Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Corrugated Butterfly Tutorial

I hope you are having a pleasant week. It is forecast to be a cooler week here, which is a delight to me. I went to visit my parents yesterday and shared such a peaceful ride on their pontoon boat for a lovely evening. What a blessing to spend time with family surrounded by the beauty of God's creation. 

Today, I have a Technique Tuesday Tutorial for you. I have had many kind words on my Corrugated Butterflies, so I thought I would share the steps in creating them. They are actually quite easy to make. 

Here are three I've created. You can see that depending on how you paint, ink, and embellish these sweet butterflies you can get very different looks to go with any color scheme and scrappy style. 

Corrugated Butterfly Tutorial


Supply List:

*Big Shot or other die cutting machine
*Tim Holtz Alterations Movers and Shapers Mini Butterflies or other butterfly shaped heavy die that will cut through corrugated cardboard
*Tim Holtz Alterations Base Tray
*Donna Salazar Zutter Corrugated Board. You can also use scrap packaging cardboard, however be sure to spritz it with some acid free product, and Donna's corrugated board is so easy to use since it is designed for the top layer to release from the corrugated inside easily. 
*Coloring products like acrylic paint, Distress Ink, Smooch Spritz are my favorites, but anything you have on hand should work
*If using acrylic paint, a foam brush works better than a regular bristle paint brush
*Something to created antenna - thread covered floral wire and flower stamens are my favorites
*Glossy Accents or other fast drying glue

Step One ~ Cut Butterflies

Cut small rectangles of your corrugated board the size of your butterfly die(s). If using the movers and shapers dies, place the butterfly dies in the mover and shapers base tray, place the corrugated board on top of the dies, sandwich between the clear cutting plates and roll through your die cut machine to cut.

Here is what it will look like before sandwiching between the plates:

Then after it has been run through your machine:

Step Three ~ Reveal the Corrugation

Remove the top liner paper to reveal the corrugation below. If you are using Donna's Zutter Corrugated Board, you can remove it in one piece and save the shape for another project!! When you remove the liner, little bits and pieces of it will be stuck to the corrugation - I like to leave some of this for the added texture and grunginess that it adds.

Step Four ~ Painted Peaks

When going for a more delicate, girly look, I like to lighten up the corrugated bord with  a lighter color. If you are going for a darker, grungier look you could use a darker paint or skip this step entirely.

For this example I will start by painting the "peaks" of the corrugated board with some antique white acrylic paint. I like to paint just the peak, allowing the natural color of the corrugation to be visible down in the valley of the corrugation. From some trial and error, I've found that a foam brush works best to achieve this effect. I place a small spot of paint on my craft mat and brush some paint across the mat so I only have a small amount of paint on the foam brush. (If you have too much paint on the foam, it will still drip down into the valleys.) 

You can see what I mean in this photo.
(Excuse my mat - it was cleaned, but my well loved and used craft mat is quite stained.)

Now that you have the paint on your foam brush, use a light hand to brush just the peaks of your butterflies. I do like a little paint in the "valleys" right at the very edge, so I go back and hit the very edges of the valleys with a bit of paint as well. 

Here are my painted butterflies:

Step Five ~ Inking/Misting

Ink your edges to coordinate with your project. I like to used Distress Inks and usually apply several to achieve the desired color. Also applying several colors can add depth and dimension. Really though, you can go wild here if you want inking, painting, misting .  .  . the entire butterfly as in my first example at the top of my post with the rusty tones. 

Here is my example with just the edges inked using a combination of purples and brown:

Step Six ~ Antenna

I like to add some kind of antenna to my butterflies. My two favorite materials to use are flower stamens or thread covered wire from the floral department. Today I am using the floral wire. Simply cut off a small length - double the body height plus enough for the two antenna. Fold in half and curl the ends - I use a pair of round tip jewelry pliers, but you could curl them around a toothpick, hole piercer, or any other small round object. Use glossy accents or other fast drying glue to adhere them to the back of the butterfly. You might notice that I had green wrapped floral wire in my supply photo - I simply inked them with walnut stain Distress Ink. 

The really easy peasy way to add antenna is to pick up a pack of stamens from the floral department, fold them in half or if too long, trim them down to the right length and glue them to the back. My third example at the top of this post shows an example done with stamens.
Step Seven ~ Bling

I like to add small pearls or rhinestones down the body of the butterfly to finish it off. If you don't have the right color, a bit of alcohol ink will transform them to a color that will be just right. 

Here are the finished butterflies ready for my next project.

I hope you have enjoyed this tutorial and will give it a try. If you do, I'd be delighted for you to leave a comment and a link so I can hop over and see your creations.

Now for a bit of sweet news. My Beautiful Life layout of our dog, Ellie, was selected as the top entry at the Scrapping Everyday Miracles challenge to scrap with the theme Created Beauty. And yes, it has one of my Corrugated Butterflies!! What a sweet challenge site encouraging us to find the blessings God gives us in our everyday lives and to scrap them. Be sure to stop by their blog and check out their wonderful site and challenges. 

Thanks for stopping by!! I treasure your comments. 

~ Blessings ~ 


  1. Great tutorial! By the way, I mailed your ATC yesterday, so hopefully you'll have it soon. Blessings!

  2. Stunning page, and great tutorial for a cute corrugated butterfly. Thanks, given me some ideas. Hugs lin

  3. Thanks so much for the tutorial. Those butterflies are just gorgeous!!

    Always fun to spend time with family!

    CONGRATS to you, I can why your layout was picked, it is (per usual) just gorgeous!! I love it! And your dog is soo adorable!!!

    Thanks for always stopping by with your very kind comments!


  4. Those are so pretty Tracey!! I always love the texture that corrugated cardboard adds to a page!!

  5. Absolutely beautiful and thank you for sharing the tutorial!!!

  6. such a gorgeous page!!! and LOVE LOVE the butterfly tutorial those are stunning!!!!

  7. Tracey, I love those butterflies. I'm going to have to ask for a Big Shot for Christmas. I have one of the first Sizzix machines that was made. So I can't use Tim Holtz's dies in it. The kids mostly use it now. One of my favorite layouts of yours is My Beautiful Life. Makes me smile everytime! Have a great week. :)

  8. Sweet!! Thanks for sharing!!

  9. wow first of all I love those butterflies. I'm a huge butterfly fan! I didn't even know you could use corrugated cardboard in your machines. will try it out!! love the tutorial and congrats on the win!

  10. Wonderful butterfly and love the layout very much.

  11. These are beautiful Tracey!!! Thanks so much for posting this awesome tutorial!

  12. These are gorgeous! Thanks for sharing how you created them!!! Congrats on your layout!!!

  13. Well, I am a big butterfly loving gal, so this was a great tute! I've never bought the DS kind .. so that is new to me. Love my flower stamens .. they are great for a number of things. Hope you're having a blessed week!

  14. Congratulations on your win! That was a great layout! And I love your corrugated butterflies....thanks for sharing how you made them Tracey! :)

  15. Your butterflies are just amazing!! And your lo... WOW WOW WOW!!! I loveeeeeeeeeeeee that photo, the colors and loving how you framed the photo!!!!

  16. what a great tut tyty :) and WOW that layout is so amazing huge congrats!!!!

  17. Thank you for a great tutorial.....love your butterflies. Fabulous layout too, love the stitching around the flower. Hugs

  18. HI.. Thank you for taking the time so show how to make this fabulous butterflies.. they are so lovely!!

  19. these are gorgeous layouts...well done...have a great day!

    enjoy *~*

  20. Always loved those corrugated butterflies, Tracey. Thank you for sharing this awesome tutorial!

  21. So pretty Tracey! Love the butterfly embellishment! Awesome tutorial!

  22. Congratulations on your winning layout Tracey and thanks so much for this very thorough tutorial. Unfortunately I don't have any butterfly dies but I could trace around a chipboard butterfly for sure so if I get to this one day I'll certainly let you know :)

  23. Stunning! and a fabby tutourial as well. Love the wonderful colours you have used. Wonderful LO.
    pure inspiration!
    Love n hugs

  24. Great tutorial Tracey. I love your butterflies. They have such wonderful texture. I am inspired to go create some myself. (or at least try LOL)

  25. Thank you for sharing this tutorial!I love those butterflies.I had to make a few too:)

  26. sweet page and a great tutorial.

  27. What a great tutorial, Tracey! Where can I get that corrugated board? LOVE the look to pieces! And congrats on the recognition for your layout! So deserving! Hugs!

  28. What a great tutorial!! Those butterflies are beautiful, and they seem pretty easy to create. Thanks for the idea...yours turned out really pretty!

  29. What a wonderful tutorial! Your butterflies are gorgeous as well as your creations using them! Wow!!! I love how you have your doggie photo circled with that cool looking branch material! Thank you so much for taking the time to stop by my blog and leave a sweet comment!!

    Heather Lynn

  30. Congratulations~your work is gorgeous, what a blessing to win! I love those butterflies~wonderful tutorial. Thank you also, for your sweet encouraging words, Tracey. ;)

  31. Gorgeous butterflies!! Thanks for the wonderful ideas :)


  32. Awwww! Big congrats, Tracey!!! Your layout is just beautiful - it has such a lovely and sweet message, too! And Thank you SO MUCH for sharing how you made the beautiful butterflies with us!

  33. Hey Tracey! I just love the way you can take a hunk of chipboard and make it look so vintge and sweet. I think I could give you a grocery sack and toothpicks and you'd find a way to make them look beautiful! Such a gorgeous creation, my friend.


  34. wauw it's beaus janneketiful thanks for sharing greeting

  35. Beautiful Layout! I love the colors and your butterfly is so cute. TFS AJ~

  36. Gorgeous! So many wonderful details!thank you for the technique.

    hugs carla

  37. It would take me weeks to make a card if I did all the wonderful explaining and photos you do in your blog yet you have time to leave beautiful messages on every card I post . I would love to have you living next door you are a special lady............Lis

  38. Tracey, I love your butterflies so thanks so much for the tutorial. I'll have to give this a technique a try on some other shape as I don't have any heavy butterfly dies (yet LOL). BTW, I am loving my Distrezz-It-All, I just used it on a layout. Congrats on winning the Scrapping Everyday Miricles challenge!!!

  39. Your butterflies are awesome! Thanks for sharing your process! Congratulations on winning that challenge.


Thanks for taking the time to stop by and leave a message! I treasure your comments.