Stamped & Painted One Layer Cards!

Hi friends! Today I’m going to show you a very simple technique for creating one layer greeting cards.


I use the Succulents stamp set I designed for Rubber Stamp Tapestry combined with other stamps to create a Thinking of You card to send to a friend. You can try this with any stamps you have that have large areas you can color. I recommend working on watercolor paper if you have it because the paint will flow and blend nicer and the tape will not rip it.

This video is sponsored by Rubber Stamp Tapestry  Use coupon code: LINDSAY and receive 15% off your retail order of $10 or more of peg stamps, peg stamp sets, and unmounted stamps! Coupon expires a week from this video publication. Continue to receive great deals by becoming a PegStamp VIP here. As a PegStamp VIP
you’ll get a weekly deal via email plus links to fabulous tutorials by me, Lindsay the Frugal Crafter and other designers.


1. Fold and tape down your watercolor card. Make an even 1/2″ border with the tape around the card and press the tape so paint can leak under it.

2. Stamp the planter in black and the succulents in green. Use the masking technique when stamping the plants.

3. Color the image with watercolors and let dry.

4. Paint the background with shades of pink, purple and yellow. You can flick on paint splatters if you wish. Let dry.

5. Remove the tape and stamp the sentiment.

6. Use paint to ink up some peg stamps and decorate the envelope if desired.

You can use any watercolor you have for this or scribble your water based markers on a white plate and pick the color up with a wet brush to paint with instead. I hope you enjoyed this easy project and til next time happy crafting!


Exploring Inks & Giveaway! Let’s get Ready for Inktober LIVE!

Hi friends! Today we are going to look at a bunch of different inks and discuss what they are best for. We will also compare inks and paint and what inks might go well with the supplies you already have. If you have been on the internet for any amount of time you have probably heard of Inktober, a month-long drawing challenge during the month of October started by Jake Parker (more details here) so I thought I’d help you get ready in case that’s something you want to try. If not you can still learn about inks and maybe add some to your stash.


I also have an awesome giveaway!

3 lucky readers will win a copy of both of Jane Davenport’s new books Fabulous Figures and Whimsical Girls! Jane uses inks a lot, she even has her own line of ink and I am sure these will inspire anyone to get creative. To enter the giveaway simply leave a comment on this blog post letting me know what your favorite ink is. Due to publisher restrictions this contest is only open to USA residence to let me know what state you are from as well. I will choose 3 winners at random next Friday. Good luck!These book are a wonderful way to kick start your creativity and get you ready for Inktober!

*Note, due to the high volume of comments it might take a while for your comment to appear on the site as new commenters have to be approved manually. Rest assured if you leave a comment on this post you are entered in the drawing.


You can watch the live broadcast or replay in the player below but if you want to chat live or ask questions about any of the inks I am using please watch on the YouTube watch page at 12:30 pm Eastern time.

Supplies available at sponsor Jerry’s Artarama! Use coupon code: frugal20FS49 for 20% off $49 + Free Shipping (Excludes: Sale, Super Sale, Egift Cards, Buy It Try It’s and Vendor restricted items. Look for the green coupon eligible icon on the product listing.

So…What IS ink exactly?

Ink can refer to any fluid colored substance used for drawing or printmaking. We are not going to discuss printmaking inks today which can be as thick as paints. Today is all about the inks we used for drawing and mixed media work. There are some blurry lines between what is ink and what is paint. Ink can be either dye or pigment based (just like paint) it comes in all sorts of colors and lusters (just like paint!) some is waterproof and some is water-soluble (just like paint!) and some is lightfast and some is fugative (just like paint!) The similarities between ink and paint are vast but the difference here (unlike printmaking inks) comes down to viscosity for the most part. Inks will be liquid and fluid and by the end of today’s presentation you will know about many different kinds and what ones will enhance your particular style of work and make your other supplies more useful.

The 5 most common inks for drawing

Let’s talk about water reactive inks first. These inks are similar to Dr Ph Martins Radiant line or children’s liquid watercolors. These dye based colors are super clean and transparent and they are the same type of inks you will find in most watercolor/water based markers. These inks will come bottled, in daubers (like distress stain), in markers (Tombow, Zig real brush pens etc), in spray bottles (Adirondack sprays) and can be applied with dip pens, fountain pens and with an airbrush. You can apply them with a paint brush too but it will stain your bristles. These inks are typically not lightfast so are only for work that is meant to be kept in a sketchbook or reproduced. Dye based stamp pad reinkers diluted with a  bit of distilled water will make this kind of ink. This ink can be layered as it stains the paper but the ink will react somewhat as it is not waterproof. It layers on porous surfaces because of the staining ability of the tiny dye particles to absorb into the substrate and stain it. Fabric die is an example of this process. These also can be used for calligraphy. My pick for a good all around water reactive drawing ink is Winsor & Newton. *There are shimmer versions of this ink as well, some in spray form, but I advise against using shimmery ink in fountain pens or airprushes as it may clog or oxidize.

India Ink is an ink known for being deep black, usually waterproof and made of carbon and used for drawing typically with a dip pen. You can find no-shellac fountain pen safe india ink, just be aware some is waterproof and some is not. You can also find colored pigment based india ink like the Bombay line from Dr. PH Martin. This is my favorite India ink because it is waterproof and lightfast and comes in a  beautiful array of colors. You can also get india ink markers like the Pitt Pens from Faber Castell, they come in nib sizes from superfine to jumbo brush markers. I really like the fine tip markers for pen and ink work. India ink is a wonderful addition to a watercolorists tool box as you can watercolor over these inks without lifting them. You can also use the inks on top of a watercolor and not worry about lightfastness. Just keep in mind that thick applications of india ink may seal the paper and not allow the watercolor to bond in places giving you a resist effect.

Acrylic inks are very similar to the Bombay India inks in color, viscosity and performance. The difference is the binder which in this case is acrylic emulsion. Many companies make acrylic inks such as Dr PH Martin, Daler Rowney, Liquatex and more! Acrylic inks come in a range of transparent to semi opaque colors and pearlescent/metallic finishes. Due to the pigment composition some can be airbrushed and some shouldn’t be (never spray apply anything with a CL label!) so read the labels to be sure. You can also purchase acrylic inks in a spray bottle and these can be used on paper, canvas, textiles and some plastics and metals. These can be applied over watercolor and acrylic paint as well. They are waterproof once dry. Most brand name acrylic inks use pigments like they would in their paint and will be lightfast. Specific info on each ink can be found on the bottle. You can explore acrylic inks here.

Alcohol inks are another favorite of mine because they are waterproof when dry on so many surfaces. They are best on non porous surfaces like metal, plastic, marker paper and glass but can be used on regular paper and fabric too (but the color will appear much darker.) Pinta and Adirondack are two of the most popular brands of bottled alcohol inks but you can also find loads of alcohol ink markers (like Copic, Sharpie, Spectrum Noir, Promarker, Concept etc.) to choose from! For drawing the marker will probably be more useful however if you like to make cards, jewelry or home decor projects having a few bottles of alcohol ink around would be handy because you can color ceramic and metal and use it to tint glass. You can use other media over alcohol ink but I don’t recommend using alcohol ink over acrylic inks or india inks as it will dissolve the layers below. This ink is available in markers, bottles and STAZ-On inkpads. Do not spray apply.

Xylene based inks like the ink found in Chartpak markers might be useful to you if you can stand the smell (it’s a doozy!) The clear Xylene ink is great for transferring toner based photocopy images to your projects (I have a tutorial here on transferring photocopies to ceramic tiles) and then you can color those images with alcohol inks without smearing because the solvent is totally different. OR, if you stamp an image with alcohol based Staz-on Ink you can color it with Chartpak markers with no smearing which is great for jewelry and home decor items. These markers can be used in the same way as alcohol based markers on marker paper but they are harder to get ahold of, can be more expensive and the smell is intense (unless they have improved it since I bought mine.)


I know that is a lot of info and there are a lot of brands that makes these kinds of inks and I will do my best to cover it in a comprehensive manner in the live broadcast but please refer to the cheat sheet above if you get confused. Thanks for stopping by, good luck on the giveaway and til next time happy crafting!

Beginner Watercolor Hydrangea Tutorial!

Relax and paint this vase of beautiful Hydrangea flowers.


This tutorial is great for beginners or more seasoned painters who want a relaxing way to get out their paints and play! Please paint along with this real-time tutorial!

For this project you will need (Affiliate links used)

  • Watercolors (JoiArt) The set I used contains 24 paints and the small brushes I used in the tutorial.
  • Brushes 1/2″ or #7 flat, #6 round (included in JoiArt watercolor set)
  • Watercolor Paper (6″x9″ Bee)
  • Reference photo

Do you like these beginner watercolor tutorials? If so let me know in the comments below. If you would like more step by step flower tutorials please check out my online class: Watercolor Flower Workshop and learn to paint a variety of flowers in different arrangements!

Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

Halloween Treat Bags-No Template Needed!

Hi friends!  Today we are going to make these sweet treat bags for Halloween! You get 2 bags from one sheet of standard cardstock (I am using the cheap stuff from Sams Club so whatever you have on hand is totally fine!) making these favor bags less expensive than store-bought treat bags.


If Halloween isn’t your cup of tea you can use the technique for making these bags for whatever occasion you like! You can change-up the dimensions of the box, all you need to remember is to keep the sides the same size,  and the front the same size as the back. You can save time by using thick patterned paper to match your occasion too! Watch the video to see how!

This tutorial is sponsored by Top Flight Stamps! SAVE 10% off your next order with coupon code: thefrugalcrafter10 *USA orders of $50+ ship free!


Supplies below can be found at Consumer Crafts. *25% off sitewide at Consumer Crafts today (no minimum purchase!) with Coupon Code FLASH918 (expires 11:59pm PST 9/19/18) Free shipping on orders over $49 everyday:) *Affiliate links used.

I hope you found this project useful! You can make a wider, thinner box to hold gift cards as well. Just make the score for the bottom flaps equal to the skinniest side so you don’t have to cut off excess and it will make your bag a bit taller to hide the card. Add ribbon and you have a bag you could even hang on the Christmas tree! There are so many options for this, I hope you give it a try! Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

“Sweet” Happy Birthday Cards! [How to use layering stamps]

Hi friends! My twin daughters had a birthday last week and I thought it was the perfect opportunity to use the new layering stamps I bought from Impression Obsession a couple of months ago.


Layered stamps are fun and you get a pop art-offset printing look with your stamping. I think it is super fun and I like all the options you can get by switching up your colors. Watch the video to see how to use layering stamps.


Lindsay’s Tips for Layering stamps! (just so you know other stampers might disagree with this and that’s OK)

  1. If you don’t have enough colors of ink to create your picture ink up your stamp, stamp it off on a scrap and then stamp on your project for a lighter shade. This will waste some ink but if you only occasionally need that pale color it will work out way cheaper than buying and maintaining another inkpad. You can also stamp another layer of the same color for a slightly darker shade.
  2. Try ink cubes for less needed colors. You can still reink these pads just like you can larger pads if you need to and brands Memento and Gina K sell reinkers to replenish their old pads. If I had it to do over again I’d only get large pads in my outline stamping colors (black,brown, grey) and stick to mini cubes for colors. (Except for distress ink where I use the ink pads to color cardstock as I would ruin mini pads with that kind of use.)
  3. To assist with lining up your images look directly over the stamp block. Also you can ink up your stamps with black archival ink and let it dry so the stamps will be stained black easy to see.
  4. Start by stamping the largest (most solid layer) first with your lightest ink and gradually work darker as you go smaller.

I hope this project give you the confidence to try layering stamps. Some stampers get so frustrated with them if they are not absolutely perfect but I think they look beautiful even is they are stamped slightly off. If you have some layering stamps give them a try! They are so fun to play with! affiliate links were used in this blog post, I earn a small commission if you shop through my links without costing you anything extra, thanks! Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

Affordable Pro Paints: Renesans Watercolor Review

Hi friends! Today we are going to take a look at Renesans artist watercolors from Poland. There is an ETSY shop in Maine that imports these and sells them in the USA and will be offering them to Canada later this week. These paints are high quality and very affordable with half pans costing $3.50, 15ml tubes at $5.50, sets of 12 for $30 in a metal palette and 24 half pan sets for $58 in a metal palette. Also if you purchase 24 individual half pans you get a metal palette for free. Also with the coupon code FRUGALFAN you can get $3.50 off (the price of a half pan) an order of $60 or more.

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I had many people ask me if I would show how I swatch my paints. I have been using the swatching stamps from Waffle Flower to do all of my swatches now because they keep my swatches so neat and tidy, I highly recommend them! Watch the video to learn about these paints.

I was going to take a photo of the swatch from my swatch binder but the names on the pan wrappers would be too small to read so I am going to list the colors from my hand swatched chart here from left to right:


  • top row: white, flesh tint, lemon yellow, gamboge, cadmium orange, cadmium red, cadmium red deep, geranium lake, mineral violet, cobalt blue, Poland blue, paris blue (top row colors included in 24 set)
  • middle row: raw sienna, cyan blue, prussian blue, cerulean, emerald green, cinnabar green deep, cobalt green, cadmium yellow deep, indian yellow, magenta lake, bordeaux madder lake
  • bottom row: cobalt turquoise, cinnabar green pale, zinc green, golden green, hooker’s green, venetian yellow, raw sienna, stil de grain brown, raw umber, paynes grey, sepia, ivory black (bottom row colors included in the 24 set)

I did not include the tubes in this swatch because I didn’t have them at the time of recording. I did some playing with the colors, I did a quick color wheel with ultramarine blue, quin red and transparent yellow and it was a really nice triad yielding clean bright mixes. I also did a quick face sketch to see how potters pink worked in a shin tone mix, I really like it and am excited to use it more. I think the tube colors are even more clean and vibrant than the tube mixes!


You can see a full list of colors and pigment numbers on A Little Creative shop on Etsy. They are the only distributor in the US (and soon Canada) but if you live in Europe check with your local stores as you should be able to find them at various shops for similar pricing.

Bottom Line: I think these paints are one of the best deals going in artist quality watercolors. The prices for the 15ml tubes are less than many other brands 5ml tubes and the quality in the tubes reminds me of M Graham. The pans are extremely concentrates and easily rewetable. If you travel with your paints I recommend going with the pans as the honey content of the tubes make them slow to dry down. The pans have honey in them too but they dry out completely so maybe they don’t have as much honey in them. The tubes have the pigment info and lightfast information on them but the pans do not but April has listed the pigment info in her shop and is working on adding the lightfast info. The lightfastness is rated in the blue wool scale of 1-8, 8 being excellent lightfastness. I tend to go by the pigment number and what I know about the pigment to make my own judgement about color quality. I hope you find this review helpful.  I want to thank April for sending me these paints to review and til next time happy crafting!

Sketchbook Sunday! Indigo Buntings

Hi friends!  I had so much fun painting these birds in my sketchbook!


Watch the video to see the time-lapse!


If you would like real-time step by step lessons on painting birds please check out my course Texture Toolbox Feathers & Fowl where I go in-depth into painting birds and feather.


Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

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