Friday, December 17, 2010

Just Missing You! (damask digi paper freebie & tutorial)

I'm "just missing you"...

Heather Ellis digi Boy & the Dog card by mel stampz, in honour of the holidays, I thought I'd post a couple of cards this week.

For today's post, this ultra simple
3 1/4" by 6 1/4" card
(with a little digi paper freebie and a short how-to).


digital image shopping:

I was ever so excited to find the website & digital image
shop of the artist Heather

... extraspecially since I love MFT stamps so much (including her Pure Innocence and Boy & the Dog series), but I must admit I have found myself drawn to digital so much of late. I like that I can scale them down and I'm a MESSY stamper so digi actually saves me paper. (I still have to find the perfect ink, I guess).

I embossed this little pair of friends from my inkjet printer
(on some white paper painted with Matte Medium):

CLOSE boy & the dog Heather Ellis digi

...and coloured them very lightly with pale Copic marker colours. Then,
scratched the paper with a paper piercing tool to get texture:

texture on boy & dog by mel stampz

I scratched a cross-hatch pattern onto the boy's pants
I also added white dots of gel pen on his sweater.
His doggy got fur texture scritches.

Do you guys like different textures?
(Or am i just a weirdo)? ;o) heehee

and Great news if you're looking for a previously retired Heather Ellis image: It just might be back! There's a note on her site detailing that she's decided not to discontiue her images, since she's had so many requests to keep them available.


pencil damask patterned paper

DIY embossed pencil damask paper

So, I'm broke, ya know?
...but really it's true!

Hence, I'm always trying to find ways to get a fresh new look on things
without breaking the bank. This do-it-yourself damask paper has been
super useful in my projects lately (and relatively costless)
so I thought I'd share a copy of it...
and share how you can make your own.

Click the image or links
to download pencil damask paper.

The paper is available for download from
my account at here

When you get to,
just click the little green download button in the top left corner:

If you have any trouble downloading from acrobat
please see this post describing how to do it.

If you're still stuck, feel free to comment here or drop me


make your own digital patterned paper
with a hand-drawn damask pattern:

Step 1) Create a single damask element. (The sneaky trick is that you only need one shape will be repeated to make the pattern).

Draw one, or use a digital or rubber/acrylic stamp; clipart etc... (following copyright, of course) ;o)

Don't like to draw, but want a hand drawn look? You can trace a copyright free image (public domain images are great!) Just lay tracing paper over & use a nice sharp pencil (I love mechanical pencil)

Step 2) Scan your damask element. I scanned it as a colour photograph and at a high resolution (600) for detail & flexibility.

Step 3) Open your damask image in Photoshop (or other software) & Clean it up, cropping & fixing any areas you like using the eraser tool or paint brushes. I didn't worry about getting the image perfect, since I wanted it to look hand drawn.

Step 4) Turn Your scanned image into a photoshop brush.(Not sure how to do that? Here's a great tutorial by Dani for how to make a brush in Photoshop.)

and then

Step 5) Repeatedly "stamp" your new photoshop brush in a pattern to make a piece of digital paper. I made mine dark by "stamping" the brush in black & then adjusted it to use later by making it pale (under the "image" tab > "adjustments" > "hue & saturation" > then slide the scale bar to increase the "lightness"

Step 6) Print the image out to make your very own paper. To emboss mine, I just...

A) brayered a thin layer of Matte Medium (by Golden) onto white cardstock,
B) had the clear embossing powder ready,
C) printed it in the digital printer (my printer is a Canon Pixma 260),
D) quickly sprinkled the embossing powder on the wet printer ink and heat it to melt it...

et voilĂ , homemade embossed damask paper!

Blogger pictures for those who prefer them...

(Simply click on the photos to see them larger
& click back to return to this post). :o)

Digital Image: The Boy & the Dog by Heather Ellis

To emboss the image: Inkjet printer, White cardstock & Matte Medium by Golden; clear embossing powder, heat gun

Pale Copic markers: E50 eggshell; E00 skin white; BG10 cool shadow; B00 frost blue; V000 pale heath; V95 light grape; cool grays: C1 & C3. (Please see this tutorial for a disclaimer on digi embossing & copics.)

To emboss the sentiment: word doc. with coloured phrase, vellum cardstock, inkjet printer, clear embossing powder, heat gun.

Miscellaneous: Fuzzy snow paper (gift from my BFF Kimmy, sorry no source); paper piercing tool to score texture into image & pierce holes for sewing, needle & gray thread

I hope your days are bright and beautiful this winter!

P.S. By the by, this is an unsolicited post. I just bought some Heather Ellis images on etsy a while back and thought you all might find the shop info handy for last minute digi cards. :o)

Copyright notice: this damask image copyright M. McCarthy 2010 and
is for personal use only, please. :) Feel free to sell handmade items made with this, but not digital ones. Thanks!


Lydia Fiedler said...

Why you gotta make me love you so much???


Chris said...

Miss you too and I love it when you feel like popping up with a card -- they are well worth the wait!! :) I love the textures you use - hadn't thought of scritch scratching it in like

MA said...

Love how you did this PI image. I have most of Heather's digis and a lot of the clear stamps. Thanks for sharing your talent!

slbt17 said...

WOW! I fell like I hit the jackpot with this post! Thank you - love your card - and LOVE Heather's work!

Dawn said...

adorable, adorable! YES! I love all your texture...his pants are too cute!!!

and thanks for the lesson too! you're sooooo schmart!!!


Tiffany said...

Yeah!! So wonderful to see you in my inbox again!! =) Great paper tutorial!! Love it!

Anonymous said...

Just a quick note to let you know that a link to this post will be placed on CraftCrave today [18 Dec 01:00am GMT]. Thanks, Maria

Erum Tasneem said...

Gorgeous Mel!

Lenoria said...

Thanks for posting this card and I'm glad you are feeling well enough to post occasionally. I have missed seeing your creative stuff! I too am financially challenged right now (not working)and it is very hard for me to not buy since I see so many crafting toys that I want. So thank you for "enabling" me to use my head and the stuff I already have.

g said...

oh Mel this is so beautiful- such soft coloring and gorgeous textures! we're all missin' you too!! {{GIANT HUGS}}

katemade designs said...

Your talent and ingenuity never cease to amaze me. This is lovely.

sofietjes handwerken said...

that is great mel.
I ave set the paper to my computer is great.
And the card is great also.
Greetings sofie from belgium.

Charodeya said...

Thank you very much! It is a great idea!!)))

Crafting Queen said...

Love your card! Have a great Christmas.

Dotty Jo said...

Hey babe! Great to see a marvellous Mel creation again! great work and thanks for the tut! Jo x

Dorcas said...

LOve your card! Its precious!

leslie (crookedstamper) said...

You so TOTALLY rock! I love the texture on the boy & dog images. I'm gonna need to try that Matte stuff on white to emboss some of my digital images. xo

Nancy S said...

Oh me, oh my--what a wonderful card full of amazing techniques! I love, love, love the scratching to make textures on the white images--brilliant! And embossing straight from the printer; I know that you have shown this before, but I've never tried it (been afraid to have embossing powder anywhere near my computer). Maybe I can run to the nearby bathroom while the paper is still wet...

Chelsea said...

I love how you distressed the image by scratching it up!!! wonderful! and thanks for the free digi paper and instructions!

Deebi27 said...

Thanks for the paper gift and the great ideas about tectureing the papers...I am thinking about tree bark...Wow! I am sooo pleased about these baby steps! Welcome back!

Kim Etherington said...

Fab card. Got your mojo back I see. Love the details and textures.

Anonymous said...

So glad to see you back again! Love the textures and will try it out! Hugs and Merry Christmas.

mekei said...

you know i don't know what i enjoy most - your sense of humor, your inspirational projects, or your amazing techniques. quite a toss up!

Emma said...

Love the digi, thanks so much for sharing!

Jessie/knightrone said...

Very pretty Mel!

Charodeya said...

Mel, I used your idea, thank again!

ileana said...

How gorgeous! as everything you do.... Thank you for the paper and the tutorial how to do our own. Have a wonderful Holiday, Mel! take care, hugs!

Jen said...

thank you for sharing. make it merry!!

Priyanka said...


Ur all tut help me a lot, as I dont have much crafting material so I make everything for me, I also make my own pattern paper but just dont understand this one and cant stamp it as u say here "Repeatedly "stamp" your new photoshop brush in a pattern to make a piece of digital paper. " my brush mooving around with my mouse movement and and I cant stamp it plz looking forward for your help.

Thanks a lot for ur every tutorial

rosebudinnh said...

amazing,as always......thanks....Rose

mel m. m. mccarthy said...

Hi Priyanka,

Sorry to hear that photoshop is giving you trouble. I know it can be frustrating. I'm still befuddled by some things after a couple of years of playing around in it. :)

To stamp with your brush you click with the mouse. On my mouse it's left click. Every time you click, you get a new "stamp"

Here's a video on how to make a PS brush & patterns:

brushes and patterns in photoshop

Hope that helps you out. Please don't hesitate to email me any time you have a question. I might not know the answer but I'll be happy to try & help you find it!

Happy crafting,

Georgee said...

Fantastic tutorial!!! Love it. Also how you added texture to the digi elements. Great!!! Thanks so much for sharing your knowledge with me and everyone.