Create your own Spring Themed Floral Notecards
Pressing flowers is a very popular pastime for many over the years and many beautiful pieces of artwork were created using the flowers that were carefully prepared and preserved. The practice continues today – growing, gathering, pressing/drying, and then creating magnificent pieces for use in floral arrangements, wreaths, and other pieces of art including notecards.
The technique used here is a spin-off of something that gained lots of popularity with stampers and card makers several years ago. Luckily, you don’t have to wait weeks for the flowers to dry before you can put them to use.
True to life or watercolor floral elements are perfect for this project. And there are so many you can choose from. For this project the following collection found at Creative Fabrica was used:
- Tissue paper, Translucent vellum or copy paper
- Images (Watercolor – Hand Painted Flowers – Leaves, link above)
- Electronic die cutting machine and associated software (eclips2 and eCal3) optional
- Cardstock (AC cardstock and Bazzill textured)
- Embossing machine (Sizzix Big Shot)
- Embossing folder
- Paper trimmer
- Inkjet printer
- Foil Quill (standard tip)
- Heat activated Gold Foil (Glimmer Mist)
- Mod Podge (Matte) or Gel Medium
- Foam brush
Print your image
Select your images and prepare to print. If using an electronic die cutting machine, size and set the png to print2cut in your software. If there are a lot of fine lines in the image, add a blackout shadow layer (contour cut) behind the image, set to white and no outline. If your software allows, set the shadow to print2cut outline. Check preview to make sure your images will print, and the shadow is set to cut.
You can use any editing program if not using an electronic cutting machine, sizing the images as desired and hand cut the images once the print has been made and the ink is thoroughly dry. Images were printed and cut separately for the project you’ll see here, using tissue paper. If desired, layering the cut images also adds some depth and still allows for the translucency of each of the images you’re using.
Printer settings are very important. If your printer has a vellum setting, use that. Some vellums require some extra drying time… so be patient. Place the vellum on the mat and cut using the print2cut directions for your machine. The color on the vellum may be muted and not as bright when printed. If using tissue paper, the tissue paper must be secured to another piece of paper to print. Prints on tissue are more vibrant than the vellum. Copy paper can also be used for your prints. Samples for this project were printed on tissue paper
Tissue paper is a little fussy to cut since it’s fragile. A small pair of scissors was used for the sample. Edges were cleaned up a bit more before applying to the cardstock permanently.
The image printed on Vellum cut easily with the machine.
Use digital designs instead of drying real flowers
Drying flowers from the garden can take several weeks – however, using digital images is a perfect way to get the look without having to wait for your pressed flowers to dry before you can arrange them. Another upside of using digital images is that you can find images for nearly every flower and create a beautiful arrangement anytime and for any occasion. And the only space these beauties use is a little space on your computer drive or in the cloud!
Apply design onto background piece
Once your images are cut, and you’ve decided on how you want to place them, turn the cut images over – the printed side should be facing down. Place a light coat of Mod Podge or Gel Medium on the back of the piece. Carefully lift and place the image on the background piece. The cardstock or watercolor paper should be able to absorb the moisture from the Mod Podge or Gel medium without buckling. If desired a very light coat of Mod Podge or Gel Medium on the background piece will keep the buckling to a minimum. A single image is used in this sampling of cards. You can layer multiple images as well for a different look.
Carefully, smooth the images to remove any bubbles or wrinkles and if necessary, using the liner brush dipped in the “glue”, secure any loose edges. You do not need to apply a coat to the top of the image if using vellum or copy paper.
Since the tissue is fragile after being cut, this sample does have a coat of Mod Podge sealing it to the paper background.
Let this dry. Check again for any loose edges. Secure if needed or let just a little bit be free.
Time to emboss
Now you can place the piece with your images in an embossing folder and run through your embossing machine using the manufacturer’s directions for using an embossing folder.
TIP: If you don’t have a machine, you can use a rolling pin. Place the image in the folder, place on a hard surface. Applying some pressure, roll the pin across the folder several times until you have the desired imprint from the folder.
The imprint from the folder used in this project leaves a light impression – just enough to press the flowers slightly into the cardstock backing.
For a slightly different look, you can use two embossing folders for an even deeper impression. This piece used a folder with a brocade design and the wood texture design.
Final touches: inked edges and sentiment
You can ink the edges of the cardstock if you want a little more antiqued look. In your cutting machine’s software, create a sentiment. The font used in this sample is Signaday from Creative Fabrica. The lettering was set to draw. The foil quill was used to draw the sentiment and the circle outline. A shadow layer was added and cut. Set the sentiment tags aside for a little bit.
TIP: Don’t unload the mat from the machine between steps.
Mat your card as desired and secure to a card base. Add the sentiment to the card. Several cards make a nice gift. Box for a nice presentation. The presentation box used here will hold 5 cards and envelopes without crushing the sentiment tags that have been added using pop up dots.