Don’t you love learning a new crafting technique? It just opens up so many possibilities! I recently got my first embossing/die cutting machine, and I have been having a lot of fun playing around with it. I picked up a few fall themed embossing folders and got to crafting some DIY greeting cards for the upcoming season.
Embossing folders are fun on their own, but I love watercolors so I wanted to see how the two could play together. It turns out they play very well together. 🙂
I put together some slightly autumnal DIY greeting cards that use this fun technique and I wanted to share them with you all today. I have never been a huge fan of the traditional reds, oranges, and browns that are associated with fall. So my color palette went more blush, burgundy, chartreuse, navy, and copper. Of course, feel free to use whatever colors you like.
Supplies needed to make your own watercolor DIY greeting cards:
- Watercolor Paper.
- Spectrum Aqua Watercolor Markers.
- Ultra Fine Mist Spray Bottle.
- Embossing Folders (I used the Wood Grain Background design).
- Embossing Machine.
- Paper Trimmer.
- Colored Cardstock.
- A2 Envelopes.
- Permanent Double Sided Tape Roller.
- Pop Up Adhesive Foam Dots.
- Minc Foil Applicator.
- Minc Reactive Foil.
- My Printable Heart Tags (Download HERE).
Next, take your watercolor marker and carefully rub the marker over the raised side of the embossing folder. You want to avoid getting ink into the depressed parts of the design as much as possible, so just kind of swipe the marker over the top of the embossing folder. You can use just one color over the entire surface or mix several colors together. I found that I tended to like the way light colors looked better, but try whatever colors you like.
When you have the embossing folder pretty well covered with ink, take your mister and spritz a bit of water onto the embossing folder. Making sure the ink is wet will help to give you a smoother color with less splotchiness. Experiment a bit until you find a technique you like.
Next, place your piece of watercolor paper into the embossing folder with the rougher side of the paper facing the inked side of the embossing folder.
Put the embossing folder onto the necessary plates (follow the instructions of your embossing machine), and roll it through! Finally, open up your folder to reveal the finished design. Ta-Da!
If there is still a bit of ink left on your embossing folder, spritz it with a bit of water and run it through the machine again with a new piece of paper. This will produce a very light print, but I really like the effect.
Step Two – Foil Greeting. Now that we have our embossed pieces all ready to go, it’s time to add a little text element to the front of the DIY greetings cards. You can use whatever sentiment you like, but I chose the phrases “thankful for you” and “hey there.” I decided to add some foil to give a nice shiny contrast to the watercolor effect. To get the foiled effect, you need a few extra supplies, but it is a lot of fun. If you don’t want to use foiled, colored cardstock is a great option too.
To foil the heart-shaped greetings, start by printing out the designs on white cardstock with a laser printer (the foil will only bind to toner, so it must be printed with a laser printer or copied on a copier; an inkjet printer won’t work).
Cut pieces of foil in the colors you want and place them over the printed parts of the design color side up. Place the cardstock and foil into the Minc folder and run it through the machine on the level 3 heat setting. (If you don’t have a Minc, a laminator should also work.) Finally, after the folder has gone through the machine, peel up the foil and reveal your awesome design. Use scissors to cut around your foil hearts.
Start by making your base cards. Cut your 8.5 x 11 cardstock into two 8.5 x 5.5 halves, then fold those in half to form your 5.5 x 4.25 cards (A2). I used a navy blue and burgundy colored cardstock for the base of my cards.
Next, use your tape runner to adhere the embossed design to the front of the card, and then use pop-up adhesive foam dots to place the foiled heart where you like on the front of the card. This will give the card some extra dimension.
And that’s it. You could add some extra decoration to your envelopes (maybe some foil tape!) or leave them plain.
For more DIY greeting card inspiration, check out these pretty dry embossed cards embossing tutorial.
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Alexis Middleton is a lifelong crafter/DIYer and blogger at Persia Lou. She started crafting at a young age. As a girl, she spent summers with her grandmother crocheting baby doll afghans, making coasters out of plastic canvas and yarn, and canning apricot jam. Today, Alexis spends a lot of time dreaming up and working on projects for her family’s home. She loves mixing traditional crafting techniques with a more modern aesthetic.