A stunning background can really make a card have that WOW factor.
There are many ways that can accomplish that, so I always love to find a new one! I love Designer Series Paper, but did you know you can make your own??
If you are anything like me, you have a lot of nail polish bottles that are getting a bit old, but out of guilt you keep them — and once in a while treat yourself to a manicure (if only just to cover up the ink stains on your hands from stamping!), but the joy for that specific color or painting your nails is no longer there. I get it; I hate wasting. Even as I continue to simplify my life and minimize my possessions, throwing things out is hard.
So I found a creative way to use those nail polishes: use them to make a scrapbook page or a fun card! That orange would be perfect for a “Tropical” layout, but just doesn’t cut it anymore for my nails ha ha!
On Pinterest, I’ve seen people using nail polish to color wood and other materials, but wondered if I could use a similar technique for my paper crafting! See below for what I did:
How to prepare:
Ingredients: Nail Polish, Watercolor Paper, Pan, Water, Toothpick, Paper Towels or Newspaper, Drying Rack (optional)
Choose some nail polishes. I used three colors for each dip but more or less would be fantastic, too! Open their tops to make it easy to quickly pour. Mine are fairly old (more than a few years) and they each seemed to have their own behavior in the water, but that added character to the marble!
Have your Watercolor Paper ready. I use a heavyweight paper from Stampin Up, but if it holds up to water, it should hold up well with this craft.
Lay out pieces of newspaper or paper towels on your table or surface. I actually used junk mail. Whatever will protect your surface in the event of messiness.
Pour about an inch of lukewarm water into your pan. Your pan should be large enough to accomdate the size of your paper.
Spread out your supplies. Moving efficiently will increase the likelihood that your papers will turn out well, so you’ll want everthing prepared and within reach. No need to rush, but the following took me about 5 minutes.
How to marble paper with nail polish:
1. Pour a few stripes of one color of nail polish in the water. Pour a few more of a different color. Continue with all of the colors your want to use. Have fun with it! Don’t try to purposefully draw anything– just let the water swirl.
Pour in a few drops of your first color.
Pour in other colors.
2. Use the toothpick to swirl a few lines through the polish.
3. Pick up your paper and place it face-down on the water surface for a few seconds. With one corner, carefully pull the paper back up and flip it over. Place it down on your drying rack or paper towels.
Place paper face-down
The drying rack helps
But the rack is optional
4. Depending on the size of your paper, you may have used most of the polish up. If that is the case, use your toothpick to glide through the water to pick up the “skin” that forms a layer on top of the water. Now your pan and water is ready for more polish and more paper marbling!
5. If you were using small pieces of watercolor paper, you may be able to (quickly) dip more paper on the surface. By the third dip unfortunately, enough time as passed for the nail polish to congeal a bit. Blek. My paper ended up looking like a spiderweb of plastic.
6. This seems to be the limit before pouring out and using new water. Let your papers dry fully before using them.
You never know how this will turn out, and I LOVE that!
Multiple pieces done all in less than 10 minutes!
I was worried about the texture of the paper after I had layers of nail polish on it, but it just feels like sturdy cardstock! It doesn’t smell like nail polish, and BONUS: the paper is now water-resistant!
I hope you had fun with this tutorial. I’d love to see your marbled paper, so please leave a comment or a picture! And if you found this tutorial useful, please bookmark it or maybe even follow the blog for more craftiness! Happy Crafting!
Hello Crafties! New stamps and craft supplies are always fun, right? But what about those items at the back of your toy bin “craft closet?” I’m guilty of letting those get a bit dusty.
But don’t worry about dusting…this isn’t a time for housework. I wanna try two different cards with the same (retired) embossing folder. Does anyone have the Stampin Up Manhattan Flower embossing folder? 🙋🏻♀️🙋♂️ It’s very pretty, but I don’t find myself using it much anymore. So I brought it out in an attempt to “stamp my stash” and want to share the results with you!
So here is two different ways to use the same embossing folder. They are mirror images of each other because for the first one we want the outlines raised (this will hold the watercolors inside the lines) and the second one we want the outlines depressed and pressed down. Not to mention the bonus of using HEAT embossing, too!
I embossed a 5 1/4″ x 4″ piece of watercolour paper with the Manhattan Flower folder.
I inked up the brayer with versamark and lightly ran it over the embossed image, catching the high spots of the embossed flowers.
Next I sprinkled clear embossing powder and heat set. This ensures my watercolors stay on the petals where I want them.
Now its time to watercolor!! I used Melon Mambo, and put more ink towards the bottom of the petals. Start light–you can always add more ink. Watercoloring is a very forgiving technique.
Lastly, I stamped the sentiment with the Blusing Bride ink, and adhered this card front to the top of some folded blushing bride cardstock. If you are wondering why I switched from Melon Mambo to Blushing Bride, it’s because when I watercolored, the ink became diluted to the point of matching the more subtle pink shade!
How to create the blue card:
If you follow my blog (and please do hit that button in the side bar for fun crafty awesomeness!), you may notice this card looks similar to a stack of cards I recently created. After these embossing steps, the I colored these beautiful flowers using prismacolor pencils. Detailed steps can be found outlined in this tutorial!
I brayered versamark ink directly onto the embossing folder, careful to keep it on the flower outlines. I placed the black cardstock (5 1/4″ x 4″) carefully inside the folder and ran it through my Big Shot.
Then I sprinkled gold embossing powder inside the flower outlines (which is now impressed down), carefully tapped off the excess, and heated it. This should leave you with the petals outlined in gold!
Is there a craft item in the back of your closet that you’ve forgotten about? Maybe a different embossing folder, a stamp set that you still like, some funky paper, or some brads? Let me know what it is! If I also have it, or something similar, I’d love to help you find a new way to use it. We can challenge each other to create something new with it! Leave a comment below and who knows — Maybe it’ll be a future post! Can’t wait to hear from you!
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