So… you have to make a card for a guy, but you don’t have any boyish stamps sets. Sound familiar?

As the proud owner of a stamp collection that is about 80% floral designs, I feel you. What if I told you cards for men don’t need to be all about tools, grills, and cars?

As long as you don’t go crazy with some super scripty greetings and keep it a little more on the geometric side, you can pull off a card with a neutral design that will appeal to guys and girls alike!

For today’s card, I chose to use a stamp set from Papertrey Ink called Winter Woods. This is one of my go-to stamps for masculine or neutral cards. Partly because I like the straight lines of the branch, but mostly because my husband likes birds. 🙂

You’ll need:

To start off, create an A2 (5.5 x 4.25-inch) card base from the Basis 110# cardstock. Also, cut a 5.25 x 4-inch piece of the Curious Metallic cardstock. 

Set those aside and grab a 5.5 x 4.25-inch piece of the 80# Basis in White. We are going to work on this panel and trim it afterward (in case the die shifts in the machine, that way you can cut it to look straight after the fact).

Center the double stitched die as best you can on the 80# cardstock piece, and secure in place with a small amount of the masking tape. Use a pencil to lightly trace on the inside of the die. This is where we will create the stamp design.

Next, use the stamp masking paper to mask off all around the lines, so only the inner rectangle is exposed (see photo below). I used Post-It® Tape for this since that was all I had, but masking paper works better because you can cover all of the outer edges of the panel and not have to worry about transferring ink to places you don’t want it to be.

Tuck your paper into the corner of a MISTI (or other stamp positioning tool) and line up how you’d like your design to appear. As you can tell, the branch from this set is well loved! There’s no actual ink on it yet, but it sure helps with visibility when I’m taking photos 🙂

Once you have the placement just right, go ahead and close the lid to pick up the stamps. I inked my branch with Soft Brown and the sentiment with Charcoal. I stamped the sentiment twice to make it a little darker, then I lined up the leaves image over my branch and stamped them with Field Greens. I planned to add a bird to my card, too, so I did a quick stamp where I wanted the bird to be.

After that’s all done, peel off the tape and reposition the double stitched die using the pencil line, and secure it in place with a few scraps of the tape. Run it through your die cut machine with the Impressions Plate and Silicone Mat. This will emboss the paper instead of cutting it. And boy, do those Basis cardstocks emboss like a champ!

To finish off this panel, erase any pencil lines you can still see and trim it down to a 5 x 3.75-inch rectangle. **Don’t forget to correct any alignment issues while trimming by adjusting your cuts to run parallel to the embossed lines.

Next up, we need to add in the bird. Ever have trouble stamping a perfect die cut image? Here’s a little trick I use, and I’ll tell you how it works with my little chickadee stamp. I use my MISTI for this technique.

  1. Stamp your bird image on scratch paper inside your MISTI and leave the stamp in place on the lid. 
  2. Die cut your bird from a piece of 80# cardstock and then trim around the negative. Use the negative to align where you’d like to stamp the die cut.
  3. Tap the die cut back into place and ink up your stamp (which is still stuck to the lid).
  4. Swing the lid shut and enjoy the perfect placement of your stamped image.

You can follow these steps to add other ink layers as well. For the chickadee, I stamped the detail in Onyx Black ink and the rest of its body in Charcoal Gray.

Now, to put it all together, grab the card base and center the Metallic cardstock. Adhere that to the front with glue tape, then add the front panel with the embossing and stamp work. Use glue tape to secure it to the card. Finally, attach the chickadee over the shadow we stamped with a few squares of foam adhesive. Draw in some cute feets with your Zig pen.

There you go! Make sets of these to keep on hand since they are perfect for all the people in your life, including that grumpy neighbor you’ve been trying to soften up since he moved in a few months ago. 😉

Don’t forget to pin this project to your Pinterest for later, and thanks for stopping by the blog today! Have a great one!

❤️  Niki • (on Instagram, Pinterest & Twitter)

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