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How To Use Alcohol Inks

Aug 17, 2007
Using alcohol inks is something I have not tried before and to be honest I was a little apprehensive, looking at all the different pots of inks, mixers and blending solutions it appeared to be a complex and difficult craft to master.

Alcohol inks are dye based multi surface inks that can be used on a variety of surfaces including glossy paper, dominos, plastic, metal, shrink plastic metal foil, glass and many other materials.

Each color of alcohol ink can be intermixed and should be used with a blending solution which can be used to lighten, blend and even remove colors.

There are also four mixatives, gold, silver, pearl and copper. Together with inks that can be used along side the alcohol inks. They are more solid in colour and have a metallic look to them.

Before you use your inks make sure that the room you are using is well ventilated as they have a strong chemical smell.

You will need a small piece of felt and a small wooden block, or you could make one your self using some wood and some Velcro so you can change the felt when you need to.

Decide which surface you are going to use. If you are making backing paper then I find shiny paper works really well. Choose your ink colors, you can use as many different colors as you like but I tend to stick to just two or three.

Place a few drops of one of the alcohol inks directly onto the felt pad and dab randomly over the paper. Select a different color and repeat the process until the desired look is achieved.

There is no right or wrong way to do this, you can experiment and see what you like the best.

Add a few drops of the blending solution onto the felt pad and dab all over your piece of paper, this will blend the colours together and give them a softer look.

If you would like your design to have a metallic feel then add a few drops of the mixative and once again dab your paper until you are happy wit how it looks.

You can also drop the inks directly onto the surface of the chosen material and add the blending solution in the same way, this will produce a totally different look but will require more ink to be used.

Alcohol inks can be used on so many different materials before you know it you will be changing the color and look of plastic pots and your photo frames.

By using the gold and rustic looking inks you can make an old photo really stand out by decorating the frame making it look aged but not tatty.

Do not be afraid to experiment, you can add as many layers as you like until you get your desired effect.
About the Author
Vicki Churchill writes for several sites that specialize in scrapbooking and step by step guides on cards to make.
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