The unofficial start of summer here in Canada – Victoria Day – took place earlier this week.
The third Monday in May turns the weekend it immediately follows into a long one. Historically, this has been the point in the year when many Canadians shake off the last vestiges of winter, look beyond the heavy rains of spring, and jump feet first into summer.
Gazing ahead to that point, back in January, I created this cheerful summertime perfect greeting for a loved one. Tucking it aside until spring was well underway and the Victoria Day long weekend loomed into view once more.
In light of the profoundly devastating and far-reaching Corvid-19 pandemic and the need for self-isolation as a vital defence against this devastating global crisis, the camping-related part of the sentiment on this card may not be possible at present.
However, the general message continues to ring true and when coupled with the tranquil scene of woodland deer surrounded by throngs of lofty evergreen trees, this card is still wonderfully at home during the warmer months of 2020.
And speaking of being home, one can always go camping indoors if they so desire! All the s’mores with none of the mosquitoes, yes, pretty please! 😃
Relax and unwind stamped woodland scene card
The idea for the design of this card came to me as I looked upon the lovely woodland deer scene stamp that is at the heart of this handmade greeting.
I adore how the lofty trees in that image stretch up towards the starry heavens and wanted to extend the forest that I imagine these darling deer are in beyond the stamped image itself.
As I wasn’t sure if I’d be mailing or delivering this card in person, I didn’t go wild on the degree of bulk and thickness of the layers here, but did still include multiple layers (some of which are elevated via foam pop dots).
I played around with adding a third panel to the right-hand-side, but couldn’t hit on one that I liked or felt balanced well with the other components here, so in the end, opted to go with just the central panel and the sentiment cut-apart panel on the left-hand side of this summertime card.
Where both myself and the recipient of this card live (BC’s gorgeous Okanagan Valley), we have a lot of stunning natural settings, including many woodland areas. Deer are extremely common throughout the area, so this setting is one that is familiar to both of us (and many others around these parts).
By the same token, I think it is a fairly universal scene as well. Even if one doesn’t live around deer filled forests, the imagery itself is familiar and appealing, with just a hint of fairytale wonderment to it.
While I created this stamped forest scene card for the warmer months, you could easily take this same kind of stamped image and utilize it for a wide range of events (such as Father’s Day, birthdays, thinking of you cards, retirement cards, Canada Day, etc), as well as for each of the seasons.
Paler shades of brown, mint or sage green, pine and maybe a little pink, peach or purple would make this an awesome design for spring. Why not lean heavily on shades of rust, mustard, burgundy and teal or warm brown for fall?
And who wouldn’t swoon if they received this card done up in greys, whites, silvers and the palest of icy blues (perhaps with some glitter or metallic cardstock swirled into the mix for good measure) come the chilly day of winter?
Putting this stamped woodland scene summer card together
To create this serene stamped woodland scene card, I began with a base of brown cardstock. The base is scarcely seen, so you could use other colours – from kraft to white to navy blue – here instead, if so desired.
Next, before moving onto the rest of the layers and card elements, I created my central stamped panel by blending various shades of dark blue, golden yellow, earthy green, and black Ranger Distress Oxide Ink together on white cardstock.
Once I was happy with how my blended ink background turned out (please feel free to let me know in the comments below if you’d be interested in seeing a tutorial of how I create ink blended nighttime sky backgrounds like this), I flicked some water droplets onto the sky portion (but not the rest of the inked panel) using a clean paintbrush and a small amount of water to help give the illusion of a starry sky at dusk.
To further add to the star factor of the sky, using the same paintbrush, I gently flicked some slightly watered-down yellow acrylic paint randomly across the sky portion of my ink blended night sky panel.
Once the ink blended background was dry, I placed it in my stamp positioning tool and, using India Black Ink from Hero Arts (a wonderful dark black dye ink that is great for many different stamping purposes), stamped the woodland deer scene a few times until the image had laid down fully and I was satisfied with the intensity of the black ink.
Next, I die cut a navy frame for my stamped image panel using a squared corned rectangular frame die. I didn’t have a die of the same shape that was a size bigger, so for my next layer (of sage green and gold plaid print paper), I used a ruler to draw similarly shaped corners, cutting them to shape and size with a pair of scissors.
I layered a piece of the same sage and gold plaid print paper onto my main card panel, followed by a piece of brown woodgrain print paper on the righthand side of the card.
This was topped with a central panel of grey-blue cardstock (best scene below the crochet trim at the bottom of the card), onto which I put my woodland deer stamped image panel.
I then added the olive green tulle rose trim and cream crochet trim to the bottom of the card, along with some of the same crochet trim behind the top of the framed panel of the central stamped design.
After that, I die cut a label shaped piece to put behind my (central) sentiment sticker. I ran two lengths of teal coloured rustic twine through the holes on each end of the label and placed that finished piece on top of the olive green tulle trim.
Next, I selected the “Eat, Sleep, Camp, Repeat” die cut sentiment, cut it out, lightly distressed the edges, and backed it with a layer of grey cardstock followed by a layer of vellum. I attached this panel at an angle on the left-hand side of my card and then set about die cutting a cute little forest of trees.
I die cut trees using three different sized tree dies and a mix of navy blue cardstock, green-on-green patterned paper, and classic white vellum.
To add visual interest, I used both the negative and the positives of the trees that I die cut, resulting in a forest comprised of both solid and outline tree shapes.
Once I’d arranged all of my trees and adhered them in place, I stepped back and assessed how I thought the card looked. I loved it and could have left it as it was. However, I felt that it needed one more little touch to help bring the whole design together.
A few minutes of embellishment searching led me to a fab sheet of puffy black star stickers from Bella Blvd.
These stickers added extra pizzazz and dimension (while also extending the star element of the stamped image beyond that panel, much as the die cut trees did for the tree portion of it), without stealing the show from any of the other existing card design elements.
And voila, my card was complete! This design might look a bit complex, but rest assured that it really isn’t.
It does take some time due to the Distress Oxide Ink blending, stamping, and decent amount of die cutting involved, but nothing about this card is inherently tricky and I found building a forest of die cut trees to be awesomely enjoyable (I can easily see myself doing again in the future on different projects).
Products to help you recreate this summertime stamped forest scene card
-Navy blue, brown, grey, and grey-blue coloured cardstock
-Stamping appropriate white cardstock or sturdy white watercolour paper
-Brown woodgrain print paper – Knock on Wood Armoire paper from Lawn Fawn
-Sage green and gold plaid print paper – Fall Forest Mat Stack 6×6 inch paper pad from DCWV
-Green-on-green print paper (or a light to medium green solid coloured paper or cardstock)
-Vellum – Premium Cardstock Vellum from Core’dinations
-Square corned frame shaped die
-Tag/label die with holes at each end of the shape (or use a hole punch to create the holes)
-1 to 3 different sizes of evergreen tree (or tree species of your choice) shaped dies
-Camping sentiment paper – Cabin Fever from Simple Stories
-Sentiment sticker – Lakeside Element Stickers from Photo Play
-Black puffy star stickers – Oreo Black Puffy Star Stickers from Bella Blvd
-Woodland deer scene stamp
-Ranger Distress Oxide Ink in Black Soot, Chipped Sapphire, Faded Jeans, Forest Moss, Fossilized Amber, and Mustard Seed
-Black ink pad – India Black Ink from Hero Arts
-Yellow acrylic paint – Folk Art Acrylic Paint in Lemon Custard
-Olive green tulle rose trim – Spring 2011 floral ribbon trim from Webster’s Pages
-Cream crochet trim – Lost & Found Christmas Trims from My Mind’s Eye
-Teal twine – similar style of turquoise jute twine
-Dimensional foam, pop dots, or similar to elevate some of your layers
-Adhesive, such as a tape runner, of your choice (I often use my Scotch Tape Glider)
Card making tips and ideas from this project
-Utilize the outline pieces from your die cut shapes, when applicable, as I did here for the trees.
-When working with multiple and/or layered die cuts, introduce vellum or another standout paper (glitter, mirror, metallic, sequin covered, textured, burlap, corrugated, etc) into the mix for added visual interest and to help the various die cut elements pop all the more.
–Don’t be afraid to let a stamped scene be one part of a larger card front, not “just” the whole of it. While stamped scenes can make for awesome card fronts unto themselves, no two ways about it, they can also look terrific as one element of a broader design. Mix things up, have fun, and remember that if you really don’t like how something looks, you can always chalk that try up to practice and have a second go.
-Combine elements that are traditionally seen as masculine and feminine together for breathtaking results. I wouldn’t bat an eye about giving this card to the manliest man I know, but by the same token, there isn’t a woman in my life that I wouldn’t be delighted to present it to as well.
Here, olive green tulle rose trim and crochet trim are amongst the more feminine style elements, but the card design as a whole isn’t overtly feminine, thanks to the colour palette, sage green and gold plaid paper, and universally enjoyed woodland-themed elements at play here.
-No puffy star stickers on hand? No worries! Die cut, punched, fussy cut, or even freehand cut stars, as well as other styles and colours of star shaped stickers would all work fabulously here as well.
If you weren’t feeling stars or didn’t have any of those items available, you could easily forego the stars altogether or swap in a different shape such as dragonflies, bats (if keeping with the nighttime forest theme), feathers, branches, or small leaves instead.
-If you don’t have teal or blue rustic twine to run through the die cut label piece, natural twine (jute), butcher’s twine, or a thin width of ribbon would all work great here as well.
–When creating an ink blended background, be sure to take your time and to thoroughly buff each colour so as to end up with a seamless blend between ink shades.
-A stamped scene image like the woodland deer one here often covers a decent surface area and may not stamp entirely evenly the first time. As such, to avoid misalignment when restamping in the same spot, I highly recommend using a stamp positioning tool such as a Misti or the Tim Holtz Stamp Platform.
Summertime needs more handmade cards!
Compared to some of the other seasons, summertime in many parts of the world isn’t exactly overflowing with major holidays. Various countries, including the US and Canada, have their nation’s birthdays and perhaps another long weekend or two, but for many of us, that’s about it.
For my fellow witches and Pagans who observe these dates, there is also Litha (the Summer Solstice) and Lammas (at the start of August; it is the first of the three fall harvest sabbats), which are welcome and highly meaningful events that help to up the festivity factor of summertime.
Again though, not a ton of holidays during the summer months, which is all the more reason why I love to come up with fun, creative sunny season makes to send to my friends and relatives around the world.
One certainly doesn’t need to have a specific holiday in mind to make a card.
“Happy summer”, “Happy Sunshine Season”, “Just Because”, “Summer Makes Me Think of You”, “Remember When”, “Time to Relax”, and “Summer Lovin’” are just some of the many different ideas you could use as the sentiments or jumping-off points for your summertime cards.
This is the season for punchy, upbeat hues, beach and pool, forest and camping, garden and flower, picnic and barbeque, sports and outdoor games, ice cream and ice coffee, and RV and road trip themed paper crafting products, to name but a few! 🌊🍦🏕️
Let your imagination go wild, have a blast, and send some cheerful greetings out this year (or save them for future years, if mailing it not currently safe in your area) to let your loved ones know that you’re thinking of them during the roasty-toasty days of summer. 🌞
Pin the image below – or any other in this post – to Pinterest, pop it into your Instagram Stories, post in on Twitter or Facebook, or share it anywhere else you wish to help yourself find it again and to inspire others at the same time.
If you make a project based on or inspired by this card – or want to share any of your other handmade crafts with me – please use the hashtags #WitchcraftedLife and #WitchcraftedLifeMakes on social media so that I see can your beautiful creations.
So pretty. Great theme, nice message and beautiful visual images. You make smart choices.
And you leave blush inducingly kind + supportive comment, Ally. Thank you very much.
This card was such a pleasure to create. From the inked and stamped central panel to the forest of trees, it resonated with my nature adoring heart and soul, and reminded me the whole way through the spectacular natural beauty that we’re fortunate to have here in British Columbia.
Yet another gorgeous card! I love the look of the tree outline shapes in combination with the solid ones and the vaguely fairy tale feel of the whole thing!
You’re fabulously sweet, my dear friend. Thank you so much! 😘
I had such a lovely, relaxing time creating the forest here. It’s a technique I could easily see myself replicating again – and really want to try out with fall trees and/or colours as well. 🍂
Many hugs & sunny May-into-June wishes coming your way,
WOW Autumn, this is stunning!! I absolutely love your inky background, the starry sky is beautiful! Gorgeous stamped scene and details, all of the trees are perfect for a camping themed card! Here in Colorado, they opened the campgrounds on May 12th so my husband and I were able to enjoy our first trip of the season 🙂
Take care- Tammy x
You’re awesomely sweet + kind, Tammy. Thank you SO MUCH!!!
I really, really enjoyed making this card. I haven’t had a chance to do much in the way of ink blended backgrounds as of late and didn’t fully realize how much I was missing creating them. I’ll definitely be looking for ways to weave them into more projects again from here on out.
It’s fabulous that the campgrounds reopened in your state this month and you guys have already been able to go on a camping excursion this year. Hopefully, the C-19 situation will not escalate again in Colorado and the camping parks can remain open all season long.
Thank you again. I wholeheartedly appreciate your visits and wonderful comments.
A beautifully crafted card evoking the magic of Summer nights! And yes to camping indoors! Or why not camp in once’s garden? We often did this as children, sleeping in my Dad’s old tent which he put up in the back garden. Quite magical and admittedly also a little bit scary! xxx
Thank you sweetly, dear Ann. 🥰
Absolutely! If one has the space and equipment needed, backyard camping can be a serious blast! We used to do so as well sometimes when I was growing up as well.
I’ve always adored camping. Immersing oneself in nature, being self-sufficient (at least to a degree), getting out of the house for a while, making great memories, it’s all so appealing and enjoyable in my books.
I was heavily involved with Girl Guides for several years of my youth and count the many camping trips I had the joy of experiencing during that time as one of my very favourite elements of that experience. So that too only further made a devoted lifelong camper out of me.
Perhaps we should both go camping in our own yards/gardens this summer. I’m game if you are! 😃
WOW, this is stunning, what a beautiful card, I love the colours you have gone for, they are so fresh. Hazel xx
Thank you very much, Hazel. What a wonderfully lovely compliment. I’m really digging this colour palette as well. The hits of lime help it to pop and feel extra summery. I think this palette would work fabulously for masculine cards, too, but it’s just as well suited to any gender and a wide range of occasions.
Big thanks again! I hope that you have a fantastic final week of May.
This is so elegant and harmonious, Autumn! I love the effect of the night sky, almost like raindrops, but mimicking the overlapping glow of the stars. I really like your choice of that very chartreuse shade of green to accent it. This is a gorgeous card! You are so talented.
You’re blush-inducingly kind, dear Shelia. Thank you deeply.
I’m rather taken with this colour palette and suspect I’ll turn to it again both for cards and scrapbook pages alike. I have two male cousins who are in their 20s and am envisioning future b-day cards for both of them in, as I suspect they’d love these dusk meets woodland meets summer shades.
I truly appreciate your immensely kind words. Thank you again! 😘
Sunny hugs & happy wishes for these final days of May.
Your design is a perfect representation of a camping scene that’s so inviting and full of fun! I love the stair step design so that all of the critters and map signs are displayed perfectly! 🙂 Beautiful colors too! Thanks for sharing your lovely post!!
Thank you so much, sweet Vicki. I truly appreciate your kind words about this fun summertime card. I had a serious blast creating it – especially the bevy of trees. I’m envisioning a similar forest scene (likely in different colours) for a fall time make now, likely with the inclusion of vellum trees again.
I hope that you’re doing positively as May winds down (how is it that late in the spring already?!) and that you have a sunny, safe, and very enjoyable week.
A beautiful card Autumn, you have created a wonderful woodland scene, gorgeous colours and lots of fabulous details.
Pauline – Crafting with Cotnob
Thank you very much, Pauline. You always make my day with your wonderfully kind and supportive comments about my papercrafts.
I hope that your week is off to a positive start and that it blossoms into a safe, serene, and splendid month for you.
WOW!! This is gorgeous!! I LOVE the pretty colors you chose and all your layered details. That blended background is came out so pretty!!
Thank you very much, Nora. You’re so sweet and supportive. It had been far too long since I last created an ink blended background and whipping up this one reminded me of just how much I enjoy and adore making them. Definitely something I’ll be trying to include in more of my projects from here on out.
Big hugs & joyful start of June wishes coming your way!
Wow! This is so gorgeous! It’s so soothing! I love the navy and yellows together. Stunning! My husband would love this. He is a backpacker. I have given up on backpacking due to several issues but I still enjoy camping. I love your tree die cuts in vellum and paper and your stars pop! Beautiful! I saw that you stopped by my blog and mentioned that you have never seen fireflies. I hope you get the chance sometime. They are magical! I have enjoyed seeing them all my life but the most incredible experience happened on a camping trip with our kids in a National Park. There were hundreds of them and they seemed to glow in sync. Amazing. Thank you for sparking the memory I have almost forgotten! 🙂 Hugs!
Hi lovely Angie, thank you so much for your fabulous comment and for sharing about the passion for the outdoors that both you and your husband share. The same rings true in our house big time as well.
Like yourself, hiking/backpacking (and most physical activities beyond basic walking, which itself sometimes is not in the cards) is not a possibility for me.
This has been the case for about half of my life now due to a multitude of chronic illnesses (but back when I could do so, I camped and hiked with them best of ’em – especially during my years in the Girl Guides).
Thankfully, however, that fact hasn’t dimmed my passion for the outdoors – if anything, it may have brought me closer to nature. As when I’m outside, I’m often doing very peaceful activities, light walking, or simply sitting/laying there delighting in the natural rhythms of the outside world.
And speaking of the great outdoors, that is so sweet of you to say regarding your hope that I get to see fireflies in person. I’m very touched!
Hopefully spotting those glowing cutie pies in the wild will happen for me one day. My understanding is that they’re more common in Eastern Canada (we live in BC, on the westernmost side of the country), so perhaps I’ll get to see some on a trip out that way.
Thank you again for everything – including sharing about your own wonderful memories of watching fireflies waltz across the night sky. How enchantingly special!
Big hugs & joyful June wishes coming your way,
What a wonderful woodland scene. Fabulous texture and dinension. Beautiful ink blending.
And thank you So much for your kind comments on two of my posts. You made my day! And happy early birthday to you and DH. A rainbow cake would be awesome! 😉
Hi Trina, you’re sincerely welcome. Your blog and the bevy of beautiful creations that it houses is a fairly new discovery for me. I was hooked at once and am now following you in my feedreader.
Thank you very much in turn for your own wonderfully kind comments on this card. It had been a hot minute (and then some! 😄) since I last made an ink blended card. I’d all but forgotten how much I adore this creative technique and have vowed to involve it more often in my makes from here on out. 😃
A huge thank you as well for the early happy b-day wishes for myself and Tony (my DH). That’s so lovely of you!!! 🥰
I hope that you have a sunny, super safe, and highly enjoyable June (complete with ample time to craft).
Oh I wish I could just step into this card! I absolutely love it!
What an awesomely lovely response to this woodland card, my dear friend. I had the tree-filled portions of our neighbourhood (our town is this really unique mix of bucolic farmland, some – though not as many – of the arid desert elements of the lower Okanagan Valley, lush forests and towering mountains that flake the town on both sides), so if you’re ever up this way, you might be able to do just that. 😃
Thinking of you two and sending scores of hugs + wishes for an immensely safe, positive, and joyful June your way!
Wow, this is stunning. Beautiful scene you created and so many lovely details.
Aww, you’re making me blush, Anesha. Thank you very much for your fabulously kind compliment.
It had been way, way too long since I last created an ink blended background. I’d nearly forgotten just how much I adore working with ink blending and am vowing to myself that I’ll weave into more of my paper crafting again from here on out (and have various ideas for fall projects involving ink blending swirling around in my head as we speak).
I sincerely appreciate your thoughtful comment and hope that you have a super safe, peaceful, and enjoyable month of June.
What a gorgeous card! All of your work is so beautiful. 🙂 I’m going to try to get your package out this week. Despite other crazy stuff, I’m not too terrified to run to the UPS store. Haha!
Thank you deeply, dear Willow. Your kindness really knows no bounds. 🙏
I sincerely appreciate you letting me know. The mail coming into Canada has been as slow as molasses in the snow for several weeks now (completely understandably), but hopefully as we’re just on opposite sides of the 49th, it won’t take too long for your heart-touching package to reach me.
I will zip an email or DM your way once it does, and truly cannot thank you enough again for your incredible thoughtfulness and generosity. 💗
May you have an extremely safe, positive, and blessing filled Litha month. 🌞
Such a beautiful scene, I love the feeling and all the colours. Again, pure art. 🙂
Thank you very much, my wonderfully dear friend. I had the grandest time crafting (quite literally) a forest of paper trees for this card and am now brainstorming a fall time take on the idea (because, let’s face it, when do I not have our mutually favourite season on my mind? 😄).
Thinking of you and hoping that you guys have a sunny, super safe, and wholly enjoyable spring-into-summer season.
What a beautiful card! I love everything about it – the color palette, the layered details and the sentiment! I can’t wait to go hiking/camping again! Take care – Rachelle : )
Hi Rachelle, you’re terrifically kind! Thank you very much for making my day with your famously kind words about this forest filled card.
My DH and I adore spending time in the great outdoors as well and are really looking forward to when doing so is safe once again. Hopefully, it won’t be too much longer until doing so is possible again no matter where in the world one resides.
Thank you again. I really appreciate your visit to my blog and hope that this summer smiles warmly, sweetly and abundantly on you all season long.
Oh how beautiful! I would love to escape to the woods for a little while…After beaches, forests are my favorite landscape. Something so mystical and wondrous about century old growth, forest wildlife, and the calming effect it has on our souls…You’ve captured it perfectly here, friend!
Eloquently and wonderfully said, dear Ivana. I adore how passionately you speak about the woods. This facet of nature is a treasured favourite of mine as well. We’re blessed to live on a rugged little slice of woodland, and to be surrounded by far more of it in our neighbourhood (and general area).
I took inspiration from some of the lofty tree festooned hills around this area when creating the “forest” on this card – which was a blast to put together (I’m already envisioning fall and winter versions of it).
Like yourself, I adore the ocean as well. I was born a stone’s throw away from Vancouver, so the Pacific is especially near and dear to my heart. I adore all oceans though and have also had the pleasure thus far in my life to spend a bit of time on the shores of the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea. I’d love to visit more of the world’s vast bodies of water, as well as to spend more time with those I’ve “met” already.
Thankfully we’re only a few hours (drive) away from Vancouver these days, so the occasional trip down that way brings me in contact with my beloved Pacific Ocean again every now and then (yay!). What is your favourite ocean/sea that you’ve visited so far?
Many thanks again, dear heart – not only for this comment, but for each one that you so kindly left for me here this week.
Scores of sunny hugs,