Monday, August 5, 2013

Card Swaps...what got me here!

I have been an active card swapper for years.  My family got me into this rubber stamping hobby and my online friends have helped keep me involved.  I've been a group moderator and/or member of one Yahoo rubber stamp group or another since 1997.  I enjoy card swaps because they give me a reason to play with my stamps even when no one in my family is having a birthday or other special occasion.  It's nice to get back an assortment of cards from other stampers, too!  Back when I was a brand new stamper, it's how I learned some of the techniques.

Western Swap Card
I happen to be hostessing this particular swap for the Yahoo Midwest Stampers group.  The theme is Western and I chose this gruff looking cowboy.  I stamped him on white card stock using Memento Tuxedo Black ink and colored him with Sharpie markers, then fussy cut him out.
I chose several different western elements for the background scene. The road and sky were colored with Faber Castell Gelatos.  After coloring, I took the paint brush that came in the set and wet them just enough to spread the color without watering them down too much.
When the Gelatos were dry I used Sharpies and Bic Mark-Its to color the rest of the scenery.
I found some great blue jean material trim on a recent trip to JoAnn Fabrics.  What a great 3D element to go with a cowboy!  I attached the trim to black card stock using Helmar Craft Glue.  I cut the trim even with the edge of the card stock and used a toothpick to place a thin line of USArt Quest PPA along the edge to keep them from fraying.  I chose the PPA over the Craft Glue because it dries matte and flexible and virtually disappears on this fabric.
The original color I had chosen for the cowboy's jeans was a washed out denim but with the addition of the trim I had to darken them up to pull the element into the card.  With the darker jeans I also had to darken his shoes.  Then I put some double sided tape on the back of a silver sheet of paper and punched out a star for his vest.
I attached double-sided foam tape to the cowboy so he would stand out from the background.
I didn't have enough star shaped buttons for all six cards so I cut the back off of these brads and attached them to the trim using Helmar Gemstone Glue.  I like these brads because they are dimensional but still flat enough that the card can be mailed without adding additional postage.  Even though I love the look of cards that have large embellishments or thick paper flowers, it just isn't practical for a card swap.  These are cards that other people may be mailing out.  I like to keep my swap cards to the 1-stamp rule.
Here is the finished card.  Inside is a paper liner and the stamp, "It's your birthday...saddle up and party 'til the cows come home!"

Stamps used on this card are:
Cowboy - Biblical Impressions
Western Roadway - Third Coast Rubber Stamps
Cactus - Beeswax
Skull - Viva Las Vegastamps
Horse Silhouette - unknown
Buzzards - Stampscapes
Saying - DRS Designs

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