Today I have two cards I’m sharing that use simple striped backgrounds as the key feature. I think the important thing with backgrounds such as these is to get a cracking colour scheme to work with. I was browsing stripes on Pinterest the other day when I came across a sweater with an oatmeal background and bold stripes in mustard, black, terracotta and white. I continued browsing and came across multiple examples of similar jumpers all sporting lovely stripes, but I did notice dusky pinks making an appearance too. So I set about using Winsor & Newton Permanent White Gouache along with the American Crafts/Paper Fashion gouache sets. I recently took a closer look at these gouache media, and you’ll find that video on my blog and YouTube channel. I mixed a dusky pink, mustard, black, terracotta and oatmeal colours on a side plate as my palette and I love seeing these colours together. They reminded me of a lot of Instagram accounts I follow, which are using these warm autumn tones in the homes and also from illustrators for branding. I’ve linked all supplies at the end of this post. Compensated affiliate links used.
Watch below or in HD on YouTube.
SIMPLE PAINT STRIPED BACKGROUNDS
I used Arches hot pressed watercolour card as its smooth surface is ideal for getting smooth washes of colour when using gouache. I am terrible for being able to paint, draw or cut a straight line and so I marked the painter’s tape I’d used to adhere the card to a board at regular intervals in an attempt to keep my lines straight. Having said that I’m not too worried as I think one of the key elements of stripes such as this is their hand-painted look. A little imperfection works in your favour here giving that quirky hand-drawn look that’s so popular. I then painted the Arches card with a layer of the oatmeal mix. I kept the paint of a creamy consistency without using too much water to get the best coverage. I then dried this layer and set about painting a stripe of each colour from my test swatch, drying each layer before moving on to the next. Gouache is a watercolour medium, and as I brushed the stripes across the page, the stiff brush and moisture from the new layer reactivated the layer below. At first, I thought I’d have to repeat the process, but then when I looked at it, I really liked the variation in colour – again that quirky hand-painted look. Once I’d dried the panel for the last time, I removed the painter’s tape and trimmed the piece down to 3.5 by 5 inches in line with a 4 bar sized card.
I used my gouache paints today, but a simple striped background such as this could be recreated with a multitude of different options. You could use traditional watercolours or ink blend each area using masking paper to get clean lines between each stripe or colour each stripe with Copic markers or cut strips of coloured card. Whichever method you have the supplies for is the perfect method to give a lovely striped background a go.
For my other background, I wanted to create a repeat pattern using the five colours from the test swatch. Again there are numerous examples of this type of pattern on social media. The example I showed in the video is from Sara Boccaccini Meadows, and I loved the look of it, but it was a little too loose and random for my brain, and so I based my pattern more on that of Kirsten Sevig. When I paint with gouache I find that the most time-consuming aspect is washing my brush in between each colour – that gouache sure does like to get in among the bristles, and when you think your brush is clean it often isn’t. So with the prospect of changing colour so many times for a pattern such as this, I felt it easier to map out blocks on my card in pencil and then I could paint one colour at a time. All I had to do was paint the first block then count four spaces for the other colours then paint the next block. I dried the panel and then went in with a small Tombow mono eraser to remove the last of the pencil lines.
Ok, it’s now time to turn these two backgrounds into cards. For the first wide striped panel, I took the Outline Clustered Leaves die and cut it from Ivory card. I added Gina K Connect glue to key points and adhered the die-cut to the panel. I then wrapped a piece of twine around the card and tied on the back, and I think this adds a nice touch of texture to the card. I added three of the leaves from the Outline Clustered Leaves die offset and kept in place with more Gina K Connect glue. I added the panel to an Ivory card base, and then all that was left to do was the sentiment. I like simple sentiment strips and also felt this went well with the theme of the card so I took a birthday greeting from the Simple Sentiments 02 set from Cathy Zielske in collaboration with Simon Says Stamp and stamped it in clear embossing ink on black card, sprinkled over white embossing powder and then heat set before trimming to a skinny banner and adding over the leaf die cut with foam adhesive.
To embellish that card I used Nuvo droplets (Sugared Almond, Bubblegum Blush, Dark Walnut and Simply White) and here’s a top tip for you. I often squeeze out favourite colours onto a craft mat and leave to dry overnight. Then you can simply peel the droplets of the mat the next day. This way the droplets are dry and you can fiddle around with their placement until you are happy before adhering them and to do this, I used a dab of Gina K Connect glue to keep them in place.
For the other background, I used the Thanks Frame die. I painted swatches of some of the colours and dried them before running the die through for each colour. I played around with different combinations of ways to adhere the frame elements but in the end, decided I liked the tone on tone effect of the main part of the die-cut from the oatmeal painted card with a mustard back panel and skinny terracotta frame. I stamped, and white heat embossed another sentiment from the Simple Sentiments 02 set that went with the Thanks Frame die cut and trimmed the piece to a skinny banner. Then I added foam adhesive to the back of all of the elements and mounted the panel onto a Fog card base before aligning the Thanks die cut top and centre with the coordinating sentiment strip underneath. I then used the same combination of Nuvo droplets – Sugared Almond, Bubblegum Blush, Dark Walnut and Simply White.
And there you go, two simple painted striped backgrounds with die-cut elements, skinny sentiment strips and Nuvo droplets to coordinate. I hope you give stripes a go too.
You can find links to the supplies I’ve used below; click on the picture or shop icon to get taken directly to the product. Where available I use compensated affiliate links which means if you make a purchase I receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. Thank you! Items marked with an asterisk (*) were provided by a store or the manufacturer. You can read my affiliate and product disclosure here. I genuinely appreciate your support.
Summary of the project which gives all the views of the card in one photo :D I’d love if you pinned and called by on Pinterest :D