The Things I Learned Creating an Ugly Card

Sometimes, you have a brain full of muck, no inspiration to create, and you have a deadline for a project that just isn’t coming together. This has happened to me more times than I can count. I can choose to walk away and drink some coffee on the patio, hoping to find inspiration, or just throw a bunch of stuff onto a card base and see what happens. You can learn quite a bit when you just start tossing stuff down onto a project.

Today, I am going to share what I discovered while creating this ugly blue card and how I adjusted some of the elements to make something so much better. Now you might be saying to yourself “there is no such thing as an ugly card”, but, when I posted this on my social media feed, I had quite a few people telling me that this bright blue butterfly card needed to be tossed into the trash.

I won’t argue with them. This card is not my typical design, but, haphazardly grabbing random items allowed me to discover some design elements I wanted to replicate. Here is what I learned.


Backgrounds Set the Mood

On the first card, the background consists of a bright distress oxide combination of blue diamonds with splatters of Peacock shimmer. I do like the look of this, but it doesn’t quite fit the theme of the card. This bright background stands out above everything else causing you to miss out on other elements in the design.

On the second card, I chose a muted french vanilla background with texture paste, distress oxide ink, toffee splatter, and some torn paper. This simple background complements the other elements on the card and the beautiful texture doesn’t compete with the other objects.


Lines Are Important

When you are planning a project, you need to pay attention to the horizontal, vertical, and arching lines you create. They formulate balance and movement. On the first card, I have quite a few harsh vertical lines. I attempted to create some curves with the vellum wreaths in the background, but they don’t stand out enough to help with the flow and they are contrasting with the curve of the flower and the curve of the butterfly.

In an attempt to balance out some of the rose gold, I laid down diamond stickers with more harsh lines and they became a non-linked element that just distracts your eye from the rest of the mess.

When planning my second card, I scaled down the vertical lines with a simple wrapping of gold thread, created an arching flow with the placement of objects and thread circles, and added a horizontal element to ground the card. The flow of the design walks your eye gracefully from the top, through the garden to the loving sentiment.


Big & Bold Isn’t Always Best

Sometimes an object you choose might just be a wee too big and bold for your design and you might be better off finding a more useful way to use it.

On this card, I really wanted to use that beautiful layered butterfly thin cut, but it is a bit too large for a slimline card. I tried to make it fit by adding some other large elements around it, but I should have scaled it down some. Creating it from peacock or black cardstock may have helped it to stand on it’s own or I could have just nixed the butterfly and stuck with the simple flower sticker. With those changes, the card might have come together.

I did like how the vellum looked behind the layers, so I chose to replicate this on my second card. I added the third layer to the image, adhered it together without foam tape, and shaved a little bit off the edge. Not only does this scale down the image, but it also helps to create an illusion of design continuation.

Behind the butterfly die cut, I added some rose gold sprig stickers and wooden leaves to create the illusion of floating in a garden. The stickers were backed in white, so I used some of the distress oxide ink to shade the edges to match the background on the card.


From the ugly mess to a delicate balance, I was able to learn so much.

It’s a bit like life. This past month, my head was full of rude comments sent to me, retreat from private messages telling me that I wasn’t made of the “right ctmh material”, and the battle of fighting my insecure brain monsters. The enemy was working overtime and my brain became as unsettled, unbalanced, and ugly as that bright blue mess.

Like me, I am sure that you also struggle with the mess, the muck, and the ugliness, but I encourage you to do what I did. Throw it all out on the table – reveal the ugliness – learn from it and make something beautiful.

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

Welcome to the Slimline Card Blog Hop

Slimline cards have recently become a popular card design and many of you have been searching for inspiration to make a few slimlines of your own. This week, our talented blog hop team has been working diligently to create a few of these tall, thin card designs. We can’t wait to share a few ideas with you.

Our monthly blog hops are a wonderful way for you to gather a few ideas for future projects. Feel free to Pin these projects directly from each of our blogs and save them for later.  You may be just starting here or you may have come from Kim Loewen’s blog – either way, you are in the right place.  When you are finished viewing my Beautiful Butterfly Slimline Card, click the link at the end of my post to “hop” on over to the next website. If you get lost along the way, you will find the list of participating consultants on Melinda’s Blog.


This past month, my creative juices have not been flowing in the right direction. If you follow me on social media, you saw one of my recent attempts at a slimline design and, oh, boy, was it a mess. Even though that card did not turn out how I expected, I was able to learn from my mistakes and create something new.

This gorgeous butterfly card is a small reminder to myself – even after a messy month of disasters I need to remember to love myself. I need to give myself some grace, step away from the craft space, and be happy with the creative mess that I am. Little reminders like this are just God’s way of telling me that everything is going to be okay. 

It is for this reason that I used many of the elements from the You Are Enough collection. I just adore all the phrases, patterns, and rose gold elements in that collection. I purposely chose to use a piece of pattern paper that says “beautiful” on this card to add to all the other reminders to be good to yourself.

I also added an elegantly layered die-cut butterfly image to this card. The softness of the vellum plays so well against the soft cream color of the French Vanilla cardstock. I wish the photo could show you how lovely the texture paste background looks with the distress oxide ink. My poor camera has decided to go on strike and I am struggling to get well-detailed photos of my projects this month.


I hope that today’s project inspired you to create a slimline card of your own and I hope that you remember to take a little time to LOVE YOURSELF. Take care of your soul, spend some time in the sun, and enjoy creating something new this week.

Now head on over to  Darlys Recker’s blog to see her work!  Be sure to visit all of the team blogs to get some great crafting tips and other fun slimline card ideas. Remember, the You Are Enough collection is only available while supplies last. If there are any products currently on your wishlist, you might want to head on over to my site and grab them sooner than later.  

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You Are Enough Is Simply Stunning

In May, we celebrate Nation Scrapbooking AND Mental Health Awareness. For me, these two go hand-in-hand. Crafting and memory keeping are great ways to re-live your best memories. They can be cathartic exercises that help you remember the best in yourself and others. When you create artwork with positivity at its core, you not only renew the happy feelings associated with those memories, but you also create new ones as you continue to do what you love. That is just one of the many reasons why I am loving the new You Are Enough Collection!

This gorgeous gemstone-inspired collection is the perfect foundation for inspirational artwork. The You Are Enough suite is full of dazzling patterns, eye-catching foil accents, and uplifting sentiments. It includes a stunning combination of patterned papers, rose gold cardstock, stickers, sequins, pocket cards, stamps, and butterfly thin cuts, and it is perfect for scrapbook layouts, cards, and other personalized artwork.

Along with all the exciting products in the You Are Enough collection, this special also includes two discounted bundles and three workshop options. The discounted bundles are available at up to 30%-off and offer various groupings of You Are Enough products, so you can pick and choose the bundle that works best for you and your crafting vision.

Here is What Your Get in Your Everything Bundle

Of course, the Everything Bundle has the greatest discount, but you also have a few other bundles to choose from. The You Are Enough workshops include a cardmaking, a scrapbooking, and a 6″ x 8″ Everyday Life™ album workshop—each of which comes with pre-designed projects and instructions on how to put them together!

Each of these bundles includes the supplies you need to make the projects that will be featured at the You Are Enough Live Workshops in June. You can view each of the projects you are going to make and download the cutting guides using the links below.

You Are Enough Card Kit

Live Event June 21st

You Are Enough Scrapbook

Live Event June 25th

You Are Enough MiniAlbum

Live Event June 23rd


If you love these collections as much as I do, you are going to want to grab them soon because the items in the bundles are only available while supplies last. With all of these different options, the You Are Enough special is a treasure trove of creative possibilities and the perfect way to celebrate National Scrapbooking Month!

I have already started creating a few projects using You Are Enough including a Back to School scrapbook page and a few fun fold cards I created for the You Are Enough blog hop. Today, I spent a few minutes on my Facebook page showing how to make those fun fold cards I created for the blog hop. Here is a simple little tutorial for you.


The You Are Enough collection is full of possibilities and options. You can choose to purchase the items from the collection and create whatever you want or purchase the workshop kits and bundles available through this special.

Remember! There are two discounted product bundles available through the You Are Enough special. – the You Are Enough Paper Bundle is available at a 20% discount, and the You Are Enough Product Bundle is available at a 30% discount – BUT they are only available while supplies last. If you are on the fence about this collection, don’t wait too long. It may be gone before you climb down.

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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.