A Happy Place

Klik hier voor de Nederlandse versie.

It’s almost the end of the summer vacation; have you done anything nice? My mother-in-law bought a small caravan, so I made something for her to decorate her caravan.


This is a 3D image in a photo frame. It may look very difficult, but if you can make 3D cards, this is the same idea. This takes about two days to make, ultimately about 4 hours of work!

Photo frame, letters on wooden buntings, and a sketch.

As always, I start gathering all the necessary materials. On the photo, you also see wooden triangles with letters. I had an idea to use the letters, but finally did not use them because they are too big. Instead of the wooden triangles, I embossed the glass with embossing powder. The photo frame was bought from Action, a discount store in Europe.

First I took the frame apart. I decided to give the mat (passe-partout) a 1 inch border. So I cut off anything on the inside of the mat, leaving only 1 inch all around. I measured the inside of the mat and used the measurements to draw a rectangle on a piece of white cardstock.

The caravan is really adorable looking.

I started creating the sky with a cloud stencil and Distress Oxide¬†Tumbled glass. I used a make-up brush that I did not clean very well from my last project, that’s why the top left corner of the picture is slightly darker, which gave it a cool effect! On the bottom, I used a grass stencil and Distress Oxide Mowed lawn. Where the grass and sky meet, I used the brushes lightly against each other to give a nice fade from grass to cloud.

Tip! For light blending, use a soft-bristle make-up brush instead of a foam ink blending tool.

Next, I stamped, colored, and cut out the caravan. I used Twinmarker alcohol markers to color.

Adding more to the image, and the piece of faux leather paper.

Then I cut out a strip of grass with a die, and also two smaller pieces of grass to go where the wheel and stand are. To give the scenery more life, I also stamped little flowers on the grass and flying birds in the sky. I later on felt the grass needed more, so I hand-cut a bunch of little grass pieces. I also stamped, colored, and cut out a little BBQ that looks similar to what my mother-in-law also owns. Then, I cut out a small piece of crumpled vellum to imitate the smoke coming out of the BBQ. For the sky, I also created little clouds with soft faux leather paper.

Tip! You can make your own faux leather paper by spraying a piece of paper wet, crumpling it several times, then opening it up, drying it (with a heat gun), and flattening it with a die-cutting machine.

Unmelted embossing powder on the glass.

I finally put everything together with foam tape of different thickness and placing it all inside the frame with the mat. The final touch was adding the words “happy place” onto the glass. I have never heat embossed on glass before, so it was an interesting experience! It’s not much different from heat embossing on paper (though using an anti-static powder is important since glass can get very staticky), except for the fact that you need to spend more time to heat and melt the powder since glass does not conduct heat very well.

Close-up of the gift.

And so it’s all finished! I gave it to my mother-in-law, I think she likes it.

If I were to make this again, I would change a few things: little paper flowers, add a tree, and another kind of embossing powder that is finer. But even so, I am very happy with the result.

I think custom handmade gifts are the best, do you think so too?

Thanks for reading! Until next time, create some happiness today!

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