The definition of “shabby chic” is to give something the appearance of being an antique with signs of wear and tear, while at the same time giving it a soft, opulent, yet cottage-style decor, often emphasized with a feminine feel.  This shabby chic style is what I was going for with this card I made for Mother’s Day.

A personal preference for the shabby chic style of card making is to use layers…lotsa’ layers!  This photo tutorial shows how a card using relatively simple “ingredients” goes from plain to vintage cozy and shabby chic.

Begin by using Distress Ink (Antique Linen and Tea Dye) applied with a sponge dauber along all edges of the card stock and patterned paper.  I took a length of pale pink crepe paper and pleated it while running it through my sewing machine.

Next, I adhered the 4″ x 5.25″ piece of London Market patterned paper (from Paper Made Bakery’s May Fresh Baked Kit) to the card front.  I stamped a butterfly image from the stamp set included in the kit in tan ink in the upper right corner.

The first layer to the card front is simply another piece of the patterned paper, but I cut out just a corner with the rose motif, added bits of foam tape to the back and then adhered it to the lower right corner of my card front. 

This gives the layer some depth and balances the card front.  I inked the edges of this piece as well before adhering it to the corner — to give it an aged look.
The second layer was to adhere the pleated paper ribbon, which I embellished with a soft pink button and some light pink baker’s twine through the buttonholes.
For the sentiment on this card I stamped “the sweet life” onto a 1/2″ strip of fresh white cotton card stock, scored twice on each side of the sentiment, folded back then forth and snipped a wedge from each end to create a banner.  Of course, I aged the banner with Distress Ink.
For a finishing touch, and to add to that feminine emphasis, I added some pink and green rhinestones onto both the butterfly image and the banner.  The banner is raised, as I only adhered the two ends with mini glue dots.
I think I achieved the shabby chic style to this card and it was pretty easy to make.  I really like the pleated paper ribbon, and this can be made with any kind of paper — it would even be neat to use this technique on another piece of patterned paper, adding more contrast and interest.  I hope you enjoyed learning how to create a shabby chic treat!

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