Sunday, April 8, 2018

Ideas for Using the Tim Holtz Sizzix Alterations Planks Die

It's no secret that one of my favorite new die releases from Tim Holtz Sizzix Alterations is the Planks die.  I can't wait to see what everyone does with this die. It's just so much fun!

 I made a short video discussing the die and various media you can cut with it.  Then below the video are some still shots of some of the things I discussed.  I hope you find this to be informative and helpful as you work with this delightful steel rule die.

 Use texture fades and cardstock to make a raised woodgrain. Add interest by sanding the raised portions, then inking it to make it look like the paint has worn away from the raised woodgrain.
This is a faux woodgrain technique using paint and ink on Mixed Media Heavystock. This is a technique I learned from one of Tim's demos a few years ago.
First swipe Distress Paint across the surface in one direction to make a faux wood grain pattern.  The once the paint is dry you either blend in Distress Ink or cover it with Distress Stain. Wipe away the ink/stain with a slightly damp cloth to remove the ink/stain on the Distress Paint.
You can also use any of the various Woodgrain stamps available. Here are two sets I used with three different woodgrains from Tim Holtz and Stampers Anonymous. I used Wallpaper and Wood CMS126 and Birch and Pine CMS280.

For a fun technique that was inspired by a few pieces I found on Pinterest here -
To get the worn floral wall paper on wood plank look, I colored some Distress Woodgrain Cardstock with a medium Distress Oxide color.  I believe this one was Vintage Photo.
Then I collaged some of the yellow roses from the Floral Collage Paper using Distress Collage Medium. 
Once it was dry, I used a sanding block to distress it by sanding the whole piece in a circular motion, wearing away the collage paper and revealing the wood grain in places. I love the way the sanding lightened and distressed the color on the collage paper.
I cut the piece into strips a little wider than 1/2" and cut them all on the one long thin plank.  Be sure to keep them in order when you cut them and then when you die cut them or it is tough to piece them back together.
Here is another close-up to show the distressed look with the sanding.
This is the end result in a simple card.
As I showed in the video, here are some samples I had previously done just with plain half inch strips of Woodgrain cardstock, but I reworked them with the Planks die cut pieces and they just add so much more character! 
The photo on the left is the old version, and the reworked card with the planks is on the right.
See how much more character is added when using the Planks die instead?
The original card, the one on top, I used 1/2" strips of woodgrain to piece together to make a table.  On the reworked card below it, I used the thin plank die and cut several into pieces and then put them together to form a table with delightful gaps and chunks missing.
This distressed Plank die table is so much more interesting than the plain strips I used before.
Below are some of the cards I made for Creativation 2018 using the planks die with a link to each blog post where I explain how I made them. 

I hope that you love the new planks die as much as I do and I can't wait to see all the creative things you all make with it!

Saturday, April 7, 2018


I had a blast making this card and thinking about all the fun times I’ve had with family and friends in Disneyland’s Enchanted Tiki Room. I can hear Fritz the parrot in my head as he starts the whole tiki room off by making all the guests say “alooooha!”
The different papers used were from the Correspondence Paper Stash, corrugated piece is from the Textured Surfaces pack, Distress Woodgrain Cardstock and Distress Mixed Media Heavystock

The base of corrugated paper was cut using the largest Stacked Deckle Die.
I cut all of the flowers from Distress Mixed Media Heavystock and then watercolored them with Disress Ink. The pieces of the Tiki were cut from Distress Woodgrain Cardstock and then colored with Distress Oxides. The title is the Cut Out Lowercase alphabet on one of the planks from the Planks die.
The tiki and most flowers were cut from an older die set that is still available called Tropical, and a few of the Funky Florals 2.

Wednesday, March 28, 2018


 The Stamp Collector CMS338 set has some really cool old vintage stamp images. I wanted them to make a colorful background for my card, so I arranged a bunch of the stamps over a piece of Distress Mixed Media Heavystock on my Stamp Platform and then I was able to stamp several pieces before I cleaned them all off and put them away.
 I stamped them in Hickory Smoke Archival Ink -- that is key to this technique. Then I dried the ink with a Heat Tool.  Once dry, as usual, I settled in with a good episode of Murder She Wrote or Hart to Hart and started watercoloring. I used the Distress Markers in many different colors but only used one color per stamp. I scribbled some of the Distress Marker on the Glass Media Mat, then picked the color up with my Detail Waterbrush and applied the color to the stamped image. The really cool thing that happened was that the Hickory Smoke Archival Ink somehow enhanced the color or the Distress Marker Ink and made it look like I had individually stamped each image in a color and I didn't. I really love that little surprise!!
I cut the background with one of my all time favorite Sizzix Alterations, the steel rule Bigz Postage Stamp Frame. It's seriously one of the BEST dies!  So versatile and I use it a TON. It is retired, so if you find it, grab it! If you don't have this die, don't worry, there is a new one coming out soon with 5 different sizes - Stacked Postage. Hooray!
For the sentiment I stamped the large circle and the word Original from the Mail Art CMS339 stamp set. In the opening I picked the sentiment "For Being You" from the Pennants CMS330 set and stamped it in the that space.  
Then to keep with the whole postage theme, I tied some Eclectic Elements Crafter's Thread around it as if it was a parcel.
This is another card that really isn't difficult to make it is just a little time consuming to color all the stamps different colors, but seriously it is so worth it! 

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Embrace the Journey

This is a very simple card I made using the Tickets CMS337 stamp set and the Pennants CMS330 stamp set. I added a little cork from the Ideaology Textured Surfaces , a few Ideaology Hex Fasteners, and some Ideaology Filmstrip Ribbon.

I just hand cut the pennant and the two mats. The blue color is Sapphire Distress Ink. The tickets were stamped with Vintage Photo Archival Ink.

Sunday, March 25, 2018

Collage Paper Altered Books

I have decided that I want to make some altered books for my coffee table for most holidays. This set was for my St. Patrick's Day decor.  I thought the Aviary Collage Paper from Tim Holtz Ideaology would be perfect for the main part of the book and the Plain Collage Paper for the binding. I started off by gathering some supplies.
Old Books
Collage Paper -  Aviary and Plain
Distress Paint - Peeled Paint
Distress Collage Medium Matte
Distress Collage Brush
Salvaged Design Tape
Stamps of your choosing (I used an older Stampers Anonymous set called Sketch Elements CMS054 and the Worn Text CMS156 alphabet set)
Distress Embossing Ink
Ranger Superfine Gold Embossing Powder
Ground Espresso Distress Crayon
Gold Metallic Distress Crayon
Tarnished Brass Metallic Distress Spray
Crinkle Ribbon
Various Adornments or Die Cuts
The bindings on my books were red so I painted them green with Peeled Paint Distress Paint.
Then to make the de-embossed wording less prominent, I put some Plain Distress Collage Paper over the bindings with Distress Collage Medium.
I liked the grey color on this set of books, so I left it unpainted and just applied some of the Aviary Collage Paper. I tore it into pieces and then applied it with Distress Collage Medium.
I wanted the edges to look older and have a gold sheen since these are for St. Patrick's Day decor. First I applied some of the Gold Metallic Distress Crayon to the edges of the book pages, then I sprayed some of the Tarnished Brass Distress Stain over them with a brush and worked it in then quickly dried them so they wouldn't warp too much but would look fairly old.
This is probably a good time to explain my St Patrick's Day decor briefly. I decorate to celebrate Patrick's faith and life. So no leprechauns, rainbows or pots of gold in my decor. I use a lot of greens for Ireland, shamrocks, crosses, and touches of gold since our faith is precious to many of us.

Patrick was Scottish and was kidnapped and enslaved by Irish clans as a youngster. He escaped returned home, became a Christian, and later returned to Ireland as a missionary to share his faith with the very people who enslaved him. So to celebrate that, I chose the words FAITH, for his faith, FORGIVE, for the fact that he repented and asked for forgiveness of his sins and then in turn, he forgave those who had enslaved him, and then the word FOLLOW because he chose to follow Christ and to follow the call to go to Ireland.
This cool ornate stamp is on the Sketch Elements CMS054 set and I used it on the top and bottom of the binding on each side of the words which were stamped using the Worn Text CMS156 alphabet set. I stamped them onto the binding with Distress Embossing Ink and then covered them with Gold Superfine Embossing Powder from Ranger, then went over them with some Ground Espresso Distress Crayon when they were cool.
I love the look and think it looks really old!
I added a strip of Design Tape along the edge of the green part of the binding just to add a little interest, then I put some Ground Espresso Distress Crayon all around the edges of the book to age it.
I dyed some crinkle ribbon withthe Tarnished Brass Distress Stain and tied it around all three books.
Here you can see that gold shine on the page edges.
I often use Shamrocks in my decor, the three-leaved clover of Ireland since that is traditionally believed to be what St Patrick is said to have used to explain the trinity, but the four-leaf clover is rare and treasured much like Patrick's faith, so I'm very glad there is one in the Souvenir Adornments pack! I added some of the Alcohol Ink Gold Mixative to color it gold before attaching it with a cross below the bow. To make the cross I cut one of the Mini Ornate Crosses from the Movers and Shapers line out of black chipboard, then put Distress Embossing Ink on it and covered it in Gold Embossing Powder. I did this a couple of times and then aged it with Ground Espresso Distress Crayon.

Friday, March 23, 2018

Just My Type

Oh I had so much fun planning the design for this love note which features Inventor 1 CMS340 stamps and the Ornate Trims CMS326 stamps (one of my faves!) from Tim Holtz and Stampers Anonymous. These Inventor stamps are cool and since I don't have much talent in the world of mixed media art, I really enjoyed the challenge of coming up with ways to use them for greeting cards.
The main typewriter image is stamped on Distress Mixed Media Heavystock in Black Soot Archival Ink. Then I went over the whole thing with Antique Linen Distress Ink, added Brushed Corduroy Distress Ink around the edges, and then spritzed drops of water on it to age it.
For the base, I embossed a bunch of the Ornate Trims stamps in gold on a piece of Distress Mixed Media Heavystock. Then I colored it pink with Spun Sugar Distress Ink. I used this as the base and made a second one and cut the hearts out of it using the Sizzix Alterations Heartfelt Die. This is one of those dies I consider to be a staple die that should be in every crafter's collection. It is a steel rule die and can cut so many things it is a must. For this card I cut the Heavystock and chipboard for each of the hearts.
For the sentiment I stamped several sentiments from Glorious Bouquet CMS325 and then cut out the letters individually to make the play on words with the typewriter.

As a final detail I stamped one of the Trimmings that kind of looks like beads. I gold embossed it, then colored with Distress Marker in Victorian Velvet, trimmed it closely and attached it to the top and bottom of the typewriter piece.

 Although this card has a couple of steps to it, it's really not a difficult one to duplicate.

Thanks for visiting!