The first in my new series ’12 Weekends of Christmas’ with Neat & Tangled

Hello, hello!

Today I’m unveiling a new series that I’m calling ’12 Weekends of Christmas’. The idea behind this series is to help me get ahead of Christmas crafting, and do a little bit each month rather than stress like a lunatic for a couple of months to get everything ready. If all goes to plan, I will have a new blog post in this series, the first weekend of the month for the rest of the year. We will have to wait and see how it all pans out but here we go!

Ideally this first post would have been about some cards that are easily mass-produced but are still lovingly handmade. If you don’t mind making the same design over and over, decide on one early and then make the bits for them when you have time. Then you can easily put the cards together step by step at a later date.

For today I have made three cards using some Neat & Tangled goodies. The main stamp set I have used is Beary Merry, along with its coordinating diecut. All three cards feature the bear, which I have coloured with Copics. One is with Warm Gray, one with Cool Gray and one with Neutral Gray. To give them all some personality their scarves are all done in different colours and different ways. I do love the stripy blue one the most, but then I’m obsessed with blues of all shades.

It’s nice to see the difference in the appearance of the colours next to each other like this, on the same image. To me, it’s a lot clearer that there are differences when you look at them like this, rather than on the colour chart. It might have something to do with the fact it’s on an image, rather than little boxes?

The first card I put together was this one. I knew I had to possess that Fa La La cover plate as soon as I saw it. My love affair with cover plates from Neat & Tangled is going nowhere fast and I don’t think it will ever fade to be honest. I’m also totally ok with that, lol!

As I had given the bear a teal/turquoise scarf I thought I’d use some nice metallic, textured card stock in a mint green colour for the Fa La La background. I have a metal shim pad from Lawn Fawn I use in my BigShot to get a good cut but if you don’t have one, you can simply add a sheet of paper between the plates to add more pressure and run in through your machine twice.

For this first card I also coloured in a penguin, a snowman and the cup from the Beary Merry stamp set and cut these out with the coordinating diecuts too. The bear also got a foam sheet layer cut out, to raise him up and add dimension to the card. On the bear itself I have doodled with a Colourless Blender marker to create a fur-like texture.

I have used one of the sentiments from the Beary Merry stamp set ‘Wishing you Holiday Happiness’ here and it’s heat embossed in Platinum embossing powder from Altenew. The speech bubble is also from Altenew, it’s from a diecut set called ‘Speech Bubbles’ and it has a fun coordinating stamp set too (which I don’t have).

When it came time to put the card together, the Fa La La background piece was first of all adhered to a white card base. I used my Nuvo glue pen for this to get glue in all the small spaces. When that was done, I placed the snowman and the penguin so that they would peek out from behind the bear and then glued them down using the same Nuvo glue pen. The cup was adhered in the same way, in the bear’s paws. As the foam sheet I use is double-sided it was a quick job of peeling that off the back of the bear and adhering him to the card.

The speech bubble was also adhered with foam, squares from Stix2 Anything and the final flourish for this card was a good sprinkling of Crystal Clear Sequins, from Studio Katia, in various sizes. I always use Glossy Accents when adhering sequins, for me that works best.

Card no2 is done the opposite way and is so CAS/Clean And Simple I nearly threw myself a parade! CAS is NOT my forte, no ma’am! I love the look but oh my goodness, when I attempt it myself I take the highway express right into Overthinking-ville.

This one was no exception. The only thing I knew for sure I wanted to do was do a negative diecutting thing where the surrounding area of the card is raised up and the Beary Merry bear is lower. I cant’ remember what this technique is called but do you get my drift? Well, so far so good. And then it all came to a screeching halt.

I toyed with the idea of doing some ink blending on the background but seriously had such a hard time to decide on what to do and not to do, I set it aside and coloured another bear instead.

Which lead me to card no3. I had only planned on two to begin with but things don’t always (read: ‘hardly ever’) go to plan in my craft room. I’m a very…. what’s the word I’m looking for here? Messy? Impulsive? Somewhat impatient? It’s a good trail mix of all three actually.

My third bear got more texture thanks to lots of dotting with a Colourless Blender marker, all three are finished off in different ways to make them a bit more individual. His scarf is also the only one that’s done with stamps (the snowflake from Snow Fun , another Neat & Tangled stamp set) and the colours I have used are the same ones I ended up using for the background. They are both Distress Oxide inks and the colours are Faded Jeans and Tumbled Glass. I do love my blues!

For the background I blended the aforementioned colours using my Picket Fence Studios Life Changing Blender Brushes and the Landscape Duo Stencil stencil from Neat & Tangled. The ink blending is done directly onto a white card base and I’ve overlapped the colours a little to create a fun pattern.

In the top left corner I stamped ‘Have a very Merry Christmas‘ in black ink. In hindsight, I should have heat embossed clear embossing powder on top of this to make it pop a bit more. I did add some Glossy Accents to his eyes and nose though.

This bear also got a blue present to hold on to and with a final splattering of clear sequins from Pretty Pink Posh, the card was done.

That leaves us with the CAS card… I decided to stop over-thinking it and quickly cut out a banner (from Lawn Fawn, the stamp and diecut set is Home Sweet Home) and stamped ‘Merry Christmas’ in black in on it. This from MFT Stamps and the stamp set is called Greetings Galore, it’s a really versatile one with lots of great sentiments for all sorts of occasions.

Years ago, when I was on the Studio Katia Design Team, I got a bag of these snowflake embellishments and I have been hoarding them as they are no longer available. But I pulled my big girl panties up, took a deep breath and dove into the bag. I added quite a few but I still think it looks quite CAS.

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With that I’m all done for this time, however I need to mention that I have used compensated affiliate links in this post. What that means is I get a small commission from the company directly, at no extra cost to you whatsoever, if you click on one of these and end up buying a little something-something. Using affiliate links is a great way to support your favourite crafters while shopping, without it costing you a single thing. How is that for a win-win situation? I’d also like to say a big thank you in advance if you choose to use mine when you shop, I really do appreciate it so much and it always gives me a huge thrill to see that someone loved my project enough to buy the products I used for it.

Thank you so much for stopping by today and I hope you enjoyed these cards as much as I enjoyed making them. Yes, even that CAS one in the end, lol!

Happy crafting and lots of love from Erica

2 thoughts on “The first in my new series ’12 Weekends of Christmas’ with Neat & Tangled

  1. Nancy Salkeld says:

    Erica, these are are beautiful! No, your’e not crazy! I think your idea of first weekend of each month as Christmas cards is wonderful idea! I’m on the CAS Christmas DT and so we make just Christmas cards every month. So does Keeping Christmas on the 25th of each month (except Dec). I sent out more cards this year than I have in past years and sold a lot too. It’s also a nice change during other seasons to break out the Xmas stamps. And I agree if you do up same pieces at once, it’s easier (if you remember when you put them……nah I don’t do that.) Happy New Year! xx

    Liked by 1 person

    • erica1ab says:

      Thank you, Nancy! I really hope this will help me get ahead of the game and be ready for next Christmas. It’s very encouraging to hear you sent out more than ever last year, which is indicating a decent sized stash from the crafting during the year.
      Happy New Year to you and yours as well!

      Like

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