O Christmas Tree….I love your stencils!

Hi All,

I just have to say…O Christmas Tree….I love your stencils!   What… stencils?  Not…branches?  Yep!   Stencils.   I’ve been going nuts making Christmas Trees the last couple of weeks (I’ll be trickling through the pictures for those for a while I’m thinking) with the Christmas Tree die from the 2009 Holiday mini.   This die is an SU exclusive appropriately named O Christmas Tree and was created for SU by Karen Burniston.  Brilliant job Karen!  You can check out Karens blog here for crazy wonderful ideas for this and many of the 3D dies she’s created for SU and Sizzix.    I should note here that while Sizzix also is selling a Pop Up Christmas Tree die it is not the same as the SU die.  Much thinner with fewer branches as well as a different style of branch and its missing an additional layer of 3D branching (thus thinner).  Trust me if you are thinking of a Pop Up Christmas Tree die…you want the Stampin’ Up exclusive one.  You also want Karen’s terrific cutting diagrams and sample .pdf’s.   You will save so much paper if you use her cutting diagrams for both 12×12 and 8.5×11 paper sizes.  Saves passes through the Big Shot and thus wear and tear on your cutting plates too.

O Christmas Tree Die Stencils & Ornament Punch StencilSo…yah I mentioned stencils.  After cutting out my gazillion trees I found I had lots and lots of negative image frames left over.  Still mulling over some of the possibilities for them but of course what first came to mind was stencils. So I pulled a couple out dissected them from the longer strips and started mulling over the stencil possibilities.  Not sure where it came from but one of the first thoughts was what would fit inside them.  Turns out there are lots of possibilities.  Wheels work amazingly well as do stamp images of course.  But of course knowing how my crazy mind works I just had to try a stencil inside a stencil!  Turns out the ornament stencil I’d been using earlier in the week was a perfect fit.  Then of course over top of all those lovely inner workings you’ll have to do a bit of sponging or brayering or stipple brushing so you get the full outline of the tree.  Trust me when I say that that last part wasn’t immediately obvious to me!  Dunce in the corner time….I did a bit of wheeling and stamping at least twice and each time when I pulled the stencil away I was a tad disappointed…took me a bit to realize that some background shading was needed to establish the outline of the stencil…Schessch and Jeez Louise (yah that one comes to mind frequently since my full name is Jean Louise so I grew up hearing it a lot from “loving” friends)….okay in my defense I was working on these quite late at night so not firing exactly on all thrusters.

So wanna see the results….of course you do.   Please keep in mind these are early samples.  I really want you to be able to play with the concept so am bravely putting my first fruits on wanton display instead of saving up for the more elite versions.   It’s a process right?  And I’ll try to put some process photos together the next time I do some work on these.  These could all be single layer cards though I did end up matting a couple of them and with a minimum of embellishment added.   All ingredients are  Stampin’ Up.


 Using the larger tree stencil I used the Baroque Border wheel to create the overall pattern and then using a sponge dauber I filled in the tree outline.  This is also where I learned that new sponge daubers tend to leave spots and work much less evenly than older well inked ones.  Also discovered that my pads need some serious reinking after my creative blitz of the last week with stencils 😀



Stamps: Many Merry Messages

Ink: Real Red, Old Olive and a smidge of  Mellow Moss

Paper: Real Red Plain and Textured Cardstock, Naturals White Cardstock

Other: Gold Brad, White Gel Pen (flower centers), Baroque Border Standard Wheel, Wheel Handle, Boho Flowers Punch, Red Gingham Ribbon, Sponge Daubers, Stamping Sponge and homemade stencil template made from O Christmas Tree Pop Up die and Big Shot.




Stamps: Many Merry Messages, Baroque Motifs (flower), Always (berry branch).

Inks: Real Red, Old Olive Classic

Paper: Old Olive, Real Red Textured (flower)  & Natural White Cardstock

Other: Real Red 5/8″ Grosgrain Ribbon, Gold Brads, SU Paper Piercing tool and mat pack, Boho Flower Punch,  homemade Ornament Punch Stencil, Homemade stencil template made from O Christmas Tree Pop Up die and Big Shot, sponge daubers.


I can’t quite decide which version I like better the one with the added Modern Label Punch piece and the one with  the flower.  One makes me think of a Christmas I spent in Mexico and one doesn’t.  Odd huh since the Noel is in French?  So which do you like better?   The flower to the right in this pic is one I created with a Scallop Circle Punch and Boho Flower Punch.   The Scallop piece was cut towards the center along each scallop and then the petals slightly curled.  Turned out a bit too big to use on this card but it won’t go to waste.  I’ll use it somewhere else.


 This ones a bit on the plain side.  I think I’ll probably go back and add some Rich Razzleberry sponging and Paper Piercing just to jazz it up a bit.   The new Rich Razzleberry ribbon with polka dots would probably jazz it up a bit more too.   And…did you notice the cool tree next to the “tree”?  the Vanilla pop up tree was die cut as usual then the pieces were put through the Finial Press Impressions folder then constructed.  Tip:  Make sure all the small tree pieces are facing the same direction when they go through the embossing folder or you will end up with some impressions not coordinating well together.



Stamps: Many Merry Messages, Always (berry branch)

Inks:  Always Artichoke, Rich Razzleberry, Mellow Moss

Papers:  Always Artichoke, Very Vanilla, Kraft Cardstock

Other:  Kraft Taffeta Ribbon, Trio Flower Punch, Gold Brad, Stamping sponge, Sponge Daubers, Homemade stencil template made from O Christmas Tree Pop Up die and Big Shot

One other note about a trick I didn’t try. You can of course cut out your stenciled pieces and pop them up as layering pieces.  For this first time out I thought it would be more interesting just to see what can be done with the raw stencils.   Also my hands are somewhat shaky lately so cutting rarely turns out well for me.  Some embossing of various elements would also add some thing as would various resist techniques.

Thanks for stopping by and stay tuned for more stencil madness….. in the meantime tune in tomorrow for the latest edition of Tightwad Tuesday featuring stamps and wheels under $20.

Hugs and Blessings – Jean


6 Responses

  1. Congratulations! I just wanted you to know that your project will appear on the Yahoo Group Late Night Stamper’s blog finds of the day for Oct. 27. Want to receive your own copy of the blog finds of the day? Join us at http://groups.yahoo.com/group/stampinuplnstampers/

  2. Neat trees, Jean! I love the one with Baroque Borders!

  3. Love the stencil, Jean! Fantastic!

  4. Jean – what a neat idea! It’s wonderful that you have been so creative that you need to reink! That’s when you know it’s been a good week. 🙂 And WTG on having your project appear on the “finds of the day”! Way cool. Thanks for sharing these great projects!

  5. […] it’s actually the trees and not stencil projects using the trees die cut leftovers as shown here and […]

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