Custom colored flowers can be yours in less than five minutes with three tools that most crafters already have on hand. You’ll find that you’ll never be stuck with odd, useless store bought flower colors again- and your budget will thank you for it! This post recaps the coloring technique I shared a couple of weeks ago, and it describes the card for which the hand-dyed flowers were made.
A quick recap of the life altering technique
OK, maybe not life altering, but it will make life a whole lot easier for you when it comes to matching embellishments to your printed papers. I say embellishments, because this technique isn’t limited to just flowers. You can use it on natural fibers, too, i.e. cotton, linen, rayon, etc. Things like ribbon, baker’s twine, natural fibers with which you want to embellish your cards.
In this case, I wanted to dress my card up with flowers. But none of the flowers I had on hand matched. Believe me when I say I have flowers. I do – hundreds. In dozens of colors. And NONE of them looked quite right. So I colored my own.
What’s that? Get to the point? Oh right – THE TECHNIQUE. OK, I posted about it a couple of weeks ago, and here it is:
But if you don’t want to go over there at the moment, here’s the Cliff Notes version. The whole process takes less than five minutes, a few more if you count the time it takes the flower to dry. That’s the beauty of alcohol – it dries quick as a disappearing M&M chocolate candy in my office.
So if you’re Mr. Cliff Notes, you…
- Saturate the white petals with 95% ethanol rubbing alcohol swished around with alcohol markers (I use Copics) ;
- Tip the damp petal edges with a contrasting color, either from a brush (as shown in the second image) or straight from the marker for a crisper edge (as shown in the third image);
- (Optional, if needed) Brush darker color into the lighter colors with paintbrush dipped in alcohol only if necessary to blend edges a bit. And that’s it!
Pretty, aren’t they? And rather odd colors, yes? But I made them for a specific card, which is the whole point. I never would have found flowers to match the color of this particular printed paper.
You can make your flowers in your own weird color combos too. No need to make them look “natural.” They’re your flowers – make them your way.
And another thing: I never make flowers ahead – I only make them as needed because the process is so quick. Because of this, there’s no need find space to store the flowers. Unless you just want to color for the sake of coloring. Because they ARE fun to color.
Let’s take a look at the card we used these flowers on…
Dripping romance with matching flowers and ribbon
I was prepared to color the seam binding ribbon, but I have a pretty sizeable stash from back when I didn’t know how to color my own, so it wasn’t necessary this time. The stamped bird image was fancy cut with the tail sticking out over the edges of the contrasting ovals and placed so that it didn’t cover up that luscious off-white blowsy rose in the upper left corner.
Now if you spend any time at all on this blog, you’ll soon discover that I don’t “do” white very often. Can’t explain why, I just don’t like it. Not in my house, not in my clothes, and not on my creations. And sure enough, that printed rose bothered me.
So I fixed it.
Hey, at least it’s clear glitter and I left the rose almost kind of white.
The inside is simple with the traditional coordinated layers of cardstock (inked edges on the white) and the image of the bird, sans a bit of his tail. Sorry, bud.
As for the something extra mentioned earlier? Here’s a picture of the flowers again. Can you spot it?
Actually, there are two things. I added a bit of netting under the whole shebang, but I’m talking about that unnaturally-colored cherry blossom. Yep, the glitter on the stamens. Because they looked too plain. I don’t do it with all the cherry blossoms I color, but… they’re very plain stamens. I also glittered them on a project which will be featured in an upcoming post. Cherry blossoms might never be featured with plain stamens again. Hmmm…
Now it's your turn
Have you colored any flowers with alcohol inks yet? If so, will you share them with us? Head on over to the Facebook page and put ’em up there and let us enjoy them! We want to see! And if you have any questions or suggestions for future posts, let us know those as well!