Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Handmade Sympathy Cards

I had an interesting conversation with my neighbor this afternoon. She's been going through some boxes of letters and cards that have been in her attic. You know how you have those boxes in your attic that you put there when you moved in and you never looked at them again?

She had letters and cards from decades ago - including letters from her sister, who had recently passed away. She spent a lot of time reading over them and finding some treasures.

I haven't written an actual letter in a long time, but I remember stationery, and writing letters and trying to focus on my handwriting.

A different time, for sure. There won't be boxes of emails to look through, that's for sure.

Send those cards out.

I've had to make a few sympathy cards lately, and those are harder cards to make. I think as cardmakers, we want to make sure particularly those are perfect and send the right message.

For me, that means abstraction, and so that's what I did for these two.

Remember the Duoprinting with Chlorophyll video? This technique is one of my faves for sympathy cards. This particular plant had a hint of purple in it, so I made the card base Wild Lilac. The sentiment (love this scripty font) is from this set, stamped in Nocturne in the MISTI.

Sometimes when you have a new photopolymer stamp that's a sentiment, and it hasn't been inked yet so it's hard to align - you can do this little trick. Put your card base down in the MISTI, and take the imaging sheet from the stamp, which is so much easier to see. Align that sheet on your card so the sentiment is straight, hold it down with a magnet, line up the stamp on top of the sheet, close the lid and pick up the stamp. Just a little trick that makes it easier for this old blind lady.

Next, staying with abstraction, I thought I'd be brave and try a little Eclipse technique on a hand painted landscape. I used Kyanite (a sparkly blue grey - you can see some of the sparkles on the mountain), Moonglow, Jadeite, Mummy Bauxite and Mayan Dark Blue on a piece of watercolor paper I had sprayed with water so the colors would move on their own. Just a few strokes and it sort of looked landscapey. I let it dry and then I used this heart die to cut that panel as well as three more from white cardstock. I had noticed that most of the sentiments in this set fit inside that heart, so that was perfect. I matted the watercolor paper with black, attached that to the card base, and then glued all the hearts together and glued them into the opening on the watercolor paper. The sentiment was stamped in Nocturne on top. This is the perfect sympathy set with 21 sentiments and some beautiful images, that come with this matching die set.
Simon Says Clear Stamps MOMENTS OF...
[ SSS ]
Simon Says Stamp ORNATE LOVE Wafer...
[ SSS ]
Simon Says Stamp MOMENTS OF GRACE...
[ SSS ]
VersaFine Clair Ink Pad, Nocturne -...
[ ELH | SSS ]
Kyanite Daniel Smith Watercolor
[ BLIC ]
Moonglow - Daniel Smith Watercolor
[ BLIC | SSS ]
Mummy Bauxite Daniel Smith Watercolor
[ BLIC ]
Mayan Dark Blue Daniel Smith Watercolor
[ BLIC ]
Jadeite Genuine - Daniel Smith...
[ BLIC | SSS ]
Daniel Smith Extra Fine Watercolors
[ BLIC ]
Escoda Versatil Brushes, Travel Round...
[ UTR | BLIC | INK ]
Therm O Web Gina K Designs WILD LILAC...
[ SSS ]
Fabriano Extra White Cold Press...
[ BLIC ]
MISTI Stamping Tool
[ MSW | HA | SSS | ELH | MFT | UNT ]
Sizzix BIG SHOT EXPRESS Gray and...
[ SSS ]
Lawn Fawn STAMP SHAMMY Cleaner LF1045
[ SSS | ELH | CST | ART ]
Rotatrim Professional Series Cutter -...
[ BLIC ]
Tombow MONO MULTI Liquid Glue Two...
[ SSS | MFT | ART | BLIC | ELH ]
LightView 2in1 LED Magnifier for...
[ BRG ]
Heavy Base Weight Card Stock- White
[ GNK ]
Mudder 10 Pack White Buffer Sanding...
Essentials by Ellen Storage...
[ ELH ]
Teflon Bone Folder - Ellen Hutson LLC
[ ELH | SSS ]

Hope you're having a great week - it's COLD here. Much colder than normal.



  1. Such beautiful cards Lydia. I remember the Duoprinting video well. When you first posted it there were no green leaves here to be found so I waited 'patiently' for spring to srrive here and it was the first thing I did. After making multiples using many different species, there they sat on my desk upon the stack of other unfinished backgrounds for over a year! LOL They were so beautiful all I wanted to use them for were sympathy cards. (I am a weird breed as I prefer making sympathy cards to any other. Not for the occasion itself but because it gives me chance to make something thoughtful and elegant.) I have to say I was glad I waited to use them as when the idea came for how I would finish them, the outcome was beautiful.
    Thanks for sharing this great technique.

  2. The eclipse card is seriously the most beautiful card that I have seen in a long time.

  3. As I was getting my Christmas cards ready, I thought to myself that we need holiday sentiments for those that are having their first holiday without their companion. I have a friend who just lost her husband. How do you wish them a Merry Christmas when their heart is breaking? Your cards are so lovely and I really like the sentiments in this set.

  4. Beautiful sympathy cards. I love that Duoprinting with Chlorophyll process that I learned when you first posted it, and I've used it multiple times since. I also love your reminder to send cards. Old cards and letters are such priceless treasures, and it makes me sad to think we are losing that.

  5. Seeing these just made me feel sad. They are extremely beautiful! I remember trying that technique when you first showed it. I went outside (on purpose) and gathered so many different kinds of botanicals from the yard. What I found is that Hawai'i must be wetter than the rest of the world! The plants turned to wet mushy pulp in the Big Shot lol!!! I tried less of a sandwich, and lots of watery stuff came out of the plants. I'll try again. I love how yours turned out! TFS Lydia ♥

  6. Both cards are stunning. Your watercolor eclipse takes my breath away. I have been playing in my spare time with watercolor and all I am getting is fails which is ok because the process soothes the soul. I have a gorgeous sentiment I really want to make my own background for but it looks like it's going to have to wait until I practice more. I always admire your work but after my failed attempts I am even more in awe. You are in my thoughts.

  7. It hurts to realize how timely this post is, even though it was surely created days or even weeks ago. Your cards are beautiful. I am carrying you on my heart.

  8. You are an amazing artist, I love the landscape one. We just need to live closer to each other


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