Saturday, November 12, 2011


While waiting for our children's arrival for my husband's birthday celebration dinner, I played with my distress stains to get ready for my demonstration at the St Augustine Stamp Club on Monday night. These stains are great; I love all the colors (and white), how they are translucent, give quick, fast coverage, are softer looking than distress ink pads, and how they also blend and react with water. Prime the tip by pressing gently onto a craft sheet. Squeezing the bottle when pressing down releases more ink and gives more color saturation. Don't worry about transferring color from one bottle to another, just press on your craft sheet and release more ink to "wash away" the extra color.

Following are ten ways that I love to use distress stains (and of course, pearl misters):
  1.  The best way to color punches and delicate die cuts. Scroll down the tag page to technique #6 on November 8th, to see the snowflake punch and as well as the delicate Memory Box flourish behind the flower from the tag technique #4 on October 25. 
  2. If you have the need for a speedy card, pick up a piece of Tim Holtz's kraft resist and stain with any distress ink. I know that it looks too dark and streaky when the ink is wet, but the color lightens and blends when dry. You may need to lightly wipe the ink off the resist area. Remember that the lightest colors (like sage and lavender) don't show up well on kraft paper. The darker colors (like sapphire and pine) will show up the resist design better and the medium colors (like lipstick) will highlight the black line designs. The card to the right used sapphire blue.  I used heirloom gold mister over the resist paper that just doesn't show up in the picture. The Holtz text is embossed with a midnight/metallic powder that's really pretty.
  3. Don't forget to dye the trim to match your card. Last week I showed several cards embellished with dyed to match Holtz trim. Remember that colors can be blended to create custom colors. You can mist with water or spritz to lighten or blend color more easily. If the color is too dark, just blot with a cloth.  This pink card is also made with kraft resist that has been stained with lipstick and misted with heirloom gold. The Holtz trim is stained with linen and misted with heirloom. The black line images are easier to see on this lighter color. The rose colored 3-D flower is die cut and the white one was from my stash. The white one was tinted on the edge of the petals with lipstick. Both flowers are misted with gold, and the edges are embossed with aged gold embossing powder from Stampendous. (It is my new favorite). The leaves were cut using a circle punch, stained with sage, and embossed on the edge with aged gold. The ticket was crushed and flattened, inked with a blender tool using linen on the edge and rose across the top.
  4. See the tag page for Technique #4 on Oct 25 for an explanation of how stains can be used to watercolor an image embossed on watercolor paper.
  5. While you are looking at Technique #6 on Nov 8, there is an explanation of the embellishments that use rock candy crackle paint and stains. Bet you can't make just one!
  6. Stains make great backgrounds. For this next tag to fit on a card, I first cut off an inch and saved it to use for the verse. For the main part of the tag, I swiped on jeans and picket fence (don't forget to shake picket fence before using) onto a manilla tag. I didn't try to get it even, I left some background showing because I think it add more texture and interest. Next I blended jeans around the edge and let it dry throughly before the next step. White emboss a background (this is a new one from Hero Arts). The next step is to spritz; for this card I used kiwi. I also added a new reinforcer in sapphire covered with glossy accents.
  7. Notice the small punched trim to the right of the tree image; this look was achieved by using the picket fence on the same green as the card base. (Remember to shake the white before using it) Since the white color is transparent it lightens the original color. This is a great technique to use to alter a patterned paper that is too bright.
  8. The tree image is created from stamping with a pearl paint dauber on sticky back canvas. Let it dry throughly and then add stains; I used jean, pine and peeled paint stains. It won't look too good but don't give up yet. Spritz several times with misters (kiwi) and let dry. Fringe the edge, peel off the backing and adhere to the card front.
  9. The words are embossed on a stained piece of the trimmed off tag that has been colored with jeans, pine and peeled paint. The stains work great to color the edge of cardstock that has been trimmed and shows the core color. This works well on the edges of chipboard when making books, or the edges of grunge board die cuts.
  10. You can also stamp with these stains. They make it easy to dab on color just where you want it. you can go over sections with a water brush to move color around, blend or fill in parts of the images.
You can check out Tim Holt's blog to view his video. He starts by comparing different distress inks and then shows some great ways to blend colors. You can also go to the Ranger site to print out a blank color chart. Elaine found this site and it also has a video tutorial.

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