Burst Through

by Dina Kowal

Create an opening in your card where a character can emerge.


  • Cardstock
  • Craft knife
  • Cutting mat
  • Pen or pencil
  • Eraser
  • Unmounted or clear stamp (Brains! clear set from The Cat’s Pajamas used here)
  • Quilling tool, or another long and narrow tool for rolling paper (skewer, stylus, narrow tweezers, jewelry pliers)
  • Other supplies as needed to complete the card (cardstock scraps, button, swatch of gauze, Touch Twin Markers)


  1. Step 1

    Determine your card layout, and where you will position the image that will be bursting through the focal panel.

  2. Step 2

    Lay the stamp onto the focal panel and trace around the edge with a pen or pencil.

  3. If only a portion of the stamped image will be showing through the opening, trace only around the outline of the portion that will show. Set the stamp aside, and connect the end points of the traced line in a loose curve.

  4. Step 3

    Set the stamp aside. Mark a point roughly in the center of the traced outline.

  5. Step 4

    Using a craft knife, cut through the cardstock from the center point straight out to the traced line.

  6. Make a cut about every 1/2" to 3/4" around the entire outline.

  7. Step 5

    Tear off the point of each cut wedge, leaving at least 1/2" from the line. Vary the lengths as you go.

  8. Step 6

    Use a quilling tool or other long and narrow tool to roll each piece in a tight curl over and out toward the outline.

  9. Don’t worry if the paper tears between the wedge cuts as you roll; this will only add to the burst through effect when you finish.

  10. Step 7

    Adjust the curled pieces as desired, loosening the curl in some, adding more tears, distressing, etc.

  11. Step 8

    Prepare the stamped image and position it in the opening. (Sample was colored with Touch Twin Markers.)

  12. For a more dramatic look, fussy cut the image and position it so that a part of it comes out of the opening.

  13. Step 9

    Assemble and complete the card.


Your Turn

You've seen the tutorial, now you try it! We've got a section of the gallery set aside for Burst Through. Try this technique, then upload your artwork to the gallery. Show us your creations!

***Please note - Internet Explorer/Edge is not a supported browser, and will not allow you to see the videos. Please use Chrome, Firefox or Safari to view our tutorial videos.

Questions and Comments

We'd love to get your feedback or questions. Leave your comment below.

This is adorable. Great video.
Leslie Brown  |  Wed Sep 16, 2015 at 5:14 AM
Soooo stinkin' cute >>>>>>>>>>>
thanks for sharing
debbie  |  Wed Sep 16, 2015 at 6:27 AM
What a fun card...love this idea...thank you for sharing...
Gloria Westerman  |  Wed Sep 16, 2015 at 6:44 AM
A really cute idea Dina. I love it!
Kathy Harrison  |  Wed Sep 16, 2015 at 8:09 AM
Those cards are burstin' with fun. Love the sentiments:-). My brain is working overtime thinking of other images that can come bursting out of the page. My first thoughts are whales popping out of the water and the sun coming out of the clouds. Thanks again for the great idea and tutorial.
kab  |  Wed Sep 16, 2015 at 8:37 AM
Thank you Dina! Looks like fun. Off to find a stamp that will work with this tutorial.
muscrat  |  Wed Sep 16, 2015 at 8:51 AM
I really love your technique...what a fun idea.
Sue Allen  |  Wed Sep 16, 2015 at 9:30 AM
We just got the "mummy" stamp & you give us such "great" ideas so we'll be making some cards with it, real soon.
Peg MacDonald  |  Wed Sep 16, 2015 at 10:47 AM
That is clever...I have a teen-age nephew that I enjoy sending a hand-made card...too old for cutsie things, too young for sentimental.
This idea is perfect. Away I go to my stamping area!
Hope  |  Wed Sep 16, 2015 at 11:48 AM
I am so-o-o loving this burst through technique! Your examples are way too cute, especially that fussy cut version. If someone sent me a card like this, I would display it all year round!
Martie Rollin  |  Wed Sep 16, 2015 at 12:28 PM
I really like this cute card! It would be fun for children's card, too. I especially like your tutoring style. You are easy to understand and were very natural in your presentation.
Thank you!
Sally  |  Wed Sep 16, 2015 at 1:03 PM
Love it! Does anyone know what happens or how well it goes through the mail after it gets smushed flat?
Maggie Minnich  |  Wed Sep 16, 2015 at 2:37 PM
I love it . My favorite is the one that looks like it is coming out. Soooooo cute. Thanks for the great tutorial.
Joan  |  Wed Sep 16, 2015 at 8:14 PM
Thanks so much for this great tutorial Dina...my brain is working overtime.
Susie Williams  |  Fri Sep 18, 2015 at 6:55 PM
Thank you for sharing this wonderful technique, I can't wait to try it.
Celeste Bernardin  |  Sun Sep 20, 2015 at 11:27 AM
I've been wanting to do this - thank you so much for the tutorial!
PJ  |  Wed Sep 26, 2018 at 9:15 AM

Page 1 of 1 pages

You need to be logged in to comment


Splitcoaststampers's privacy policy