Be Happy

Image of the completed Be Happy card showing a four leaf clover constructed from four heart shapes. The color scheme features a range of greens using the ColorSparx watercolor powders in Lime Green, Terre Vert, and Chartreuse. The card is laying on the worktable on top of stencils, additional heart cut outs and the three bottles of green Colorsparx powders.
Be Happy card 6″ x 6″ featuring ColorSparx watercolor powders in green shades

Are you ready for the arrival of Spring? I know I sure am! I’m watching everything turning green and growing again with great excitement! With the heralding of Spring also comes the fun holiday known in many countries as St. Paddy’s day. (Did you know it is named after St. Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland; hence ‘St. Paddy’ which is derived from the Gaelic name of Patrick spelled ‘Pádraig’). To celebrate the coming of Spring, St. Paddy’s day and all things green, I decided to create this “Be Happy” card in gorgeous shades of green ColorSparx powders.

The Crafter’s Workshop provided me with some product to create this project. The opinions I share are solely my own.

Today’s simple step-by-step process teaches you how to use stencils and ColorSparx powders to create a fun watercolor card.

HOT TIPS: Use watercolor paper to create the heart shapes, I used 140 lb / 300 gm weight paper. Don’t like or want to use green? Choose different shades of colors (be sure to use only two analogous colors that are next to one another on the color wheel). Don’t want to make a four-leaf clover? Make an extra heart and create a five petaled flower instead of a four leaf clover.

Follow along with these simple steps to create this beautiful card:

Step One: Very lightly sprinkle your choice of ColorSparx powders onto the watercolor paper. I used the three green shades of ColorSparx powders in Terre Vert, Chartreuse, and Lime Green.

Close up image showing the three bottles of green ColorSparx powders sitting adjacent to the watercolor paper that has been lightly sprinkled with the powders.

Step Two: Using a fine spray spritz bottle, spritz the water across the entire page to activate the ColorSparx powders.
HOT TIP: Do not spray too much water or the colors will all pool together and blend, losing the ColorSparx effect.

Close up image showing the Colorsparx watercolor powders that have now been activated by water that was spritzed lightly over them across the entire page.

Step Three: Once the colors are activated to your liking, dry the watercolor paper completely with your heat gun.
HOT TIP: Dry both sides alternately for several seconds with the heat gun to help prevent the paper from curling too much. Notice that I have my paper sitting on paper towel to catch any excess drips for easy clean up.

Image showing the now dried watercolor page with the green ColorSparx watercolor powders.

Step Four: Using the TCW5035 Single Heart stencil with a pencil, outline the hearts over the page and then cut them out. Cut out at least six heart shapes out so that you have several to choose from to use. After you have cut them out choose the four hearts you like best (choose five if you are making a flower instead of a four leaf clover).
HOT TIPS: Use the stencil cut out as a view finder window to find the parts of the paper that you like best, then trace the heart shape to capture that area. This is a great technique to use for master board projects too. Save the remaining hearts and cut offs as collage fodder for future projects.

Step Five: Using a black pen or stamp pad, apply black ink around the edges of the hearts you have chosen to use on the card front. For this project, I used a Faber-Castell Pitt Artist Pen brush in Black 199. Your focal point parts are now ready to be used; place them to the side for now, we’ll come back to use them shortly.

Close up image showing the Faber-Castell black Pitt Artist Pen brush sitting on top of two of the outlined, cut out heart shapes that were created from the ColorSparxed watercolor paper.

Next, you are going to create the background on the 6″ x 6″ card.

Step Six: Mix a tiny bit of each of the ColorSparx powders you used in a plastic palette with a little water to create watercolors. Wet the paper with plain water and a round paintbrush, then drop some of the watercolors into the water on the card and watch the magic as they blend into one another.
HOT TIPS: Add the colors one at a time, randomly, and in small amounts. Once the first color is on, drop the second color next to the first, randomly, and in small amounts. If you used a third color, repeat this process. As soon as the background color looks how you want it, dry it immediately with your heat gun. Hold the heat gun at least 2 inches from the surface of the card, and move it in small fast circular motions across the card to dry it completely. If the card curls, apply the heat to the back side to help flatten it back out. The more water you use, the more the card may curl.

Image of the 6" x 6" card with the watercolor background now dried.

Step Seven: Using ink color pads of your choice and ink applicator brushes, apply the ink lightly in circular motions through your chosen stencils. I used two pattern stencils in the top left and bottom right corners and one sentiment stencil to apply the words to my card. The stencils I used were TCW2317 Fence Grid Slimline Stencil, TCW922 Etheral Stencil 6″, and TCW585 Inspired Words Stencil 6″. The stamp pad ink colors I used were Rustic Wilderness Distress Ink, Speckled Egg Distress Oxide Ink, and Black Stayz On Ink.
HOT TIPS: Use the slimline stencil horizontally in two bands across the card. Layer the two pattern stencils to add additional depth and interest.

Step Eight: Glue the hearts to the card front, I used PVA white glue to attach the hearts. Outline the sentiment and hearts and add doodling as desired. I added a dashed line down the center of each heart to indicate a leaf vein.
HOT TIPS: I used acrylic paint pens by Signo uni-ball UM-153 in black and white..

I really hope you found these step-by-step instructions and photos to be helpful and that you feel confident enough to try this on your own. If you have any questions or feedback, please don’t hesitate to post them below.

Do you want to see this blog post as a fly-by video (1:22 min)? Hop on over to my YouTube Channel to watch it by clicking on this video link. I’d really love to hear which part of this process is your favorite and why, please leave me a comment, below! Have a great day and happy making, we *LOVE* to see your projects, so please be sure to tag us using our hash tag of #ilovestencils !

Michaela Butterworth
The Crafter’s Workshop Design Team Member

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4 thoughts on “Be Happy

  1. I just checked out your you tube channel – love it! One of the best I’ve seen. I’m now a subsriber.

  2. This is so well written that I feel confident that I can do it with my own Colorsparx colors! I really like how you made the hearts into a 4 leaf clover. Brilliant in color and design.

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