Crystal Valley Blog

Easy, DIY Watercolor Christmas Cards

POSTED December 1, 2020

Even if you’ve never thought of yourself as an artist or painter, we guarantee you can create lots of these DIY holiday cards, thanks to YouTube tutorials that make the process easy as leftover pumpkin pie! The tips, secrets and shortcuts shared by the artists who make the videos are worth watching, worth imitating and worth appropriating as your very own!

Holiday Magic with Watercolors

We can find our way around creative apps to help us fine-tune images and graphics, but creating art from scratch has never been our long suit, skill set or wheelhouse. BUT! Thanks to Emma LeFebvre and other talented artists, we can now wield a paintbrush with confidence — and so will you!

Take a look at this instructional video showing three different ideas for holiday cards – a Christmas tree, a snowman and mistletoe – any of which you can make in under six minutes. If you can manage these, keep going to the places your newfound skill will flourish – and even greater artistic heights! We started with the Christmas tree and one thing we discovered: you don’t have to be super exact with the brush and watercolor. Emma uses painters’ tape to make a triangle in the middle of a folded card, and she’s very casual about her strokes.

For tips and advice about card stock choices for watercolor greeting cards, another artist, Kristina Werner gives her favorites and the reasons why she prefers each one. Scroll down for a written list in the remarks section.

 More Idea Options for Card Art

Emma’s main advice for beginners is to keep it simple, keep it small and don’t overwhelm the card with too many extras. In this second series of three holiday cards – pinecones, mistletoe and evergreen garland — Emma demonstrates how to lighten and darken shades to get just the right hue. That was eye-opening.

One of her tips about drawing/painting mistletoe is to start upside down, which flabbergasted many of her followers (if you read the comments below). Using Arches watercolor paper and Windsor Newton watercolors ($16.99) and two Princeton Snap brushes, size two and six,  Emma lays out her materials for a DIY card of winter foliage. Her 160K subscribers follow her tutorials faithfully, and revel in her ability to show-and-tell — from a blank page to a finished frameable art.

Artist Kristina Werner conducts online card classes from her blog, which may be something to consider this winter as we hunker down during cold weather. She describes herself as a blogger, designer, calligrapher, letterer, and paper lover, and loves to share her ideas.

Ellen Crimi-Trent, another gifted YouTube artist/instructor has tutorials on watercolor painting projects for bears – polar and brown – and deer. These mini-Monday madness ideas – as Ellen calls them – can be used as cards or gifts – even tags for presents.

Honestly, when these talented artists break down the step-by-step process this sort of art is accessible for the least talented and least artistic among us! With such affordable materials, and lots of idea options to choose from – success isn’t far away. And just think of the smiles your efforts will bring to the faces of friends and family!

Holiday Decorations in Crystal Valley

We love decorating for and celebrating the holidays, and driving through neighborhoods of new homes in the master-planned community of Crystal Valley we see lots of decking of walls, windows and halls! There’s never been a better time to buy a new home set in natural surroundings in the fast-growing Castle Rock community. Floor plans and elevations vary from Richmond American Homes, Kauffman Homes, Century Communities and D.R. Horton. Choose from ranch or two-story models — priced from the $300s. 


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