Monday, November 10, 2014

Paper Leaves Challenge

This month I have been working with Simple Stories Sweater Weather. These fall themed papers are perfect for a page about a family gathering. Although I love the die-cuts and chipboard, I also like to add 3-dimensional embellishments to may pages. On this page, I made these 3D paper leaves.

I have leaf stamps which I used to make these leaves. However, these instructions could be modified to use die-cut leaves or leaves fussy cut from patterned paper. If you are not coloring your leaves, then you can jump down to the part where I fussy cut the leaf. Since I would be coloring, I started by choosing some markers which are appropriate for leaves and match my paper collection. 

I decided to stamp my leaves with dark brown ink, but black would work too.  For this leaf, I chose to use 3 shades of brown and the colorless blender. I color dark to light and I made the inside of my leaf dark shading out to lighter color near the edges. Leaves with darker edges shading to a lighter center also look realistic, so there are plenty choices for coloring. I start with my darkest shade and just color some of the middle of the leaf.

Next I take one shade lighter and color further towards the edges. My strokes with this marker go over the color from the darker marker to blend.

I continue coloring in this manner with all my shades, in this case 3, until the leaf is completely covered. Then I use my colorless blender over all the other colors from the inside towards the edge. I continue using the colorless blender until I like how the colors are blended. 

Once I am satisfied with the look of the leaf, I fussy cut it out. I don't wait for the markers to dry, I'm just careful with the damp paper. 

Once the leaf is fussy cut, I put it upside-down on something soft (like the palm of my hand). I squirt the back with water. Then I play with it to form the shape. I don't have a stylus so I just use anything plastic with a rounded tip I can find, usually my bone folder. I poke with the tool on the back just inside the edges to make the edges curl.

Next I turn the leaf right-side up and fold along the veins. Sometimes I poke in the middle a bit as well. Typically, I flip the leaf over a couple of time poking and folding until I have the desired shape.

Then I let the leaf dry, they maintain their shape and can be handled.  I adhere them to my page using glue dots or foam as I would with any paper flower or leaf. 

My challenge to you is to use any parts of this tutorial to create your own paper leaves to use on your scrapbook page or other fall project. 

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