Tag Archives: tips and tricks

Distress Ink Blending Foam Storage – Update + Video Tutorial!

Hello friends! Today I’m here with a video (as promised!) showing something I get emails weekly about –  an update for that awesome Distress Blending Foam Storage chart that I released several years ago with the No-Stress Distress Inks course. Since that time, Tim Holtz has come out with 12 more colors. The were originally deemed seasonal and limited edition colors, but the colors were so beloved that they became a permanent part of the Distress Inks line. That’s a good thing, too, because the seasonal colors are some of my very favorites of all time. First, here’s a look at the finished product:

Distress Ink Blending Foam Organization Chart by Britta Swiderski with video tutorial! (08-10-14) brittaswiderski.com

For a full supply list, please scroll down a little bit towards the bottom of the blog post. There you will find a full supply list and the link to download the free PDF. Enjoy the video!

watch here | watch on youtube | subscribe to my channel

Here’s another look at the chart in all its colorful glory. It’s seriously so inspiring to see all of these colors right in front of my workspace. I highly recommend hanging this somewhere where you can see it!

08-10-14 Distress Ink Foam Organization Chart by Britta Swiderski-3

Here’s an up-close look at the back. I used a stapler to secure small pieces of velcro to the front around the edges and used a craft pick + brads + brad setter to attach the velcro in the middle of the board. This extra security will keep your velcro (and blending foams!) on through many projects and crafty adventures.

08-10-14 Distress Ink Foam Organization Chart by Britta Swiderski-4

Supplies used on this project: Click below to see where you can buy the products used on this project. Click on “SS” for the product at Simon Says Stamp and “EH” for the product at Ellen Hutson. I only link to products and shops that I know and love. Thank you for your support!

If you’re really wanting to dive more into distress inks, I can’t think of a better way than my No-Stress Distress Inks E-Course. And guess what? It’s discounted right now from $15 to $10. Would you like to know why? Well there just might be a No-Stress Distress Inks 2 class in the works… but you didn’t hear that from me. ;)

No-Stress Distress Inks E-Class by Britta Swiderski

Here’s where you can download the chart for yourself. It’s absolutely free, but please tweet (@brittaswiderski), instagram (@brittaswiderski) or facebook (BrittaSwiderskiCreative) a picture of yours when your done. I would LOVE to see it!


Thanks so much for stopping by today. It’s an exciting time in my life, and I’m so glad I get to share it with you. :) Coming up next: more filofax inserts!



Filed under Cardmaking, Links and Shopping, Tutorials

Color Wheel, Part 2: Color Relationships

I think it’s about time for another Tips and Tricks post. How about the second part to The Color Wheel Tips and Tricks Part One from last week?

Sorry I haven’t posted since Monday! It’s been crazy around here… to say the least. There was a bad storm, a massive heat wave, CHA preparations and a national holiday, and MAN I’m wiped! I’ll post soon with some pictures from the week. You’re not going to want to miss these. I just didn’t want to overload the post today!

The Color Wheel, Part Two

Last week, we talked about the standard color wheel and how we get those 12 basic colors. Check out the post if you missed it or need a little refresher. :)

Color Relationships

Today, we’re going to talk about using this handy dandy little color wheel for choosing color schemes. It’s basically a cheat sheet to test what colors naturally look good together. These are just some of the basic color relationships based on the color wheel.

This doesn’t by any means mean that these are the only good color schemes or even that each one of these is perfect for your project, but it’s always a good resource to have in the back of your head when choosing colors.

The first part of this is probably something that you hear very often – warm and cool colors. Warm colors tend to imply brightness, happiness and energy. Cool colors, on the other hand, tend to imply relaxation, calm and coolness.   Cool colors almost always “go” with other cool colors, while warm colors almost always “go” with other warm colors.

Analogous Color Scheme

In the same vein that cool colors tend to look good with other cool colors, choosing a few colors that neighbor one another on the color wheel makes a solid analogous color scheme. Because these hues share like origins, they look good together. You can can choose as many or as few as you need for your design this way. The sweet spot is usually around 3 or 4. :)

Complementary Color Scheme

This next scheme is produced by taking two colors from across the wheel. This is called a complementary color scheme. The contrast of complementary colors makes them really pop. In their purest forms, if you mix two complementary colors, the result will always be brown.

Triadic Color Scheme

Whereas with the complementary color scheme we drew a line, for the triadic color scheme we draw a triangle to formulate our color choices. These are equally spaced around the circle (in this case, every 4th color). This geometric relationship to the circle gives our color scheme a very balanced, even feeling.

Quadratic Color Scheme

Here, we use a square to help us make our quadratic color scheme. You can have a lot of fun with the contrasts between all of the colors here.

Complementary Analogous Color Scheme

This is an example to show you that once you have the analogous and complementary concepts down, you can experiment by expanding your options. Here, I chose a complementary color scheme and then added both of the colors’ “neighbors” to create a complementary analogous color scheme. Something like this would be very helpful for a large piece like a layout or painting. It’s nice to have a specific color palate but still have options when you’re working on a larger project.

I hope you enjoyed the color lesson for today! Make sure to stay tuned for more information early next week on my upcoming design class. If you like this type of lesson and you like my videos, you’re going to love this class. <3



Filed under Tutorials

The Color Wheel, Part 1 + An Announcement!

Are you ready for another Tips and Tricks post? These are quickly becoming my favorite posts to make up, because I get to make fun things like this:

It’s a Distress Ink Color Wheel! As you may know, I’m just a few months away from graduating with my B.A. in Graphic Design, and I’m a chart lover to the very core. I love to organize, categories and make lists. My left brain is a very big part of my creativity, and I love it.

On a recent video tutorial, I mentioned that I used colors that were next to one another on the color wheel. I recieved several questions about what I was implying, and this made me realize that I owe you a little lesson in color. Trust me, it will be quick and painless. :)

But first, I thought it would be fun to make your own color chart. You’ll need the your distress inks (I used all off the 36 standard colors plus the 12 seasonal colors here), a 3/4″ circle punch (5/8″ or 1/2″ would work as well on this chart) and the will to get your fingers a little inky. Here’s the pdf you can print onto white cardstock and adhere your circles to. It’s sized for 8.5″ by 11″, so it cuts off the two outermost circles (you don’t need them anyways). If this bothers you, you can print out the chart from the 11″ by 14″ PDF version on a large format printer. Do what works best for you!

Let me stress that this is an imperfect chart. The colors aren’t perfectly spaced, the main 12 colors use several of the limited edition colors, and there simply are not enough colors to completely fill the chart. This is all okay! It’s about seeing your colors in a new way. You can also punch circles of other inks you have and practice arranging them on the chart. You don’t have to stick to the Distress Inks.

The chart also leaves out several distress colors that don’t quite “fit” because of their neutrality (they would normally in the the middle of the chart, but this looks prettier). Just think of these as your neutral colors that’ll go with just about anything. These colors are: antique linen, black soot, brushed corduroy, forest moss, frayed burlap, gathered twigs, iced spruce, old paper, pumice stone, tea dye, vintage photo, walnut stain and weathered wood.

The Color Wheel: An Introduction

[CLICK HERE for Part Two about color relationships!]

Now, forget everything about Distress Inks. We’re talking color here, and it doesn’t matter what inks or paper or anything you use. Just the colors matter. :)

First, let me introduce you to the standard 12-color wheel. (This is the exact same as the circle of inks on the chart with the bold line around it.) This is the basis of most color theory.

Remember, this is an exercise in understanding and not perfection. If you were to make this chart using computer colors and exact math, it would look a little different. That’s okay! So how did these colors come to be? Why these colors, and why does it have to be arranged this way? Well, here’s why:

These are the primary colors. You’ve probably been working with these since you were a toddler: the basics red, yellow and blue.

When you combine each of these colors, you get what we call secondary colors. So red and yellow combine to make orange, yellow and blue combine to make green, and blue and red combine to make violet.

See? That’s easy enough. Now we just combine each of the colors next to one another – one primary and one secondary – to create tertiary colors. Red and orange combine to make red-orange, orange and yellow combine to make yellow-orange and so on. ***Note that when a color is mixed so that has even amounts of each color, you say the primary color first.

Now that you have this part down, we can move on to color schemes next week! So make a chart of your own and see if you can categories the inks and paper you have on hand into a pretty color chart. I’d love to see your results! Remember, not everything falls perfectly into one of these 12 colors – sometimes there are mixtures that fall in between. That’s okay! It’s all part of the process. :)

[CLICK HERE for Part Two of color theory about color relationships!]

Introducing… Design Principles!

So you’ve seen me mention a couple times that I’m working on a big project. Well, this is it. I’m not going to give away all of my secrets quite yet, but I can finally tell you a little about my newest designchild.

Inspiration University: Design Principles will take place here on my website and will be an interactive class. It’ll be a combination of my Tips and Tricks posts with a little bit of the feel of No-Stress Distress Inks with some new, fun things like guest designers, giveaways and private galleries for class participants. There will be lots of videos, lots of examples and lots of community love.

I hope you’re getting excited! I know there will be a ton of questions, so I’ll divulge more details about the class soon. Feel free to ask away in the comments, and then look out for a post around the 9th or 10th for more details about Design Principles.

Thanks so much for stopping by today. Back to work for me. Lots to do, lots to do! :D



Filed under Tutorials