An Expensive Habit

Ugh, graduate school stinks this weekend. More precisely, grading freshman writing STINKS this weekend. Seriously, there are only so many comma splices and disorganized messes a gal like me can HANDLE, you see. So I’ve procrastinated every way I can think of . . . taking my cat to the vet, painting a room, planting herbs in pots, ANYTHING but grading. Why not procrastinate on crafting too? Or at least blogging about being crafty?

I’m fortunate to be the daughter of a very crafty lady. If you go to my momma’s house, you will find evidence of 1,001 hobbies—one of which is rubber stamping. It’s easy to justify a rubber-stamping hobby to oneself: “Gee, I will buy this stamp set, and I’ll make SO MANY thank-you notes and sympathy cards that I will certainly make my money back on the supplies.”

WARNING: THIS IS LIKELY NOT THE CASE, FRIENDS.

Mom and I have spent so much money on stamps, ink pads, embossing powder and guns, ribbons, glue, paper products, hole punchers, stickers, brads, glitter, YOU NAME IT, that there is no way in heaven (or hell) that we will ever “make our money back.” That is why, loyal (and few) readers, that I suggest you approach this hobby with monetary caution.

But if you’re looking for a hobby to sink a ship into, rubber-stamping might be for you!

To make the project I’m describing here, you will need:

  • several sheets of white cardstock or thick paper
  • a set of two-step stamps (the one I’m using is called “Roses in Winter” by Stampin’ Up, and sometimes it’s for sale on Ebay)
  • a stamp with a greeting (“Thank you!” or “Best Wishes” or whatevs)
  • some green vellum
  • ink pads in complementary shades of one color (I’m using pinks and red here), plus a green
  • adhesive of some sort (I’m using the roll-y kind)
  • something to cut with (scissors, are okay, but a paper cutter is better)

First, cut your 8 1/2 X 11 piece of cardstock into 8 1/2 X 5 1/2 pieces (basically, cut the paper in half). Then, fold that piece in half (into greeting card shape), like so: 

Now, the beautiful part about two-step stamping is that it’s really hard to mess up. Being imprecise can result in loveliness. So on the front of your card, stamp the base stamp (in this case, the largest rose) around the edges. Use your lightest shade of color for this.

Next, take the second-layer stamp and layer it on top of the light imprints you’ve made. Use a darker shade to create the effect you want.

Some of you perfectionists might be bothered that these roses look messy, and that the second layer of ink is not perfectly stamped on top of the other. But ya’ll can go read Martha Stewart’s blog now, and I won’t miss you.

Finally, stamp your darkest shade of color on top of the others. I suppose that by now, this is really three-step stamping. (oops)

It’s starting to look like something by now, which is nice. Next, stamp your green leaves around the edges and cut a piece of green vellum to fit like so:

Cut a piece of white cardstock that is slightly smaller than the vellum. You want the vellum to be like a frame to it:

Take that tinier piece of cardstock, and “stamp it up” just like you did on the card itself.

Try to pick an appropriate sentiment for the greeting you stamp in the center:

However, I do think a lovely rose-themed greeting card would be particularly ironic with a phrase like “Bite Me” in the center. It’s up to you.

Adhere this piece of cardstock to the vellum, and then glue that layer to the card itself.

VOILA! You have made a nice card to send to somebody. In my case, I made three using the same technique.

The fun thing about this hobby is that you can experiment with what you have. Change up the colors, change up the shapes, whatever. Stamping is like art for people (get it: me) who can’t make art without lots and lots of help. You’ll figure out pretty quickly who appreciates your handmade lovelies and who doesn’t; and of course those jerks who never mention what you’ve sent them will never ever get another one.

Repeat: craft with MONETARY CAUTION. You have been warned. I guesstimate that this craft cost approximately $47.83 per crafted card.

Cheers!

Joce

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6 responses to “An Expensive Habit

  1. You are going to have to stop being so disgustingly brilliant and creative or no one else is ever going to blog on this thing :). xo

  2. Ooooh. They’re beautiful. I have a bad habit of picking expensive hobbies, too.

  3. Oh, gimme a break, genius Jen. Just COOK something! You’re an artiste in the kitch every single night. Speaking of which, come over and cook me some dinner.

  4. Is that my stamp set you have run away with?
    Love you–

  5. You should give the “bite me” cards to your cheating freshmen.

  6. I’ve been thinking for a while now that you’re the best card maker I know. This confirms it. Go into business, girl!

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