Pop-up Diorama Tutorial

Pop-up diorama card by Natalie Lapakko featuring Lift Me Up and a sneak peek of Glimmer Paper from Stampin' Up!

Pop-up Diorama Tutorial

My card today features two things that I am super excited about. First, I have a new technique to share with you that lets you create a pop-up diorama inside your card. Once I figured out the math, the rest was easy.

Don’t worry, I’ve done all the math for you, so all that’s left is the easy parts.

The second thing I’m excited about is a sneak peek at a new Sale-a-bration item: the Glimmer Paper Assortment Pack! If I were to truly express my excitement in text, I would be in danger of breaking the exclamation mark on my keyboard. I LOVE glimmer paper and I had been wanting more colors so badly.

Starting on February 21st, Stampin’ Up! is adding three additional FREE items you can earn. All you have to do is place an order and for each $50 you spend, you earn a free product. Yay!

Here’s the brochure PDF, in case you want to check out the other free items: Sale-A-Bration, Part II.

Pop-up diorama card by Natalie Lapakko featuring Lift Me Up and Carried Away DSP from Stampin' Up!

Challenge Inspiration

This card was inspired by Global Design Project Challenge #074!

The front of my card pretty closely follows the layout, though my balloon was so large I had to eliminate the cute little bow tied at the top. The inside of my card is inspired by the cutout hole that shows the pattern of the paper below: I created a pop-up diorama around this circular hole!

Pop-up diorama card tutorial by Natalie Lapakko featuring products from Stampin' Up!

Pop-Up Diorama Card Base Directions

  1. First, cut and crease a piece of cardstock as shown in the graphic above. I used Whisper White.
  2. Next, cut a window shape. I used a circle, but any shape will work.
  3. Then, adhere the piece of designer series paper that will be visible through the window. I used Carried Away Designer Series Paper.
  4. Adhere the last flap to the inside of the front panel (the first flap). Open and close it while the glue is still wet to ensure it will close flat. When it is open, the back of the card should form a box. Adjust it if necessary.
  5. That’s it! Now you can decorate your pop-up diorama card!

Pop-up diorama card by Natalie Lapakko, viewed from the bottom.

Card Front Decoration Directions

  1. First, make a diorama card base following the directions above.
  2. Cut a Night of Navy panel 1/4″ (0.6 cm) smaller than your card base. Remember that this will be skinnier than your standard card size!
  3. Cut a piece of Carried Away Designer Series Paper 3/8″ (0.9 cm) smaller than the card base.
  4. Adhere the layers to the front of the card.
  5. Die cut a hot air balloon from the Up & Away Thinlits out of Mint Macaron glimmer paper. Remember to cut with the glitter side facing down, away from the cutting edge of the die; this is easier and will protect your dies from getting dull.
  6. The banner and the background paper behind the hot air balloon are all one piece. To create this, place the hot air balloon on a piece of Night of Navy cardstock and trace with a pencil. Then, trace a strip of paper over the balloon shape. If desired, trace a Lots of Labels Framelit shape onto the bottom of the banner. Cut out the resulting shape, and flip it over so the pencil doesn’t show.
  7. Adhere the glimmer balloon to the banner shape, then attach the banner to the card using dimensionals to add depth.
  8. Cut two small cloud shapes from Whisper White cardstock using the Up & Away Thinlit Dies. Adhere the clouds to the edges of the banner.
  9. Add three Enamel Shapes as accents in a triangle shape around the bottom of the hot air balloon. I used Pumpkin Pie dots because I didn’t have Peekaboo Peach ones, but since the paper already has a light and medium shade, it just continues the orange spectrum.

Card Interior Decoration Directions

  1. To decorate the card interior, cut a 1″ (2.5 cm) strip of Carried Away Designer Series Paper and adhere it the the left edge of the card interior.
  2. Next, cut a 1/4″ (0.6 cm) strip of Mint Macaron glimmer paper and adhere it next to the strip of Carried Away paper.
  3. Die cut a Mint Macaron hollow circle shape with the interior circle the same size as the diorama hole and the outer circle a size larger. Adhere this outside the edge of the diorama hole.
  4. Ink the large hot air balloon stamp from the Lift Me Up set in Mint Macaron ink. Then, sponge a light layer of Night of Navy ink on the bottom two thirds of the stamp and a second layer of Night of Navy on the bottom one third of the stamp. Stamp onto Whisper White paper.
  5. Fussy cut out the balloon (or die cut with the Up & Away Thinlit Dies, it if you prefer). Adhere it to the bottom right of the diorama window.
  6. Die cut a few different cloud shapes using the Up & Away Thinlit Dies. If desired, sponge a little Night of Navy around the edges. I aimed to have the bottoms of my clouds a little darker, since that is where cloud shadows usually are.
  7. Adhere the cloud shapes to the card in a way that looks balanced.

Tip: If you are overlapping shapes (such as a hot air balloon) over the edge of the diorama hole, be careful with your adhesive! You do not want any adhesive on the back of the shape that is hanging over the edge of the hole or it will stick to the background paper when the card is closed and get stuck that way.

Guess how I figured that out.

Pop-up diorama card featuring Lift Me Up and a Sale-A-Bration sneak peek of Glimmer Paper from Stampin' Up! Design by Natalie Lapakko.

Tropical Color Combination

This color combination was inspired by the Carried Away Designer Series Paper. It is also a Sale-A-Bration item. I know, tough choice, right?

The colors have a very tropical feel to them and would also work great for a beach theme or a card featuring summer treats.

Stampin' Up! color inspiration: Watermelon Wonder, Peekaboo Peach, Mint Macaron, Night of Navy

Pop-up diorama card by Natalie Lapakko featuring Lift Me Up stamps and Carried Away DSP from Stampin' Up! color inspiration: Watermelon Wonder, Peekaboo Peach, Mint Macaron, Night of Navy


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

Paper: Carried Away Designer Series Paper, Mint Macaron Glimmer Paper (from the Glimmer Paper Assortment Pack) (c) Stampin’ Up!

Ink: Mint Macaron, Night of Navy (c) Stampin’ Up!

Stamps: Lift Me Up (c) Stampin’ Up!

Dies: Layering Circle Framelit Dies, Up & Away Thinlit Dies (c) Stampin’ Up!

Other: sponge, dimensionals, Brights Enamel Shapes (c) Stampin’ Up!

Thanks for visiting and happy stamping!

By Natalie Lapakko

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17 thoughts on “Pop-up Diorama Tutorial”

  1. WOW!!!! that is awesome! I need to make one of these! Thank-you for sharing with the GDP – Krista from Canada

  2. I am so doing this for my next customer event! Slightly modified, but very similar. Thank you for the details, this is an awesome creation.

  3. I thought it was a great card! Relatively easy to make yet so different with the diorama element! The only criticism I have would be to add the score lines, rather than just size of each section: 3 5/8″, 6 7/8″, 7 1/4″, 10 1/2″. Makes it quicker and easier to do the scoring.

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