Saturday, December 19, 2009


This was so easy to do - and don't worry if you're not "computer savvy" - before there was "cut and paste" there were scissors and glue!  I colored this card with a photo-editing program, but colored pencils, markers, crayons, etc. will actually do the same job!  :D  The rest was just embellishment that I know you all know how to do, so this will be more about the computer work for those who want to try your hand.  For those who don't - not to worry - I'll point you in the right direction to just get the pictures, print them out and go from there!

First you need to find an image.  This is the only part I have everyone working on the computer for - not to worry - it's easy!  There are a great many sites that offer free and copy-right free clip art.  My favorite is Dover Books.  They have a program for you to sign up for and every week, they send you an email to come get your free samples!  I've been doing this for about 3 years now, and I have a great clip-art library on my computer (backed up on my external hard drive AND another backup program online - I'm not taking any chances!).  Go here to sign up for the Dover free samples.  One caveat:  Dover started this program to sell more books, and it works!  I have lots of their books now.  

If you'd rather not get a weekly newsletter, here are some more sites: This site has some wonderful vintage post cards available - on the main page, click on Antique Postcards and Related Traditions - and then scroll down to see some beautiful old cards.

You will no doubt find more if you Google Antique Clip Art or whatever you are specifically looking for.  In general, the way to capture these images is to select one, right click on the image and choose "save as" from the pop-up menu.  But each site may be a bit different - and they all give instructions on how to get the images onto your computer.  If you're looking at a small thumbnail of a picture, don't save that - click on it to bring it up to full size and save that one.

A word about copyright.  For the most part, these images are copyright-free, but in some cases, they are the work of an artist who has generously offered them up for your use.  Whenever you visit a new site, please carefully read the "rules of use" to be sure you are contemplating using your clip art for an authorized use.

Now that you have some clip art to play with, let's print some and see what we have.  Here's what I printed before I decided what I wanted to do:

Narrowing it down wasn't easy - but I decided I liked the look of that house in the snow, with someone hurrying home in the cold and dark.  But it's in black and white!  Hmmm - well, I could at least make it turn sepia!  Here's a screen-shot of how that looked...

I did that on Publisher - though you could also do it in any photo-editing software.  I just thought I might be adding some other elements with Publisher (in the end, I didn't), so that's where I went.  There are so many different photo editing programs out there, that I couldn't possibly tell you how to change the color in all of them, but if you look through your tools or consult the "help" pages, you'll soon find out how to do it.  In Publisher, you would right-click on the image and a menu will come up that allows you to "change picture".  Select "recolor picture" from that menu and then choose a brown shade.  Click on "apply" and you can see how you like it without closing the color palette.  If you don't like it, you can choose a different color, and keep working at it until you are satisfied.

I decided it didn't look cold enough in the sepia - part of the appeal to me is that the person hurrying home must be cold and anticipating a warm welcome!  I know - I can leave the picture black and white, but put a yellow glow coming from the window!

I did THAT in a photo editing program that allows you to "paint" - again - most will do that, and there are so many.  I used PhotoDraw.  In that program, go up to the tool bar and hover your mouse over "tools" - then click on "paint tools" from the drop-down menu.  A little box will come up that lets you choose the brush, brush size and color.  

So, I put a strong yellow in the two windows I thought should be lit, and then a softer yellow to show the glow coming out the window and reaching to the hurrying person.

Obviously - if you don't want to do this with software, here's where a yellow pencil would come in handy!  

This is more like it - but I think I'd like the moon to be colored, too.

Now it was time to print and decide how to embellish.  I  printed the image on card stock and gathered some things together:

I cut out my card using a cutter for the straight edges and scissors for the curve:

Now comes the really fun part!  I added glitter, and I think I showed admirable restraint here - I HAVE been known to cover the whole picture!  I thought a little white on some of the snow, gold on the moon, and silver for the chimney smoke would be good, but I had some RED glitter....I know!  The person's hat and scarf could be red!

I played with some of the glitter on the other images I had.  After all, I had that RED glitter and I'd hardly had a chance to use it!  

Then, you can see that I tried out a new product to me:  Glimmer Mist - you just spritz this on and get a lovely, pearlized glimmer on the page!  I tried it out on one of my "rejects" - I love it!

I started playing with the buttons, too, as you can see.  Finally, I decided I liked the card I'd been working on as it was, and put some lace around the edges to give it a finished look.  To do that, I used double-sided tape "Terrifically Tacky" tape - it's a really great product - and so much less messy than glue!   I usually end up with my fingers glued together when I use glue!

 And the finished card looks great! I added some red glitter on the edge and it's ready to send!  One down, 67 to go!


  1. What a great idea! I'm sure I can find already printed photos of beautiful scenery and doll them up. Just hadn't thought of it. Thank you for sharing.

  2. Thank you so much for the links to clip art sites. Everyone in my family knows I love sparkle on my cards. If it doesn't have some kind of glitter, shiny stuff, jewels etc. - it's just not done. glad someone else likes the sparkly stuff.

  3. I discover your site & your blog as I'm Needleprint addict!But as I hvn't Word logiciel I can't contact you.Please could you send me your email so that I can order from you (I live in France!);congratulations for your great job.Lots of love.Couson

  4. Eyyyyy no había visto este tutorial, gracias por compartir. Un saludo

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