So what do I use as decorations nowadays?

In the beginning there was embellishment. Paper flowers, a minimum of three roses, ribbons, lace, metal charms, brads, rhinestones, half-pearls and chipboard… in short a world of plenty decorations.  Then slowly the urge of putting some three dimensional decoration on my cards died out.  Does this mean I hate these kind of decorations in cards when other people use them? Au contraire my friend! I admire those of you that can find the just amount of paper flowers, charms and and lace to make the card look balanced and not messy at all. I could not. I think that is why I stopped using them. Does that mean I do not decorate at all? Of course not. But I use more subtle things and definitely less. I show you what I mean in this card.

Type of project: Card
Occasion: birthday
Style: clear and simple – ish
Techniques used: ink-blending, colouring, die cutting,
Decoration: die cuts from foiled cardstock, shimmer paste, stains, sequins
Main colour: pink and plum
Media used: foiled cardstock, spray paint, watercolour pencils, shimmer paste
Equipment used: dies, stamps, stencil


The base is a quite simple card – a vase filled with beautiful flowers that I colored with Watercolor pencils and made a background using a stencil and some light blending with distress ink. Beautiful but a bit dull, to be honest. Yet I want to keep it simple. So what do I add? And just so you know I use the term embellishment in the widest sense possible.

First of all, shimmer. Everything gets better with shimmer. Shimmer comes in many forms. Sprays for example. Those are easy to use. But this time I chose a translucent shimmer paste and carefully and evenly sponged it out over the panel. Tada, much more interesting! I don’t know if you file shimmer under embellishment, but since I use it to finish my creations I think it deserves mentioning.

Second of all I like stains. Sometimes I do it with just paint and a brush.  If I want it real fine stained I use a toothbrush. But often I screw the cap off my spray paints pulling up the straw and just tap it over the paper. This way I get a small amount of stains over the panel. Nowadays I almost never leave a project unstained.

Thirdly, die cuts is obviously something I use for decorations. But let me be a bit more specific: foil is coming back big time. Well it’s been a while now. But as all trends it’s starts in one area; the hot foil machine, and then spread to the renaissance of foiled cardstock. And this time it’s thin enough to die cut intricate shapes in but thick enough to not fall apart in its layers. Love it! On this card I used it to cut a frame, a leaf and the text – meaning congratulations in Swedish.

Last but not least I use sequins. I haven’t been able to master the skill of shaker cards, seems like it’s not my cup of tea, but I do love buying these small bags with various colored and shapes of sequins that are purposed for shaker cards. But I glue them separately here and there often in groups of three or five.

Perhaps this gives you new perspectives on how to decorate you projects? I hope so!