Layered Birch Trees, AliExpress Dies, How to Layer Die Cuts

Here’s another use for the alcohol ink backgrounds I made.  I bought a birch tree die from Aliexpress for $3.15.  Their prices vary, here’s a link to the birch tree dies there. https://www.aliexpress.com/wholesale?ltype=wholesale&d=y&origin=y&isViewCP=y&catId=0&initiative_id=SB_20170521130357&SearchText=birch+tree+die+metal&blanktest=0&tc=af
I cut two of the tree dies, one on a bone cardstock 5 1/4 x 4″ and a grey one that was the same size.  I took Hickory Smoke Distress Ink and used a brush I bought at Harbor Freight Liquidators to highlight the trees to make them look shaded on the bone card stock..
Using a piece of white 110 lb Recollections 5 1/4″ x 4″ cardstock and a die from Aliexpress that was the largest in the set, I cut the center out of the paper.  This set was $2.32 and here’s the link to it. https://www.aliexpress.com/wholesale?ltype=wholesale&d=y&origin=y&isViewCP=y&catId=0&initiative_id=SB_20170521130949&SearchText=rectangle+die+set+metal&blanktest=0&tc=af
After cutting the center of the white card stock, I took a piece of gray cardstock that was 5 1/8 x 3 7/8″ and laid it under the white frame I just cut out.  By doing this, you can find the right size die to create another frame that you’ll be able to see inside the white paper.  (I think this die was two sizes smaller than the largest die).  Once you find the size die you want, you’ll lay it on your gray paper, making sure to center it in the white frame, then holding it in place, tape it down with washi tape or medical tape, something not very sticky, and remove the white frame.  Using the Vagabond, I cut this piece and then put tape runner on the white frame and laid the gray frame on top of it.  Since the sizes are almost the same, make sure you can’t see the gray paper on the outside of the white paper.  Put tape runner all around the edges of the gray paper and lay the bone colored trees on it.  I needed to cut two trees off of my die cut.  Make sure you cut the same two trees off of the gray die cut as well.  Carefully lay the bone colored trees down and glue them in place and then offset the gray trees so they look like shadows.  I used wet glue (I think it was the Best Glue Ever) on the back of my bone colored trees to ensure the gray trees were glued well to them and so my branches don’t stick up.  You’ll want your branches glued together if possible.
I used a white card base that is 5 1/2″ tall x 4 1/4″ wide.  I cut the alcohol ink background down to 5 1/4″ x 4″ and using tape runner, centered it on the front of my card base.  Then I took more wet glue and applied my framed trees to the front.
I took the centers that I die cut from my frames and layered them together with tape runner and put them inside the card where you would write.  I stamped a sentiment from Hero Arts Friend stamp set #L351 on a piece of the white card stock and took one of the dies from my set and cut it out and cut a piece of the grey in the next size bigger die, cut both out then layered them on top of each other and used tape runner to hold them together.  I put foam pieces behind the gray piece.  I didn’t adhere it yet, as I decided my trees needed to be more white.  I took a Prismacolor white pencil and colored them and then used a Uni Posca white paint marker and made white horizontal dashes on the trees to make them look more authentic.
I had one branch that was sticking up, so added some wet glue behind it and then set my glue bottle on it to hold it.  I put my sentiment in the center of the card and added some green leaf washi tape to my envelope and stamped the back of my card with “I made this for you.”
If you don’t have a background, you can use any medium, watercolor pencils, colored pencils, gelatos, to create a background where one third is green, the middle is yellow and the top one third is orange for a sunset look.

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