Not sure there is anything better than throwing ink around and making a mess turn into something pretty. I started by dry embossing the cover plate onto watercolor paper.
The next step was putting distress ink on my crafting mat and spray with lots of water. Dry and do again a couple of times to get the color where I wanted it. I stamped my sentiment in brown but decided it needed to be embossed to see it better. I offset the stamp just a touch with gives it a bit of a shadow.
Thinking of You card
stamps: SSS - Sending Happy Thoughts
ink: Tim Holtz distress inks - Peeled Paint, Salty Ocean, Tumbled glass, Vintage Photo, Fired Brick, Mowed Lawn; Memento - Rich Cocoa; Versamark
paper: PTI - Spring Moss; watercolor paper
other: PTI - Mighty Oak Cover plate; Zing - Chestnut embossing powder