July 4, 2020


Since it's the Fourth of July, I wanted to share a card with you that has a background that really reminds me of fireworks -- somewhat -- as well as the hot temps we are experiencing.

A card such as this one is so incredibly easy to create. You could do multiples of it with ease, just a little mess, time and patience.. 

The problem -- or great part?? -- of doing this type of background is that you will never get two to look alike. There is just no way to tweak it to get a similar  -- or different -- look. You will simply be surprised at the outcome each and every time. I love the whimsy of this technique.

To create this type of background, I usually start with a quarter sheet (4 1/4" x 5 1/2") of Whisper White cardstock. You will be trimming it down to a size that works for your card design.

Choose two, or at most, three, colors to create the background. When choosing your colors, be sure they are colors that play well together, such as two shades of a primary color: red, yellow, blue. Since these are primary colors, they will always work well together because every other color stems from these three colors. If you introduce a secondary color, such as green (blue plus yellow, two primary colors, when combined, make green), you run the risk of your background becoming muddy. Unless that is your intention, be careful.

For my card, I incorporated shades of yellow and red. I used the Clear Block E, which measures 3 7/16" x 4 7/16". to create my background. There are many ways of achieving this effect, but this is how I did it for my card. Doing it this way gives incredibly vivid eye-catching backgrounds. 

I actually stamped on the clean block on about half of the block with an ink pad. You can keep "stamping" with the ink until you get the coverage you like. Leaving a little blank space sometimes works to give uninked white in the background, which is the look I like. Notice the upper right corner of the card. With the ink so saturated, however, this can be difficult to do. 

Use the other ink pad to do the remaining half of the block. 

Since I was using two primary colors, where they overlapped, it formed orange, which was perfect.

Once the block is covered with ink, lay it on scratch paper, and lightly spritz the inked block with water from a mister bottle. Don't get it TOO wet. That makes quite a mess to clean up and also causes the excess moisture to seep under the block. 

After creating numerous bubbles on the block with the spritzed water, flip it over quickly and stamp it as centered as possible on your waiting piece of Whisper White cardstock. I let it sit a few beats, then lift it STRAIGHT UP off the paper. 

At this point, you can either let it dry naturally, which takes some time, or hit it with the Heat Tool, on both the front and back to minimize the warping of the paper as much as possible.

The floral image I stamped onto my background is from the Ornate Style set on page 67 in the Annual Catalog. Being such a large stamp, I often have trouble getting a good stamped image, especially in the center portions. To alleviate this situation, I suggest you use a stamp positioning tool such as the Stamparatus on page 164 of the Annual Catalog. Using this type of tool gives you the chance to restamp the image if the first try isn't quite the way you'd like it to be. 

To put together the rest of the card is very simple, merely the act of putting together as many layers of coordinating cardstock to act as mats as you like. 

One thing to keep in mind when putting your card together is that the top piece, no matter how careful you are, will probably be a bit warped. So be extra vigilant when adding your adhesive, bringing it right to the edges so it lies flat against the first mat piece.

This is such a fun and easy technique to achieve really wow effects. Something like fireworks! Give it a try. There is no way to mess it up.

I hope you have a happy and safe Fourth of July!



  1. That is so pretty! I have never tried this technique. Pinned.

    1. Thanks! Oh, please do try it! You will love it -- such a great easy way to create a stunning backdrop.

  2. I can see why this paper reminds you of the 4th of July!

    Thanks for sharing with Creative Compulsions!