A Way With Words Els van de Burgt Studio Joset Designs Shimmer Sheetz Soft Finish Cardstock

Gingerbread Man Topiary Tree Cards

August 14, 2016

Gingerbread Man Topiary Tree Cards
By Judi Kauffman

Topiary 8

I’m back as today’s guest designer with a project that takes the new Joset Designs Gingerbread Man die in an unexpected direction: As a shape for topiary* trees. Did you know that one of Santa’s elves is a gardener when he’s not getting ready for the holidays? Well, that’s how I imagine it…

These cards are designed for someone blind or with impaired vision, as well as for the sighted. For those who ‘see’ by the sense of touch, the textures tell the story: Shimmer Sheetz, a wooden stir stick, felt, Velvet Adhesive Sheets, cork, woven and knotted seam tape, layered rectangles made of heavy cardstsock. I shut my eyes as a test and was able to figure out everything but the greeting, though I think I would have had a tough time with the leaves if I hadn’t already known what they were.  (*Dictionary definition – “Topiary: The art or practice of clipping shrubs or trees into ornamental shapes.”

The cards measure a generous 4” x 10” so you’ll need an oversize envelope and extra postage for mailing.

Santa’s elf has his clippers ready for some additional topiary, so be on the lookout… Can you guess which of the new die shapes I’m going to help the elf turn into trees???


Topiary 1

Topiary 2

1. Create a 5” x 10” side-fold card base from Mustard Soft Finish Cardstock, scored and folded so that the white side of the cardstock is on the inside. Top with a 3.5” x 9.25” Buttercream SFC rectangle. Add a 3.25” x 2” piece of Through the Lens Wood series cardstock across the bottom. (Adhere all layers with Clear Double Sided Adhesive Tape.)

2. Use brown ink to color a 4” piece of a wooden coffee stirring stick. Set aside to dry. Make sure one end is cut straight across.

3. Die cut a Gingerbread Man from Emerald Gemstone Shimmer Sheetz OR from green cardstock topped with Green Velvet Adhesive Sheet. Back a piece of Shimmer Sheetz with Clear Double Sided Adhesive and die cut a Leafy Branch to match the Shimmer Sheetz Gingerbread Man OR die cut a Leafy Branch from Green Velvet Adhesive to match the Velvet Gingerbread Man. (Optional: Instead of matching, mix things up so you can put shiny leaves on the Velvet Gingerbread Man and matte velvet leaves on the Shimmer Sheetz Gingerbread Man.)

Reminder: If you are new to die cutting Shimmer Sheetz review Els’s Tutorial HERE. You must use a metal adaptor plate when cutting.


Topiary 5

4. Adhere the leaves to the die cut Gingerbread Man; trim at the edges as needed.

5. For a mottled flower pot and/or Dec. 25 greeting alter a piece of White Iridescent Shimmer Sheetz with alcohol inks in shades of brown, rust, black, and gold metallic. Alternatively, simply sand a piece of Fire Opal Gemstone Shimmer Sheetz. Die cut flower pots from either Shimmer Sheetz or brown felt backed with Clear Double Sided Adhesive Sheet.

6. Die cut a ‘Dec. 25’ greeting from either Shimmer Sheetz or Velvet Adhesive Sheet. Die cut a 3.25” x 2” Stitched Rectangle from cork sheet backed with Clear Double Sided Adhesive. Center on the Buttercream rectangle .5” from the top edge.

7. Cut a 2.75” x 1.5” piece of Buttercream SFC. Distress with Espresso and Butterscotch inks. When ink has dried, add the Buttercream rectangle to the cork rectangle, a scant quarter-inch from the top edge. Add the greeting, centered from left to right with the top of the ‘D’ a scant eighth-inch from the top edge.

Topiary 6

Topiary 7

8. Center the flower pot 1” from the bottom edge of the Through the Lens rectangle. Add the ‘dirt’ to the flower pot (felt for the Shimmer Sheetz pot, Shimmer Sheetz for the felt pot). Use Kids Choice Glue to adhere the wooden stick. Using foam tape for added dimension, add the Gingerbread Man, making sure that he overlaps the bottom of the flourish on the greeting. About 2.5” of the stick will remain visible. (The rest of the stick helps stabilize and strengthen the card front.)

Topiary 4

9. To accent the top of the card, die cut a piece of gold cardstock with the slotted Ribbons 1 die. Weave green seam tape through the cardstock and knot at both ends. Cut this piece in half and use one half for each card at the upper left as shown. If you don’t yet have the Ribbons 1 die set use a different linear embellishment like a piece of ribbon, trim, knotted fibers, or a different die cut strip.


Elizabeth Craft Designs –

Shimmer Sheetz in Emerald Gemstone and White Iridescent or Fire Opal Gemstone

Joset Designs Gingerbread Man

Garden Notes Potted

A Way With Words Dec. 25

Els van de Burgt Studio Ribbons 1

Els van de Burgt Studio Leafy Branch

Els van de Burgt Studio Stitched Rectangles

Metal Adaptor Plate

Soft Finish Cardstock in Mustard and Buttercream

Through the Lens Wood Series cardstock

Velvet Adhesive Sheets in Green

Clear Double Sided Adhesive Tape and Sheets

Beacon Kids Choice Glue

Other –

Quarter-inch wide wooden coffee stirring stick

Espresso and Butterscotch inks

Craft sponge or ink dauber tool

Green seam tape

Gold cardstock

Lightweight cork sheet

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  • Darla August 14, 2016 at 10:41 am

    What a cute way to use a gingerbread figure….. and so many ways to use the card….
    Great color scheme…

  • Lilaha Bolen August 14, 2016 at 10:32 am

    Wonderful! What a treat! Thank you for your unique creativity!

    • judi kauffman August 14, 2016 at 9:29 pm

      Thank you, Lilaha. I’ve got another topiary tree in a different shape coming up in two weeks so I hope you’ll check that out, too.

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