Paper Pumpkin celebrated another anniversary in March. This means that subscribers got a gorgeous custom box, fantastic project designs (as always), and a bonus stencil set with a sponge. These are the two cards the kit made, including custom envelope liners. I love the outdoor theme—we all need a little more fresh air. The stamping was super simple, so the cards came together very easily.
The alternatives I have for you this month focus on using stencils. Stampin’ Up! has a full-sized set of stencils in the annual catalog and is coming out with a second set in the new catalog in May. Maybe you haven’t tried to use stencils in your crafting. If not, this kit was a great inspiration to jump in!
Sunburst Stencil Card
Before starting this card, I cut my sponge into four pieces. It’s easier to hold and makes stenciling more manageable. I started with the back cut from one of the Petal Pink cards in the kit. I taped down the lower corners with old Washi tape on my workspace, which I covered with scrap paper. Stenciling is an inky endeavor. Then I taped the sunburst stencil toward the top of the card stock. The cool part was that I could get a little messy because I trimmed the card at the end to get “perfect edges.”
I started by inking my sponge, tapping it once on my scrap paper, and then, using a combination of pouncing, dapping, gentle rubbing, I filled in the image. This one is a little tricky because the spokes want to lift. But slowing down and taking my time allowed me to get a good image. In fact, I like the variation in the coverage because it looks more like a sunbeam.
After I finished with the stenciling part, I trimmed my card stock to 3-1/2″ x 4-3/4″. I used the bottom of one of the envelope liners cut to 1-1/4″ x 3-1/2″ to place at the bottom and hide any over-inking. Before I added the card to the base of Bumblebee, I added some of the linen thread in the kit at the seam of the DSP and the card. Lastly, I stamped some birds on the pre-punched pieces and put them at the top of the card on Dimensionals. Happy Birthday is stamped in Pretty Peacock.
The Slimline Artistic Alternate
This card uses a couple of interesting stamping techniques as well as the cloud stencil from the kit. I decided to go with a slimline layout to have plenty of room for my trees. The card’s base is Calypso Coral cut at 8-1/2″x7″ scored on the 7″ side at 3-1/2″. I used Basic White card stock for the stamped layer cut to 3-1/4″ x 8-1/4″.
To begin, I stamped the trees in Pretty Peacock about an inch in from the edge. Without re-inking, I stamped to the left and right and left to fill in a forest-like space. I repeated that at the other end of the card. I frequently use second-generation stamping to control the intensity of the image, but this was a good way to give a sense of depth to the collection of trees.
Next, using Bumblebee ink, I used just the top of the flower stamp in the kit to create a meadow effect between and under the trees.
For the clouds, I just held the stencil in place, starting at the top of the card, and with the stencil off the edge, I sponged Seaside Spray along the edge of the stencil opening, just along the round parts. The trick with clouds is that you’re inking in the negative space to define the white areas to give the impression of big fluffy white clouds. I moved the stencil over and then down, repeating the process so I had about three rows of clouds. Stagger them so they aren’t all lined up, and watch the straight edges of the stencil to avoid having harsh lines.
After I finished all my inking, I cut the pre-printed image from the front of the card I used in the Sunburst card. I layered that on over a couple of boo-boos. I added the pre-punched trees on Dimensionals. To fill in a big white space to the left of the image, I added some of the birds in Smokey Slate. Lastly, I stamped one of the sentiments and layered it on a scrap of the Petal Pink card. To lift that piece, I put it on Dimensionals.
Stencils are a lot of fun. They can be used with ink, with embossing paste, a cutting guide if you’re brave, even heat embossing. I hope I’ve inspired you to give them a try. Happy crafting