January 4, 2017

Banner or Bunting? Holiday or Birthday?

Yes, the holiday season seems to be in full swing! That means holiday cards along with birthday cards for my fellow pals with December birthdays. As a December baby, I was never the fan of the combined Christmas/Birthday card so I make a point to give both birthday cards and holiday cards to my December friends. Never one for a Hallmark, I like to make holiday cards that are a bit unexpected, this year I thought it would be fun to make banner styled cards that double as decorations. Stay tuned…I did a birthday version, too. I started it all with the Sketched Holiday Stamp Set from Brutus Monroe. You may have seen my post a few weeks past where I used this set for cards and a really festive planner clip. I just love the detail in the artwork and with the Detail Ink in Raven that detail doesn't get lost in the stamping or the watercoloring. This stamp is included in the Sketched Holiday Card Set and it is available individually in the Brutus Monroe store.

I started by stamping the pieces on heavy white coverstock and then watercoloring a bit. I used a set of Recollections Watercolor Crayons from Michael’s. I like these crayons — they leave great color and a real pop of shimmer once they dry. I do like the fine Brutus Monroe Water Brush because I it gives me a bit more control of the color. I find that watercolors can sometimes get away from me with bigger brushes — so control freak that I am, I like the fine tip! When the pieces were dry I added little dots of gold and silver from the Paint Pens. You know me and my dots!

Stamping, coloring and fussy cutting accomplished I moved on to the scallop circles. I cut pairs of 3 inch circles using my vintage but loved Silhouette, one for the front and one for the back. (But then you probably already knew that!) A little note: since my scallops aren’t perfectly proportioned all around if I didn’t mirror the duplicate in each set I would never get them to match up. I used two different patterns taken from my Vintage Floral & More! (ECV-0131) Planner Series that I sell in my Etsy shop. (Ding! Shameless pitch!) I printed the patterns on heavy (110#) coverstock.

After I arranged the stamped pieces, including the sentiments, on the front of the circles, I taped them in place with that tricky but good double-sided tape. I was thinking about using foam tape but nixed the idea because I didn’t like that you could see the tape from the side. This never bothers me on a card; but with this banner design the circles will move gently and you just might be able to see light between the colored piece and the circle. So flat tape it was. Once all the fronts were done I backed each circle with its mirrored partner. Really quite simple.

For the string part of the banner, I used black and white twisted baker’s twine. It worked out perfectly, since the little opening on the tiny clothespins I used is just the right size for the twine to slide through, which means the circles can be adjusted along the string. Works for me! I tied small bows in the ends of the twine and easy-peasy there you go — a card of a different sort. I will accordion fold these and place them in the normal card envelope that I will slip into the same small heavy chipboard mailers that I use to ship my planner stickers. (Ding! See what I did there?)

For the birthday cards, I did the exact same steps that I did with the Christmas banner, switching out patterns from the Peonies, Peonies, Peonies! Planner Sticker Series in my Etsy shop (ECV-0132). (Ding, ding ding!) I used the Angel Wings Stamp Set from Brutus Monroe and watercolored the bird cages. Talk about your detail and in a stamp! Amazing. I did not color the feathers; instead I stamped them in Aubergine and Sage Premium Chalk Inks. And, there you go — birthday cards for fellow Sagittarians that don’t scream Merry Christmas or Happy Chanukah! 

As a side note — if you are not the fan of the fussy cut there are free digi cuts for the Sketched Holiday and Angel Wings Stamp Sets on the Brutus Monroe store. Just be sure to add the free digi cuts when you put the stamp sets in your cart!

So the burning question — banner or bunting? I guess it depends on where you live or where you grew up. In the United States, we call them banners and my friends from England and Ireland call them buntings. So…is it one or the other? I like to think that it’s both because they are just so festive no matter their name!

As you may know, I had the good fortune to be a member of the Brutus Monroe Inspiration Team in 2016. I thought it would be fun to share my posts from that blog with all of you here. Hope you enjoy!

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