Work Wonders with the Colour Wheel

Learning about the colour wheel can be scary for some of you, but let me reassure you that it really isn’t hard to learn and understand.  In my introduction about Learning About the Colour Wheel you learned about the colour categories: monochromatic, analogous, complimentary, split complimentary and triadic.  Today we will take a more relaxed look at the colour wheel.

Did you know that you see your favourite colour combinations every day?  Here are some examples:

  • Clothing Take a look in your closet.  Think about the outfits that you put together.  This is a good example of colour coordinating.  Imagine what you like to wear and pick out the colours on the colour wheel.  Chances are they fit within the colour categories mentioned in my introduction.
  • Paint on the Walls Chances are your walls fit within one of the colour categories.  If you are a little afraid of colour, your walls will be monochromatic.  If you love colour like me, my walls are split complimentary and triadic.    Thinking about painting?  Choose your curtains and bedding before you paint.  Pick your wall colour next, by picking one of the colours in your curtains or bedding.
  • Magazines What pages attract you?  Look at the advertising pages.  Are the ones that you are attracted to have your favourite colours?  Compare that page to the colour wheel and see what colour category it fits into.  This is a great exercise for you to think about in your leisure.
  • Gardens City parks and gardens such as Niagara Falls, is another great example of colour wheel use.  Have you ever noticed how you are atracted to these gardens?  Great colour knowledge and use really work well together.
  • Designer Paper Rubberstampers love designer paper.  Pick out a paper and you are sure to find it fits within one of the colour wheel categories.  Pick a colour and use it as your main colour in your matt and in your coloured image.  If you can create the main colour in your technique, even better. (ie,  Technique Junkie Newsletter offers a wide number of techniques in their subscriber newsletter).

Wasn’t that fun?  Colour wheel combinations are right under your nose every day, and you didn’t know it.


  • Look in your closet and pick out your favourite cloths and look at the colour wheel.  What colour combination does it fit into?
  • Pick an ad in a magazine and see what colour combination it fits into

In the next post about the colour wheel, we will look at colouring using the colour wheel as a guide.

For more tips and tricks, and tutorials, please visit my pages above

Posted on : Jun 27 2010
Posted under Tips & Tricks |

Introduction to the Colour Wheel

What is a colour wheel? It is a circle-shaped disc that is divided into 12 sections which displays colour according to their pigments.

Colours are made up of red, yellow, and blue. These colours are known as primary colours because they cannot be created by mixing any other colour. The remainder of the colours on the colour wheel are called secondary because red, yellow and blue are mixed to create these colours.

There are many shades of each colour as you can see above.

Let’s take a closer look at the colour wheel.


Monochrome colour is made up many shades of one colour.  One example is the green above.  It starts with a cool shade of kaki green and graduates to a very deep kaki.  When cardmakers and scrapbookers use monochrome colour, white/cream or black is often added.

Associated Colours or Analogous

Associated Colour consists of colours that are side-by-side on the colour wheel.  Associated with the kaki green are gold and blue-green.  Normally one chooses a colour as the dominant colour and then uses the associated colour as an accent.


Opposites attract.  No, they really do.  Take a look at the colour wheel above, and look at the opposing colours.  Notice how kaki goes  well with the pink-red.  This is a bold use of colour, and is my favourite to use.

Split Complementary

Just as the name says, split complementary is the use of opposites and the addition of a third colour.  The third colour is to the left, or to the right, of the main colour.  For example, red-pink and kaki are the chosen main colours, and gold or blue-green would be the third colour if I left the wheel as it is seen in this photo.

Turning the wheel around, pink-red and kaki are the main colours, but this time orange and violet are the chosen colours to use as a split complementary.


Triadic sounds like triangle, right?  Looking at the colour wheel above, can you pick out the triangular colours to use?  The answer is:  kaki, orange and violet.  Isn’t this easy?

I’m absolutely in love with this colour wheel that I found on Letter Seals.Com

This colour wheel is non traditional, and perfect for cardmakers and scrapbookers.  Why?  Because it shows a wide variety of colour combinations.  This colour wheel is yummy.

Let’s look closely at the colour wheel again.  Notice that each colour is broken up into five colour segments.  Each colour wheel can be broken up into as many colour segments as the producer of the wheel chooses.  In this case my wheel is produced by Bazzil paper company, so my wheel matches with the colours at the time the wheel was printed.  One does not have to purchase Bazzil paper.  Case in hand, I use Stampin’ Up paper yet I can follow along on this colour wheel.

Getting back to the segments of colour, let’s look at the lightest shade on the wheel.  If I choose the lightest blue, the best colour choice to compliment my light blue would be the lightest shade of green, violet or gold.  In another example, if I choose the third from the top blue, the complementary colour choice would be the third from the top of the green, violet and gold.  Are you catching on?  I knew you would.

Isn’t colour grand?!

Did you read my other posts?

Work Wonders with the Colour Wheel

Colour Wheel

For a list of more tips and tricks, please see my page above

Weekly tutorials can be found on two pages listed at the top of my blog


Posted on : Jun 21 2010
Posted under Tips & Tricks |

Prismacolor Coloured Pencil


In a world where Copic marker sales are soaring, you may ask why I continue to love a coloured pencil aka pencil crayon.  Linda Heavens of Heavens Created This is a prime example of how beautiful Copic markers work.  Linda makes me believe I could do beautiful work with Copics, but in the end, coloured pencil wins.  Why?  Coloured pencil takes me back to my childhood where I would spend countless hours colouring.  Child by heart, I get an overwhelming sense of peace and relaxation when I take the time to enjoy colouring with coloured pencil.

If you are following my Coloured Pencil free on-line class, you will need to have 6-10 Prismacolor coloured pencils.  Prismacolour sets may be cost prohibitive, but there is a way around that.  Simply visit your local art supply store (ie. Bear Creek Studio in Sarnia, Dick Blick) to select from a showcase of single coloured pencils.  If you do not have Prismacolor on hand, any brand will do, but it will be necessary to purchase a colourless blender pencil (purchase at local art store, Michael, Hobby Lobby).

What makes Prismacolor so special?

Prismacolor coloured pencils are wax-based and blend with ease.  The bright series has 132 colours, and lightfast has 48 colours.

Coloured Pencil Galleries

Prismacolor website gallery

Colored Pencil Society of America 2009 winners

Colored Pencil Society of America 2008 winners

Monopoly board

Bouquet that resembles a photo rather than coloured pencil

Shiny gold chairs

Alastair Lockwood

Colour Pencil Resources


Coloured Pencil book list

Amazon book list

Coloured Pencil Blogs

Nicole Caulfield

Siti Nuriati (beautiful Lady Diana artwork)

Holly Bedrosian portrait artist

Deborah Friedman

Gamsol/Odorless Mineral Spirits


In my coloured photo above, I used Prismacolor coloured pencil with Gamsol.  Gamsol is an odorless form of turpentine.  A little goes a long way, and your bottle will last forever.  You can find this product in the art supply section at Hobby Lobby or Michaels, among the oil paint tubes and watercolour tubes.  Look for odorless mineral spirits if you do not see Gamsol.  Local art stores carry this as well. tortillions

To blend your colour you require tortillions, which are tightly wound paper sharpened to a point.  You can purchase a starter kit which will have everything you need to get you started.  If you don’t see a starter kit, have sandpaper on hand.  Stores will have sandpaper hand-held blocks in the coloured pencil section.  If you chose to buy your sandpaper at a hardware store, buy a very fine grit.  Sandpaper is used to sharpen your point and to take off colour in you don’t have enough tortillions on hand.

Don’t miss out on my free on-line coloured pencil class, subscribe today

Posted on : Nov 12 2009
Posted under Tips & Tricks |

S&D Challenge 8: Sweet Tooth


This is a very exciting week for Sunflowers & Dragonflies Creative Designs.  Want to know why?  We are showcasing cupcake stamps drawn by our new artist, Marisa of Elegant Bloggery.  When I came across her cupcakes I asked her to make some for us.  I am sure you will love these just as much as me.   All week I will showcase more projects and cards with these delightful cupcakes.

Cupcakes are stamped out on watercolour paper and watercoloured with Tombow and Stampin’ Up.

The surprises don’t stop there.  Next week we will showcase another stamp line by another artist.  They are darling and will win your hearts.  I know they won mine 🙂

Both stamp lines will become available to purchase on my new website which will be unveiled on September 19th.

*  *  * *

Please join us and show off your talent.  Show us a card or project with anything sweet.  You are welcome to use any product. Of course we’d prefer that you use images by Sunflowers and Dragonflies Creative Designs, but feel free to use other images if you don’t have one of ours.  This week’s prize is a set of cupcake stamps and sentiments.

Please post a direct link to your challenge project  (with a link back to the challenge) from either your blog or an online gallery so we can view it, no later than Saturday afternoon.   If you upload to an online gallery, please use the keyword S&D8.

Please check out the challenge projects below from each of our DT members and click on their blog links to find details about each specific project.


Kim created a sweet tooth house


Beth showcases her love for chocolate


Jennifer created a heavenly sugar-coated delight for you

This week’s prize

A complete set of our cupcakes stamps and sentiments

cupcake-stamp-sweet-tooth-challenge-beth-norman-51 cupcake-stamp-sweet-tooth-challenge-beth-norman-6

Posted on : Sep 12 2009
Posted under Tips & Tricks |

The Magic of Pearl Ex

pearlex-powder-200 Pearl Ex is a wonderful, colourful, and magical medium that is used by professional artists and potters, as well as rubberstampers, scrapbookers, and polymar clay artists.   There are a variety of finishes–from metalic to pearlescent and iridescent.  Pearl Ex is safe, non-toxic and archival safe.

Pearl Ex comes in liquid and powder form, but the most versatile is the powder form.

When painting with powder, water and Gum Arabic is added.  Gum Arabic is a binding agent that prevents the powder from rubbing away.  Rubberstampers find that a finishing spray (or hair spray for the thrifty) works just as well if Gum Arabic is omitted from the Pearl Ex powder/water mixture.

pearlexheading There are many ways to use Pearl Ex powder.  It can be used as a colouring agent in embossing powder and polymar clay.  It can be dusted into polymar clay molds before pressing the clay into the molds.  One of my favourite methods of colouring polymar clay is to dust a variety of colours, with my finger, onto the clay prior to baking.  Colours blend beautifully together.  The adventerous are known to add Pearl Ex powder to their eye shadow.

There is a wealth of information on the Jacquard Products website where you will find products, a forum, project ideas, and more.

I hope you are inspired to try Pearl Ex out.  Listed below are lots of tutorials and interesting photos to read, so grab a coffee, sit back, and enjoy.

50 Places to Inspire You

Subscribe to Technique Junkie Newsletter for ideas

Sunflowers and Dragonflies Tutorial (one I posted on my old blog)

Maria’s Bell’s Christmas Ornaments

Maria Bell’s Floor Wax Tutorial

Mel’s Verdigris Embossing

SplitcoastStamper’s Melted Pearls Tutorial

Mini Tutorial by Camp Fire Lady

Background Technique by Inkie Fingers

Polymer Clay Buttons

Crafty Goat’s Notes makes a test strip

Crafty Goat’s Notes organizes jars of PearlEx and Embossing Powder

Amy Celona has a video to share with you

Learn That Craft shares a video

Ars Longa put together a tutorial

Kim shares a tutorial about PearlEx with Gold Leaf

Scrapbook Designs shares a tutorial

Amy put together a wonderful tutorial and Information Sharing

Cindy Lou combines chalks with PearlEx

Pez-A-Doodle Shines

Tanya’s crayon scrappings shine

AMACO describes a technique with Friendly Plastic

Melissa’s Tile Tutorial

Gina P Crafts Shimmering Tutorial

Kim BT’s Tile Tutorial

Scrapbook Studio Gets A Little Messy

Polymer Clay Project Makes PearlEx Paint

After Hours Stamper’s Stained Glass Tutorial

Mona Designs’ Stunning Bracelet

Lisa’s Beaded Necklace

Pearl Ex as Eye Shadow

Polymar Clay Buttons on Flickr

Mikasa Vase on Flickr

Pendants on Flickr

Halloween Trinket Box on Flickr

Flower Pendent on Flickr

Sea Journal on Flickr

Tiles on Flickr

Faux Shells on Flickr

Mermaid on Flickr

Bright Coloured Card on Flickr

Jacquard Projects

Please report any broken links.  Thank you.

Posted on : Aug 10 2009
Posted under Tips & Tricks |

What is Watercolour Paper?

One of my favourite methods of colouring a stamped image is to watercolour with Tombow markers, and for that watercolour paper needs to be used.  Whether a stamp artist or professional artist, watercolour paper is all the same; it is personal preference that determines what brand and style of paper is used.

Watercolour paper is paper that has been treated specifically to prevent absorption.  There are three things that determine the weight and feel of the paper, and that is how much pulp is used, how it is treated, and how it is processed.  A hot pressed surface is smooth, while a cold press surface is a little roughter.   On close inspection, each piece of watercolour paper has a smooth side and a rough side.  Again the roughness is determined by the factors discussed above.

Watercolour paper is labelled by weight.  Weight is determined by pounds per ream, or grams per square meter.  The lighter the paper, the higher the tendancy to warp.  

 As a rubberstamp artist, 70 pound paper is acceptable to use because less water is placed onto the paper, thereby decreasing the risk for warping.  I purchase a heavier pound paper in booklet form because it travels well, it  warps less, and book paper goes on sale. 

In summary, picking the right paper isn’t  rocket science.  With the information provided, your next trip to the art store should be a little easier.

Posted on : Jul 24 2009
Posted under Tips & Tricks |

Cameo Roses


The minute I saw the video tutorial  for this gorgeous rose on Patty’s Stamping Spot, I put in a Stampin’ Up order that would allow me to create this lovely and elegant rose.  The order included Fifth Avenue Floral stamp set, reinkers, white Craft pad, and Shimmer paper.  This rose is just one of the 24 that I created.

These lovely textured leaves are sold at Sunflowers and Dragonflies Creative Designs.

Thanks to my mom for passing over all her unused lace, I was able to add a little more elegance to the card.

I will add this post to the Tips & Tricks tab at the top of my page, so you can refer back to my card and location of the tutorial just in case you need it again.


Thank you for stopping by.  Have a great day!

Are you a subscriber?  Subscribe today for more tips and tricks and tutorials.

Posted on : Jun 13 2009
Posted under cards, Tips & Tricks |

Happy Father’s Day Paper Wallet


Don’t these odd birds remind you of your husband?  Look, it’s taking three odd male birds to fix one leaky pipe.  Admit it, our husbands pretend that they can fix something around the house, but we all know who tells them how to do it!  Us. Yes, us odd bird ladies certainly know how to keep things under control in the household.   Sheesh, and our husbands think we are only rubberstampers!  Ugh!  I have a great story to tell you, but I’ll save that for another day as I have lots to share.  But, I might add, I would love to hear your funny story about your Mr. Fix-it.  You will find the tutorial at the end of my post.


Odd Bird Planet is having a Father’s Day special for that someone special.  Stamps are 25% off and can be found on the website store.  The following is a long list of stamps that are up for grabs in this special.

1402G  Happy Father’s Day
1434I  U-pipe
1420B  S-pipe
1243Q  Pipes
1427E   Toolbelt
1411D  Ladder
1423BB  Bucket
1230M  3 Pipers Piping
1416C  Bucket Plumber Bird
1415D  Coffee Plumber Bird
1281E  Piper Piping With Faucet
1283J  Pipers Piping in Shower
1287E  Pipers Piping on Bench
1282G  Pipers Piping Under Sink
1424E  Tattoo Plumber Bird
1417B  Tool Belt Plumber Bird
1432N  Barn
1433I  Barn Stall
1435C  Lunchbox and Thermos
1400E  On Father’s Day
1474F  Carlos the Bull Left
1473F  Carlos the Bull Right
1560H  Brawny Strong Bird
1500J  Larry Strong Bird
1559H  Mr Wilson Hat and Tie Bird
1513I  Ringleader
1620J  Work Van Left
1237J  Work Van Right
1547I  Woodrow Western Duckie Left
1546I  Woodrow Western Duckie Right
977C  Theodore Left
976C  Theodore Right
1920C  Karrie’s Casey Cowboy Owl
1958N  Kelly’s Gnome Carpenter
1939G  Kelly’s Gnome in PJ’s
1871Q  Kelly’s Gnome on Branch with Birds
1957W  Kelly’s Gnome Train
1943I  Kelly’s Gnome with Workbench
1730E  Kelly’s Gnome Man Left
1731E  Kelly’s Gnome Man Right
89J  Scooter
1300F  You Rock (jj mix)
1299C  You Rock (whimsy)
1280A  Max Rocker Owl
1271K  3 Drummers Drumming
1270L  3 Drummers Marching
1268O  4 Drummers Drumming
1419E  Brody No Drum Left
1418E  Brody No Drum Right
1269D  Drum
1316E  Rock and Roll (gothic)


The tutorial for the paper wallet comes from the very talented Jerry Kay, of A Touch of Grace.  I sew on all my cards, which made this card so much fun to create.  If you don’t sew, don’t worry, you can piece your wallet together with double sided tape.   My photos don’t do justice for how awesome it looks in real life.

For Jerry Kay’s tutorial click here.

Hope you enjoyed this post as much as I did putting it together.  Have a great weekend everyone!

For a complete list of my tutorials, click on the Tutorial tab on the top of the page.

Posted on : Jun 12 2009
Posted under Tips & Tricks, Tutorials |

Margoux is Painting


I just love Sarah Kay stamps don’t you?  Sarah appealed to so many of us when she came out with Holly Hobby in the 70’s.  Today she is turning her images into rubber stamps.  You don’t have to look too far to find a place to sell these cuties; you can buy them right here at Sunflowers and Dragonflies Creative Designs.

Did you know that Splitcoast Stampers have awesome weekly sketches?  For this card I used Sketch 209.  When I work with Stampavie images, I enjoy pairing it up with BasicGrey paper.  Prima flowers were added.


Sarah Kay on the Internet

Free web images and clipart

The Adventures of Holly Hobby in print

Original Hobby Hobby

Colouring Book pages

A cute card

Cross Stitch kits

Cute Christmas card

A cute card

Posted on : May 30 2009
Posted under Tips & Tricks, Uncategorized |

Magnolia vs Stampavie Challenge 17


I couldn’t resist diving right into this week’s sketch challenge.  There are different prizes each week.  All you have to do is use one of the images that is permitted for the challenge, post your name with your blog link, and wait for the results.  To help get you jumpstarted, visit my store where you can purchase your first–or fifth, Stampavie image.


Image was watercoloured with Tombow markers and Twinkling H2O’s.

Link me up to your Stampavie card, and be the selected winner at Magnolia vs Stampavie this week, you’ll walk away with your choice of Prima flowers from my store.  You must link me up to your card in this post to qualify for my prize.

Thanks for stopping by!

Posted on : Mar 11 2009
Posted under Tips & Tricks |

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