Saturday, October 22, 2016

Patterned Paper Greeting Cards

Hello again!
for my DT post today at CraftAdda I have used the gorgeous papers from 

To make this card, I started with the gorgeous rose background paper and cut it down to size to fit my card base. 
I then partially debossed it using my Cuttlebug swirls folder, to add some interest. 
I white embossed (Ranger white embossing powder) the beautiful sentiment from Hot of the  Press on vellum 
and added it to the card along with some pearls to finish the card.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Diwali cards for our soldiers.

For my DT post for CraftAdda today, I am using the fabulous Diwali stamp sets from Craftangles.
I was encouraged by my dear friend Neha Gala  who is collecting cards to send to our brave soldiers who could not go home for Diwali.
I was pushed out of my comfort zone, but, I am really thrilled with the cards I made.

For this card, I started by creating a background using the large diya in the 
I heat embossed the background with Craftangles clear embossing powder. I then blended the background using Memento  Cottage Ivy and Memento Tangelo inks. Once blended, I flicked some water onto the background and lifted off some colour. 
I then placed a scrap sheet of paper over the panel and ironed off the embossing powder.
I then gold embossed the sentiment on a strip of vellum and attached it to the card panel. I used three star shaped buttons in the tricolours as an embellishment.
I finished the card panel by placing it on a kraft card base.

For this card, I started with stamping the fireworks stamp in the Indian tricolour on a piece of white cardstock cut with Simon Says Stamp's stitched rectangle die.
I added a gold embossed sentiment on a vellum panel and added a watercolured diya. I finished the card by placing the card panel on a kraft card base.

For this card, I started by using TimHoltz sun rays stencil and colouring in with Memento Cottage Ivy and Tangelo inks.
I then added a gold embossed sentiment on vellum and a watercoloured diya. I then finished the card by placing the panel on a kraft card base.

For this card, I created a dark sky background for the very first time!!!! I am so thrilled with the way this card turned out.
I clear embossed the fireworks and then blended the background using memento and Tim Holtz inks.
I then flicked some water onto the background.

I then stamped, watercoloured and fussy cut the small diyas from 
I added the tricolour panel at the bottom of the card to anchor the diyas and stamped the sentiment onto the panel.

I hope you enjoyed this post and will be inspired to create a few diwali cards of your own.
Thank you so much for stopping by...
Have a great day!

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Craft Adda New release

Have you seen the fabulous new Diwali release 
 from CraftAdda?!
These stamps are superb quality and when stamped the images are super crisp!

I have used some of these gorgeous stamps to create a set of  3"x4"notecards...perfect for the festive season!

I used a range of techniques to make these notecards... masking, rubber stamping, watercolouring, emboss resist and heat embossing. 

For this card, I first gold embossed the rangoli pattern from the 'Festival of lights' stamp set. I then masked off half the card using post it tape and used Tim Holtz distress inks  Fired Brick and Dried Marigold to blend the colours. I used a paisley stamp on the coloured background to create some interest. I finished the card with gold embossed sentiment from the same stamp set.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

ICR discussion on Branding and Marketing

Hello everyone!
I am Paru Mahtani of Paru's Perceptions Handmade Greeting Cards.
I started making handmade cards as a hobby about 18 years ago and have only recently attempted to make it a business.
Asha of Indian Craft Room asked me if I would share some tips and trick that I have learned along the way, to help other crafters with the issues they might face.
It would be my honour to do so!
Today, in my last post,I would like to talk about BRANDING AND MARKETING.
This, I think, has been my biggest challenge!!
Making the card is the really fun part of this journey! Creating a brand and then marketing it is something I've had to teach myself.
My first task was to believe in my product 100%! There were times when others doubted me...there are still those who do...and, there are many many more times I doubt myself.
But, I've taught myself not to give up and to continue to believe in my product...with the help of my ever supportive husband and family!
I then started participating in small exhibitions..and slowly bigger ones. Along the way I knowledge and confidence.
Today there  is social a lot easier to be seen.But, since everyone has the same idea, I have to make sure I put out quality content on a regular basis. This is how I have created an interest in my BRAND.
I have a style and mostly, I stick to it. Slowly customers have started to recognise the brand.
As for MARKETING, Social Media and digital marketing is the way forward. What's App works very well too!
Here, exceptional photography is the key, since the customer cannot touch and feel the product, the photograph has to convey everything.

Blogging makes me more visible and I often give a set of my cards as gifts to friends. Word of mouth is the good old fashioned way of marketing!
Here are some excellent links with lots of ideas about how to brand and market handmade cards.

I has been my honour to share my experiences with you here and I hope that these discussions have been helpful.
Please leave me a comment...I would love to hear from you.
Thanks so much for stopping by!
Have  good night.
Paru Mahtani

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Handcarved rubber stamps

This past month I have been playing around and making handcarved rubber stamps using speedball rubber sheets (you can also use large size erasers like Staedler) and speedball carving tools.
Here are some images showing the process.

It took me a while to work out...was very satisfying in the end!

The stamps are carved our of a thick rubber sheet. They have no capability to cling to an acrylic surface. So in order to use them with an acrylic block, 
I used a reusable cling sheet 'Tack 'n' Peel from Tsukineko.
I cut and mounted this sheet on an acrylic block to provide a cling surface for all my hand carved stamps. Now stamping with these homemade stamps is super easy.

Here are some more designs...

and the tags I made with them.

I used Tim Holtz distress inks to stamp on textures card stock to give it an uneven fabric like feel.

I hope you are inspired to create some of your own!
do leave a comment below if you have any questions.
Thanks for stopping by...
Have a great day!

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Cash and Gift card holders

Hello!! I am back with a post for CraftAdda..the awesome craft store!!
After much deliberation I finally got myself an envelope punch board from We R Memory keepers! And what a fun product this is!!!

 I decided to make a few cash and gift card holders today, 
using the awesome papers from Craftangles.

For the first two cards, I used papers from the 'Autumn Harvest ' Paper pack. The colours are beautiful and the papers are really thick and luxurious! You can buy them here.
I added a strip of vellum to hold the gift card in place and added the die cut sentiment from Winnie and Walter.
the gift card holder is also help in place with a tiny piece of double sided tape.

The cash gift holder card below is also made using paper from an assorted Craftangles 6"x6" paper pack.
With so many kids going off to college just now, I thought it would make a nice motif for the cash gift holder. 

The tilted banner and sentiment are from Simon Says Stamp and the patterned paper is mounted on a kraft card base.

I hope you enjoyed seeing these cards as much as I enjoyed making them!
Thanks for stopping by!
Have a great night!

Saturday, September 10, 2016

How I photograph my cards

I am back with another post for Indian Craft Room...this time about Photographing Greeting Cards.
Apologies for not posting yesterday, as promised!
I'm Paru Mahtani, an avid cardmaker and photogrpahy enthusiast. My passion for  card making led to a need to photograph my work; hence developed an interest in photography. Once I started exploring this hobby, it became addictive!
There are so many good blog posts, video and discussions on the internet about photographing you cards/crafts/art work. Thanks to the popularity of online shopping, crafters have realised the tremendous importance of photography!
The lessons I have learnt in my 15 plus  years of making cards are...

1. Research!! Research!! Research!!
Read blogs, look at others photos, read what they say about their photography processes, look at photos on Pinterest and Instagram and learn! 
Here are some resources:

2. Take a few photography classes to earn how to master your camera. 
Then you can create some amazing photos.

3. If you have a spot with great natural light, that's fantastic! If like most people, you don't, make an inexpensive lightbox (learn how to make one here.) and learn how to use it! 
The results are amazing!!
Here is an image of my set's not perfect (the light box is a little wonky) 
but the results I get are just fab.

I have set it up at a height so that I don't have to bend. I have a put a little side table on top of my dining table and then placed the light box on top of it.
The lights are 'Sonia Trilights'. They have an adjustable stand and it is continuous  white light.
These are photography studio lights, but the same can be acheived with any continuous light.
I use a Canon 7D dslr, but very often take photos with my iphone if I dont have time to set up the light box.
I usually make a bunch of cards and  photograph them all together.

Here is the result!

These are photos taken on my desk with an iphone...

I hope this post has been useful and you have been inspired!! Do leave me a comment...I'd love to hear from you!
Thanks so much for stopping by today!
I will be back next Thursday with another post.
Have a great evening!