Been Good All Year?

Susan Robinson
December 7, 2021

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We’ve all got one of ‘those’ friends.

Not long to go now. I probably still have 1 more post in me before Christmas.

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Mary & Joseph

Susan Robinson
November 27, 2021

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As we all get caught up in the hype of Christmas, it’s good to take time to reflect and remember how the story all began.

Variations on a theme, using the ‘Mary’ (LAV040) stamp above from Lavinia Stamps, and ‘The Journey’ (D023) by Stamp Africa below.

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Leafy Bauble

Susan Robinson
November 14, 2021

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I thought it was past time I started on my Christmas cards. Still playing with Paper Rose’s ‘Gum Leaf Circle Frame’ die.

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Christmas Baby?

Susan Robinson
November 7, 2021

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I’m not sure if this card is supposed to be a baby card or a Christmas card, it’s a bit of a hybrid. I find card making very therapeutic, and sometimes use symbolism to work through issues that are personal to me at the time. My mother’s passing marked the end of an era for our family. My focus now will be on the younger generations coming up. She was mother to 5, grandmother to 11 (soon to be 12) and great-grandmother to 1. Her middle name was JOY. This card shows the circle of life – we are born, we live and grow, then we die. I will always remember my mother with much LOVE, but am glad she is now resting in PEACE.

die: Gum Leaf Circle Frame 22795 by Paper Rose

stamps: Snugglepot and Cuddlepie – Bush Babies 17529 by Paper Rose; Xmas – Plate 1 by Paper Artsy

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Susan Robinson
October 25, 2021

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Sadly my mother passed away yesterday, so I will not be posting for a while.

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Framed Garden

Susan Robinson
October 22, 2021

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My posts may be a little sporadic and short on commentary over the next few weeks sorry. My mother has been sitting in the ‘departure lounge’ for many months now, but I think the time has come for her to fly. Thinking of her in happier days, tending to her beautiful garden.

die: ‘Toulouse background’ 98826 by Memory Box, with a few extra bits from Tim Holtz dies added. Butterfly is a Fiskars hand punch.

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Noble flower 2

Susan Robinson
October 11, 2021

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In my last post, I told you of one way to colour stamp designs which have a lot of rubber area. Here is another way, using a Ranger product called ‘Cut-N-Dry’. It comes in felt or foam pads. The felt one is for using with dye (water) based inks, and the foam one is for using with pigment (embossing) inks. It is basically a way for you to create your own custom design ink pad. I used the felt pad, as am colouring with dye inks.

  • 1. first, cut a piece from the felt pad to fit the exact size of your stamp.
  • 2. stamp your image onto the felt pad (the cotton side) with a StazOn pad, so that it won’t bleed when you apply the other inks over the design.
  • 3. the instructions say to apply the different coloured inks with a paintbrush, but I found this method didn’t soak the pad with enough ink to give a good stamped out impression, so I ended up pouring the inks direct from the bottles onto the pad. The newer bottles have a needle point nozzle which made it easier. The inks will spread, but don’t stress, as that’s nothing to be concerned about.
  • 4. I applied green ink over the leaves, and yellow, orange and pink ink over the flower part.
  • 5. then you line up the stamp over your custom ink pad and stamp out your image! It doesn’t matter if the inks have bled out, as the rubber will only touch in certain places and pick up the ink underneath it.

The beauty of this technique, is that you can mass produce cards with the same coloured image, over and over again, rather than painstakingly colouring it by hand each time. Great method to employ for Christmas cards, when you have a lot of cards to make of the same design. When you have finished with your custom pad, store it in a self-sealing bag to keep the inks moist, and you can re-use it again down the track. If the inks have bled out a lot and it’s hard to see the design, write the details on the back of the pad. I always also mark the top left corner too, so I know which way is up and makes it easier to re-align the stamp.

(left) using direct from bottles to ink up pad (right) using paintbrush to ink up pad

Now, as I explained in step 3. above, when I used a paintbrush to apply the inks to the pad, it didn’t make it wet enough, so my stamped image was quite pale (see image at right).

So rather than waste it, I cut the flower out using it’s matching die, re-inked my flower stamp, then lay the cut-out over it. I placed an acrylic block over the top so I could better apply pressure without risk of the paper moving.

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Noble flower 1

Susan Robinson
October 8, 2021

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Sometimes when you have a solid stamp design with a lot of rubber area, such as this one, stamping it out in black is not a good option (see sample at right). It’s just too heavy and dominant.

So what ARE your options?

One method is called the ‘direct-to-rubber technique’, where instead of using an ink pad, you simply colour the rubber area with texters. Two things to be aware of: 1. only use water based texters, never alcohol based ones (such as Copic or Spectrum Noir pens) for this method. 2. Make sure to use a painty nib (soft pointy nib like a paintbrush), as the bullet style nibs are hard and may scratch your rubber, therefore effecting further stamp outs.

Because it may take you a while to colour in the whole stamp, huff your breath over it to re-moisten the inks, before stamping out. I stamped onto gloss card, which will take a moment for the inks to dry, but makes the colours more vibrant.

stamps: Noble 4377K by Penny Black; Art washes by Hampton Art

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Aqua Chess

Susan Robinson
October 6, 2021

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My last card inspired me to find other ways to use up my scraps of patterned paper. Thought I’d go for a softer look with this one. I sponged some black ink over the ‘black’ chess pieces, and around the cat, mouse and table. I used Opal Liquid Pearls over the white chess pieces.

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Green Chess

Susan Robinson
October 4, 2021

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Simple silhouettes. I love this green patterned paper and had only a scrap of it left. I’m glad I found a good use for it.

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