Ghosting with Distress Oxides – Video & Giveaway!

Altenew, Cards, Watercolor

No this is not a post about seeing ghosts with distress oxides inks! LoL! If it was I wouldn’t even try it! Its about how I created the background of my card by water stamping onto a card I previously coloured with Distress Oxide inks, the latest inks everyone is raving about.

Tim Holtz Distress Oxide Ink Pads are water-reactive dye & pigment ink fusion that creates an oxidized effect when sprayed with water. I resisted for awhile before getting them as I had just bought normal distress ink pads. But I had to try them and I now understand why everyone is so crazy about them! I am not good at creating distress inks backgrounds, but these inks go on smoother than the normal inks and are so easy to use even for a beginner like me! So obviously I ordered more from Cards und More in Germany, and I can’t wait to get them to create more backgrounds with them!

altenew willow side.jpg

So to create the background, I first sponged in the Faded Jeans distress ink onto watercolour paper. I took the outline stamp from Altenew’s Peony Bouquet and spritzed it with water before stamping it on my inked background.

altenew willow tut 1

The water reacts to the ink and “lifts” it from the paper leaving a ghostly effect (thus the name of the technique). As you can see, depending on the amount of water on the stamp, it creates a thicker or thinner image on the paper. If you want  a thinner outline, I suggest you stamp your watered stamp first on a tissue, before stamping it on your inked background. I also created a short video to show you how I did it.

I then created a strip with the leaves from the same set, by stamping it with the same distress ink, and lined it up on the card. I placed my scallop rectangle die from My Favourite Things blueprint 20 onto both paper so that I would get a perfect fit for the strip. I then ran it through my Big Shot plus to cut it.

altenew willow tut 3

Remember these flowers I made while experimenting with my new Winsor and Newton paints?

altenew peony

Well I wasn’t satisfied with them and put them aside. But I received so many kind encouraging comments from all of you that I decided to use it to make a card! Thank you all for the support! So I die cut 2 flowers with the co-ordinating dies and glued them onto the flower strip I created.

altenew willow cu

For the sentiment banner, I just cut a strip and made an ombre blending with the same distress ink. The sentiment from Altenew’s Perennial Beauty set was stamped using Versafine black ink.

Since this card was created only because of all the support you gave me, I will be giving it away! All you have to do is like this video at YouTube, and subscribe to my channel if you haven’t done so already. Then leave me a comment letting me know if you’re a new subscriber or a returning one. I will pick one person to send this card to.

Thanks for stopping by and I really appreciate all the support you show me time and time again!


I’m playing along with:

HLS watercolour Happy Little Stampers – My 2nd entry to their Watercolour challenge with the “bloom” optional twist

the flower challenge The Flower Challenge – Focus on background stamping

Altenew facebook Altenew Facebook August Anything Goes challenge – A new to me challenge I just discovered on Altenew’s Facebook page. Come and vote for me!

color crazy.jpg Color Crazy challenge – Anything Goes


Trompe l’Oeil

Brushos paint powder, Cards, Heat embossing, So Suzy stamps, stamping, Stamplorations, WoW embossing powder

“Trompe-l’œil is an art technique that uses realistic imagery to create the optical illusion that the depicted objects exist in three dimensions.” – Wikipedia. OK… my card is not that sophisticated, but I was going for that effect!

stamplorations marigold

I used to think using design paper on hand made cards was “cheating”, and so I put away all my beautiful paper, to be pulled out when I finally have the time to consecrate to scrapbooking. When the kids are gone and we are living in a considerably smaller place, cause we have to pay for the kids education in MIT or/and Harvard… (yes I can dream), so there will be almost no housework to do. No interruptions during the 4-6h I need to create one scrap booking page, to pick up the kids from school or make them meals, or clean their clothes/rooms/dishes/hair… unless of course, horrors, we live close to where they’re studying! If that happened, I think I will never be able to start scrapbooking again!

stamplorations marigold main

Anyway… what was  saying? Oh yes, using designer paper. I have been seeing a few of my favourite card makers use beautiful watercolour like design paper as backgrounds to their card, but adding a die cut or stamp which blends in or increase the beauty of the design paper. I was always fooled into thinking that the design paper was their own artwork, it was so beautiful yet artistic at the same time.

stamplorations marigold cu

So I decided to make one too. Unfortunately I can’t tell you where the gorgeous designer paper comes from as I only have 2 different loose sheets, which have been lying around on my craft table for a year at least! The beautiful flower, which I stamped in Versamark before heat embossing it with white Wow embossing powder comes from Stamplorations and its called “Marigold”. I absolutely love this stamp! I sprinkled Cambodge brushos powder on it and sprayed it with water before using my water pen to move the paint around.  I then fussy cut it and adhered it onto the designer paper.

stamplorations marigold sparkle

I brushed the centre of both flowers with clear Spectrum Noir sparkle pen and they twinkle in the light! The beautiful sentiment from So Suzy stamps was simply stamped in Versafine black ink.

I do love this card even though I used designer paper. Unfortunately it was made for my Auntie who has just lost her husband and I hope this will help a little.

Thanks for stopping by and let me know what you thought of my card!


I’m playing along at:

ssswchallenge Simon Says Stamp Wednesday challenge – Use pattern paper. I’m not quite sure if they meant there has to be a pattern on the paper or just use designer paper…

stamplorations sketchn theme Stamplorations Theme and Sketch challenge – the theme is stamp and family.

HLS AG with Dies Badge Happy Little Stampers – Anything Goes with Dies challenge

addicted to stamps Addicted to Stamps and More – Its their 5th birthday!

allsorts Allsorts Challenge – Flower Power!

STAMPlorations-anythinggoes Stamplorations Always anything Goes if you use Stamplorations products





Calling All Sistahs – New Encouragement Challenge

Cards, stamping, Watercolor

Today is the first day of a brand new challenge, starting the 18th of each month, over at CAS-ual Fridays new blog “Calling All Sistahs“! I’m part of their design team called the “Encouragement Squad”. Why are we called this? Go on over to the blog here to find out more and join in the fun… and perhaps win a 25$ gift certificate to the CAS-ual Fridays store… or double if you use any of their products on your creations!

Insp board

 This is the beautiful inspiration board for our very first challenge. Don’t you just love those colours and table setting? I wish I was sipping tea in that garden right now… So many gorgeous details to be inspired from!

Be badass side

As you can see, I went with the colours and the flowers and even added some splatters to try and capture the print of the table cloth and the blueberries.  I stamped the border flowers from CAS-ual Fridays stamps on my card with Distress inks before filling them in with my Zigs Clean color real brushes. That inspiring sentiment, also from CAS-usal Fridays stamps, was stamped a few times with my Misti to give it a strong colour so that it really stands out.

Be badass cu

So do pop on over to the Calling all Sistahs blog and join us in this exciting new challenge!

Thanks for stopping by and thanks for taking the time to leave me such lovely comments.



Stamps: FloatingFlower Power & Be

I’m also playing along with:

CAS mix up CAS Mix up card challenge – Stamping, Splatter & watercolour

addicted to stampsAddicted to Stamps – Make your Mark

muse Muse Challenge – I was inspired by the flowers on Jenni’s pretty card

creativewstampsCreative with Stamps – Flowers

Spring is here!

Cards, Heat embossing, stamping, Watercolor

Everyone is yelling it at their top of their voices here in Germany, and everywhere else where they might be lucky enough not to have anymore snow. There’s a great Spring coloured post by my friend Dalit over at her blog My Piece of Craft where she showcases some ways to decorate a Spring table with paper, cork, yarn… and highlight some delicious vegetarian recipes! Its in Hebrew but with google translate…and its really worth the visit.

Anyway back to me, I personally don’t mind Winter as I do prefer the cold to the heat! You might think thats strange coming from a tropical country like Singapore, but I realise that most people I meet who come from colder countries love the heat and those that come from warmer climates prefer the cold! And when its cold and rainy, I have an excuse to stay in and craft, instead of feeling guilty I should be outside enjoying the beautiful day instead.

blending with spectrum noir

I do love all the Spring flowers that are popping up in my garden though, especially when I don’t have to do anything for them! I don’t trim them, replant or even water them, yet those tulips and narcissus and other flowers I don’t know the names of, seem to actually double their production each Spring. And so influenced by them that I have been doubling my production of flower cards! If you’ve noticed, my last few cards all have flowers…and gold panels on them.  I’m crazy about using gold strips at the moment but I think this will be my last one for awhile, as I just finished cannibalising the gold card I was using as panels for my sentiments!

Zigs & sparkle stampers anonymous

I made this very quick and simple to do card for a friend who just received some bad news. I’m keeping my fingers crossed for you Alexandra that everything will turn out fine in the end.

I stamped 3 of the flowers from Tim Holtz’s Flower Garden set in Versamark, a clear ink that acts like a glue, and sprinkled some clear Wow embossing powder on it before using my heat gun to melt the powders and leave just a transparent outline that will act as a resist when I paint. I used only three of my Zig clean color real brushes today, 041 Light green, 052 Bright yellow and 025 Light pink, to colour the flowers.

zig bunch of flowers closer

I took each brush and smeared some colour in the middle of the flower, then with my Spectrum noir clear sparkle pen, I spread the colour onto the rest of the flower. And thats it! No thinking about shading or perspective or anything, just had fun. And I love the sparkle on my flowers, don’t you? For the stems, I mixed the green and yellow together to create some detail. To stamp the sentiment from The Ton, I used my Versamark again and heat embossed it with black Wow embossing powder. I cut the gold sentiment panel with my fancy scissors and adhered it across the card.

Zigs & sparkle stampers anonymous cu

 I should have just left it at that, but I wanted to create a shadow around the flowers to accentuate the light colours on the flowers…but I just ended up with a grey smear. Sorry, I now know I should have first put the grey on an acrylic block and picked it up with my water brush, instead of drawing a line around the flowers and trying to blend it around…well no pain no gain I always say! I added a few rhinestones to distract you from it and the card was finished.

I’m really crazy about how the Spectrum Noir blends with the Zigs though and gives it such shine at the same time. I learnt this blending technique from Jennifer McGuire’s post here where she shows you all the different ways to use the Zigs. I also followed her advice and labelled them and created a colour swatch. This has helped me a lot to know what the colours actually look like once dry and mixed with other colours…and what colours I am missing in order to get more! 😉

Thanks for stopping by and I always love to know what you think of my card!


I’m playing along with:

CropStop challenge –  cropstop A new to me challenge blog where you just have to use any of the products from their store, even if you didn’t buy it from them!

Less is More – Use 3 pastel colours less is more

AAA Cards challenge – My 2nd entry for their Shiny spring theme AAAcards

Happy Little Stampers CAS Challenge – Blend HLS CAS.png

Addicted to Stamps and More – Anything Goes addicted to stamps n more anything goes

Beauty from despair


I visited the Tate Modern in London when I was there 1 month ago and among the amazing paintings there, this one was my favourite and I wanted to share it with you. Richard Hamilton’s “The citizen”.

the citizen

Its not cause he has such a hot bod (no really!), but because there is so much dignity portrayed by this prisoner amid the degradation in his cell, which was self inflicted to protest against the conditions they had to live in (yes thats his own excrements on the wall…). I am not making any political statements here, I’m just looking at the art…and the philosophy. We all go through our own personal hell sometimes, but if we can turn our own shit (excuse my French) into something beautiful or at least learn from it, its something to be admired in the end.

So heres my something beautiful for you today.flower circle.png

I was inspired by the challenges over at Just add Ink, which had a pic of a xmas wreath, and Color throwdown, using only red green and white, to make this card. I first masked the rest of the card leaving a large circle open and a small circle pasted on the inside. I used Stampers Anonymous Flower garden and The Ton Simply floral for the blooms and Hero Arts for the leaves. I cut out the butterfly from a watercolour card stock which I had previously coloured using Brushos.  The sentiment is from Impressions Obsessions which I heat embossed on the green podium. i didn’t mean to add the podium but I actually messed up the sentiment at the bottom so I had to cover it up. The whole thing looks like a crystal ball now!

This card is for a dear friend’s birthday, which unfortunately has already passed. I never seem to have available cards for my friends’ birthdays, as I accumulate them, then donate them all for a prize for some fund raising event. Obviously the day after I give them away, I realise I have a friend/relative’s birthday in the week and of course they don’t live in Germany either!

Thanks for visiting!

I entered this card in the following challenges:

Color Throwdown CTD 400  color throwdown

Just add Ink #319  just add ink

Addicted to Stamps and More – Anything Goes

Seize the Birthday – Birds, bees or butterflies

Inkspirational Color challenge – Anything goes with RED