Hi friends! Simon Says Stamp is releasing their new Dear Friend collection tonight, and I have illustrated two new stamp sets for this release: Peony Background and Blissful Bouquet! I have a minor (okay, major) love affair with peonies, and my friend Caly Person (you can check out her blog HERE) sent me the most stunning photos of peonies from her garden last year… I couldn’t resist drawing them, and then Simon Says Stamp turned my illustration into a big, bold, red rubber background stamp!
I immediately stamped the Peony Background stamp on both Fabriano Artistico watercolor paper and Hammermill paper with black ink so that I could do some watercoloring and some alcohol marker coloring. These huge peony images are perfect to sit down and relax with your favorite coloring medium…. they’re so huge that you can really dig down into the nooks and crannies and practice adding dimension and depth. I colored the watercolor panel with Karin Brushmarker Pro markers (I find that the Fabriano Hot Press watercolor paper works beautifully with the Karin Brushmarkers; the markers’ dye is transparent and I find that that transparency works wonderfully with the super smooth surface of the hot press paper.), and I colored the Hammermill panel with OLO markers. I decided to focus on the OLO panel for today’s cards and save the watercolored panel for a rainy day!
The large Peony Background creates a slightly larger than 5.5″ square panel, which makes it perfect for use on an A2 card, creating a square card, mini slimline… or, as I’ve done here, cutting it in half and creating two different cards! I stamped the Peony Background onto my Hammermill cardstock using Hero Arts’s Intens-ified Black ink, my go-to for alcohol marker coloring or watercoloring, stamping a few times to be sure of a crisp black line. I then used my OLO markers to color the peonies in bright shades of bubble gum pink, deep magenta, and a dark lilac purple (a peony color which I don’t believe truly exists in real gardens, but it’s fun to dream!), adding beautiful emerald to the leaves. Once I had finished coloring the images themselves, I added black marker to the background to make sure that those brightly colored peonies were the stars of the show!
To create the A2 card and mini-slimline card, I cut the 5.75″ square panel in two sections, one 3″x5.5″ for the mini-slimline, leaving the remaining 2.75″x5.5″ for the A2 card. I was sure to keep as much of the two large peonies intact as I could, which worked out well to keep the majority of the cool pinks to one side and the deep magenta on the other panel!
For the first card, I used the A2-sized panel as the jumping off point for the rest of my project. I trimmed a very thin piece of Amethyst cardstock from Hero Arts, as it worked perfectly with the beautiful purple peony “marshmallow” buds in the corners and picked up the cool purple tones in the larger bubble gum pink peony nicely. I also clear embossed the entire Peony Background on a panel of Pitch Black cardstock using clear embossing powder to add a bit more interest to the black panel. I placed the colorful panel along the right edge of my black embossed panel, then nestled the purple strip right up against the other edge of the colorful piece to create a touch of contrast between the two patterned pieces.
After I had created my background, I set to work on my sentiment. I die cut the Big Hugs die from some glittery black foam from Spellbinders, adding extra dimension, height, and texture, but keeping those crisp, dramatic black accents true! I also trimmed down one of the greeting strips from the new Reverse Bold Hello Sentiment Strips and popped it up beneath the glittery black foam greeting with some black foam adhesive.
Once I had adhered the sentiment components, I added a few Perfume Bottle gems from Trinity Stamps to accent the purple tones in my card.
I kept things very simple for my mini-slimline card, simply trimming down the large floral panel to 3×5.5″, which I matted on a 3 1/8″x5 5/8″ panel of pink cardstock to create the slimmest of hot pink outlines around my colorful background, accenting the vivid colors on my black mini slimline (3.5″x6″) card front.
For the greeting, I die cut the Here For You die from some of Simon Says Stamp’s Glossy Black cardstock and adhered it towards the bottom of my card front so that I wasn’t covering up too much of my meticulously-colored magenta peony bloom. The final touch was to add a few iridescent black Melanite Magic gems to add a touch of sparkle. This card is simple in layout, but those enormous flowers make such a huge statement on their own; you don’t really need much more to create a dramatic card!
Well, that’s all for my projects today. I have a few more projects to share with you during the blog hop, so be sure to stop back by on Saturday to see some more inspiration using the new Simon Say Stamp Dear Friend release! Thanks so much for stopping by today, and have a marvelous day!