Do you ever find yourself needing to thank someone with more than just a quick text or email? But you don’t want to buy a whole box of “same same” cards, because that would be bo-ring, and you’re an individualist.
No, you want a simple, elegant thank you card to reflect your feelings towards the person who gave you a terrific gift, or who did you a huge favor. You want your card to be SPECIAL, but you’re short on time.
Before you throw in the towel and head to the dollar store for a cheap-o card, I’d like to show you a thank you card so quick and easy, yet so subtly elegant, you’ll want to make a whole batch of them to have on hand! And the best part is you probably already have the tools to do it!
A beautiful card can be Clean and Simple (CAS), but it doesn't have to be boring
Cutting the layers for this card is a simple, straightforward task.
- Cut the base layer: 4 1/4 x 5 1/2 inches
- Cut two layers of contrasting cardstock: 4 1/8 x 5 3/8 – these are the mats for the inner and outer panels. Let’s call them Layers #2.
- Cut two layers of cardstock in the lightest color for the top (inside and out): 4 x 5 1/4 inches. This is where the “action” happens. These are Layers #3.
And you’re done with cutting cardstock. That was quick! Not to mention you’ve only used two, maybe three pieces of cardstock, depending on if you use two colors or three for the card. (This card uses three: dark brown, kraft and off white.)
This is the time to ink any edges if you choose to do so.
We’re at the point where you might be thinking you should start attaching all the layers together right now, but DON’T. You’re going to do all the decorating before you put the papers together. Because, if you’re anything like me, you’ve jumped the gun before and then discovered you needed to do things to the backs of the layers before adhering them to the base. This is usually (but not always) fixable, but why create more work than you have to? You’re in a hurry, remember?
Now for the quick, yet slightly magical part.
- First, “pounce” the top layer so that static cling will be reduced. Pounce is a fine powder contained within a small bag and struck against the cardstock to deliver a thin layer of the powder. This will prevent static cling from attracting unwanted granules of decorative powders onto the CS.
- Find your prettiest pattern or flourish stamp. Mine’s an old, discontinued stamp from Stampin’ Up. It doesn’t matter the design. It could even be a large background stamp.
- Stamp the design all over the top layer using Versamark ink. You’ll need a good light source – stamping on light papers can be challenging as the ink is nearly invisible. Try to not overlap the image. (A background stamp can make the process even quicker with just one stamping.)
- Choose your color of Perfect Pearls, and gently stroke it on the entire layer, going over the stamped image. The design will appear, almost as if by magic!
- Let the image dry for a few minutes, then with a clean brush dust off the excess Perfect Pearls between the stamped areas. Perfect Pearls is so fine that there shouldn’t be enough left over to put back in the jar. I just swish my dry brush over the card front while holding it over the waste basket.
- Continue making the card.
A few more steps and you're done
The top layer is not quite finished. Now you’re going to heat emboss the edges of that layer in a complementary color. I went with the monochromatic look, so I used copper embossing powder.
Note: do NOT emboss the edges before stamping – the stamp won’t reach to the edge and will leave a small gap.
Now that you have a beautiful top layer, let’s make the label.
Stamp the thank you greeting onto cardstock that matches the top layer. Then run that stamped piece through your die cutting machine to create the label (mine’s a Big Shot). I used one of the three tag dies in Spellbinder’s Shapeabilities Ribbon Tag Trio 2. I’ve had this set for years and never used it, but after this card I’ll be using it a lot!
Then thread one 2-inch piece of ribbon through each slot. Attach one end of each ribbon piece to the back side of the label. Set aside.
Time to put it all together
- Adhere the top layer (#3) to the mat layer (#2). Do the same with the layers inside the card. Also, you can attach the inside layers to the base layer.
- If you like, stamp a small additional sentiment inside the card. I tend to stamp on the lower left corner which leaves more room for a handwritten message.
- Write your message. Why now? Writing a message inside a finished card is often frustrating, especially if the card has heavy embellishments. It’s always easier to complete the inside before completing the outside.
Now it’s time to finish the top.
Place the ribbon-enhanced label in your location of choice, wrapping the ends around Layer #2. 1/3 up from the bottom balances the card nicely, but you can put it in the middle if you prefer. Or at the top.
Then attach that layer to the base layer.
For added interest, use dimensionals to attach the label to the card. That will give it a nice, 3-D appearance.
The final touch? A couple of small pearls adhered to either side of the greeting.
The secret to customized embellishments
So what do you do if you don’t have pearls in your color of choice? Color your own! Copics will color pearls and rhinestones very nicely. Never worry again about not having the right color embellishments. You’ll save money, too, by not having to buy every single color in your stash.
Now it’s your turn. Create your own elegant card using this technique. It is suitable for many occasions when you want something quick and easy, yet beautiful too. It’s simple but still satisfies the need for bling.
Then come back and share your card with us. We’d love to see your ideas.