Make a Slimline with a Standard Background Die

Slimline cards seem to have a new awakening in the crafting world, and companies are starting to make a few slimline dies that we can purchase. For those of us on a budget who might not have a slimline die yet, I wanted to share a way you could “stretch your supplies” and use a standard die instead.

I used those words deliberately. Today, I am showing you how to “stretch” a standard-size background die into a size that will allow you to create this Life is Beautiful Lemons card.

This card was originally created for the Craft Roulette challenge, but, unfortunately, I broke the rules again, so I was not able to submit it. After you watch the tutorial, you can read why I wasn’t able to participate in this week’s challenge.

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As you saw in the video, I was able to take the standard 4ยผ” x 5ยฝ” Stitched Lattice Background Die and use it to create a background for my slimline. This is easy to do when you know how to place your die onto the cutting plates.

When you create your first cut, make sure to stop before you get to the bottom of the die. In the first photo, you can see how the bottom portion of the die hasn’t gone through, yet. I simply moved my plates back towards me before it cut through and removed the die.

To create the bottom half of the slimline background, place the die so that the top portion is above the plates. This prevents any pressure on the die and prevents it from cutting through your paper. You can also use this process to create a border for a scrapbook page using a standard die as I did on my Parade Layout.

After I finished assembling the base of the card, I added a denim hexagon and some floral images that I shaded with SpectrumNoir Metallic markers. I wanted to create a metallic wash on the images, so I watered down the marker pigment on a paint palette and used a watercolor brush to shade the flowers with Silver Ingot and Red Garnet.

As I was shading the remaining portions of the images with watercolor paints, I realized that I had broken the rules. The parameters for this week’s challenge were: Slimline Card, Tasty Treat, Polka Dots, and Yellow+2. I had added a fourth color.

At this point, I decided to continue with the project because I wanted to make sure I finished this tutorial. After all, my goal was to show you how to “stretch” those standard-size background dies and share how I shaded the images with watered down metallic markers.

I could have attempted to make another card to submit for the Craft Roulette challenge, but life took over, and it just didn’t happen. Oh, well. Maybe next time I will try to follow the rules.


I hope that this project inspired you to use your metallic markers in a new way and a “stretch” those background dies into a few slimline cards. If you have any questions about this project or the supplies listed below, feel free to leave a comment.

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here is a list of some supplies I used today (View All My Supplies Here)

Tuesday Tip: Create a Swatch Book

Do you keep track of all the markers, paints, pencils, and inks you own OR do you trust you can find them in your craft space and hope that you don’t buy doubles when your favorite craft store has a sale? If you are looking for a way to keep track and stay a little more organized, then today’s Tuesday Tip is for you.

In my latest Craft Space Tour, I briefly mentioned my Swatch Binder. Today, I am going to show you how I use this book and share ways that you can make a few swatches of your own.


For those who are new to color swatching, let me explain what these are and how I use them. Swatches allow you to see the dried result of a specific medium – paint, ink, gel, spray, etc. When you create a swatch, you can see the variety of tints, gradients, and patterns in that medium.

I keep all of my swatches in my planner because it travels with me everywhere. When I shop, I can check my swatches to see if I already own a specific color. When I am crafting, I use my swatches to match my papers or cardstock to the medium I plan on using.

In the video, I show how I create swatches for Spectrum Noir Triblends and Watercolor Paints. The alcohol marker swatches are self-explanitory. I simply shade in the area with the color label.

Watercolors are swatched a little differently. When I use watercolors, I can change the shade of the pigment by adding more water. I created my swatches to show the variation of pigment to water ratios.

I have labeled both my watercolor swatches and my watercolor palette using a label maker. This may seem a bit tedious, but it is much easier for people to read the labels when I am teaching in-person and online.

Once I have completed a swatch sheet, I use a Disc Punch to add it to my planner. If you don’t want to use a disc planner, you can create a three-ring binder full of swatches or add it to an artist’s notebook.

No matter how you organize your swatches, they will be a great reference for you. If you would like to learn how to create a swatch book of your own, go ahead and watch today’s Tuesday Tip!

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My swatch book stays in my craft space and goes with me when I shop and go to weekend retreats. I keep it near when I am crafting so that I can see which colors will go best with a pattern paper I am using. These swatches also come in handy when my favorite craft shop is having a sale. No more buying doubles of my favorite ink or marker. ๐Ÿ˜‰

I hope that today’s Tuesday Tip inspired you to create a swatch book of your own. If you have already made one, I would like to know how you store your swatches. Feel free to comment below and tell me about your swatch book or post any questions you have.

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Some of the links on this page are affiliate links. By clicking on those links and making a purchase, you are helping to support my small business. This is at no additional cost to you. Thank you for your support.


here is a list of some supplies I used today (View All My Supplies Here)

Welcome to the Strong Roots Blog Hop

Can you believe that it is already July?! Time flies when you are having fun in the craft space. This month, our team of Makers has another incredible set of projects using the stamp of the month. If you plan on getting this etched images stamp set, then you will want to save a few of these ideas because, today, we are going to inspire you. 

What is a blog hop? This is a wonderful way for you to gather a few ideas for using a specific element on your projects. You may be just starting here or you may have come from Gina Brandstetterโ€™s blog โ€“ either way, you are in the right place.  When you are finished viewing my Welcome Home card and video tutorial, click the link at the end of my post to โ€œhopโ€ on over to the next website. If you get lost along the way, you will find the complete list of participating consultants on Melindaโ€™s Blog.


Let me start by saying that this month’s design is one that I don’t usually share with others, but a friend told me that I needed to show all of my creations and stop fearing what people think. So, today, I am sharing my vintage-inspired Welcome Home card along with a video tutorial showing you how to make one of your own. 

This month’s card does have a few retired products paired with the Strong Roots stamp set. My package of new paper was lost in the mail, and I did not arrive in time to make my design, so I used paper that I hoped would carry over into this month. Unfortunately, the mix-in papers sold out quicker than I imagined. 

Items like ledger paper, woodgrain paper, and tags are all items you can easily find within your craft stash, and, who knows, you might find something even better. 

This card design gave me a chance to play with my Distress Oxide Inks. I was able to create a blended background behind the cottage, use them as watercolors to shade the tree, and create some splatter using a waterbrush. 

The Strong Roots stamp set not only has some lovely etched images, it also contains a few simple sentiments. I chose to use the word “Home” for the front of my card, then added another sentiment inside that says “is where the heart is”. 

The distressed layers of torn paper, texture paste, tags, watercolor paper, and pewter elements remind me of a vintage drawing. I love how it all came together and I hope that you do, too.

If you would like to learn a few new ways to use your Distress Oxide Inks and create Welcome Home card of your own, I have created a simple video tutorial for you.

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I hope that my Welcome Home card inspired you to try something new and that you learned a few new ways to use the Strong Roots stamp of the month.  Now head on over to Wendy Kesslerโ€™s blog to see her work! Be sure to visit all of the blogs to get some great crafting tips and other fun ideas.  

Donโ€™t forget! The Strong stamp set is only available during July. Contact your CTMH Consultant, or visit my website to learn how you can get this stamp set FREE as a VIP or at a discounted price of $5.00 with a qualifying order.

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Some of the links on this page are affiliate links. By clicking on those links and making a purchase, you are helping to support my small business. This is at no additional cost to you. Thank you for your support.


here is a list of some supplies I used today (View All My Supplies Here)