Tuesday, April 26, 2011


Well, we are officially back in the rat race after a relaxing week of vacation.  Everyone is back at school today, the suitcases unpacked and the laundry complete.  Sooooo much to get ready before I leave again on Wed morning for Phoenix, Tucson and St Louis.  My friend suggested packing a bicycle helmet for St Louis since it's tornado season and us Californians don't really have any tornado training.  I assured her I was going to be with my sister that has lived in Texas for 25+ years and she has plenty of tornado training so I should be fine as long as the airport stays open this next week.

I thought I could get in one more project before I go so that is what we are starting today.  First of all I found some great flower pictures on Deviant Art.  You can download them for free (which is great). You will need a least a few flower pictures for this project or some of your own ephemera.

1.  Download the file from Mellowmint.
2.  Open the file and choose the pictures you want to print.
3.  Open Photoshop or Photoshop Elements to size...if you don't have either of these programs, just open a Word Document.  Drag photos into the Word doc.  You can size it and even add text using a text box if you like (see below).
4.  Now print...it's that easy.

Super easy to do... for those of you that might be shy about trying to print your own ephemera, try a few of these.  
Okay, so back to the project at hand.
To be quite honest I am still not really sure what I am making yet, but this is how I started...For the foundation I am using the 7gypsies Naked Tabs (6 x 4"), much bigger than the little tabs I used in the last project.  These large tabs are made for the 7gypsies Library Drawer but of course I am going to use them for something else.  I guess I should say that the Library Drawer comes with some index tabs but they are printed with lines and the months.  These naked tabs are sold separately ($5.95 for 24), are not printed and heavier weight (which is why I like them).

You will need the tabs, a mini mister and some distress stain.
 Cover the entire surface with Spun Sugar.  You can lightly blot to give it a mottled effect.  Dry with a heat gun.
 Working quickly add some streaks of Broken China then spritz with the mini mister.  Don't worry when the paper starts to curl.  Just let the stain bleed, creating a watercolor effect. NOTE:  You can spray the water before you add the stain...I just like the effect of spraying after for this project.
 You can stand the card on end to let the stain run.  If you get to much at the bottom just blot with a paper towel.  Once you like what you see, dry the card with heat gun to stop the bleeding (and the card will go back to being flat again).
 Now add a bit of Antique Linen Stain.  
Again, spray with Mini mister, let bleed then dry with heat gun.
 Here is the finished watercolored card.  I love the fact that every time you do this it will be totally different and unique depending on the colors used, the amount of water, and honestly how fast you are.  The tabbed cards hold up well to repeated spraying and drying and still retain a great work surface for stamping.  I did a have one card I got overzealous with and the pulp started balling up, but I just dried the card and then flicked away the pieces with my fingernail. 
I grabbed a script stamp and inked it with Frayed Burlap Distress Ink, but before I stamped the card I used a baby wipe to wipe away a few of the edges and a bit of the center so there would be no straight edge to the image. Gosh, that sounds much more confusing that it really is.
 You might be able to see it here better than I can explain it.  You can see there are portions of the image missing where I wiped away the ink.  Super simple technique.
 Cut out the printed flower.
  I added a stamped image from the new 7gypsies Conservatory stamp (sorry I don't have a better picture of it) that just came in last week, a bit of dyed cheesecloth and Lille paper tape (stamps).
Well, I feel like it's 90 percent complete...I ended up spraying it with a bit of Perfect Pearls Mists - Heirloom Gold that you might be able to see in the finished card.  I may add some stitching and I still need to add a word to the tab but that will come when I finish the rest and have an idea of what I want to do with the cards. I guess you will have to stick with me while I go on this little watercolor journey.
because there are more to come...

So back to the table for more fun using the Distress Stains as watercolors...on second thought, maybe I should pack first.


  1. Wow, those tabs are so beautiful!
    And thanks so much for the tutorial. It actually does not look that difficult to create and could definitely be something I would try doing myself.
    Thanks for the inspiration!

    Greetings from FarfallaDK

  2. This is amazing! However, it will wait until after Saturday when I see you and Deb at MMU in Tucson!
    Can't wait!

  3. Wow that's gorgeous!!!

    Kirsti xx

  4. How fortunate for us that you made time for this project and shared your technique. I love your end results. That bit of cheesecloth under the paper flowers is the perfect unexpected dimension that brings it to life. Thank you very much. Happy week and Safe Travels to you...

  5. Love these, can't wait to see more!

  6. Beautiful! Love the flowers and the stamping!

  7. You could just stamp "hi" on it and send it to me! Love this technique. Off to try and download some flower images!!

  8. Thanks for sharing about the flower images. I don't have Photoshop and thought this technique was not for me, but I'm definitely trying it.

  9. Girls, each day I love more in this blog .... you are really very special, God bless each one of you for the blessings of God that will spill over us.

  10. These are so pretty! You've inspired me to create today!

  11. Have a great time and thanks for showing us this magical gypsy trick. I wish I was going. My daughter lives in Gilbert.

  12. So pretty and as always you make it seem so easy that I think I will have to give it a go.

  13. WOW!! Thanks so much for the tutorial!