Alcohol Inking for the First Time

Hey there crafty pals! I’m here today to share with you my first experience with alcohol inks. Like everyone has seen, alcohol inks have made a massive comeback this year with people like Jennifer McGuire who, through their videos, inspired me to jump into the alcohol ink pool feet first.  I waited until I found a good sale on alcohol inks to get myself started because I needed the basics plus colors which can cost a pretty penny without the use of a sale or coupon code.  I was lucky enough to be searching for something else on when I saw that they were having a sale on all things having to do with the Ranger alcohol inks.  I started with what was basic to me for colors, the rainbow.  Using ROYGBIV (red, orange, yellow, green, blue, (unused indigo), and violet to make my choices, I got to work.  I got one of everything to start out, except I wound up getting two different greens and three different blues.  I also got two pinks to precede the red that I chose.  I also got the alcohol blending solution, gold mixative, the mini blending felts that work with the Distress Ink mini blending tool, and I got the 4.25″x5.5″ pack of 20 sheets of Yupo paper which is pretty much like glossy photo paper.  So, I had my starting point and was beyond excited so when I got the products in my hands a few days later I jumped in trying various techniques to see what I did and didn’t like.  This is the first piece I created that I was proud of enough with to share:
To create this background I dropped Watermelon, Valencia, Limeade, and Turquoise alcohol inks onto the paper and after they had spread out by themselves and mixed I went in with the blending solution.  This helps to lighten areas and create areas where the color isn’t as thick or as heavy.  I then added the gold mixative.  This took me a while to figure out how to work because it doesn’t spread like the alcohol inks do, it’s thicker and it just sort of sits there in a dot shape if you don’t move it yourself.  One of the things I learned from all of the videos I had watched prior to making this was that you could use a cheap paintbrush and move the colors, not just the mixative, around while it was still wet and that is what I did here.  I should mention that I worked on top of an old cutting board, that way if the ink rolled off or anything it wouldn’t stain my table or my work space.  I wound up wanting to turn this into the front for a fortieth birthday (or anniversary) card, as you can see below.

I love heat embossing.  If I had to pick one technique that had to be used on every one of my cards it would be heat embossing.  Embossing over alcohol inks, however, can be quite tricky but I figured out a way to do it so that you don’t have the powder sticking to where you don’t want it.  Even before dusting my paper with my anti-static tool, I hit the background with my heat gun trying to really dry it out and then I dusted it with my EK Success powder tool.  I then did the normal procedure for heat embossing: I stamped my desired image with Versamark, took a tiny spoon and poured my embossing powder over the stamped image, tipped the excess off into a coffee filter, and hit the paper with a couple of good hard flicks to knock off anything that was still stuck to the paper.  I was expecting to have to brush off powder with a brush but I didn’t.  I then took my heat gun to the image and melted the powder and came up with the image you see above.  I really think starting out by using my heat gun on the paper before even the anti-static powder tool made it so that I didn’t have powder sticking to every little bit of the paper where I didn’t want it.


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