Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Technique Tuesday

Hey there SI fans! Today is another lovely day in my Scrappy World and I hope things are wonderful in yours too! Today it is Technique Tuesday at the Shelly's Images blog - so I guess I should get on with it huh?! ;) Today I am featuring Alcohol Inking! I hope you'll take this WILD RIDE along with me, as I am an over-the-top, fun lovin' kinda person!

Ever need an embellie for a project and can't find the right color or colors? Are you like the rest of us, and not exactly rolling in money? Are you tired of wasting time and gas trolling the stores trying to find just the right DP or embellie? Well, with this simple technique you can turn 'junk' from the dollar store and the discount bins into one-of-a-kind, expensive looking treasures on the cheap! AND it's easy and 'Scrappy-cident' proof too! It will all be custom color-matched by following the steps below!

First you'll need this:

Alcohol Inks 2 or 3 colors, I use Adirondack (or more as desired! Beware, they are addictive! ;))
Blending Solution (also Adirondack/Tim Holtz)
Felt (Buy a big sheet on the cheap and cut it down. Cheap felt works better as it has low pile.)
Handle with Velcro (Ranger makes these, but if you look at #3, you could prob. make your own!)
GLOSSY cardstock (or photo paper from the dollar store!)
*Optional (if you don't mind stained clothes/furniture, or dayglo dyed hands!)
Waxed Paper, Plastic Wrap, Paper Towels, Rubber Gloves, tweezers, plastic trays

Before you get nervous...you CANNOT screw this up! Don't forget, there are NO MISTAKES in stamping! There are only OPPORTUNITIES for embellishment! The prep is scarier than the play!

Step 1:
Prepare your surfaces! Cover your desk with protective layers of plastic wrap or waxed paper. OR, if you are as clumsy as I am, use BOTH! I also work on layers of used/repurposed priority mail envelopes to keep drips contained. Alcohol ink stains EVERYTHING! It is permanent on all non-porous surfaces (and semi-permanent on others!). It works wonderfully on glass, ceramic, metal, tile...! Okay, I'm getting ahead of myself... So once your surface is protected and you have your gloves on (unless you are going mano-commando like I do! :P), you are ready to get started!

Step 2:
Gather your handle, felt squares, blending solution, inks, tweezers (if desired), and whatever you want to ink. In this picture, I am preparing my hndle by placing one of my precut pieces of felt on the handle. The Velcro on the handle usually kinda grabs the felt. However, if it doesn't you should be able to stretch and press it on until the 'nap' of the felt is caught in the Velcro 'teeth'. I am planning to use my glossy cardstock with a few different colored inks as you see pictured in the background.

Step 3:
Place small dots of ink, sparingly over the felt pad, starting from lightest color to darkest. The little spots of color go very far, so you won't need much. Your vaguely 'blotchy looking' inked felt can be used like this, and directly applied to your item, or you can add a few drops of blending solution just before applying it. Alcohol Inks are quick drying, so you must work quickly - especially if you are forgoing the Blending Solution. The Blender melds the edges of the colors somewhat and can be used to sort of bleach out mistakes. This makes it perfect if you don't achieve the look you are going for.

Step 4: In this picture I make a vague wavy shape with my handle in hand. The design on your paper will depend on how you manipulate the handle. This would make pretty neat flowers, if I cut it into thin strips! Alternately, it could be a sky or water depending on your color choices! Your creativity is the limit with this!

In the picture below, I use blending solution, and dab it on. Moving the handle in a 'pouncing' motion creates a marble -like design, as the colors blend together. This is my favorite technique, as it seems to float and swirl into shape and it is TOTALLY cool to watch! :)

This DP can be used in any other application just like any other Cardstock or paper. Now, what do we have that coordinates with this cool paper?

Uh-Oh! I'm getting ideas...aren't you? This is cool! What ELSE can I use these inks on? Have I created a monster yet? Keep reading!

Alcohol Inks can be used on 'anything non-porous'. So these cheapo embellies that I bought too many of several years ago (and still haven't used up!) are now getting my attention!

And throught the 'magic' of 'blog-o-vision' we have some BEA-U-T-I-FUL new Embellies! Aren't they fancy looking? And they will definitely coordinate, especially since I used the exact same colors to make the DP!
...but how about if the item is porous? Like, say - Ribbon? Could I...? Well why not? Some of the ink will absorb into the fibers and some will stay on top! So I gave it a whirl...and voila! coordinating ribbon! :) Well, maybe I need to try it on my metal findings box, or some charms, leftover tiles, mini mirrors, mailbox letters...! oOoOoh...my hubby has a whole toolbox in the garage full of bolts and nuts he won't miss! Think he'll mind carrying around a gold and pink, inked toolbox? :p Well, you can see where I'm going here! This truly fun and addictive technique can be used everywhere! I hope you have enjoyed my Technique Tutorial! Be sure you let us know if you try it! We'd love to see what you make! And FYI...I DID Ink some of the things listed above! See?

(You wanted to see his toolbox here didn't you? :p)

Come back tommorrow for some more fun!


  1. This is a fantastic tutorial Scrappy! Thanks for showing us these techniques. I think I will be having some messy fun later today. :)

  2. WOW Scrappy what an awesome tutorial you made. What a great job. Going to give this a try as well.

  3. Wow, WAY Cool!! I'm sure your hubby would LOVE a Gold & Pink tool box! HA HA!!
    Great work!!

  4. AWESOME technique Scrappy! LOVE the buttons and the badge especially - I have tons of alcohol inks - need to use them for this!!