Hello! My name is Tami and I'm so happy to be back on the Sizzix blog today. I have a little tropical vacation project to share.  I'm sure many of us would love a nice tropical getaway right about now, but until that's possible, this tropical décor piece might help to keep that dream alive.

There are many textures and details going on with this project, so get out your dies, papers, and mixed media products and let's get started.

You will need:

Sizzix Bigz Die - Baggage Claim (664439)

Sizzix Thinlits Die Set 24PK - Happy Hour (664435)

Sizzix Thinlits Plus Die Set 5PK - Large Tropicals (664402)

Sizzix Bigz XL Alphabet Die - Handmade (664218)

Ideaology Vignette Framed Panel
Distress Cracked Leather Cardstock
Distress Woodgrain Cardstock
Distress Mixed Media Heavystock
Distress Paint
Distress Spray Stain
Distress Glazes
Distress Embossing Dabber and Pen
Distress Resist Spray
Distress Collage Medium
Burlap (paperbacked)
Chipboard (I used black) or Sizzix Little Sizzles Mat Board

How to Make:

1. Begin by painting the Vignette Tray and frame with Black Soot Distress paint, then sand it and dry brush some Hickory Smoke Distress Paint over it.
2. To add some detail to the frame, use the Distress Embossing Dabber and run it along details that stick up.  Then pinch some Embossing Glaze in your finger tips and sprinkle it over the embossing glaze. I mixed Broken China and Cracked Pistachio.
3. When you feel you have covered the embossing glaze thoroughly, then heat emboss the glaze.
4. Cut a piece of paper backed burlap.  Cut a piece large enough to fit within the inside of the frame, then sew a zig zag stitch all around the outside edge. Add some Walnut Stain Distress Ink to the outside edges, spritz with water and then dry. Attach it to the inside of the framed panel with Distress Collage Medium.

5. Before going on to the die cutting and decorating we need to make some paper to die cut. This is where the Cracked Leather, Woodgrain and Heavystock papers come in.
6. Choose two background stamps that have a tropical, travel feeling. I chose Botanical and Batik CMS327 and Rosette and Florette CMS279 both from Stampers Anonymous.
7. Stamp one of the background stamps onto the Heavystock with Distress Embossing Ink and then using the same technique you used with the frame, pinch a bit of Embossing Glaze in your fingers and sprinkle it across the stamped ink. Do this with several different colors. For the Florete, I used Fired Brick, Fossilized Amber, and Cracked Pistachio.
8. For the Botanical piece I used Fossiized Amber, Peeled Paint, Cracked Pistachio, and Vintage Photo.

9. Once you have bits of the powder sprinkled over the ink, then tap in it with your fingers from below and it will allow the colors to dance around and cover the rest of the stamped image. Tip it slightly as well to try and make sure all the ink is covered. Then heat emboss. Dispose of the little bit of left over mixed embossing glaze.
10. To make the stamping stand out, apply Walnut Stain Distress Ink by blending it in to the paper.
11. On the Woodgrain and Cracked Leather cardstocks, you are going to use the next technique. Start with to choosing a paint color. I chose Broken China for the Woodgrain. Put a drop on a nonstick mat, then get a thin amount on your finger and rub it across the raised areas of the wood grain.
12. When you are done with the paint and it is dry, you want to color the rest. Spray the paper with Walnut Stain Distress Spray. Let it dry. With a damp paper towel, wipe the excess stain off the paint.

13. It should look like wood that had the paint worn off with time. Use this paper to cut out the sentiment. I cut TROPICAL HIDEAWAY using the Bigz XL Handcut Alphabet. Because it is a Bigz steel rule die, it can cut chipboard or Little Sizzles Mat Board.
14. Adhere the woodgrain letters to the chipboard. Line the words across the top of the frame but wait to adhere until the other pieces are in place.
15. Use the same paint + spray stain technique on the cracked leather paper. You want a couple of colors for two of the Baggage claim suitcases, and some brown for the straps and corners and things for the Baggage Claim bits, and a color for the hibiscus flowers from the Tropical set, so keep that in mind when choosing colors.
16. For the foliage from the Tropical set I used two pieces of cracked leather, but as you can see, I used several different colors of green paint. One piece has more of the Peeled Paint yellow/green colors and the other has more of the Cracked Pistachio minty colors.

17. Apply the paint to the raised areas of the Cracked Leather, then when dry, color the paper with Distress Spray Stain. You want the cracks to really stand out for the foliage so I used a darker stain, and eventually added some Forest Moss to really pull out the cracks.
18. When you die cut the leaves from the green pieces you can see how the cracks really add what botanists call a coriaceous, or leather-like texture. 19. Now it is time to die cut. Cut and assemble the suitcases from the stamped and paint/stained papers. The Baggage Claim die is also a Bigz die, so I cut the suitcases from chipboard as well so that there was more dimension to the piece. Some have one piece of chipboard behind them and others have two. These will be stacked and adhered to the bottom right had area of the frame.
20. Cut the flowers from the red Cracked Leather, and the centers from some yellow cracked leather. To make these seem tropical, I sprayed them with Distress Resist Spray to add a sheen.

21. Arrange all of the foliage and flowers as seen in the main photo. When everything is aligned and fits, begin to adhere to the burlap backing with Distress Collage Medium. Put a thin layer on the back and then hold the piece in place until it doesn't lift.
22. Lastly, you want to cut two of the Happy Hour drinks and their garnishes from the smooth side of the Watercolor Cardstock.
23. Leave the base white, watercolor the die cut that represents the drink. Watercolor the various garnishes you choose.
24. Using the Distress Embossing Pen, add a few dots and bits of interest to the umbrella, then sprinkle with a color of Embossing Glaze and heat. Repeat with another color and then with a third color add some to the raised lines as well.

25. Adhere all the pieces together and spray with Distress Resist Spray.
26. Adhere the drinks to the Baggage Claim suitcases.

Thank you for following along with this tutorial and I hope that it inspires you to make a little bit of tropical décor to brighten your home.