Wednesday 14 April 2021

Stretching your supplies - ink blending and Spring Blooms

Hello! Thank you for joining me for my first blog as T4TD’s Blog Ambassador! 

I’m actually pretty new to cardmaking, so if you’re like me and haven’t built up a huge stash of crafty goodies yet, you’ll want to make sure you’re getting the most from your supplies. So today, I’m going to share with you how I used ink blending and my Spring Blooms dies to make five different cards.

TIP - if you’re stuck for inspiration, grab a pencil and some paper and start sketching! I find that once I’ve scribbled down an idea or two, more just keep coming, and it really helps me make the most of my supplies.

I started by making my backgrounds. I knew from my sketches that I wanted two A2 sized cards, and three slimline, so I cut some panels down to the right size, grabbed my blender brushes and some distress oxide inks (which blend beautifully) and got to work!

Ink Blending Tips

  •           Certain cardstock is smoother and produces a better blend. I use Neenah Classic Crest, Solar White in 80lb or 110lb or you could try T4TD’s super smooth card 
  •           There are lots of tools available for ink blending, but I find blender brushes produce a more seamless blend. They tend to put down a softer layer of colour than foams, so you might want to apply more layers for a more saturated colour
  •           Make sure you get a decent area where the colours overlap, to help blend one into the next. Apply your first colour, then add your next, overlapping with the first a bit where the two colours meet, then go back to the first colour and overlap the second a little. Keep doing this with each colour until you are happy with the blend. 

Next, I die cut a whole bunch of the spring blooms from a decent weight cardstock – two full A4 sheets worth, to be precise – as I needed them for all of my cards. Prep done, time to assemble the cards!

Card 1 – Brighter Days are Ahead

  •           Cut an A2 panel (5.5” x 4.25”) from white card
  •           Ink blend the following Distress Oxides: Spun Sugar, Picked Raspberry and Shaded Lilac
  •           Adhere the blended panel to an A2 top-folding card 
  •           Die cut six A2 frames – I used T4TD’s nesting frame dies but you could use any you have, or create your own using rectangle dies, for example.
  •           Glue several of the spring blooms die cuts to the bottom corner of one of your frames. Glue another frame on top so they’re nicely tucked in.
  •           Trim away any excess from around the edges.
  •           To create your shaker panel, glue an A2 piece of acetate to the reverse of your frame.
  •           Next, glue the other four frames to the back of the acetate sheet. You could use foam tape instead of all the frames if you prefer, but as the frame is so narrow, using multiple frames looked neater.
  •           Add some gems/sequins of your choice on top of your ink blended panel
  •           Tip - if you have an anti-static powder tool, use it on the acetate to stop the sequins clinging to it, allowing them to shake about more freely inside the card!
  •           Glue the shaker panel on to the ink blended panel, sealing the sequins inside.
  •           Finally, add a sentiment with some foam tape for a little dimension
  •           Shake, shake, shake and enjoy J

Card 2 – Let’s Celebrate!

  •           Grab some of your die cut blooms, and ink blend over them in a rainbow of colours.
  •           I used the next biggest nesting frame die cut left over from card 1 and repeated the same process to make a shaker: glue the blooms around the edge of a frame, add another frame on top, trim. Add an acetate panel to the reverse, then your remaining frames behind that. Sprinkle some gems/confetti onto an A2 card base and seal them in by gluing your shaker panel on top.
  •           Finally, add your sentiment in the centre, and you’re good to go!

Card 3 – Hello Friend

  •           I ink blended a slimline panel using just two colours – Shaded Lilac and Wilted Violet. See how it creates a new shade where the two overlap? I faded out the Shaded Lilac at one end by applying it very lightly.
  •           I sprinked a little water over the top and dabbed with kitchen towel – this lifts some of the ink away and creates a nice effect.
  •           I trimmed down the blended panel down by about 2cm on each side and mounted it to the card base using foam tape, making sure I left some space around the edges to tuck in some of the spring bloom die cuts. I used liquid glue to attach them to the underside of the panel.
  •           I then die cut the word “friend” using black cardstock for the word, and vellum for the shadow, and glued this down. Finally, I stamped “hello” (from this set) to finish off card number 3!

Card 4 – you are the best

  •           Ink blend a slimline panel with the following Distress Oxides: Twisted Citron, Cracked Pistachio, Mermaid Lagoon, Chipped Sapphire
  •       Spray with silver shimmer spray (oh my heart.... look at that shine)
  •           Arrange some of the spring blooms onto the card panel
  •           Add a sentiment with foam tape, tucked into the blooms
  •           Trim panel and add to a slimline card base using foam tape

Card 5 – you make me smile

  •           Ink blend a slimline panel in the following Distress Oxides: Spun Sugar, Picked Raspberry, Fossilized Amber and Squeezed Lemonade
  •           Using the  Slimline Scalloped Trio CircleNesting Dies, die cut the smallest slimline panel from white card stock, and die cut the three circles from the centre of it.
  •           Trim down your blended panel to the same size and adhere to the reverse using squares of foam tape.
  •           Tuck some of the spring blooms around the edges of the three circles and attach with liquid glue.
  •           Die cut the medium sized panel die, and attach the first panel on top of it. Adhere the completed panel to a white slimline card base and trim to size.
  •           Finally, add a sentiment with some foam tape, and a few raindrop gems dotted about.

Phew – that’s a whole lot of crafting, so well done if you’re still with me! Which of these cards is your favourite??

I hope this gives you some inspiration on how to stretch your own supplies. Why not tag us in your social media posts so we can see how you've stretched your supplies?

Please feel free to use discount code T4TJAYNE10 to get 10% off anything you purchase. Happy crafting!


  1. Wow....these are all simple and really effective. Love them 😍

  2. Great use of the spring blooms dies. I love a bit (ok i love a lot lol) of ink blending. They're all fab.


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