Circles and Squares and Rectangles, OH MY!

By February 5, 2008General

As soon as I saw the first drafts of Alli’s Shapes by Design set, I knew it would be perfect for creating some amazing background papers.  You will be able to create dozens of different patterns with each single image, just by the type of repetition you choose.

020508_first_stampI chose to work with this retro circle with nesting shapes within it’s frame.  I stamped it once in the center of my card front to start.  Notice how the nesting rectangle is vertical.

020508_second_stampTo begin the creation of my pattern, I rotated the stamp 90-degrees and stamped a second circle above the first.  Notice that the nested rectangle in the second circle is horizontal.

020508_first_lineI filled in the rest of my first "strip" of pattern in the same manner, making sure the direction of the nested rectangles alternated.

020508_starting_second_stripTo start a second strip, I made sure to align the rectangle in the opposite orientation used in the neighboring circle.

020508_finished_stampingI continued working until I had filled the sheet.

020508_punched_circlesTo help add a little finishing detail to the pattern, I punched 1/2-inch circles from cardstock and adhered them to the centers of the circles.  If you are playing around with this type of technique, don’t be afraid to try punching out patterned paper rather than cardstock for a unique look.

020508_circle_pattern_cardHere is my completed card.  The monochromatic color scheme makes it easy to create this card in the recipients favorite color.  I love having simple cards like this to reproduce when I am need of several at once.

020508_card_interiorI am often asked what I do on th interior of a card to finish it off.  Here is an example of what I like to do.  Carrying over a small design element into the upper portion of the interior helps to continue the theme, even after the recipient opens the card.  I am really looking forward to playing around with the remaining images of this set.  It just holds SO many design possibilities!

Nichole Heady

Author Nichole Heady

More posts by Nichole Heady

Join the discussion 104 Comments

  • 1
    Victoria says:

    This is really great! I love the idea of making your own backgrounds. This set has a simple elegance. I’m excited to see the rest!!!


  • 2
    Angela Smith says:

    ohhh wow! looks great! I can’t wait to see the rest of them!

  • 3
    Kisa Peters says:

    THis is great! I love how you make your own background paper! This would work so well for boys…something I Have such a hard time doing!


  • 4
    Ghazal says:

    I love the idea of making your backgrounds. Can’t wait to see other stamps from this set.

  • 5
    Stefani Riley says:

    Can hardly wait to see the rest of the set. I love the ability to make my own backgrounds!

  • 6
    JudiBlue says:

    Oh my gosh! Think of the color possibilities for cards with these stamps! They can be used for designer paper backgrounds for male, female, kids, anyone! Endless ideas!
    Can’t wait.

  • 7
    Silvia Mabie says:

    Yeah! I love Ali! This set looks super cool! I can’t wait to see what the rest of the set looks like!

  • 8
  • 9
    Joan B says:

    This is lovely. Very interesting that you alternated the rotation of the stamp to make the background.

  • 10
    Michelle says:

    Love the clean lines (and fonts) on the card example! Am anxious to see the complete set!

  • 11
    Aussie Kylie says:

    Wow, how versatile are these stamps !! Great for when you cannot find the right background paper, especially in the colour you want. I am so into orange at the moment – I LOVE THIS CARD.

    Happy Crafting,

  • 12
    CherylQuilts says:

    Great stamp for background and for guys! Always need help in that category!

  • 13
    toodlesyall says:

    Fun! Congratulations on this new venture as a stamp designer! How awesome. I dig, dig, dig your geometric style and how it all balances out. Great idea to carry the smaller stamp to the inside of the card.

  • 14
    Emily D says:

    I love the clean, simplicity of the card. I can’t wait to see the rest of the set.

  • 15
    Holly says:

    The cards made with this set have a classic, rich look to them. Also, these stamps will be great for masculine cards!

  • 16
    Renee V. (happystamper05) says:

    Oh, this looks like a ‘must have’ set too! What a great card!

  • 17
    Sue B says:

    I like to carry over a small design element from the front of the card on it’s inside too, and am always pleased to see mini elements included in a stamp set for that reason!

    Thanx for the inspiration!
    later, alligators!
    – SueB of

  • 18

    I just love the clean look. This would be FAB to fill my need for a more masculine look to my cards for the special guys in our lives. Waiting with baited breath to see the entire set!!

  • 19
    Andrea says:

    wow, i can’t wait to see the rest of the stamps….designing my own backgrounds sounds terrific…

  • 20
    Victoria says:

    Make your own backgrounds and accents with a coordinating punch. It looks very clean and modern, great for guys cards and pages too! Just like Nichole’s stamps there seem to be elements at different scales too.
    Looking forward to seeing the whole set!

    Great job.

  • 21
    Jennifer Davis says:

    The new fonts are great!

  • 22
    amanda says:

    I love the simple, graphic design.

  • 23
    Erica says:

    OH MY!! I am so loving this card. I love orange and this card just makes me so happy. I really need this set now. I cannot wait to see what other stamps are included in the set. And thanks for the peek inside your card Nicole.

  • 24
    Donna says:

    Wow Nichole! I believe you could encourage me to buy any stamp set, although this one has great possibilities even before I saw your creation. I love this clean look- my scrapping style!

  • 25
    Sheri Danielson says:

    What a great idea this is. I think it looks like a kalidascope. It took a great imagination to come up with this. I love the way you carried it to the inside of the card. Well done


  • 26
    tanja says:

    What I love about this set is that we can create our own designs using Alli’s. The look of your card is so retro! I’m in awe!

  • 27
    Alanna says:

    Oh my these ladies are talented..I have been following their blogs for awhile now, and am truly inspired by their art….Way to go!

  • 28
    Leslie Elvert says:

    This background is great, and the punched circles really make it pop. Loving the versatility of this set!

  • 29

    Nichole, this is SOOO cool! So easy to do in lots of different colors and would be so great for guy cards too! Another great job!

  • 30
    natalie wilson says:

    Great stamp set for background paper. I can’t wait to see the entire set.

  • 31
    broni says:

    Wow! I’m really excited to see the rest of this set!

  • 32
    Marcy says:

    This set gives a whole new freshness and fun to stamping. I tend to use more florals but when I saw the cards I was drawn to how versatile it is.

  • 33
    Marcy says:

    This set gives a whole new freshness and fun to stamping. I tend to use more florals but when I saw the cards I was drawn to how versatile it is.

  • 34
    jeanne nielsen says:

    What a cool set! My usual cards are usually so floral — I never think to go “geometric”! Jeanne

  • 35
    Dena Clarke says:

    It is amazing how the designers can take a simple stamp and create something entirely unique! I’m so jealous!

  • 36
    Karen Rose B says:

    Nichole! When you annnounced the stamp design team, 1 of the things I was interested in was seeing your projects with their stamps. With 2 days under your belt, you’ve surpassed my hopes/expectations. You are a real talent!! Thanks for your inspiration! Love Alli’s stamps and will definitely buy …!! Karen Rose B

  • 37
    Jackie says:

    I love shapes, any shape really…they’re all fun! I am an architect in training so shapes are my thing. Thank you ladies for joining together to create a set that I know will end up at my home some how!

  • 38
    otter says:

    Oh how freaking cool!! I am thinking my budget is going to be completley BLOWN!!!

  • 39
    Jessica Kuzelka says:

    OMG! Another must have for sure. I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE stamps that coordinate with my punches and Nestabilities. I really like the backgrounds you are showing too.

    ~ jess k

  • 40

    Well first off I love Alli’s style – her creations are amazing & I can’t wait to see the rest of this stamp set too! How fun – shapes are great – you can do so much with them & I’m glad that it is “gender neutral”.

  • 41
    Jennifer Batchelor says:

    What I love most about the set is the versatility and coordination options. I love punches and have tons of them so to be able to use them with this set will be awesome!! Another great set!

  • 42
    Carolyn King says:

    I LOVE the simple yet powerful design of both of these cards. Go ALLI!!! Congrats on your first set—cannot wait to see the rest!


  • 43
    Sue Symens says:

    I have followed this girl’s blog for quite awhile. Oh do I love shapes!!!! Thank you!

  • 44
    Ann says:

    Wow!! I can’t wait to see the rest of this set.

  • 45
    Janine Hempy says:

    COOL! I love that these shapes coordinate with the Nestabilities dies and SU! punches! I could really use a stamp set like this!

  • 46
    Lennie says:

    What a great design for backgrounds!

  • 47
    Diane O'Gorman says:

    I love that this set is so versatile. Backgrounds, masculine cards, ideas for teen cards. Many possibilities limited only by our imaginations!

  • 48
    AaronB says:

    I can think of so many wonderful things to do with this set-

  • 49
    Ellen Sutton says:

    I like the simplicity of this stamp set! I too have trouble with making boy/man cards and this set will be great for that! I can’t wait to order!!

  • 50
    Emm says:

    I love the font and I can’t wait to see all the shapes in this set.

  • 51
    stephanie says:

    This looks awesome, Looks like alot of options with this set!

  • 52
    Teresa says:

    Fantastic set. I love to play and make my own backgrounds. This set will add so many possibilities to the fun of creating. Congratulations! I am very excited for you!

  • 53
    Rachel says:

    I love the simplicity of this!

  • 54
    Katie says:

    What a great card! Perfect for a guy or gal! Love it!

  • 55
    Heather Luft says:

    I love to make simple quick cards and it looks like this set would definately work! Love the background card!

  • 56
    Katie says:

    I love to make guy cards so this set will be perfect for doing that!

  • 57
    Beth says:

    Love this mod look! What an awesome way to spend the first half of February!

  • 58
    BeckyS says:

    Can’t wait to see the rest!!

  • 59
    Jessica says:

    Congrats, Alli! What an exciting opportunity and versatile design you have created! I really like Nichole’s idea too abt creating designer papers with it! The creativity at PaperTrey is neverending!

    Super happy for you and your new endeavors. Congrats!

  • 60
    Michelle says:

    What a fresh & timeless set to design your own backgrounds for cards & scrapbook pages. Wouldn’t this be great for gift wrap too?!!

  • 61
    Rixey says:

    What a bright and fun card- this set looks awesome!

  • 62
    laurie r says:

    I love the design and also how you can create your own paper.

  • 63
    Cara says:

    Now THAT is an amazing card.

  • 64
    Verna says:

    This set looks like a fun one!

  • 65
    Kerrie L says:

    Wow – just from these little peeks I can tell that this will be a very versatile set, and definitely handy for those oh-so-difficult masculine cards. Can’t wait to see more!

  • 66
    Nicole says:

    beautiful! a great example of less(simple) is more!

  • 67
    Amy G. says:

    This is amazing!!!I can’t wiat for her sets!!

  • 68
    Regina Davis says:

    What a gorgeous card. Love that monochromatic look your created. Great job featuring Alli. She’s so incredibly talented.

  • 69
    Nicki Lundeen says:

    I love the clean, simple lines and the fact that it genderless. The possibilities would be endless. Love it!

  • 70
    Debbie Nelson says:

    Great set that can be used to make cards for men…I make and send out about 50 cards a month with my card ministry. This will be great..always sruggle trying to make cards for the men.

  • 71
    Vicky Schulte says:

    I really like this set. It will be a great background set.

  • 72
    meigan says:

    both cards are great – love the type and how different the cards look!

  • 73
    Mandy says:

    Another gorgeous sample, I can’t wait to see the whole stamp set.

  • 74
    Jodi says:

    So wonderful!!!!!

  • 75
    TanyaS. says:

    Great work!!!! This months release is going to be so much fun. I can not wait to irder these new sets. Absolutley Perfect!!!!

  • 76
    Rhonda says:

    I just love the versatility of this set. I’m always on the lookout for things that will work with, but not be limited to, masculine cards. This set perfectly fits the bill!

  • 77
    Tiffany says:

    You could create this card in any color scheme you wanted and totally change the feeling!

    What a versatile set, I can’t wait to get my hands on it!

  • 78
    Melissa says:

    What a great set! It looks like it will be so versatile — especially for making masculine cards, which I ALWAYS struggle with!

  • 79
    Audra says:

    WOW! Background for scrapbook pages is what I am seeing in the future with this stamp set!!!

  • 80
    Lisa V says:

    Another winner for PTI!! With just those few elements revealed, I can already see some very cool design opportunities! Thanks again for another versatile set. Can’t wait til we can order it!!

  • 81
    Granna on the Go says:

    Love the bright and practical shapes that can be so versatile. Once again, Nichole, you make such a clean and crisp card. I love the inside with a hint of the patterns! I can see endless possibilites with colors and shapes. Thanks!

  • 82
    Janette Olen says:

    looks like a really cool stamp set with endless possibilities. can’t wait to see the rest of it. TFS

  • 83
    Sonya says:

    This looks like a great set – another must have. Can’t wait to see what tomorrow holds!

  • 84
    Dawn (stampinscotsgirl) says:

    Love the look of this!!! I love how you create your own backgrounds using your stamps! Can’t wait to see the whole set. I should just set up a monthly allotment to PTI as much money as I have been spending on your wonderful products lately, lol!! I have a feeling that I will be in big trouble as long as you keep creating such wonderful versatile sets!!!! (But please don’t stop!!!)

  • 85
    Barbara Howell says:

    Wow, how exciting to have more shapes to coordinate with punches. It just adds so much to a project. The nesting shapes are awsome.

  • 86
    Vanessa K. says:

    I love the versatility of this set. I can use it in card making and scrapbooking. I am always looking for new phrases too.

  • 87
    Paula says:

    Wow! this stamp set and card have a very modern look-lots of possibilities.

  • 88
    LateNightScrappin says:

    This is a fabulous set! Love the card!!!

  • 89
    Renee says:

    These are really cool stamps! I can’t wait to see more samples. Congratulations on being on the Papertrey design team!


  • 90
    sarahjane says:

    I love the simple, clean design. I love that Alli is Canadian from Vancouver Island, she is a teacher, lives in a small town — wish I had her talent in common too — this is a set that I will be ordering! I also love that it co-ordinates with so much of the SU stuff I have!!

  • 91
    Jewel says:

    Wow, I just love this stamp set! The creative possibilities are endless and love the clean look of it. Great job!

  • 92
    Yosha says:

    This is great! I am always looking for versatile backgrounds and this looks perfect!


  • 93
    Laura says:

    Love it Alli! Congrats, your set is awesome! I love the geometrics of your design…it has a wonderful trendy, timeless feel! Love both projects, love the set!

  • 94
    Lindsay says:

    I think this card is so fun! I love that you did the stamp all over the background creating a pattern paper. There are so many color combinations that would look good! Can’t wait till this set comes out!

  • 95
    irishchristine says:

    I love making my own back grounds and this seams like the perfect set!

  • 96
    Jean says:

    These stamp sets are really complimenting each other–oh the possibilities. Love your designs.

  • 97
    Peggy says:

    LOVE the new stamps, and you always have such great ideas!!! Keep up the great job!


  • 98
    Margaret says:

    LOVE IT! It is so simple yet so beautifully graphic! As they say, less is definitely more! Can’t wait to get my hands on this stamp set!

  • 99
    sarakay says:

    This set looks great! I love the geometrical shape-type stamps, they’re so versatile!

  • 100
    sarakay says:

    This set looks great! The graphic images are so versatile!

  • 101
    Faye says:

    I like this set because you can create single or many backgrounds for cards as well as unique borders.

  • 102
    Monika says:

    Tan sencillo y a la vez original y elegante, felicidades

  • 103
    Mary Anne says:

    The colors are what intrigue me the most..I already know the product will be superior, like everything else I’ve received from’s hoping I get lucky!

  • 104
    NDixon says:

    Wow..this is looking better an better..I am new to this site so I am looking forward to visiting more often..

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