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Creative Watercolour Media (AECP 2)

Today I have three more cards to share as part of my Altenew Educator Certification Program.

Here are my three cards, with more info on how I created them below:

These cards were made for my assignment based on Creative Watercolor Media with three tutors - Jen Rzasa, Laura Bassen and Debbie Hughes. This masterclass had six lessons, each with a different perspective on using media creatively to watercolour, e.g. using shimmer sprays, inks and re-inkers.

One of the things I love about card-making is the many ways you can colour - with pencils, paints, inks and more. I loved the reminders in these masterclasses to get creative with different ways of colouring.

Card One - Using Dye Inks to Watercolour

My first card was an unexpected surprise. I wanted to do a non-traditional floral image and use some warm greys for the flower. When I added water to the Altenew warm grey die inks, they had gorgeous green and pink tones too, which then set me on the path of using corals for the leaves. They look so pretty in real life with the different tones shining through.

Here's how I made this card:

  1. Stamp and emboss the flowers and leaves in the Altenew's Striking Flowers stamp set, using Versamark clear ink with Altenew's Rose Gold Embossing Powder.

  2. Create some 'watercolours' by smooshing ink onto a glass mat or a piece of acetate as a palette, then add a little bit of water to create 'paint'

  3. Using a paintbrush, watercolour the flowers onto watercolour card in warm greys using Altenew's Moon Rock and Lava Rock dye inks. Set aside to dry.

  4. Die cut a large rectangular panel out of coral cardstock and attach this to a white card base

  5. Die cut a smaller rectangular panel of watercolour card (I chose this card because I wanted to keep the same off-white tones to match the flowers)

  6. Die cut three more plain white card panels with the same rectangle die and layer these up with glue, stacking one panel on top of the other.

  7. Add some Altenew Enchanted Gold ink to the inside of an embossing folder and dry emboss through a cutting machine. This transfers the ink into the recesses of the embossed panel.

  8. Add this gold imprinted panel onto the three rectangles already stacked up to create a dimensional panel for the florals to sit on. Attach this to the pink rectangle.

  9. Adhere your flowers and leaves to the imprinted panel

  10. Stamp the sentiment, 'Have a super day' from the Altenew Sentiment Strips XXX set using Lava Rock dye ink.

  11. Die cut the sentiment using the Altenew Featured Sentiments dies. I know; I use these a lot. They're just soooo good! Sorry, not sorry, haha.

  12. Die cut another three blanks out of the watercolour cardstock and adhere them together before attaching the stacked sentiment to the card base, with the stamped sentiment on the top.

Top Tip: You don't have to have realistic coloured flowers if you don't want to. Play around with different colour combinations to come up with something a bit different.

Card Two - Using Dye Inks to Smoosh a Coloured Background

I hadn't realised until I came to blog about this card that I'd chosen a similar colour scheme to my first card. Oh well, it is a nice colour scheme! For this card, I created a clean and simple card using a smooshed dye ink background.

Here's how it came together:

  1. Die cut a heart shape out of watercolour cardstock.

  2. Create a 'watercolour' by smooshing ink onto a piece of acetate, then add a little bit of water to create 'paint'. This time make the paint slightly looser.

  3. Gently press your watercolour card heart onto your 'palette' to apply colour. Note: This technique works well because it's on textured cardstock. This means there is a tooth to the paper, where some of the ink won't reach, creating a mottled background. Set aside to dry.

  4. Once dry, using the Altenew Ditsy Print stamp set and black ink, stamp the floral image onto the smooshed heart. Remember, you could use dye ink pads, shimmer sprays, re-inkers, or any other watercolour medium to paint them.

  5. Attach the heart panel to a larger bordered heart.

  6. Using the Altenew Floral Lace Die, die cut a panel out of chocolate-coloured cardstock.

  7. Tie some Altenew Metallic Thread around the chocolate panel before adhering it to the card base.

  8. Attach the completed heart to the chocolate panel.

  9. To finish the card, stamp the 'happy birthday' sentiment from the Soft Blossoms stamp set, using (wait for it .... The Featured Sentiments die set) and layer this up with the shadow die cut in pink.

Top Tip: Metallic thread is a great way to add a bit of interest without taking away from the overall design.

Card Three - Using Shimmer Sprays to Colour Stamped Images

Well, this card was a faff to get completed. All user error! I started off with a design in mind that didn't work and then carried on playing to fix it. I will share the other versions I created so you can see why I wanted to change the design. It was just not working.

Then the shaker element - another bit to muck up! I could tell you how I created the shaker element, but the truth is, for some reason, shaker cards fry my brain, so I always default to Jennifer McGuire videos to remind myself which bit goes where! I will do my best to explain what I did :)

Now, I don't have any Altenew shimmer sprays, so I used some that I've had for about 15+ years (not joking!) This masterclass made me think about my sprays differently :) They would have been in a drawer for another 15+ years if I hadn't watched this masterclass! Why did I not think of taking the lid off to use the contents when the lids got blocked - Facepalm moment!!

Here's how this final card was made:

  1. Stamp and emboss the flowers in the Altenew Soft Blossom's stamp set, using Versamark clear ink with Altenew's Rose Gold Embossing Powder.

  2. Using shimmer sprays, colour the images. If you're trying to recreate my colours, I would say that the Altenew Orange Cream and the Dusk Metallic Shimmer Sprays would be good substitutes.

  3. Using the turquoise paint and some Altenew gold metallic paint, add some splatters to the coloured image.

  4. Create a shaker card window by die cutting a rectangular stitched panel in a watercolour card, and then create an opening by die cutting a circle to the left middle of the panel.

  5. Repeat this process three more times with scrap plain white cardstock, layering the pieces together to create the thickness you need.

  6. Once you've got your scrap panels layered together, add a piece of acetate behind the opening on the watercolour card panel and stick that to the front of your card to create the acetate window.

  7. Because the left-hand side of the circle has a gap, and sequins could fall out, I needed to add some strips of card to close the gap. (See, this is why I refer to Jennifer! Brain officially fried!)

  8. Add some sequins to the shaker card base.

  9. Die-cut a gold glitter strip which I added to cover the messy strips where I had the gap!

  10. Die-cut the leaves from Altenew's Leaf Canopy die set and adhere this to the side of the circle

  11. Stamp the 'happy birthday' sentiment in Altenew's Tide Blue ink and the Soft Blossoms stamp set.

  12. To finish, you know what I'm going to say - Die cut the sentiment using the fab-u-lous Featured Sentiments die set.

  13. Using the turquoise shimmer spray, paint some watercolour card to create a custom-made background for your sentiment to sit on

  14. Die cut another two blanks out of the watercolour cardstock and adhere them together before attaching the stacked sentiment to the card base, with the stamped sentiment on the top.

Oh, and the gold leaves die cut to the right of the circle - I got glue on my acetate panel, ugh, so needed a fix. Enter the Leaf Canopy die - saving the day - yay!

Top Tip: Sometimes, your mistakes can guide you to a better or whole new design. Go with the flow and see what creative things come out of your mishaps!

Here are the original designs that I had been playing with and hated. I had added the gold frame to the first one as I label my cardstock with the initials of the company, and for this design, I totally forgot to turn the card over before stamping and colouring! I had the initials DR - Daler Rowney on the top left, so needed something to cover it up! I just felt the gold frame was too much for the orange flowers; a bit distracting, plus it had frayed slightly. Despite adding gold thread and turquoise ribbon, I decided to go for a complete change of design.

See, I told you this was a nightmare card!

I hope you've enjoyed seeing the final design and hearing about my muck-ups! I do think your muck-ups allow you to get more creative, though, and I'm pleased with how the card eventually turned out.

That's it from me for now. I'd love to hear which card you liked the most. My favourite is the first one.

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Erum Tasneem
Erum Tasneem
Jun 12, 2023


Ruby 2 Shoes
Ruby 2 Shoes
Jun 12, 2023
Replying to

😂 Aww, thank you 😀


Beautifully done Ruby! On their own, each one is wonderful. If I had to choose a favorite, it would be the first one as well. The colors you came up with are gorgeous together! The Organic linen embossing behind the floral piece is a perfect choice! The gold really brings out the details too. Your work is awesome!

Ruby 2 Shoes
Ruby 2 Shoes
Jun 09, 2023
Replying to

Thank you for taking the time to comment, and for your lovely feedback :) Have a fabulous weekend :)

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