October 15, 2019


A trick lots of Stampin' Up! demonstrators have that they like to teach to others is to create something of a watercolor palette right in their ink pad. The way they do this is to, while the ink pad is closed, squeeze on the container with both hands. This transfers a puddle of ink to the inside of the ink pad lid. 

When I have fretted that my hands are not strong enough to accomplish this, it was suggested to set the closed ink pad onto a surface and press down on the top with my elbow. Nope. This doesn't work for me either. So, if I don't have a strong person around to do this ink transfer for me, I am stuck. 

Let me back up a bit. The reason for doing this trick is so that you can come in with an Aqua Painter, Blender Pen or paintbrush and pick up ink to use in faux watercoloring. A really cool trick -- if you can do it!

In the past, I've already simply picked up ink directly from the ink pad. But I don't think that method is all that healthy for the pad itself. 

The other day I wanted to do the Faux Watercolor Technique, but with no strong person in sight, and not wanting to take the ink from the pad, I came up with another solution. It's probably been discovered by others way before me, but no one had ever suggested this method to me. So, I'm claiming it as my own personal discovery.

If you have weak hands -- or elbows?? -- here's how to transfer ink for faux watercolor: Take a clear block and bring the ink pad directly to the block and put a dab of ink onto the block surface. In this card, I used three different color inks, so I used three separate blocks to create my color palette. 

I must note that, even days later, when I wanted to use this ink -- and it had obviously dried onto the blocks -- I simply went into the dried ink with my Aqua Painter and went to work. In fact, these blocks have been sitting there all dried up for awhile now, but I know that just a bit of water will reconstitute them for use once again.

Now that we have that all cleared up, let's go back to the card in this post. 

To do my Faux Watercolor, I started with a piece of Whisper White cardstock that measures 2 1/2" x 5". After rubbing it well with my trusty Embossing Buddy, I stamped the gorgeous leaves from the Colorful Seasons set (page 56) several times in all different positions -- think: falling leaves -- in VersaMark ink. At my Heat Station, I sifted white embossing powder over all the stamped leaves, then used the Heat Tool to emboss the leaves.

By embossing the leaves rather than just stamping them, the raised embossing gives a little "wall" which contains the liquid ink better and easier.

To color this card, I added Mango Melody, Pumpkin Pie and Merry Merlot inks to each of three clear blocks. I then proceeded to simply dip an Aqua Painter into the ink on the block and transfer it to the embossed leaves. It looks more watercolor-like if you try to keep some areas light, some darker. You get my meaning.

Of course, after you finish each color, it is important to wipe the Aqua Painter clean on a paper towel before moving onto the next color Unless, of course, you want a combination look, which would also be lovely. Just keep in mind that, if you combine the colors, each individual color on the blocks will eventually become somewhat contaminated and will lose its true color. 

Since I embossed the leaves, I thought it would be only fitting if my sentiment was embossed also. But, I don't have Merry Merlot ink that would take embossing! 

I have another trick for you. You can make any color of ink to use with embossing. The way to do this is to first ink your stamp with VersaMark, then ink right over that with the color you want your sentiment to be. Simple as that.

So, for this card, I inked up "Thinking of You" first in VersaMark ink, then right on top of that, I again inked it up, but this time with Merry Merlot ink. Then stamp onto your cardstock as usual.

In the following photo, I attempted to showcase the sheen of the white embossing. 
But, as usual, I was unsuccessful.

This is a nice flat card, perfect for mailing. The only bit of dimension is in the sentiment, which is popped up with Stampin' Dimensionals. Not enough to warrant extra postage.

There now. Maybe I taught you two new tricks today?

And I have an announcement to make that I am very excited about. I wrote a guest post on another blog, Katherine's Corner. It's the post about the Painted Harvest Thank You card I created specifically for Katherine's blog. Give it a click and let me -- and Katherine! -- know what you think!



  1. It's a beautiful card!Thank you for being my guest today. xo

    1. Thank you, Katherine! Thanks also for allowing me to be your guest today!

  2. I love the colors that you chose for this card! Thanks so much for sharing your talent with us at the Creative Muster. Looking forward to seeing what you'll be sharing next week. Pinning!

    1. Thank you so much, Robin! Thanks also for letting me play along with you each week!

  3. What a simple idea to use the block instead! You made a stunningly beautiful card with the technique too. Pinned.

    1. Thanks a bunch! I picked up those three blocks today again with the dried on ink, and thought about making another card with it. I just hate to wash the ink down the sink. I'll save it a few more weeks.

  4. It's beautiful!

  5. Replies
    1. Thank you so much! I am so glad that you like it.

  6. What a beautiful card. I love the colors!

  7. Absolutely beautiful!

  8. This card is soooo pretty! Thanks for linking up to Creative Compulsions!

  9. This project is so cute. I love the colors, the design, everything about it.

  10. I do love those colors, thank you for sharing at The Really Crafty Link Party. Pinned!

  11. Wow, really lovely and such an interesting technique! Great to meet you on craft schooling sunday, hope to see you again soon!

  12. A great tip Linda and a simply beautiful card.
    Thank you for sharing at Create, Bake, Grow & Gather this week.

  13. What a beautiful card, Linda! I love the effect you have achieved with the leaf stamps. Thank you so much for sharing with the Hearth and Soul Link Party.