Wednesday, September 2, 2009

How To ~ Make a Sky/Cloud Template (and use it!)

What is this, you say? No, it's not some kind of new funky card design. It's not a very poor attempt at creating a lop-sided turtle made of punches! It's a template that YOU can make to create realistic sky and cloud effects on your cards and scrapbook pages! I made this template using a large Scallop Circle Die Cut and 5 Scallop Circles Punchies (out of scrap cardstock, obviously). Using scotch tape (you can see the back in the smaller photo), I attached the scallop Circle punchies at varying depths and spacing around the Die Cut. The idea is to get a variety of scallop configurations so that as you sponge ink on your project, nothing will line up, giving you a random cloud-like effect.

Okay, here's how you use it once you create it. Using ink and a Stamping Sponge (I used Ballet Blue Ink and I cut my sponges in quarters), begin at the top of your cardstock, lightly sponge ink over the template. Working from the top to the bottom, move the template down and rotate it, each time apply a little more sponged ink. Keep working until you get to the bottom of the cardstock. If you like, go back over areas of the sky and add touches of yellow, pink, purple or any other color you want your sky to be, again, turning and rotating the template to give a random (rather than a uniform) effect. That's it! It's pretty simple really and so easy to make the template. The template can be used hundreds of times until it gets so saturated with ink that it's falling apart. Then simply pull out your punches and scraps and make a new one. This would be a great project to do with a Stamp club and each member would have a template to take home and use!

Okay, now for a couple of ideas of what to do with a sponged sky and clouds! Here's my first one (click on the image to view as larger). The sky is sponged with Ballet Blue, So Saffron and just a touch of Almost Amethyst. I stamped the bold flower image from Inspired by Nature directly over the sponged sky, added a book plate, ribbon and sentiment and you have a quick and beautiful card, ready to send to someone you care about!

And here's another idea using the Cheap Talk Stamp Set. The sky here is sponged with Bermuda Bay and So Saffron. I put some texture on the Bermuda Bay cardstock using the Big Shot and a Texturz Plate. The polka-dot paper is Thoroughly Modern Designer Series Paper and the ribbon is 5/8" Polka-Dot Grosgrain. Cute, don't you think!

There you go -- perfect sky and clouds everytime! Have fun stamping and sponging!

Blessings, Gretchen


  1. What a GREAT idea! I've been thinking about how to get a more random effect, never came close to this, but I think its perfect. Thanks!

  2. Thank you, great idea, I have always struggled to do this! TFS, HUgs always!

  3. Love this!! Thanks for posting the tutorial, now I can try my hand at this!!

  4. with all that is happening with su!, i have learned that you are a su!-oriented blog. does this mean that i must use only su! products when i join a challenge?

  5. Thanks Gretchen, this is a perfect idea, and it can be used over and over again.

  6. Response to comment by RUSH -

    Even with all the changes at SU! you may still use any thing you like to complete the challenges and link back here. We will be posting a more in depth article on this soon, but for now, the only links we must remove are those that link back directly to an online store or blog that is selling a competing product directly from the site.

    As much as the operators love SU! and are loyal to the company and their products, we and SU! understand that there are many products that can spur your creativity. We want you to feel free to play with the challenges each week with your choice. We only ask that you help us to honor our contracts by not selling directly from your blog and then linking back to us.

    Great question, RUSH, so glad you asked!

  7. Gretchen! You are a rock star! This is absolutely gorgeous! I like the idea of making it random! Woo hoo!

  8. I was just perusing your blog and the How-To posts. For the clouds, if you wanted to have a lasting cloud template (not having to worry about recreating) you could use the SU! window sheets or acetate sheets purchased from an office supply store. I have done that to be able to use coluzzle ovals and circles as frames and have used them over and over and over and . . .

  9. That's awesome. As a result of this post I made some clouds; mine were different because I didn't have quite the same tools.