Today's project is a special one because it's a card I made for my best friend who's birthday is Tuesday, November 13th. Gloria has been my best friend for many years. I met her when we lived in Frisco, TX and I think she moved there in 2000. We became friends through a Creative Memories Class that I taught at my next door neighbors house through another of my friends, Xochil. It wasn't long before Gloria and I were "thick as thieves" and through the years we've become even closer. Even though I spent 8½ years living in Oklahoma, she still came to visit me and when I came here to see my daughter and grandkids, I would make sure to see her as often as possible. Several times over the years that I was gone, we would still get to share Christmas and Thanksgiving meals. My daughter and son-in-law are gracious hosts and would always let me invite her to the special family dinner that we traditionally hold on Christmas Eve.
It was hard being away from each other during the years in Oklahoma so as you can imagine, we see each other as often as possible now that we're closer to each other. I don't know how much you all know about the Dallas area, but a 40-minute drive is nothing. She still lives in the same house in Frisco still so it's about an hour for her to drive here from her house. I go to Frisco pretty often as two of my doctors are there. But I'm normally running around doing other tests and don't often get time to visit when I'm there as she is at work. We've had at least 1 weekend together every month since we've moved back to Texas and she is the most frequent visitor in my guest room. We spend a lot of time making cards and a lot of time outside on our back deck, sometimes deep in conversation, and other times just relaxing. We watch movies and hang out.
All of this is just to say I wanted to create a beautiful card for her birthday and heat embossing wows her every single time. I chose the Simon Says Stamp Rebecca Lace Background Stamp for my card, which is one of my absolute favorites! I stamped the image in my Original MISTI onto a 5 x 7 piece of Fabriano Artistico Extra White Hot Pressed Watercolor Paper. This is a very detailed stamp with fine lines and it can be hard to get a good impression, so I inked it up with Versamark two times before adding Antique Gold Embossing Powder to it. I could see a place in the center of the image where I did not get it inked up well the first time so rather than trying to fix it or cover it after the fact, I decided to just ink it twice to make sure all the areas were covered with Versamark. I inspected it carefully before adding the embossing powder and I got a perfect image. This was somewhat of a surprise since I'm kind of out of practice with heat embossing lately and forgot to use my powder tool first. So I breathed a huge sigh of relief when I got a clean image.
I wanted to use a Wet-on-Wet technique for the background so that my colors would blend and move seamlessly. I chose to use Altenew Re-inkers in Puffy Heart, Coral Berry, and Maple Yellow. After wetting the entire panel of paper, I started adding a diagonal area of Maple Yellow from the upper left to the bottom right as I wanted the other two colors from each side to blend into the yellow. I let that dry a little bit but while the paper was still damp, I added Coral Berry with a good amount of water to the upper right portion of the panel. Next, I added Puffy Heart to the bottom left of the panel and let all of those colors dry a little bit. Once the excess water was evaporated, I went back into each area adding more intense color while the panel was still damp to kind of brighten it up a bit. Once all the excess water was evaporated again, I sprayed it with some Iridescent Gold Shimmer Mist from Tattered Angels which helps the blends be an even smoother transition from color to color. I set it in my window sill to dry well. With the shorter winter days, the sun comes in through the window much earlier and at the time, it was in full force in my window so it didn't take very long to dry.
Once the panel was dry, I lined up my WPLUS9 Stitched Rectangle Die (from the Gift Card Layers set) and die cut it where I wanted. I adhered it to a top folding Card Base made from Stampers Select White Cardstock. I chose the Simon Says Stamp Big Happy a word die and cut it from Gold Foiled Cardstock. Then using a sentiment from the Papertrey Ink Painted Petals Stamp Set (2016 Anniversary Set), I stamped Birthday Wishes onto a strip of black cardstock with Versamark and heat set it with Antique Gold Embossing Powder. I used some pink pearl gems from Hero Arts to embellish the card which finishes off my project. I love how this card came out and I know she will love it also. We aren't celebrating her birthday until next weekend, so I'm saving it to give to her then.
I hope you all enjoyed my project for this class and that you'll give it a try. Wet on Wet backgrounds are among the easiest of watercolor techniques to do and no two cards will ever look the same.