Cardmaking, EBE by Julie Ebersole, Essentials By Ellen

Making custom patterned paper for card backgrounds

Join EH Design Ambassador Carolyn Peeler as she shares a whimsical holiday card, featuring our EH “Holiday Characters” stamp set which gets a starring roll both in the adorable deer and in the watercoloured patterned paper.

Sometimes, when paper crafting finding the perfect patterned paper just eludes me. I have something so specific in mind, that it becomes clear that I just need to make it myself. Such was the case with today’s card.

I used the evergreen bough from Ellen Hutson’s “Holiday Characters” stamp set to create a whimsical patterned paper. The process is very easy – and a wonderful way to get more mileage out of a stamp set.

Here are the steps:

  1. Gather your supplies: watercolour paper, your stamp, a water spray bottle, and the ink colours you want to use on your stamp.
    I usually recommend choosing a piece of watercolour paper that is larger than your card front – that way you can choose the “best” part of the design when you finally cut your paper to size.
  2. To stamp the design, I coloured directly onto the evergreen stamp using Distress markers, then lightly spritzed them with water from a spray bottle (holding it about 8-10 inches away, and moving my hand as I spritzed so that the water spray didn’t concentrate in one area of the stamp. I sprayed approximately 3 times.) After spraying the water, I stamped directly onto watercolour paper. If you’ve never done this technique before, I recommend experimenting a bit first. You will see how the amount of water you spritz on the stamp directly affects the finished impression… more water will result in the ink running into each other more and less detail in the finished impression. Less ink will result in more detail but less of a watercolour look. So, you will want to see what finished look you are more drawn to.
  3. After you have finished stamping a large area of watercolour paper, then trim a portion of it 5″ x 3.75″ for layering onto your card front.
  4. As a final step, I sewed a straight line across the bottom of this custom paper because I liked the texture and detail that it added.

Next, let’s talk about that ADORABLE deer! I had cuteness overload as I was painting him. Those cheeks! As you can see in the detail photo, above, when I watercoloured him I did not take the paint to the edges of each section. This was a very deliberate design decision. By doing this, it lends a whimsical feel to the image. Had I painted perfectly, it would have a different, more formal, feel. When combining this painting technique with the rosy cheeks the deer looks casual, whimsical and so cute!

Ok, so now let’s talk about the pink parts of the card:

First, Cut the pink dotted paper the size of an A2 card front (5.5″ x 4.25″), then using the tag die, die cut the tag from the centre of this paper. Because the centre will be covered by our evergreen bough patterned paper, we can get more mileage out of the pink paper.

After cutting the tag, use the MISTI (or other stamp positioner) to stamp the greeting with brown ink then lightly clean the stamp without removing it from the stamp positioner. Next, stamp it again using Versamark or clear embossing ink. Quickly remove your tag from the positioner and cover with clear embossing powder then heat emboss the greeting. I love the subtle texture that the sheen from the embossing gives to the card front!

The final step is to assemble the card. (yay!)

Using a white cardstock A2 card as your base (I made my own by cutting a piece of 8.5″ x 11″ in half) glue the pink dotted paper, covering the card front. Then, center the custom evergreen paper onto the pink paper and glue it in place. Glue the tag in place. Then, glue the deer to the bottom left of the tag tilting it ever so slightly as seen in the photo.

And, there you have it – a whimsical holiday card with custom patterned paper!


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1 Comment

  • Reply On My Desk or In My Heart November 15, 2020 at 9:26 am

    So beautiful and love the Pink!

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