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Saturday, July 24, 2021

ATC’s (Artist Trading Cards) + Scraps = the Perfect Pair

ATC's are perfect for scraps

Hi crafty friends. It’s Kristine and I’m back with one last project using the beautiful “God Bless America” collection from Carta Bella. If you’re anything like me, you’ve accumulated quite a pile of scraps! After creating four projects with this collection, I had this nice, and perfectly usable, pile of scraps leftover. ATC’s, or artist trading cards, are the perfect solution for those little scraps. Personally, I have such a hard time throwing away even these small pieces because the papers are so beautiful. Instead, I keep them in a small bag for use on projects like making ATC’s! In making my ATC’s, I used paper scraps and pieces from the Ephemera pack and Frames and Tags pack, which were leftovers from my other projects.

What are ATC’s?

Artist trading cards are very small, measuring 2 1/2” x 3 1/2” in size. Each card is an individual work of art, and often they are created as a set of ATC’s. These little cards can be made with any medium, and using any technique. They’re the same size as a baseball card and many people make them to trade with other artists around the world! In fact, there are groups for people who want to make and trade ATC’s. If you make a set of 9 cards, like I did, you can also place them in a page protector and now you have the start of a pocket letter! Another option is to add them to journals as cute inserts or journaling cards.

God Bless America ATC's

Tips for Making an ATC

To start, I like to create a base using thin cardboard. Next, I will layer a piece of my light blue cardstock, and ink around the edges using distress ink. Once the base of the ATC’s is complete, it’s time to start layering! Starting with the ephemera and frames and tags, select some pieces for each card. Then, sort through your scrap pile and select papers to compliment the pieces selected. As you can see in the photo, I arrange all of my ATC’s together and move pieces around until I find the right combination.

Once you are satisfied, with your arrangement, you will need chipboard or foam squares/tape to give your ATC’s some dimension. Personally, I use chipboard because I have so much leftover from making mini albums and I like to use my scraps! Starting with one card, adhere the pieces to the front of the ATC. Be sure to only add dimension to some of the pieces for a layered effect. Finally, add any additional embellishments such as pearls, rhinestones, or Sprinkletz.

Check out the set of ATC’s I made with the “God Bless America” collection below. I hope you will pull out your scrap pile and make a set of ATC’s of your own! And if you don’t have enough scraps, head over to the FotoBella store and pick up some new paper today!

Happy crafting,

~Kristine, FotoBella Design Team Member

Thursday, July 22, 2021

How to Assemble and Decorate a Policy Envelope

Hi There! It’s Lynda from Scrapbook with Lynda here to share some die cutting tips with you. This month I’ll be working with these fun supplies from Graphic 45, with a focus on various ways to use the policy envelope die set.

graphic 45, fotobella, envelopes, portrait of a lady

This post contains step by step instructions for assembling the policy envelope and ways to decorate it. In future posts we’ll look at some fun variations that can be made with this die and ways to use other dies in this set.

Die Cutting the Graphic 45 Policy Envelope

The first thing to consider when using the policy envelope die is what will show when the envelope is folded.

graphic 45, fotobella, envelopes, portrait of a lady

In my case the policy envelope will be a tuck spot in a junk journal, so the back will not be seen. That means I only need to focus the images showing on each flap.

graphic 45, fotobella, envelopes, portrait of a lady

My die cutting machine has a 6” opening, so I cut the paper 6” wide.

graphic 45, fotobella, envelopes, portrait of a lady

I like the green perfume bottle on this Graphic 45 paper, so I position the die with them showing on the flaps. To keep the die from moving I adhered it to the paper with washi tape.

graphic 45, fotobella, envelopes, portrait of a lady

For best results have the print you want on the outside of the envelope facing you and run it through a die cutting machine.

Next it’s time to cut out 4 of the small circles. They can be cut from the scraps left from cutting the envelope, but for this one I used a contrasting paper.

I like how this dark green looks with the bottle paper, so I cut the circles from it.

Adding Eyelets to the Graphic 45 Policy Envelope

For added strength I layered two of the circles together.

This is what the string will wrap around, so I want them to be very sturdy.

This step is optional, but I like how they look with dark brown ink applies to their edges.

Add an eyelet to the center of each circle, then using a crop-a-dile tool set an eyelet in the holes made by the die.

Some people assemble the envelope prior to adding the eyelets, but it’s to much easier to do when the envelope is flat.

Assembling the Graphic 45 Policy Envelope

Inking the flaps prior to assembling the policy envelope.

Inking around the policy envelope is optional, but I like how the brown ink edges look.

Fold on the dotted lines, then run a bone folder around the edges of the policy envelope to get a crisp crease.

graphic 45, fotobella, envelopes, portrait of a lady

Ink around the outside of the policy envelope with brown ink.

Add two lines of glue to the policy envelope. One along the edge of the inner flap, then another along the edge of the inside flap with the eyelet. Close the flaps, then hold in place until the glue sets.

Now, run a bead of glue along the bottom flap, then fold it up to close the bottom of the policy envelope.

Add the Closure String

Policy envelopes are classically closed with a string that wraps around the two circles.

graphic 45, fotobella, envelopes, portrait of a lady

I tied white bakers twine around the eyelet on the top flap.

graphic 45, fotobella, envelopes, portrait of a lady

Wrap the twine around the two circles, then cut to length. You can leave the twine like this, but I decided to add a bit more detail.

Cut a 1/2” circle from contrasting Graphic 45 paper with a circle punch.

Ink the edge to cover the white core.

graphic 45, fotobella, envelopes, portrait of a lady

Add glue to the circle, then place the end of the twine on it.

graphic 45, fotobella, envelopes, portrait of a lady

A small round sticker from the collection completes the look.

graphic 45, fotobella, envelopes, portrait of a lady

Here’s what it looks like with the twine wrapped around the closure. This policy envelope is pretty as it is, but I decided to dress mine up a bit.

Decorating the Policy Envelope

Added a bit of inked book page behind a sticker, then glue it on two sides to create a tuck spot.

graphic 45, fotobella, envelopes, portrait of a lady

Make a tiny tag from a bit of scrap paper from the collection.

graphic 45, fotobella, envelopes, portrait of a lady

On the flip side I added some blank paper, so I can write on this tag.

Here’s how the policy envelope looks with the tag in place.

Policy Envelope Tag Insert

The policy envelope need to hold something, so I created this tag from the collection to go inside.

Cut one of the 3x4 pocket cards a bit smaller, so it would fit inside the policy envelope. Cut a piece of blank paper for the back, then ink them both with brown ink.

Glue the blank paper to the back of the tag, then slip it inside the policy envelope and you are done!

A Look at the Completed Policy Envelope

Here’s what the policy envelope looks like on the outside.

It has a tuck spot that holds a tag.

The tag on the front is removable and you can journal on the back.

Open the policy envelope to find the journal card inside.

Policy Envelope Decoration Alternatives

The above example is a vertical policy envelope, but you can make horizontal ones too.

This policy envelope will make a great tuck spot in my junk journal.

The beautiful lady is attached on 2 sides, so it forms a tuck spot for a small tag.

Inside is another 3x4 pocket card that I cut down a bit, so it would fit inside the policy envelope.

Here’s another example of a vertical policy envelope. The framed portrait of a lady is attached on 2 sides, to it too is a tuck spot for a small tag.

Inside the policy envelope is a 3x4 pocket card cut down to fit. And on this one I decorated the inside of the flap with inked book page and a strip of pattern paper.

These three policy envelopes all started with the same policy envelope die, but their decoration makes each one unique. They will all be added to my junk journal, but you can use them to hold gift cards or special messages.

I’ll be back again soon to show you some other things you can do with this versatile die set. In the meantime, stop by my blog to see some of my other creations. You can also find some of my paper crafting on Instagram and Facebook.

Happy Scrapping!