Ink Sponging

Accent on the "Negative" ... Die Cuts!

Hello Friends.  Today's post is all about turning the negative space left from die cutting a shape into beautiful cards.  Using the negative space is easy if you keep a few tips in mind.  First, choose dies that look recognizable in the negative.  Second, plan the card's design and spacing keeping in mind what will be placed behind the opening.  And third, keep any small pieces cut out in case you need to reinsert those to complete the design.  Finally, make the negative space pop with colorful cardstock, decorative paper, washi tape or sponging inks.  Let's look at some samples.


For this card I used Taylored Expressions die Hey, Hello and it illustrates the importance of spacing the design before cutting.  I cut the three words out of the white cardstock panel initially cut with Memory Box die Pinpoint Rectangles leaving room to add the telephone on top of the panel.  To highlight the words, I mounted colored cardstock behind each opening then matted this panel on black.  For a cute embellishment I created a telephone cord using Taylored Expressions Skinny Mini Borders 2.  This card's design was inspired by Kim Singdahlsen.


For this card I cut the Taylored Expressions Silhouette Stems 4 die three times from turquoise cardstock being careful to keep the small pieces cut out so I could reinsert them to complete the flowers.  I sponged a piece of white cardstock with an ombre effect using dye inks of light and medium yellow and light and dark orange.  Other supplies used on this card are TE stamp set Free Spirit, TE embossing folder Leafy Vines and Penny Black die Polaroid Frame.  The design was inspired by Jean Manis.


Here the negative space of the pot is filled with decorative paper while the leaf and the flower are filled with colored cardstock.  Again planning the design before cutting is crucial.  I used Taylored Expressions dies Bloom Where You're Planted, Various Vases and Frame in Frame to cut the openings and orange panel.  Notice that the leaf is actually a positive and a negative!  The negative leaf shape in the orange cardstock panel is filled with a positive leaf cut from green.  To finish the card, I added a tiny butterfly (Memory Box die Mini Butterflies) and a Smile sentiment (Penny Black die Hooray Words).  This card was inspired by Joan Ervin.


Negative space is perfect for a clean and simple look.  To create the opening I cut two of the feathers from Taylored Expressions die Fine Feathers one at a time overlapping the tips.  For the background I sponged Distress Inks Twisted Citron and Peacock Feathers.  I added a tiny twine bow to tie the feathers together and a sentiment from TE stamp set Free Spirit.  This card's design inspired by Courtney Kelley. 



Colorful and whimsical, this card shows off Taylored Expressions dies Bloomers Greenery, Mini Bloomers and Bloomers 1 as well as the TE stamp set Free Spirit.  IRL you can see the white panel is popped up with foam tape so the colorful negative spaces really pop.  The flowers are embellished with sequins with tiny rhinestones in the centers.  Design inspired by Charmaine Ikach. 

For the final card today I cut Taylored Expressions die Silhouette Stems 1 from an oval white cardstock panel (cut with Spellbinders die Ovals Petite).  This panel is mounted to a vellum oval just a bit larger then to a vellum panel cut with TE's Bold Lace Background.  The white card is sponged with Distress ink Squeezed Lemonade and Memento inks Rosebud, Tangelo and Morocco.  I colored the seam binding with Distress Stains Squeezed Lemonade and Picked Raspberry, tied it into a bow and mounted it to a paper flower. This card's design was inspired by Julia Stainton.

I hope you've enjoyed learning more about stretching your dies by using the negative space.  Be sure to check our updated Class Calendar here and stop in soon to shop.  Have a great weekend!


















Negative die cuts will be our class this Saturday, April 2 at 10am. For more information, just click here to go to our class page.  Let me share some samples with you.