Flights of Fancy

Hi readers!  Please join me in welcoming Jill Foster back to our blog! Her work is so inspiring to me and I’m sure if you are familiar with her work it is to you as well! Read on to learn how Jill made this watercolored beauty, and also for more details on a special prize! Enjoy!

Hi everyone! Jill Foster here for Penny Black and it is such an honor to share a trio of cards with you today. I decided to use one of my favorite Penny Black Creative Dies, 51-132 Flights of Fancy. But instead of using the positive die cut, I used the negative “leftover” piece as a stencil. This is a great way to get even more use from your dies!


Using a stenciled image, as opposed to a stamped outline, gives the look of hand-painted artsy butterflies.


Place the “stencil” over your watercolor paper and apply watercolor paints to the body and wings of the butterfly. Once dry, remove the stencil, and paint the background area surrounding the butterflies.


I kept things loose and flowing, allowing the background color to drip and splatter.


Finally, I stamped my sentiments using VersaFine Onyx Black ink. The Penny Black transparent set, 30-283 Snippets, is perfect for butterfly images …or basically anything else you could need!

facebook graphic for PB

Would you like to get your hands on this beautiful butterfly die? My friends at Penny Black have one to give away to a lucky winner. Simply “like” the Penny Black Facebook page and leave a comment that Simon Says Stamp sent ya for a chance to win!


Thanks for reading today, and thanks to Jill for being our special guest today!


Blog Candy Alert!! Follow our blog via email and comment on this post for a chance to win a special blog candy!

  1. I’m surprised no one else has asked this question. How did you apply the backround watercolor after you did the butterflies? Why didn’t it run all over the butterflies? Did you mask them? I am really curious.

      1. Hi Sally! This is from Jill: (Hopefully this help clarifies :))

        After I did the butterflies I removed the die cut “stencil” and simply painted around the butterflies, I did not do any masking. To ensure the paint did not blend with the existing butterfly colors/paints, I made sure the butterflies were dry before adding the background color. (I sped up this drying process using a heat gun.) Then I applied water with my paint brush only to the area around the butterflies, taking care not to re-wet the butterflies. When the paint is then added to this wet area, it will only flow where the paper is wet and not onto the butterflies. To manipulate the drips, I turned my paper in different directions so the paint flowed away from the butterflies.

        1. Cool!!! Thank you for the additional details. I was wondering the same thing, not being an artsy person. Interesting!

          1. Thanks for asking this important question. I was wondering as well. I have always loved this card and I am so happy to have found this thread.

  2. Gorgeous idea for using dies for more than just die cutting!! Am I right in that you used the positive die cut to mask the butterfly when doing the background??!! Thanks for the inspiration!!

  3. So glad to see Jill Foster back, and with such a gorgeous set of cards! I’ve had my eye on this set of dies and now I want them even more! Until I can get my hands on them, I will try using this technique with other dies I have. Thank you, Jill, for the fabulous idea and samples!

  4. Sally…it is very simple …die cut the butterfly and remove the mask/paper then place it in the area and water the area around it or use the cut die cut card and apply rubber mask/Masking fluid wait for it to dry this works the best paint the area around the butterfly..once done remove the masking fluid with eraser and paint the butterfly using the came die cut card.

    1. Ah, another way to do it, esp. for us less artsy people (me)! :) Thank you for detailing this option also.

  5. I love the butterfly cards, very pretty. I have LIKED and has been following Penny Blake on FB for awhile. Love her work.

  6. Sorry, I know this seems like a silly question but I am new to stenciling. Where can I get a butterfly stencil like this, basically solid.

    Many thanks!


  7. If people that write articles cared more about writing great material like you, more readers would read their content. It’s refreshing to find such original content in an otherwise copy-cat world. Thank you so much.

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