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Designs in Black and White: Marie’s View

By: Marie Gamber, Artistic Guide

Finished card size:  5.5" x 4.25"

Our featured theme this month is "Designs in Black and White".  It is always a good thing to have some black and white cards on hand for those unexpected occasions when we need something simple and yet elegant .   I have created a fun, simple and yet elegant card that can be created very quickly for those special card needs.

Celibrate in Style (GinaKDesigns)

Pure Luxury White (GKD)

Pure Luxury Black Onyx  (GKD)
Cryogen for focal image (Curious Metallic, Inc.)
Little Black Dress designer paper (BasicGrey)
Memento Tuxedo Black (Tsukineko)

Copic Alcohol Ink Markers (too., Ink)
Paper trimmer

Scoring tool
Detail scissors
Acrylic block
Nailheads (Mark Richards)
Pearl - white (Kaiser Craft)
Small/large Oval Nestabilities die (Spellbinders)
Cuttlebug or die cutter (Provo Craft)


  1. Techniques:  Paper piecing, Copic alcohol ink marker inking  and flicking inking/blending  method. I decided to "triple mat" my focal image  by adding a mat of my coordinating designer paper in-between the two black mats.  This was my attempt to give it a different twist.
  2. These are the Copic alcohol markers that are used for the focal image.  The C7 will be the dark shadow area and C00 will be the highlighted area of the dress.
  3. Stamp the image on the scrap paper and identify the direction your light source will be coming from.  Draw lines to use as a guide and assist in visualizing where the light and dark areas will be.  The area that hits the image first witll be highlighted and the area where the light beam would leave the image is the shadow area.   You will want to do this on scrap paper so you can save $$ and not ruin your precious Copic paper.
  4. Stamp the image on a piece of the designer paper.   A small corner can be used because you will just be using the skirt.   
  5. Shade the skirt from dark to light.  If you have learned to shade from light to dark continue to do so it that works for you.  However,  there is a reason from shading from dark to light.  When you flick the color onto your paper use the side of your brush and flick outward.  When you place the brush on the paper,  it becomes more saturated and as you flick outward, the color  becomes lighter.  (There....  that is a million dollar secret that I learned from the fabulous Suzanne Dean in her Copic classes!)
  6. Stamp the image on the Cryogen or Copic paper.   Shade the top of the dress.   Keep the shading and highlights consistent with your shading guide.   Color the flower.  Using detail scissors,  trim  the skirt from the designer paper.  The image will be cut straight across on the bottom so the scallops at the hem will show from behind  and give more depth to our image.  Adhere the bottom part of the skirt to the focal image.  This technique is called paper piecing.  It is important to shade the image with your alcohol markers  even if you are using designer paper so the image does not appear "flat".  Give that skirt some "3-D" effect! 
  7. Lightly add a BG000 or BG0000 to the background.  Use a light flicking method away from the image and blend.  This little accent should be every light and allows the image to "pop" off the paper.  
  8. Assemble the card and apply the black railheads for embellishment.  Adhere a pearl to the center of the flower.  The railheads are arranged so the eye will not go off the page.  In the Copic Certification classes, Marianne Walker frequently reminds the students to give as much attention to the layout of the card as you do to coloring the card.  Make certain the eye bounces back to the focal image and does not leave the paper.  Another tip was to not overdo the embellishments.  You spend hours creating your image and do not want people to  just remember that great big rhinestone!   Marianne  challenge us to make our cards "memorable".  Wow!  That is a big challenge!   

I hope you have enjoyed this quick, yet elegant card.  It is so easy and can be done with any designer paper.  Remember, you are the artist and you can experiment and make this technique your own.





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1 Responses »

  1. Marie,
    This is just a stunning card! I love the elegance of it. 🙂