Projects with Instructions Tips

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Explosion cards?

Explosion Cards

Explosion Card Instructions and template.

An explosion card is made by using a special set of folds to fold a piece of paper which you then glue into your card. When the card is opened the folds all open up and "explode" at you!

Valentine cards?

Valentine's Day Card Suggestion

Here are instructions for a Valentine's Day card that I recently made that I thought looked pretty good!

I used that georgeous deep red color that you can get as my base card. First, I used a small heart stamp and some Versamark Watermark ink to stamp all over the front of the base card. Then I added a white rectangle of card that had been sponged down the edges with matching red ink. Finally, I stamped a large heart stamp (from Imaginations) onto red card and embossed it in gold. I then cut closely around the large heart so that I could stick it onto the layered base card. At that point I found some white and red curling ribbon and curled a few strands and pulled them apart into very small, curly, strands and stuck them onto the middle of card. I then used thick mounting tape to stick the heart over the strands so that the strands curl out around the heart.

Now all you have to do is add the right words inside and post it off!

shaker cards?

What to put into a shaker card

Here are some great ideas for things that you can use in shaker cards:

hundreds & thousands
lavendar & pot pourri
sunflower seeds
small sweets eg: tiny marshmallows/jellybeans
shrink plastic charms


Creating mosaic cards

Have you got a pile of cards that didn't quite work? I have, and now I make sure that I keep them all! A quick easy way of using these disasters is to cut them up into strips. You can then stick them onto a background piece of paper/card and create an abstract work of art which can then be mounted onto a card. I like to make sure that I use 2-3 colors that go well together eg: blue, yellow, white or black, burgundy, and orange. Another quick way of creating this card is to stick your strips onto a piece of "Crack & Peel" ie: sticker paper.

What gifts can I make?

Make your own Christmas Ornaments

This works well with stars and bauble images! Just stamp three images of the same stamp onto card and colour them in any way you like. Cut them out, fold each one in half vertically, and then stick them together back to back using glue or double-sided tape. Before sticking them together you can tape a piece of ribbon or twine etc into the middle so that your ornament can be hung on a tree.

what is the spotlight technique?

Spotlight Technique!

Here's a fun technique that will yield a great card! Choose a line design image, and stamp it twice in black on white cardstock. Set aside one, and with the other, choose a focal point you want to concentrate on. Trim away all but that focal point, and paint or color it as your creative spirit dictates. Mount your colored image directly over the coordinating area on the first, and still complete, black and white image.
Mount the entire image on coordinating cardstock and then onto a card front.
For an excellent illustration of this technique, visit the Stamper's Mall at

What is an accordian card?

Accordian Card

Take a piece of 8.5x11" cardstock and cut a strip (about 5" wide) down the length of the card. Fold this strip in half and then fold each half in half again. This will give you a booklike folded card. You can then decorate the cover and insides as desired.

stamping on CD´s?

CD's and UTEE!

You can use your unwanted CD's to create some really interesting stamped items for use on cards or for turning into pins/brooches or jewelry! Just break up your CD (wrap it in an old cloth and hit with a hammer - have fun!) and then coat one side with pigment ink and dip into Ultra Thick Embossing Powder. Heat with your heat gun until melted and then stamp into the UTEE while it is still soft. Add any other embellishments you want, and stick a pin on the back or glue the piece to your card front.

What is a 3D card?

3D Cards - making one

First choose your image and stamp it as desired. You can then stamp a second image and colour it so that it is exactly the same as the first. Carefully cut out the parts of the image that you want to stick out from the image. If you find that there are white edges of card showing then you can run a black pen along the edges. Then adhere the cut-outs onto your base image with double-sided foam tape. I find foam tape the easiest to use, but you can also use silicon to join the layers.

playing cards?

Altered Playing Cards

To create an interesting tag, you can use a playing card. Choose a playing card and then choose a stamped image that is smaller than the playing card. Layer the stamped image onto the centre of the playing card so that you can still see the "face value" of the card ie: the Q, K, J, A etc. Finally punch a hole in the top of the card and thread this with a tassel or similar. These can be a lot of fun!

popup cards?

Pop Up Cards

Pop up Cards

Visit my links section, by clicking above, where you will find a link to Templates by Donovan, as well as a link to Pop Up cards (which is the Fiskars site example). You'll find several templates for creating popup cards there. Basically a pop-up card is created by cutting a "stand" into a card inner and then sticking an image to it so that it "stands" up when the card is opened.

What gifts can I make?

Stationery sets - made with rollagraphs (side roll)

Take a piece of plain good quality stationery paper and lay a thick ruler (a stamp positioner works well for this) along the left vertical edge. Simply roll your rollagraph stamp down this side to create a simple and elegant piece of stationery. You can make a stack of these and give them away as presents, or you can make a stack and use them as stationery in your computer printer (this works well for those yearly christmas letters to friends and relatives).

What is a 3D card?

3D Cards - what is a 3D card?

A 3D card is a card where some element/elements of the image are adhered to the card front with thick foam tape (like foamcore)so that they stand out in "relief" from the rest of the image.

How can I make my christmas cards special?

Scented Cards - scenting your own cards

Scent your finished cards for an extra-romantic touch. Wet a cotton ball with the scent of your choice and squeeze out as much as possible. Then, place it in the bottom of a large ziplock bag. Place your cards into the bag, making sure they will not come into contact with the cotton ball. Seal the bag for about a week before removing the cards. They will be wonderfully scented.

What can I use to embellish my card?

Pearl Ex and UTEE.

You can use Pearl Ex when you are using UTEE (Ultra Thick Embossing Powder). Just sprinkle the Pearl Ex powder into the last layer of UTEE (or any layer you like - experiment!).

stamped projects?

Art Dolls

Art dolls are an exciting new medium, thanks to Somerset Studios and the Stamper's Sampler! And, there are several ways to approach the idea. You can purchase a plain stuffed doll, ready for crafting, at your local craft store. Or, you can transfer a stamp image onto muslin, or build your doll from your own imagination. Once you have your basic form in place, you are ready to paint, stamp and embellish to your hearts content! My daughter and I are creating art dolls together, and I'll post an article describing our process as soon as we're done!

stamping on walls?

Basic Information on Stamping on Walls.

Stamping on walls is really very easy! You just need to choose a normal house paint (indoor and waterbased preferably) and then choose your stamps. A bold line stamp tends to work best for this.

The best way of inking up the stamps, is to lay some folded layers of thick paper towel into the bottom of an old icecream container or baking dish. Pour a small amount of paint (a very small amount) into the dish and let it be soaked up by the paper towels. You can then "pat" your stamp onto this "inkpad" to ink them up.

It is important to only have a light layer of paint on your stamp, so that you don't get blobs and runs of paint on your wall. Have fun!

What gifts can I make?

Using Permanent Ink on Soap

You can decorate your soap! Stamp the image of your choice onto a piece of thin paper (tissue paper works well). Use a permanent ink to stamp the image. Colour it in if desired with permanent pens. Cut the image out of the paper and place onto the bar of soap. You can then use a light coating of clear craft sealer to seal the image to the soap.

What can I do for Thanksgiving?

Thanksgiving(Autumn) Cards - embellishment suggestion

So you're making a Thanksgiving or Autumn/Fall themed card? How about embellishing it with some straw? A scarecrow is going to look great with straw peeking out from under his hat. Pumpkins will look great sitting on a "bed" of straw.

How can I make my christmas cards special?

Embellishing Christmas Cards

Christmas cards are a great place to use all of those sparkly embellishments! Think about using glitter glue; glitter; foils; metallic leaf on those cards to brighten them up.

Valentine cards?

Children and Valentine's Cards

Children just love to make cards for Valentine`s Day (well, my kids do!). I always find that even though their cards aren`t "perfect", they are always special.

Clear off your dining table or craft table and pull out the card and paper that you want them to use. Having a small variety of scissors available is a good idea; as well as a few paper punches.

Children under the age of 7 years can sometimes find it too hard to use a stamp with ink. I also find that they like to spend a long time on a card, and fill every space. Punches are great for this!

What gifts can I make?

Stamping on Cookies

Make up a batch of your favourite cookie (we call them biscuits down here in Australia!) and then just before placing them in the oven you use a nice deeply etched stamp to create an impression on the top of each one. It's a good idea to dip your stamp into flour or icing sugar before each impression so that the stamp doesn't stick to the cookie batter.

pocket cards?

Pocket Cards

Pocket cards are really great to look at and simple to make. Simply take an already folded card and decide which will be the front side. Lay it in front of you with the folded edge at the top. Take the bottom left corner of the card and fold it up to the top centre. Then take the bottom right corner of the card and fold that up to the top centre. This will create a "pocket" which you can then seal down with tape and "fill" with stamped images of flowers; candy; teddy bears or anything that catches your imagination. To make the card look complete you can add a second card front behind the flap so that the card has a complete front.

stamped gift ideas

Stamped Gift Ideas (1)

Stamped Tote Bag
Wine Bottle Covers - made out of stamped velvet or calico
Stamped Candles
Post-It-Note Holders - stamped on the sides
Stamped Folios - with stationery
Christmas Thank You cards
Christmas tree ornaments
Stamped Soaps
Stamped Cookies
Note Card Box with note cards
Gift Bag and Topper
Book or Journal covers
Shrinkie necklace/anklet/bracelet
Airclay pins

What gifts can I make?

Stamping Into The Wax

Choose a stamp with a nicely defined image. Ink it up with a pigment ink in your choice of colour (metallics work well for this!). Use your heat gun to slightly melt the wax on the side of the candle and then press your stamp into the candle for a couple of moments and then remove.

stamping on CDs?

What to do

If you`re looking for a new surface to try your stamping on, then this one is probably for you! It`s also a great way of using any old CDs sitting around your house (especially those ones you`ve received as "junk mail" in your letterbox).

Just take a CD and break it - that`s right BREAK IT! This is a job best done outside, and a hammer is a good piece of equipment to have for this. It should break into some nicely shaped pieces. You can then decorate it with inks and embossing powders, you can even set special embellishments into the embossing powder (ultra-thick embossing is good to use for this). If you want to make small holes so that you can hang your piece, or have things hanging off it, then just drill holes with a very small drill bit before decorating.

What can I do for Halloween?

Halloween Cards - shaker card suggestion

If you're making Halloween cards then how about making a shaker card! A large pumpkin image is a great one to use and then you can "fill" it with pumpkin seeds!

What gifts can I make?

Make your own gift wrap!

Color co-ordinate your greeting cards and gift wrap by using stamps and inks to decorate your own wrapping paper! Just use some white or solid color wrapping paper and stamp it with the stamps of your choice. You can also color the wrapping paper using "direct to paper" technique with your inks (read more about this technique under Stamping Techniques).

How to paint fabrics

Applying a base coat of color

Begin the embellishing process of your art doll with a base coat of color. If your doll is made of fabric, you can use fabric paints. In addition regular acrylic paints can be used. Try them full strength for a textured finish but beware that the dry paint might crack if your doll is plush or soft. Acrylic paints can be diluted with water to achieve a variety of textures and shades. Experiment!

stamping on walls?

Stamping on Walls?

You can use pretty much any solid line stamp (not highly detailed stamps) that you like. There are some companies that have developed lines of stamps specifically for using on these large projects. You could try Inkadinkado Rubber Stamps who advertise that they sell stamps for using on walls and furniture.

You could even try carving your own stamp to use. There are several companies including Speedball which sell stamp carving sets.

How can I make my christmas cards special?

Scented Cards - using inks

You can now buy a range of inks (from Ranger) that contain scents! They are great fun to use, but you will find that the scent does not last long. The best thing to do is place your card into the envelope as soon as possible after stamping.

stamping on cakes?

Why not Stamp on a Cake?

Stamp A Cake
- Buy WILTON`S FONDANT FROSTING. Roll it out to cake size (use cornstarch to help prevent the icing from sticking). Stamp on it with food color (the concentrated kind - WILTON. Apply color to the stamps with a make-up sponge, you can paint in color with a paint brush. There is also an edible glitter you can apply after lightly spritzing with a misting bottle. You can adhere it right over the regular frosting or adhere it to cookies with corn syrup.

What are mosaic cards?

Serendipity Cards - what are they?

This is a new mosaic technique which can have very stunning results. You stamp up a card with a variety of images and colors to create a pleasing look. You then cut your card into (approximately) 1 inch squares and stick them down onto a base card with a small gap between each. You get the best effect when you mix the squares around and muddle them up before sticking down.

What gifts can I make?

Stamping a Tote Bag

Buy or make a simple tote bag and then you can personalise it with your stamps! You will need stamps of your choice and some kind of fabric ink. I use the Fabrico brand of inks which are a dye ink that comes in a variety of colours, and even in pen form! You simply stamp your images onto your bag and then use your heat gun to heat set the inks.

stamping on velvet?

Stamping on velvet

Yes, you can stamp on velvet! You will need to heat your iron on the hottest setting. Lay your stamp on your work surface with the rubber side UP. Then lay your velvet face down on the stamp. Lightly mist the back of the velvet with water and then press the iron onto the back of the velvet over the stamp. Hold the iron there for about 20 seconds without moving the iron around and then lift the iron off. You will be left with a lovely impression of the stamp!

What gifts can I make?

Stamped stationery sets - made with rollagraphs

Rollagraphs are great for using to create stamped stationery! Take 2 pieces of good quality stationery paper the same size. Fold one piece in half to create a "card" and lay it on top of the other piece making sure that it is centred. Roll your rollagraph stamp across both pieces of paper in a diagonal pattern. When you have finished remove the folded piece of paper and you will find that you have made a lovely piece of stationery paper and a notecard style piece of stationary. Make a set of 6 of each (12 pieces of paper in total) and then stack them and tie them with a co-ordinating ribbon and attach a pretty pen to it. These make great gifts for teachers!

How can I make my christmas cards special?

Christmas Cards - shadow stamping

Using a shadow stamp and shadow inks are are great way of producing a quick and easy Christmas card! Just stamp a row of three red or green "shadows" and then over stamp with red or green christmas bauble stamps. You can do a whole page of these and then cut and layer them onto your base cards.

What can I do for Easter?

Embellishing Easter Cards

Have you got a great image of a rabbit to use on your Easter cards? If you have then how about using some cotton wool to embellish his/her tail? Just add a dab of glue and then a small puff of cotton - those rabbits will look so cute.

shaker cards?

Faker Shaker Cards

Yes, you can make a shaker card that isn't a shaker card! Just visit here for instructions.

What gifts can I make?

Paper Method

Stamp and emboss or colour the image of your choice onto some heavy tissue paper in a colour to match your candle. Cut the image out of the paper as closely as you can. Use your heat gun to heat and slightly melt the candle and then place your image onto the melted area and press it onto the candle gently. This method works well when using a large candle with straight sides.

What gifts can I make?

Stamped Soaps - embossing

Stamp and heat emboss the image of your choice onto tissue paper (be very careful not to scorch the paper when heating). Cut the image out as closely to the image as you can. Place this onto the bar of soap and then cover with a thin coat of clear craft sealer. You can slightly wet the top of the soap bar before placing the paper onto it to help it "stick" down.

What gifts can I make?

Make a necklace

To create a necklace (or bracelet) stamp your images on the shrink plastic and cut out. Use a punch to punch a hole in each piece and then shrink as per the instructions. When they have shrunk and cooled, string them together onto thread or fish line. Use beads to separate each piece.

What gifts can I make?

Decorated Picture Frames

It's easy to decorate a picture frame with stamped images, and they make great presents! You can get plain wooden frames from most large craft shops. You can then paint a base coat of craft paint in your choice of colour onto it (or leave it "raw" if you like). Then using permanent inks (Ancient Page, Ranger Archivals, Fabrico) just stamp and colour your images around the frame. You can also stamp your images onto paper and then attach those to your frame in a collage style if you like.


Embossing in Layers

This technique works especially well with Ultra Thick Embossing Powder. You can emboss the first layer of powder and then while it is still warm you can add another layer and then another. You can add embellishments in between layers if you want to eg: fine glitter; confetti; dried flowers, Pearl Ex, etc.

What gifts can I make?

Stamped t-shirts

You can ink up your stamp with any fabric ink (there are some, like the brand Fabrico, which come in ink pad form specifically for this purpose). Just follow the instructions for setting the ink. Most fabric inks are "set" by heating the product after you have stamped. A good tip is to put a piece of thick cardboard between the layers of t-shirt to prevent the image from "seeping through" to the back layer.

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Guru Spotlight
Linda Handiak