Monday, May 2, 2016

Glazed Alcohol Ink Washers

My most popular post on this blog is a project I did a few years ago with alcohol ink where I stamped washers (yes, the kind from the hardware store) and made them into necklaces. It's a really easy and fun project--and if you have the inks, it's pretty inexpensive too. After I had added more colors to my ink collection, I revisited the project and made some more necklaces. In the comments section I had gotten some posts about how I should coat them with resin or dimensional magic so they would be all glazed and shiny. I thought that was an excellent idea.

To start out I grabbed my alcohol inks and applicator, laid down my craft mat, and cleaned some washers off with rubbing alcohol. I put a square of felt on the applicator and dotted a few different colors of alcohol ink onto it.

I stamped at the washers 3 or 4 times to cover the washer and you get a light watercolor look with not very good coverage.

So I kept stamping. 3-5 more times and you'll get a darker watercolor look. You'll get better color coverage and some of the colors will start to mix a bit. Sometimes, I stop here. But I wanted more of a stippled look.

So I kept stamping. Eventually, the ink will start creating these little bubble-like stipples. That's what I was after.

But I thought it had gotten kinda blah as the colors mixed, so I put a little bit of green (clover) onto a clean felt pad and stamped a bit. It came out marbled and very contrasted. I liked it like this, so I stopped and switched to different washers.

I made a bunch in a variety of different colors and set them aside to dry.

Then I tried to glaze them with Diamond Glaze. I don't know if it was the consistency of the glue or the size of the nozzle, but it didn't go as well as I had hoped. First off, I had them on paper plates, but over half of them had glue dripping off of the sides and filling their center (like the one above). So I used a toothpick to pick them up and put them on some wax paper so they wouldn't glue themselves to the plates as they dried. This dumped most of the glue off of the washers as I moved them. So I let them dry for a day and came back to try and do a second coat. I was more careful and put less glue on the washers, but that left ridges in some of the washers, and others still lost surface tension and ended up with glue all over. I was able to move the glue around a bit with a toothpick, but getting that nice slightly domed clear glaze that I had hoped for, just wasn't going to happen. I did end up with a few that turned out nicely, but several of them had bubbles in them that I couldn't pop with a toothpick and shaking or vibrating was out since the surface tension would bust and have glue all over. I even tried using a lighter (which is a trick I saw someone use online with epoxy resin) over the surface--this sort of helped, but only for the big bubbles.

So, I'll probably turn the few of these that did work into jewelry, but I didn't glaze all of these that I stamped, so I might try some Dimensional Magic to see if it works better on this project. I'll let you know how it turns out. If you have any tips for non-epoxy glazes on washers, let me know in the comments.

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