Tag Archives: spectum noir


Another commission; this one was rather easier than the wedding card I posted previously!

The brief was just for a 60th birthday and dog related.


The background is from the My Craft Studio ‘Occasions’ USB. For anyone who has been watching create and craft over the last few days, you may have noticed that there have been several demonstrations using the My Craft Studio software. I have previously posted items created using both Serif and My Craft Studio however one of the demo’s showed something I had not tried (ooeer) so I thought I would give it a go. The emboss function on the software is what I was playing with; I have used it before but it had not occurred to me to layer the same image over the top to maintain the colour. This is what I have done here and I quite like the result 🙂

The main image is a Mulberry Wood digi-stamp (sourced by Crafters Companion) which I have coloured with my Spectrum Noirs. Very observant people will realise that it is largely the same colour palette as for Barnaby Bear, this is because I really like how the bear turned out, so thought I would use the same again 😉


Fixer Upper

We all make mistakes when we are crafting, afterall this is where butterflies come from…

However I thought I post this particular one as the usual cover-with-a-flower-or-butterfly was inappropriate!

This cute little bear was lovingly coloured with my SN pens and I had already done most of the bear when I made an unfortunate choice for his nose…


I used black – I should have known better, but will try to remember next time 😉

So fix number one was to re-stamp the nose, fussy cut it and then stick on top creating a mini decoupage moment.

The second fix was on the sentiment. I stamped it out using distress ink unfortunately it came out a little bit distorted, so I have traced over the sentiment using a micron pen which has left me with a nice clear sentiment with an orange shadow.

I hope this helps anyone else prone to those small but intensely annoying errors which can lead to a frustrating crafty session!

Happy Crafting 🙂


Aquatint background

This is a really fun background to make with the advantage that there really is no right or wrong result – marvellous!

I am using:

  • SN Aquatints no’s 02, 15 and 56
  • Sheena Stamping card
  • Water

Step 1 – Start with your blank card.

I have cut this down to bigger than I need partly so that I can tape it down, but mostly so that I can be sure of the design going all the way to the edge without any finger prints sneaking in.


Step 2 – Spritz!

Lightly spritz the card with water. This means that you will already have a movable base layer and is also another reason for taping the card as this will reduce the curve in the card (once wetted) while you are working on it.

Step 3 – Swirl

Use a paintbrush to start adding the colours to your card. They can be in any order and layered as many times as you need. The main aim here is to make sure that you end up without any hard edges.

Step 4 – Spritz again!

Another very light layer, this is to keep the tints mobile for step 5

Step 5 – Smoodge

Okay, so not technically  a real word, but I don’t care about that! lift the edges of your craft mat (I use a glass mat which stays rigid) and tilt the card. The tints will slowly run into each other creating some nice patterns and swirly bits.

Step 6 – Spritz again!

No really – assuming you are happy with the smoodge you can either add in more tints and re-smoodge, or just add more tint where you want the colour a bit stronger; as long as you have blended the edges another smoodge is optional. This final spritz is to add the dot texture. For this particular background I have not gone in with kitchen roll to lift the colour, I have just spritzed and then left it alone, which gives you a lighter version of whichever colour you have laid down producing a nice mottled effect.image

At this point you can either leave it to dry naturally or cheat with a heat gun. I cheated for this one because it is for a specific card and I wanted to get cracking with the rest of it 😉

This tutorial was specifically for the background so I will leave it here; I may talk about what I did next in another post.



SC Casey

This is a Saturated Canary stamp which I haven’t had out for a while, but is still a lovely little stamp.



The Colours Used

Hair: GY1-GY5 (new colours)

Skin: FS2, FS9 CR3

Top: DP1-DP4

AB3 for blue bits

I also used one of the grey pencils for extra shadow (sorry can’t remember which one) and 002 for the hair highlights. To finish I used the clear sparkle overlay

Happy New Year!

Hi Folks! so, we are back,after a bit of a break over the festive period.I wouldn’t be me if I didn’t have something to say about storage, so my first post of the year is to rave about what the Christmas Fairy brought me this year 😉


I feel it important to point out that I already owned the majority of the contents

My beautiful, new Santoro Gorjuss Crafty Tote; which after some consideration has now become my colouring base.

The main section (as you can see) has all of my Spectrum Noir alchohol markers – I have the complete 2nd generation set including the two new sets of colours (again, I bow before the Christmas Fairy) which I store in these little silver three drawer desk tidy things. Four fit very nicely and as you can see, most of them have a little tag on the front to say which colour families are in there although these will need to be updated for the new colours. The two bottom right-hand drawers are my SN aqua pens; SN pencils on top, whisper pens in the upright tub – these were my first pens when I started crafting – The front flap has a velroc’d on pencil case, which has my metallic markers and some random gel pens and then the slots are filled with the Flourescent, black, and blender SN pens; spare sparkle pens and my Zig clear colour pens.

The book is my stamps catalogue, in here I put pictures of my stamps so that I can just flick through when I am looking for something. Quite a lot of them also come with a coloured picture of the stamp as part of the packaging which I then stick in here as a colouring guide.

Tucked down the sides of the main section are more velcro’d pouches which contain some stamping blocks and some sticky pads; what I like about these are that when you take out one in a lower position the top ones don’t leap out and attack (due to the velcro). There is a also a large pocket behind the drawers which can be used for paper/card, but which will probably have my colour swatch folder in it 🙂

The two side pockets have my larger stamping blocks, although I do keep a couple of small sentiment size blocks in the stamping wrap (pictured later) on the basis that I usually stamp and colour at the same time. The very front pocket has my pencil accessories and my things to stick rubber stamps to stamping blocks.

The whole thing is on wheels, which means that I can merrily wheel it out of the craft zone and over to the comfy sofa’s for an evenings colouring…. Bliss!

Twinkling Lights

This is a quick and easy card, but very effective. Please note the picture is slightly brighter than the original as I had to use the flash on my camera to take a halfway decent image.

Kit List:

  • Sheena Stamping Card
  • Twinkling lights embossing folder
  • Twinkling lights Die
  • Distress inks
  • Sentiment stamp
  • Black Card
  • Versamark/embossing powder
  • Ranger Glossy Accents
  • Dry wet-wipe
  • Spectrum Noir pens
  • Tag Dies


1.) Run your Sheena stamping card through your embossing machine. I had already cut my card to size because I already knew what I wanted to do with it, however if you want to play it safe, use a bigger piece of card so that you can line it up to the hinge edge of the folder and then cut is to the required size.

2.) Do a blanket ‘wash’ of background colour. I have use Antique linen and applied it using a soft brush, this is just to take away the stark whiteness of the card to give it a more rosy glow.

3) Using your dry wet-wipe, apply circular areas of colour to each of the lights. Remember to dab off the excess before applying to you card; for each one I started on the light itself as this was where the colour needed to be strongest and then moved outwards to where I wanted the lighter glow. The colours I used, were: Candied Apple; Lucky Clover; Pumpkin and Chipped Sapphire. Bear in mind that to keep the colours separate you will need to change which bit of the wet-wipe you are using when you change colour!

4) Ink up the light strings. There are lots of different ways to do this, however I chose to highlight the stings a little with Hickory Smoke distress ink. I have also kept in uneven rather than a flat colour to indicate light and shade. I haven’t done anything extra with the mini-lights although one could use gilding wax or foil to make them shine.

5) Warm up the edges. I have used Honey and Black Soot distress inks just to go around the edges to warm them up and draw attention to the centre of the image.

6) Apply Ranger Glossy Accents to each of the lights which will give them an authentic plasticky texture – leave this to dry!!

This card was inspired by one of Sheena’s design team samples on hochanda when these embossing folders were released

7) Die-cut your twinkling lights die. The colour it, I have used my SN markers as the idea was for the die cut to be a stronger set of colours than the background. I have also then applied the Glossy accents to these lights as well.

SN Colours:  DR2,7; CT1,OR2; GT1,3; JG6,2

8) Stamp and heat emboss your sentiment. I have used gold embossing powder, again for warmth, and then distressed the edges of the tag die-cut and layered it against black.

I have used a black card base which reduced the number of layers needed to create the same effect as a white card layered with black; looking at my picture, the white outline is actually the envelope and not part of the card 😉

9) Stick it all together!

Twinkling Lights

I hope you have enjoyed this tutorial, remember, even if you do not have the same items that I have used, the technique can be carried across to a variety of projects!

Teepee Twist

Whilst watching Create and Craft a little while ago, Weirdchild and I saw a Teepee card demo’d and we both went “..oooh…” so on  a recent commision I took the opportunity to have a little play 🙂

The basic idea behind this one was was to create an artists easel. Obviously I could have gone with a standard easel card however that wasn’t really the look that I wanted so I have used a Teepee card as my base but then attached a square front piece to mimic a canvas on an easel.

Front Canvas

This is a printout from Designers Directory “All Occaisions” USB, which I chose because it is a nice watercolour image and the theme for this card was watercolour painting. I have only added the one photo, but this one actually has two layers; the second layer is exactly the same as the first except that I have added a sentiment to it, which also makes it the area for the giver to write their personal message.

Side 2

There are several elements to the side view, the basic mat and layer I will mention below. The ‘with love’ is a heart stamp which I think is papermania but I am not sure(!) which I have stamped onto Sheena stamping card and heat emboseed. 20160726_132610.jpgI have then wash coloured it using my Spectrum Aqua pens and to finish, have highlighted some of the flowers with my Wink of Stella. The Glass jar is a free stamp from the front of a papercraft magazine, which is again on Sheena Card and then coloured with the Spectrum Aqua pens. I have also gone back over the top with the Wink of Stella, which I tend to do for anything that is supposed to be glass. The paint brushes are from Designers Directory Digistamps USBand I have re-sized them a couple of times soas to have different sized brushes. 20160726_132520.jpg

Unfortunately, my printer is rubbish when it comes to printing on anything heavier than parchment;

I can sometimes get light card through at no bigger than A5 which is intensely annoying as I have a lot of beautiful images and digistamps, so I was delighted when I found that the Craftwork cards digital paper will take my Spectrum Noir Alchohol markers (YAY!!!). As this paper is only 150gsm and I needed the brushes to stand up I have backed them onto some card scraps. The rest of this side is then embellished with an assortment of pearl drops, gems, punched flowers, die-cut buttons and hard pearls.

Side 3

The ‘Happy Birthday’ is another stamp and one of my favourites! Again I have heat embosed it and then coloured it using my Spectrum Aqua’s – the ‘Happy’ has the letters individually coloured and the ‘Birthday’ is washed the same as the ‘With Love’ stamp. 20160726_132430.jpgThe flowers I have made using copier paper, Spectrum Aqua Tints for the colours and a Tattered lace flower die. The flower die is from one of their magazines – the one with several different flower shapes on the front – I didn’t actually follow any of the instructions, I just cut several and layered it up, but it is important to mention that the stymen is not part of the die; I have just cut a strip of paper, feather-cut it down one side and rolled it up. The Butterflies are all tattered lace, the smaller ones are from a mini die set and the larger are from the Butterfly Trio (D466) and the ‘NAN’ is cut from the alphabet dies that came with the Tattered Lace Shutter Die set. 20160726_132325.jpg

Colour Kit List:

  • Spectrum  Noir Alchohol Markers – TN1-6; Darker shades for the brush handles, lighter shades for the bristles
  • Spectrum Aqua Pens – Aquamarine; Heather and Blossom. I also blended these together a little.
  • Spectrum Aquatints – No 53
  • Wink of Stella glitter pen
  • Candied Apple distress ink

Tattered Lace Dies:

  • Butterfly Trio D466
  • Buttons and small buterflies from a mini kit assortment
  • Flower die from Magazine
  • Alphabet Dies from the Shutter card set


  • Copier paper – the flowers
  • Craftworks digital paper – Background paper; front image and brushes
  • Sheena Stamping card – ‘With Love’; ‘Happy Birthday’ and the Jar
  • Topsy Turvy Card – Teepee base
  • Satinboard card – Mats and some of the embellishments


  • Pearls
  • Pearl Drops
  • Aurora Borealis gems
  • Flower Punch
  • Sticky Velcro dots – The card lies flat for boxing; the velcro dots are to fix the sides of the card together to form the upright Teepee shape