Wednesday, June 8, 2011

How To Use Stamps, Stains And Inks In Paper Crafting

Posted by JulesinParadise (Jules):

I make lots and lots of tags.  I send them instead of birthday cards; I give them as book marks and use them on layouts.  I love to get my hands all covered with inks and stains and glitter and glue.  

I recently made these two tags and they will join my stash of tags to send to special people on special occassions. All of these techniques can be used on cards and layouts as well.

First I gather my supplies:  stamps, acrylic stamp pads, inks, the wonderful new Ranger distress stains, cardstock, a piece of transparency that came with my stamps as a cover, ribbons, Stickles and the Liquid Pearls along with a mask.

First, I apply one coat of the Ranger Distress stain.  This is a fantastic product and comes with its own built in applicator.  It goes on just like shoe polish.  I add color layer by layer until I get the tags the color I want.  It is also so easy to add color to various areas but not others by applying the stain in a circular manner. 

For the mask, I first applied one light coat of color to the tag and allowed this to dry.  This stain sets up fast and dries to lovely chalky colors.  I then placed the mask over the tag and apply the stain.  It is much easier to use a mask, even one as detailed as this one, as sponge applicator gets into all the nooks and crannies with ease.  I let the stain dry and removed the mask.  A stencil works just as easily. 

Next I stamped a variety of butterfly images from the three stamp sets in various colors and hues of the colors.  This gradiant stamping is easy with the ink sets and stamping is a snap with the cat's eye shaped inks.  I stamped these on card stock and onto the acrylic square.  The images stamped onto the acrylic need to set up at least over night or they smear.  Heat setting of the chalk inks is risky as the acrylic is prone to distortion from heat.  I sprayed the acrylic stamped images with a clear sealer before I cut them out. 

Once the images were ready to be cut out, I adhered those stamped onto the cardstock first and layered the acrylic ones over them.  I only adhered the acrylic images down the middle and once the glue dried, I gently folded the wings back and creased them.  The overlay and popped up wings resulted in more vivid movement on the tag.

I have always loved beautifully stamped images and words where the colors blend and go from lights to darks.  I used to use a q tip or a blending stick to apply the inks but never could get this technique to turn out the way  I wanted it to.  I did discover a short cut though that produces results almost as well.
I stamp one lighter color over the entire image, the word "laughter" in this case.  Then, using just the outer rim of the cat's eye ink in a darker color, I tap it gently around the top, bottom and two sides of the word. 

The stamped image has the graduated inking but with half the fuss.

I stamped the butterflies directly onto the "Laughter" tag, added Stickles, Liquid Pearls (love these) and some bling.  Can't wait to see what you create with these great stamps, inks, stains and other assorted goodies.

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