15 May 2018

Steampunk Birthday - stenciling, embossing, die cutting

"Just put some gears on it..." This dapper fellow is wishing a happy Steampunk birthday on a hexagon card festooned with gears in stencilling, die cuts, Distress Oxides, Distress ink, Perfect Pearls, and embossing.

Putting It Together

Last Friday I stopped by a couple local scrapbooking stores (crazy thing is that they're nearly across the street from one another) to take advantage of sales and pick up some more Distress Oxides. I got to chatting a bit with the gal in one of the stores after making my purchase. And then my eye caught sight of some new dies and stamps they had in from a new (to us) company, Studio Light, out of the Netherlands. Their Industrial 2.0 line has some amazing items! I splurged and bought a die and a stamp, and they weren't even on sale! I love industrial and steampunk so much and the die set ticked both of those boxes as well as being a hexagon with 2 nested hexes, too.

I decided to pair the die with a gears stencil I have from Southern Ridge Trading Company and a long retired Kraftin' Kimmie stamp set. The die is 6 1.4 inches by nearly 10 1/2 inches but fits through the Big Shot with no problems. I was thinking about making an oversized card with this trio as the 'base' for the idea.

I decided I wanted to do a background colour for the stencilling to give the gears colour. I started with Vintage Photo Distress Oxide smushed on some plastic packaging and wet it down with a sprayer.

I smushed it on to a large panel of watercolour cardstock.

I used a heat tool to dry between layers to allow the Oxides to stack. I added more smushing with Antique Linen.

I used the blender to add in additional Oxide colour. I also added spritzes and drips of water.

The background colouring used Fossilized Amber, Vintage Photo, Antique Linen, and Spiced Marmalade for a distressed metallic look.

I sprayed my stencil with repositionable adhesive so it wouldn't move when placed on the panel. I used the blender to add in additional colours of Oxides, Fired Brick and Walnut Stain, as well as adding more Spiced Marmalade.

I took the stencil off and used Perfect Pearls, gold and bronze, with a mister and in powder to add metallic highlights to finish off the panel.

I ran it through my Big Shot with the die but not all of the gears cut cleanly on the pass. I decided to try them with the Precision Plate and the die shifted making a double cut in spots :( So, I used the smallest of the hexagons to cut a hexagon panel to set on a new panel with the gears.

I used the same colours as for the stencilled panel but used a couple different techniques. I used a very wet piece of plastic to scrunch the wet ink for a visual texturing.

I brushed on copper Perfect Pearls when it was still wet in patches.

When I die cut the panel, I kept it together (without lifting it to check) when I transferred from a normal cut plate on a first pass (which included the hexagon) to the Precision plate to get a deeper cut in just the gear area. Running the hexagon area through with the Precision plate will bend it slightly, moreso as time goes on, so I tried to avoid that. This is the only downside of this really cool die set.

To add more gears, I decided to rust up some gold mercury paper scrap using the same Oxides and then die cut it with Tim Holtz gear dies. I also cut some of those gears with un-rusted gold mercury paper scrap when I needed a few more.

I stamped the dapper gentleman in a dark brown that dries water safe. I used a scrap of Bristol paper.

I used Distress ink to watercolour him and added touches of metallic Gelly Roll to his buttons. I kept him to a similar palette as the card: Vintage Photo, Rusty Hinge, Tye Dye, Pine Needles, and Tattered Rose.

I dry fit the card front with some of the extra gears, the gentleman, and a sentiment.

To make a card base, I used the largest of the hexagon dies without gears. I cut a strip 11" x 6", scored and folded it in the middle, and made sure one of the hexagon edges was above the fold. I should have made the panel 11" x 6" 1/4", the tips of the haxagon's edges are missing.

To attach the decorated panel to the card base, I used double-sided tape. When I have a heavier panel or one which isn't entirely flat, I often use double-sided tape for more hold.

To make it easier to position, I put the release paper perpendicular to the tape strips. This keeps the double-sided tape from instantly adhering. Once I have it in position, I press down lightly, remove the release strips, and then press firmly. I lined up the bottom of the hexagon with the bottom of the card base.

I used the new Baked Texture, Patina, from Emerald Creek to emboss the sentiment with a bit of industrial-look mottling.

Inside the card, I added a few more gears for a visual detail (and to cover the missing tips).



Simon Says Stamp Wednesday: For the Boys
Simon Says Stamp Monday: Stencil It
Kraftin' Kimmie Stamps Saturday: Anything Goes
Seize the Birthday: Anything Goes

Final Note

As for the opening quote, that's from a song I rather like about making Steampunk themed items. The song runs through my mind and it always amuses me.


  1. Fabulous card Rijacki :-) the image is awesome and I love the shape and background, absolutely gorgeous! Love the step by step pics too :-)

    thanks for joining us on the Simon Says Stamp Monday and Wednesday Challenges
    Lols x x x

  2. Fabulous card and better yet step by step tutorial! You went to a lot of trouble for this post! I really enjoyed seeing this card come to life! Thanks for linking up with us at Seize the Birthday!

  3. Love your fabulous card! The step photos are awesome. Thank you so much for sharing with us at Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge. :)


Thank you for your comments. I do read every one. Your comments help me to grow as an artist. It warms my heart to see wonderful comments and constructive criticism.