Essentials by Ellen August Release: Happy Trails Interactive Card

Essentials by Ellen Happy Trails Interactive Card using the Push Me, Pull You Die

After a week of Instagram reveals, it’s time for yet another fabulous Essentials by Ellen release! If you’ve been following along you’ll likely have already seen several projects created with these new goodies, but if not, you’re in luck – I’m about to walk you through the release, highlighting some of my top picks along the way and sharing a bunch of projects that will (hopefully) inspire you to get crafting in the very near future!

First things first, the release is available exclusively at as of today and you can shop it all here. Everything has a fun outdoorsy vibe to it, and many of the products coordinate really well with past Essentials by Ellen items so you can feel good about getting more use out of your older EBE faves too. Let’s start with the stamp set you’re seeing on my card below, Happy Trails.

Essentials by Ellen Happy Trails Interactive Card using the Push Me, Pull You Die

Happy Trails and Happy Trails More Sayings (Stamps and Dies)

My first comment about these sets is that the typography snob in me ADORES the font, and that makes them two of my top picks in the release. It reminds me a bit of the Retro Holiday Greetings stamp set, but scaled smaller which means you can tuck these little sentiments into pretty much anywhere on your cards.

Essentials by Ellen Happy Trails Interactive Card using the Push Me, Pull You Die

The Happy Trails stamp set is full of very cute images, including a tree, camper van and a tent. I decided to use the previously-released Push Me Pull You die for the first time to create an interactive card where the camper van slides from left to right. If interactive cards sound intimidating, don’t you worry at all. The sliding is all thanks to a very simple belt mechanism that the die set allows you to create very easily, and you’ll find a video here to demonstrate. Using this die set also further solidified in my mind what a design genius Julie Ebersole is – seriously.

Essentials by Ellen Happy Trails Interactive Card using the Push Me, Pull You Die

I mentioned that this release works well with previously-released EBE items, and one of those is the Berry Basket die from this past Spring. Since I’d stamped a whole bunch of extra images from Happy Trails for other projects, I used a couple of them to decorate the basket, filling it with marshmallows for s’mores.

Essentials by Ellen Happy Trails S'mores Gift Box and Handmade Tag

‘Let’s Get Toasted’ was a perfect sentiment for the tag, where I also heat embossed the campfire, log and marshmallow images in white. (Note: I went big on marshmallows in these photos, but you could certainly swap some out for chocolate squares and graham crackers. With fewer marshmallows, it would all still fit inside the basket. Who wouldn’t want to receive a little s’mores kit?!)

Essentials by Ellen Happy Trails S'mores Gift Box and Handmade Tag

A few additional bits of inspo with these sets…

Trippin’ Stamp Set

You may recognize this guy as a gift with purchase from last year’s Summer of Stamping, but it’s now in the regular Essentials by Ellen lineup, and such a perfect fit for the theme of this release. It’s larger than the camper van in Happy Trails, and great for pairing with the Landscapes die set to create a scene.

Starry Skies and Through the Trees

Imagine looking up in the middle of a forest, only to see the most beautiful sky full of stars. That’s exactly what these two new goodies allow you to create, and these 2 items are among my top picks in this release!

Speaking of stars, there are so many ways to add starry metallic accents – the card on the left above uses silver sparkle embossing powder and one of the images from Starry Skies, plus a few little silver star confetti bits. For the card above and to the right, the previously-released Tiny Stars hot foil plate works perfectly to create a star-filled sky behind the Through the Trees die cuts, and I did some very quick and simple ink blending over top in Catherine Pooler Juniper Mist to achieve a tone-on-tone look.

Essential Stars Hot Foil Stamps

MORE stars? Yes! You may recall that hot foil arches and hot foil circles were part of the previous Essentials by Ellen release, and these are next in the lineup. These coordinate perfectly with the Essential Nested Star die set, and can be used in so many ways – shaker cards, frames, or even direct-to-card-panel foiling like I’ve done in the Hooray card below.

Hot tip: If you notice that your shaker confetti always gets stuck, try adding a few seed beads into the mix. I’ve used them on the Trippin shaker card above, as well as the Make a Wish card below. The seed beads are small enough to fit without an extra layer of foam tape, and since they’ve got more weight to them, will help knock the confetti out from any nooks and crannies.

Nature Walk

Mushrooms, a cute little snail and a butterfly – this stamp set is full of all the things you’d see on a walk through the forest.

Essentials by Ellen Nature Walk cards

For some easy texture on the ‘I’m so frond of you’ card, I used Essentials by Ellen woodgrain embossed cardstock – a gorgeous white cardstock that, when combined with some ink blending, really allows the woodgrain texture to become more apparent. In fact, if you wanted to make a set of cohesive-looking cards using just a few supplies, you could use the woodgrain embossed cardstock as a backdrop for all cards, choosing just a couple of focal die cuts from Nature Walk and a small sentiment on each.

For the Have a Magical Day card, my background was created by simply masking off the edges of a white card panel, then ink blending in the open space and stamping over top. Once the tape was removed, a clean thick border remained. I colored the mushrooms with a combination of Sketchmarkers and Copics, and finished with some clear iridescent drops. (Magical day… mushrooms.. iridescence… it all just kinda felt right!)

Mondo Rhododendron

There’s a new mondo floral on the block, and she’s a beaut! When I lived in Vancouver, I’d go for walks and see rhododendrons everywhere, so I was excited to see this one in the lineup. Those of you who love coloring can seize the opportunity to get your markers out, but if that’s not your forte, there are many other ways to add some color to this large floral. You could create a watercolor background like in the example below, or do a mix of masking and ink blending, or skip ink altogether and add color with stripes as I’ve done here.

And there you have it – a look at the full Essentials by Ellen release, available for you to shop right here. I’ve linked up some of the other supplies I used when creating these cards below, and for even more inspiration, be sure to check out today’s Instagram hop. There’s prizes to be won and you can enter by leaving comments at each stop. Good luck!

Essentials by Ellen August Release Available Now

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links and by purchasing products through these links, I earn a small commission. Thank you so much for supporting the incredible companies I’ve partnered with.

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