The Next Level is a new Challenge Blog with lots on interesting articles and tutorials. It's first challenge is to create an aperture card, which must have a lollipop flower on it. I hadn't come across lollipop flowers before but there's a full tutorial provided on the blog so that was no excuse not to take part :).
I bought some sumptuous Basic Grey papers earlier this week in the Stamp Attic and was keen to use them, so that set my colour scheme as pinks, greens, browns and apricot. I chose papers for the flower and made it first, leaving it to dry, then I went on to make the card. I haven't made an aperture card before so I kept it simple and chose to cut a circle. I wanted the circle to be off-centre to make room for the flower and other embellishments, so I used a Nestie to cut a scalloped circle and stuck that in the right spot, then cut into that with a smaller circle.
The sitting Gorjuss Girl from Sugar Nellie works really well sitting at the edge of a circle, so I coloured her with watercolour pencils and a little bit of opaque white pen and placed her on the card, with some ribbon behind to make a stem for the flower. I filled the RH corners of the cards with flourishes from Elusive Images, stamped in green, and added a die-cut butterfly to the edge of the circle to balance out the sitting girl.
Then I moved on to the inner of the card. I used some lovely blotchy green paper and began with some grass, using a Stamps by Judith stamp and with a Penny Black tree. I gave the tree leaves and flowers with Tapestry stamps and added some flowers with Craftwork Cards clear stamps.
So far so good... until I decided to spray some iridiscent Glimmer Mist over the scene, to match the lollipop flower. The non-waterproof inks all began to run and I hastily dried it with a heat gun! I also learnt that I should have cut a large square of background, not cut the circle as of course it was a pain to line up and the white around it spoilt its look. I mounted it onto a dark square of paper, only to find that it wasn't quite parallel with the card edges and looked crooked. I solved this by cutting some lace borders from the papers and covering the top and bottom of the square.
I really enjoyed making the card even if the aperture was a steep learning curve :).