Do you ever wish you could take your die-cuts and make them a little more three dimensional? It's Jenny here, and in today's Stylish Cardmaking Techniques feature, I'm going show you a technique that is surprisingly easy but has stunning results.
My card projects today feature the Just Leaves Die Set, and I'll show you how I took a simple, flat, white die-cut, and I turned it into three dimensional leafy branches. I die cut out all of the Just Leaves dies from 80lb white cardstock. Focusing on the largest branch, I grabbed a handful of Artists Alcohol Markers and scribbled color onto the die-cut here and there, moving from light to dark, and then coloring all over with the lightest color to blend the colors.
I flipped over the die-cut, and then completely covered the back with the lightest or mid color too. You'll see the ink has bled to the back and we're going to help it blend more, add that mottled or dappled look, and make sure that all of the white underside has gone. I used Sunshine Valley, Water Garden, and Tropical Garden Artists Markers for both of my cards today.
To add a three dimensional structure, simply use the fine tip of your tweezers, or a sharp needle, and draw a line up the center of each leaf. You can also add veins up each side, too, if you choose. Then bend at the ‘score' lines on the leaves you've just made, forwards and backwards (pinching with your finger or folding around your tweezer tip) until you get the look you want.
For my first card, I used autumnal oranges and greens, but you can see on my second card, I went a little more fun, using pinks and purples. In both cases, I started on the front of the die-cut, went from light to dark, scribbling on color where I wanted, and then flipped it over and covered over the entire back piece in the lightest or mid tone. When folded, you can also add a little ink blending on the edges for more dimension. I used Espresso Crisp Dye Ink on both leaves just in a few places. The ink also accentuated the newly drawn veins.
Before setting my leaves to one side, I added a few splatters. On the orangey leaves, I added Antique Gold Metallic Ink Spray, and on the pink, I added Soft Lilac Metallic Ink Spray.
The leaves are simple to adhere to a card panel, just needing a little thin foam tape behind a few leaves. On my first card, I created a messy nest of Antique Gold Metallic Thread before adhering it onto the card panel. The card panel on both cards is created with white card, die cut with one of the Mix and Match Frames dies, and mounted onto a white notecard with foam tape.
Doesn't the addition of the veins and the folding really help create that three dimensional look? And this isn't fancy coloring; I literally just scribbled onto the cardstock and let the alcohol marker ink do its thing.
I finished the first card with a simple sentiment and layered with vellum and mirror gold cardstock and a few Satin White Sequins. For my second, I stamped a sentiment in Obsidian Pigment Ink directly onto the card panel under the set of three leaves. This sentiment is from the Hello and Hugs Stamp Set.
I added more Soft Lilac Metallic Shimmer Spray to the card panel and a few Satin White Sequins to finish the second card. Both cards I kept clean and simple, but you could layer up additional elements behind or around the leaves, add florals or gather the leaves together in a bouquet – there are lots of possibilities.
This three dimensional technique also works with other sorts of die-cuts – I've done it with florals and with a succulent, and they all look so much more ‘real'. Give it a try – you can check out the step by step video tutorial here and on the Altenew YouTube Channel.