Color Me Happy with Stampin’ Blends

Handmade card by Natalie Lapakko featuring Color Me Happy stamps and Stampin' Blends alcohol markers from Stampin' Up!

Color Me Happy with Stampin’ Blends

Today’s card uses an exciting new product from Stampin’ Up! and a brand new medium for me: alcohol markers called Stampin’ Blends! I also used a new stamp set called Color Me Happy!

Handmade card by Natalie Lapakko featuring Color Me Happy stamps and Stampin' Blends alcohol markers from Stampin' Up! Color inspiration: Light and Dark Night of Navy and Pool Party blends. #stampinup #su! #handmade #MakeaCardSendaCard #globaldesignproject #happymail

Stampin’ Blends and Color Me Happy stamps and kits will be available for customers November 1st: just 4 days away!

The Color Me Happy kit and stamp set are available while supplies last, so make sure you get it while you can!

Handmade card by Natalie Lapakko featuring Color Me Happy stamps and Stampin' Blends alcohol markers from Stampin' Up!

Challenge Inspiration

This card was inspired by Global Design Project Challenge #110!

I spent a bunch if time practicing with Stampin’ Blends this week, then used some of my practice images to turn into a card for today’s Global Design Project challenge! Here’s my card:

Handmade card by Natalie Lapakko featuring Color Me Happy stamps and Stampin' Blends alcohol markers from Stampin' Up!

Practice Makes Perfect

Stampin’ Blends work a little differently than normal water-based ink markers. When the ink is applied to the paper, it spreads out a little bit from where the marker was actually touching. This means that if you put two colors next to each other or layer them on top of each other, they will blend!

Since I’m new to alcohol markers, I’ve been reading up on how they work and practicing to get better. Here’s one of my practice sheets:

Coloring practice by Natalie Lapakko featuring Color Me Happy stamps and Stampin' Blends alcohol markers from Stampin' Up!

6 Alcohol Marker Tips that Matter

After reading a bunch of articles, then doing a bunch of coloring practice for myself, I’ve figured out a few things about how alcohol markers work. Here are the top tips and tricks that helped me figure out how to blend with these new markers.

Moisture matters: If the ink dries, it will not blend as easily if at all. Color one small area at a time, such as just a bird’s stomach or 3-4 petals at once so you can get it all blended while the ink layers are still wet.

Time matters: The ink is a little darker when it is wet and it takes a couple seconds to fully blend. Don’t overwork an area trying to get it perfect, because it might just need a second and it will blend naturally. If you keep adding ink trying to get it just right, you might over-saturate the paper and the ink will start to bleed outside the lines of your image.

Your ink matters: Use a water-based ink (such as Memento) for coloring with alcohol markers. If you use an alcohol-based ink (such as Archival Basic Black) the alcohol from the markers will re-activate the ink from the stamp image and the two will bleed together. On the opposite hand, if you’re going to use watercolor or water-based ink markers, use that alcohol-based ink instead; always use the opposite type of ink for stamping and coloring when you color stamped images!

Your paper matters: Some paper causes ink to bleed more than others. If your ink keeps bleeding out of the lines, your paper may be the culprit. I used Neena Bright White cardstock for most of my practice coloring and had excellent results. I also tried Whisper White and I thought I noticed a little more bleeding on that paper, but it was pretty similar. I need to test this more to know for sure. I did try some coloring in a coloring book and it bled like crazy. It was very difficult to keep the ink inside the lines.

Your stroke matters: The direction of your coloring strokes make a difference when you are blending, especially in larger areas. For larger areas, I would definitely recommend using flick-like strokes in the same direction that you are blending, pointing toward the next color. That seems to provide the most even color coverage.

Color order might matter: I’ve read a lot of different conflicting articles that recommended blending from dark-to-light or light-to-dark. I experimented with both. I thought dark-to-light was a little easier for me most of the time. There were certain situations (shape size, certain color combinations) that seemed to work better light-to-dark. I recommend trying both to see what works for you!

Card Directions

  1. First, stamp two birds from the Color Me Happy stamp set on white cardstock using Memento Tuxedo Black ink. Also stamp the hearts in a speech bubble from the Foxy Friends stamp set using the same ink.
  2. Color the birds using light and dark Pool Party and light and dark Night of Navy Stampin’ Blends alcohol markers.
    • Start by drawing an oval shape for the stomach using Light Pool Party. Outline that oval with a Light Night of Navy oval.
    • Color the oval starting from the top using the clear Color Lifter, then Light Pool Party, then Dark Pool Party. Go over the belly a second time with the same colors to blend them.
    • Color the rest of the bird with Light Night of Navy. Add Dark Night of Navy as shadows under the wings and individual feathers.
  3. Color the speech bubble image using light and dark Pool Party Stampin’ Blends.
    • Color the left and bottom edges (like an L shape) with a layer of Dark Pool Party, then light Pool Party, then the clear Color Lifter. Go over the three colors again to blend them. Most of this shape is actually uncolored.
  4. Fussy cut out the birds and speech bubble shapes.
  5. Cut and score a Night of Navy card base.
  6. Next, cut a two pieces of Pool Party cardstock that are 1-1/2″ by 4-3/8″ (6.5 x 11.8 cm).
  7. Then, cut a two pieces of Night of Navy cardstock that are 1-3/8″ by 4-1/4″ (6.2 x 11.5 cm).
  8. Emboss the Night of Navy panels using the Polka Dot Basics embossing folder, then adhere it to the Pool Party panels. Adhere both panels to the card base using dimensionals.
  9. Die cut a circle shape from Night of Navy cardstock using the Stitched Shapes Framelit Dies.
  10. Arrange the circle, the birds, the speech bubble, and a short, coiled length of Pool Party Solid Baker’s Twine on the front of the card.
  11. Staple the Baker’s Twine to the circle, then adhere them to the card base with dimensionals.
  12. Adhere the birds and speech bubble with dimensionals: one layer where they overlap the circle and two layers where they do not, so they stay level with the card front.
  13. Add some of the lightest blue Glitter Enamel Shapes in an uneven triangle shape around the focal point.


Handmade card by Natalie Lapakko featuring Color Me Happy stamps and Stampin' Blends alcohol markers from Stampin' Up!


Cardstock: Night of Navy, Pool Party, Whisper White (c) Stampin’ Up!

Ink: Memento Tuxedo Black

Stamps: Color Me Happy, Foxy Friends (c) Stampin’ Up!

Markers: Dark & Light Night of Navy, Dark & Light Pool Party Stampin’ Blends (c) Stampin’ Up!

Dies: Stitched Shapes Framelit Dies (c) Stampin’ Up!

Other: Pool Party Solid Baker’s Twine, dimensionals, Glitter Enamel Dots (c) Stampin’ Up!

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Thanks for visiting and happy stamping!

Stamp Witch Blog Natalie's hand painted signature

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8 thoughts on “Color Me Happy with Stampin’ Blends”

  1. Oh, Natalie! This card is so stinkin’ cute! I love these sweet birds and how you’ve interpreted this sketch. Fun! Thank you so much for playing along with this week’s sketch challenge at the Global Design Project.

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