued between the layers, using Scotch Quick-Dry adhesive – a wonderful new find, thanks to Lucy on the Black Cat forum – it really does dry quickly, and it gives a very good strong bond, too. (Can one ever have enough different types of glue? One needs so many different ones for all the different things one does!)

The flowers and feathers were stuck down using hot glue, which has to be my favourite glue for this sort of thing, as it gives a more or less instant, very strong bond, and really is the only thing for making, and sticking down, flowers.

I had some difficulty cutting the small scalloped heart with the word “hugs” in the centre, as there was really too much detail to cut very small without the detail blade for Sheba (which I haven’t yet got). In the end I made it 2 inches across, and then made a mat layer for it in gold mirror card to show off the cut better. (I have just learnt how to do nesting shapes in Inkscape!) This embellishment was finished off with a small bow to match that on the floral embellishment, and also a tiny charm I bought at the recent craft show.

Here is a picture of the main design of the card. It measures 6 inches square.

To mount this whole design, I matted it onto some dark red card, and created a narrow mat layer in gold mirror card, which in turn was glued down to the main card, also made of the same dark red card. As the finished card is 8 inches square, I had to make this of two pieces, but the join is round the back, and mostly covered by the back printed background piece, so it is not obvious.

Here is a picture of the finished card.

The following pictures show various close-up shots, showing the detail of the embellishments etc.

The last two photos show the ribbon covering the unsightly edges of the layered card and foam tape.

After all my misgivings about not being able to make my dear hubby a special card this year, I have managed it after all! He is so wonderful, and does so much for me, and I am so grateful to have him as my lifelong companion and soul-mate, and I wanted to make him something special to let him know how much I appreciate him. I hope he likes the result!


  1. Absolutely beautiful! What a lucky man!

  2. I am so glad you were well enough to finish this project. It is stunning. There is such a lot of love, care and thought gone into the making of it.
    Well done for mastering nesties in inkscape. I have a tutorial for this and I have managed it with a basic shape, but my new cutter doesn't recognise svg files. They have brought out some new software that does, so I may just have to invest in it, but first I shall see what other file options are available in inkscape.
    Thankyou for offering your files on your skydrive. I may just avail myself of them, but that is lazy of me as I should be learning to make them myself! The trouble is, I keep running out of hours in the day. Kate x

  3. Of COURSE he'll love the result! What a stunning valentine, but I would expect nothing less from you:)

  4. This is stunning Shoshi, Bet he just loved it.
    Well done you and another twist to the serif design


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