Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Botanical Inspiration: Take One

Really, I promise I'm not totally changing my style, but I do have some slightly different projects to share this week.

When it comes to my Pure Inspiration pin board on Pinterest, I often pin unique things that aren't exactly my style but look interesting or beautiful in their own right. If you search through that board, you'll see a LOT of botanical stuff, from embroidered purses to decorated cakes to this lovely print:


Or this floorcloth:

Or even this more modern-looking package:


When I start seeing similar things--like rather busy botanical arrangements--repeated on a Pinterest board, I try to pay attention and play around with new ideas.

Y'all don't see the results from most of this play because, well, mostly, it doesn't work for me. I've struggled for a long time with this sort of botanical design, for instance, and even though what I make generally ends up in the trash, I keep coming back to it anyway.

Because it is beautiful stuff. Beautiful.

Last week, I finally scored! I made a loose, random arrangement of natural images and it actually looks great! Well, I think so. At first, I intended to use it on a card but then decided that this perfect little 1.75" x 5.5" strip of stamped stupendousness needed to be a book mark for my Christmas book tree...and then, after the holidays, an actual book mark for my use year-round.

Oh, yeah.

Three things make this work for me. First, the two deer (yes, they are NOT botanical but go with it anyway, please) give a sense of focus to the design, as well as movement, with the one on top looking down at the one that's looking out of the design. Their legs run directly up against the silver edges of the card and serve to keep eyes inside the design.

Second, the variations in shapes and sizes of the leaves...gingko, pine needles, fern, and even a bit of vine...work extremely well. In the past, my attempts have felt either too heavy or too linear, but the balance of solid and linear images in this effort is good! I added the snowflake stamp because there were some open spots and I liked the linear branching of the flake design. The trios of green berries also fill in the busy design nicely.

Third, the color choices are heavenly. Two shades of gray and three shades of olive-y, sage-y green create a soft, natural palette. It's serene, peaceful, and pretty.

Have you ever made a design like this? How did it turn out for you?

stamps: Lots. Mostly Papertrey Embellished Elegance, Dashing through the Snow, Peaceful Pinecones, Turning a New Leaf and some others
ink: Memento London fog, gray flannel, olive grove, pistachio, bamboo
paper: Papertrey
accessories: silver metallic marker (Prismacolor), 1/8" hole punch, eyelet, silver cord


  1. Lovely. Quiet. Peaceful. Please keep sharing. I CAS your designs.

  2. Beautiful, love the busy but open design. Quite a departure from your usual art, works great for me :D xx

  3. Susan your feeling/knowledge/use of design is tremendous :). I wish I could make something so beautifull

  4. love it...dreamy colours and such a great layout....

  5. Simply lovely... it all works... just as you described.

  6. Love your beautiful bookmark! Wonderful design, peaceful colors and the silver edging is just perfect.

  7. Beautiful, love the gentle metal edging :-)

  8. Love, love the design and colour combination.

  9. wow.. this is a stunner. I love the gorgeous collage effect.. and the harmony of those multi various stamps :)


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