Tag Archives: Tim Holtz

Studio Calico Little Things Stamp Set

When I first saw this flower stamp months ago, I couldn’t justify spending 25+ dollars for a kit when I only liked the stamp. When Studio Calico recently released a similar stamp set, I got it straight away.


I embossed the stamp on watercolor paper and outlinesd the image in various Tim Holtz distress markers. Instead of using a water color brush, I blended the colors using a Wink of Stella brush pen. The end result was amazing and really brought out the delicacy of the various colors.


Tim Holtz Distress – A Blended Background

On Black Friday, I got most of the mini distress inks for 50% off. The mini sets are such a great way to experiment with all the colors. I’m really drawn to the form factor and for some reason, I’ve actually used these little guys more in the last few weeks than the entire six years that I’ve owned the large versions!


To create the background below, I started with a scrap piece of card stock that had a shiny champagne sheen. (The pearly paper on the right is the base I started with.) Without much care, I blended salty ocean and pickled raspberry randomly in circles on the page and followed up by blending everything together with dusty concord.

Using the remains of some die cuts, I then blended in the snowflake shapes with some shaded lilac, seedless preserves, and aged mahogany. I really like the effect!


Card inspired by Kristina Werner

I learn so much from the kwernerdesign blog and the moment I saw this blog post, I had to try this technique myself.

I don’t have many flower stamps so I embossed a Hero Arts background stamp with white powder. I used all the colors Kristina Werner used on her blog (combination of distress markers and distress ink pads) and added Shaded Lilac to the mix. I also bought a set of watercolor brushes which enabled me to control the color saturation. The first photo is my tester and I love it. I think the first time around, this technique yielded an almost stained glass look.


After building my confidence, I tried my hand with the larger piece, which is for a greeting card. I wasn’t as careful on the larger piece because I was trying out the larger water color brushes. I messed up a little on one of the lilac flowers and I could have left the pumice stone ink on longer before dabbing but overall, I love the effect.




Color Inspiration from Oprah Magazine

I often see posters use color inspirations from fashionable outfits to guide a card. The “How May We Help you” section of my Oprah magazine really spoke to me and I used it to make a birthday card for my mom.


My color matching didn’t turn out quite right. For example. I didn’t expect the level of intensity from the Hero Arts shadow ink in Pale Tomato. I also realized that in addition to the color-scheme, I was really drawn to the wispiness of the design.  Other than those two points, for my first color-inspired card, I would say it’s fun and cute. My mom can be really young at heart and the sentiment really fits her cute and whimsical nature. The sentiment comes from the “Good Times” Mama Elephant stamp set and stamped very cleanly using the foam pad Stampin Up Ink pad.


I used my Tim Holtz Tiny Attacher to staple the ribbon to the card and tied a bow around the staple. So cute! It looked a little unfinished after I put on the sentiment so I added some sparkly ribbon. Voila!


Mother’s Day Cards

I bought the Hero Arts Everything Flower background stamp when it was first released earlier this year. I was a little worried that it would be too similar to my Flower Bursts Pattern stamp but after playing with both quite a bit the last few months, I find they both have added a lot of different things to my cards.

For my Mother’s Day cards this year, I thought it would be fun to challenge myself to use the same background stamp in different ways. To control the growth in my scrap pile, I decided to use up my existing supplies.  This first card really surprised me. I am always surprised at the creative process, especially when I use scraps. For example, I started quickly by embossing the stamp on the lavender card stock but then it took about 30 minutes to piece together the color scheme and colors. Something about the patterns and color combination makes me think of Japanese gift wrapping.

IMG_4016For this next card, I embossed the background stamp in white on top of some water color paper that was transformed using Tim Holtz Distress Ink pads and my craft sheet. (You can learn more about my obsession with this technique here.) The grey-blue cardstock that frames the water color paper is such a beautiful color. Everything really poped against the white.


I used less conventional Mother’s Day sentiments on these cards because they really fit the notes I wrote inside. I’ve experienced many milestones the last few years and I really wanted to thank the ladies in my life for supporting and loving me all these years. I’m very blessed and grateful.

Embossing Bonanza Part Two – Water color edition

I’ve been very fascinated by water color techniques after watching several videos by Kristina Werner and others using Tim Holtz distress inks and inktense pencils.  This next slew of cards exhibits the depth of my newfound obssession passion with watercolor and continuing love of emboss folders. I created the following cards using various Quik Kutz emboss folders, a craft sheet, and Tim Holtz distress ink pads.

Tim Holtz Water Color card - with sympathy


For the center strip, I tried out a braying technique that is supposed to mimic the look of letterpress. It was my first go around and although I definitely need to work on my technique, I think it’s a cool look.

IMG_2496 When I’m learning a new technique, sometimes the whole of the card doesn’t really turn out the way I want it to aesthetically. But man, I love this water color technique. It’s so organic and alive.  IMG_2494

Something about this just screams “under the sea” to me – in the best way possible.


I love my Tim Holtz Distress Marker set

Studio Calico had an awesome coupon the other day for 50% all writing instruments. I used the coupon to purchase the 37 set distress markers from Tim Holtz and 3 Hero Arts shadow inks (soft granite, soft green, and red royal). The package arrived just two days after I placed my order! As many reviews have noted, it comes in a clear plastic container with a black lid. The lid isn’t the easiest to pull on and off but the container itself is very handy. For some reason, one of my markers had a black smudge on the cap.

Tim Holtz markers in canister

The markers are double ended, with a brush on one side and a fine tip for journaling on the other. I learned pretty quickly that I’ll need to be careful not to dry out my fine tip because the cap needs to be snapped back on. That doesn’t seem to be the case on the brush end – at least on my set.

I was very excited to test out all the colors and decided to create a guide page of all the colors so I can have a handy reference while crafting. The ink of some markers like Barn Door and Fired Brick did not flow well and seemed a little dried out. That might be because they were stored vertically with the brush end at the top and after turning them with the brush side facing down for about 10 minutes, the ink started flowing nicely. I’m new to using markers in my crafting so this might be common knowledge but next time, I’ve learned to let the ink flow in the direction I need for a little while before swatching so I won’t end up putting wear on a dry brush tip. I’m also going to do  my best to store the markers horizontally so that I don’t dry out a tip.

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Gratuitous picture of the set – I love sets of colorful everything!

I love my distress ink pads and as others have noted, the ‘matching’ markers are  complementary in color, not exact matches to the ink pads. (You can also tell I was watching “Game of Thrones” while swatching the colors because I subconsciously started writing ‘westeros’ after I swatched Black Soot.)

distress markers guide001

Below I tested out some of the colors using both acrylic and rubber stamps. They look pretty amazing used with rubber stamps, creating a surprisingly crisp image. I used the Pumice Stone marker — the brownish-grey — on the middle “the everyday” evalicious stamp.

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I really like all of the colors, particular all the shades of neutral nudes. I think they’ll make great shadows and add dimension to cut out shapes. After swatching and playing, I would have to say that Picket Fence is my favorite. It’s actually somewhat opaque. The white appears less translucent in the picture below but in real life, it gives an almost chalkboard effect on black paper. I can’t wait to use it to create a wash on dark patterned papers. I think Picket Fence is the only slightly opaque Distress Marker and the pen tip of this marker, unlike the others, looks like felt rather than plastic.

Picket Fence Distress Marker