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Monday, 28 March 2011

Crafty Cardmakers Decoupage Spotlight Tutorial

This week's spotlight theme at Crafty Cardmakers was chosen by me and it is all about 3D Decoupage. Traditional decoupage is decorating objects and items of furniture with paper cut outs and applying up to 12 layers of lacquer. However the majority of crafters know it as creating a 3D image by layering up parts if an image and mounting on 3D foam to create a highly dimensional focal point to your card or project.

If you have never done decoupage before I have created 2 projects for this spotlight to highlight different ways that you can ease yourself in gently.

First of all, anyone who shops in the traditional craft retail outlets will have seen the die cut decoupage packs which are the easiest way of starting. As you can see in the example below, all the layers are numbered making it very easy to follow. Just be careful taking them out of the main sheet, use tiny scissors to cut the paper tabs if they don't come out completely.

I would suggest that assemble one layer at at time so you don't get confused with which layer is next. If you are a complete novice this is the easiest way of not getting into a mess. You may find there are a lot of layers and in this case I would suggest that you use foam pads that only 1 or 2mm thick to reduce how deep the overall design is. As you can see in the image below, there are a lot of layers in this image so I used 1mm pads.

The only real downside with using pads may be that you have to be careful with your placement when you are layering your image as you generally only get one chance to place it an it is stuck.You may also want to try decoupage gel which enable you to create your own depth and can be more forgiving when you are assembling the layers.

I used this image to make an easel card as below:-

One of my favourite styles of cardmaking is to use a digital image that I have coloured and decoupage certain areas to add dimension and more interest. I have used a very simple image to show you how easy it is to create this with your own images, either stamped or digital.

In the example above you can see that Image 1 is the complete digital image. First of all you need to decide what the layers will consist of and this will dictate how many times you need to produce the layer. In my case I have used a graphics program to crop each layer so that I only print out the part I need. You may decide to print the full image and just cut it down with scissors. Just do whatever you feel comfortable with. As you will see on layer 1 I have coloured only the stem and the outside edge of the petals. This bottom layer can be your practice layer if you want to experiment with your shading as a lot of it will be covered up. You do not need to colour in everything but I would always suggest that at least put a colour edge around the next layer up so that you wont see any white gaps in between the foam pads. It will make your card look a lot neater and more professional.

Layer 2 I have again coloured in the same way. The final layer #3 is simply popped on the top and you have a completed, entirely coloured image with 3D layering.

You will see how the design of this flower lends itself to 3 very simple layers. You may find the image you choose may need more or less. How complex you make it is entirely up to you. You may find as you do more of this of this technique that you will take on more complex images with more intricate layers. It is a great way of using your images in a new way and making them more versatile.

We've got a sponsor for this Spotlight Challenge which is from

Fancy Folds and Motion Paper Crafts CD worth $17.95 to one lucky winner.

I hope this tutorial will give you the confidence to have a go and I look forward to seeing your projects for this Spotlight on Decoupage. Please take a look at the projects my fellow teamies have made, there are some absolute stunners.


Josephine said...

Great tutorial - thank you!

Anonymous said...

Fabulous tutorial. Very clear and easy to follow. xx

Star said...

Gorgeous cards, and fabulous tutorial! Thanks!!