5 Next Level Heat Embossing Techniques with Mboss

by Jessica Lin

Six greeting cards made with different heat embossing techniques using Mboss embossing powder by Imagine

Hi everyone! Today’s video is all about heat embossing—from stamp layering with embossing powder, creating a faux branding iron look, to stenciling with VersaMark… these techniques really take heat embossing to the next level. If you like heat embossing and are eager to learn new tips and tricks, this video is a must-watch!

Supplies

Imagine
  • VersaMark – ink pad, VersaMarker
  • Mboss – Gold, Clear, Shimmering Night Sky, Birthday Party, Hologram, Lucky Stars
  • Craft Mat
Other
  • Stampin’ Up – Flourishing Phrases Bundle, Watercolor Wings Bundle
  • Stampers Anonymous – High Society Blueprint
  • Stamplorations – Kathryn’s Rainbows
  • Crafter’s Workshop – Stencil Template – Raindrop
  • Tim Holtz – Holiday Knit Stencil
  • Stamparatus or other stamping platform
  • EK – Anti-static Powder Tool
  • Wagner – Heat Tool
  • Acrylic block
  • Cardstock – colors of choice
  • Watercolor paper

 

Learn how to use StāzOn Pigment Ink with different substrates and mediums

by Lori Warren

Hello all, I am sharing with you some of the great benefits of using the new StāzOn Pigment ink. I really love this ink and love how it works with different surfaces. Before I get into demonstrating several options available, let me cover the basic information that Imagine has provided about this new product.

StāzOn Pigment:

  • Dries quickly on most surfaces
  • Works on all surfaces that original StāzOn does: paper, acetate, metal, glass and more
  • New felt pad produces crisp stamped images
  • Vibrant and opaque inks – these colors really pop!
  • Ergonomic, easy-to-open, air-tight case

StāzOn Pigment ink is available in 12 colors

With the basics out of the way, let’s move on to see how well StāzOn Pigment ink works with other Imagine products as well as with different substrates and mediums. To best explore the crafty possibilities of this ink, let’s embark on a variety of explorations using StāzOn Pigment ink with different substrates and mediums. The 6 explorations below outline the manner in which StāzOn Pigment was applied, the different substrate(s) and medium(s) used, as well as provide a photo capturing the result.

Exploration 1 – Paper

StāzOn Pigment: Stamped flower with Piano Black and saying stamped with Peacock Feathers.
Substrate: Strathmore Mixed Media Paper, vellum surface, 185 lb.
Medium(s): Watercolor with Memento Dual Tip Markers.
Additional Medium added, Sheer SHIMMER Craft Spray – Sparkle

Artist Observations: The StāzOn Pigment ink did not smear with the application of the wet watercolors, nice! Plus, the crisp stamped image really helped the image stand out.

Exploration 2 – Canvas

StāzOn Pigment: Stamped flower image with Piano Black.
Substrate: Flat panel canvas, pre-treated with gesso
Medium(s): DecoArt Media Fluid Acrylics

Artist Observations: The StāzOn Pigment ink produced a vibrant stamped image that held up well against the acrylic paint. With the rough surface of the canvas, I found that a well-inked stamp and a little extra pressure was required to get a clean stamped image.

Exploration 3 – Wood

StāzOn Pigment: Stamped flower image with Piano Black.
Substrate: Untreated wood plaque
Medium(s): Fabrico Dual Makers with a DecoArt DuraClear Matte Varnish finish

Artist Observations: The StāzOn Pigment worked great on wood and didn’t smear with the application of the Fabrico markers.

Exploration 4 – Glass

StāzOn Pigment: Stamped flower image with Piano Black. Floral image colored with Snowflake, Chocolate Brown, Lemon Drop & Shamrock Green using Doodlestix Mixed Media Tools.
Substrate: Glass
Medium(s): irRESISTible Pico Embellisher

Artist Observations: I love the permanency of StāzOn Pigment on the glass and the application of the ink with a DoodleStix Mixed Media Tool was super easy and effective. The challenge came with working on a slick surface; I had to keep a steady hand when stamping to obtain a clean image.

Exploration 5 – Tumble Stone Tile

StāzOn Pigment: Stamped flower image with Piano Black.
Substrate: Tumble Stone Tile
Medium(s): Faber-Castell PITT Artist Pens w/DecoArt DuraClear Matte Varnish finish

Artist Observations: The StāzOn Pigment ink worked beautifully on the tumble stone tile. There was no smearing with the application of color with the Artist PITT pens or with the use of the varnish sealer.

Exploration 6 – Metal & Glass

StāzOn Pigment: Stamped images with Piano Black. Peacock Feathers, Shamrock Green & Snowflake ink sponged onto surfaces with InkBlushers.

Substrate: Metal & Glass

Artist Observations:  Sponging and stamping onto Metal with StāzOn Pigment ink worked like a dream. Vibrant color and crisp images resulted in a beautiful project!

As these explorations demonstrate, StāzOn Pigment ink works very well on a variety of substrates resulting in crisp stamped images that dry quickly. It also holds up to different mediums without running or smearing. Not only can it be used as a staple ink to stamp images on a variety of surfaces (to be treated with different mediums), it works well as a strong stand-alone ink that you can use to create entire projects with (see Exploration 6 – Metal & Glass).

For a paper project using StāzOn Pigement as a stand-alone ink, visit “Create a Stamped Collage Using StāzOn PIGMENT Inkpad”.

Supplies

Imagine
Other
  • DecoArt DuraClear Matte Varnish
  • DecoArt MEDIA Fluid Acrylics
  • Faber-Castell PITT artist pens
  • Lori’s Cards & Creations Stamps, Cone Flower & Sketchy Rose
  • Echo Park Paper Co. Eat, Sleep, Craft Stamp
  • Water brush
  • Hobby Lobby Galvanized metal sign
  • Glass
  • Tumbled stone tile
  • Flat Panel Canvas
  • Wood plaque
  • Strathmore Mixed Media paper

Announcing Sheer Shimmer Stix

We are so excited to tell you about a new product that will be hitting the market soon—not only is Sheer Shimmer going to be available in Rose Gold, but also in an all-new easy applicator! Sheer Shimmer Stix can be held like a pen to swipe the dauber top applicator over a project surface to effortlessly and cleanly apply the elegant sheer shimmer you already love.

Sheer Shimmer Stix Color Swatches:

Quick Facts about Shimmer Stix

  • Same elegant Sheer Shimmer effect as the sprays
  • Swipe-on application for controlled results
  • Stix dauber top allows for quick, uniform, large surface area application

Keep your eye on the blog all month where our artists are going to show you some awesome technique ideas for this new product and the announcement they are ready to order!

Learn How To Create Cards With Versatile Vellum

by Elina Stromberg

Learn How To Create Cards With Versatile Vellum

As a paper crafter, I’m sure you’ve come across a material called vellum. Hundreds of years ago ‘vellum’ was used to describe a thin, yet durable paper made from calf’s skin, but today this translucent, parchment resembling specialty paper is made from cotton and pulp. Vellum is usually white, but it is available in various other colors, too. Vellum’s unique characteristics have made it a popular material among paper crafters. However, some crafters consider vellum to be a bit tricky material to work with and knowing a few tips and tricks may help in the process. The best way to get familiar with the versatility of vellum is just to start playing and experimenting. Let me share with you a couple of ideas of how I like to use this great material.

Layering vellum on patterned paper

Vellum is translucent so it can be placed over a patterned background without completely hiding the underlying pattern. This characteristic is a great way to calm down a busy background, and if you place other elements on the vellum layer they will not blend into the background pattern.

Layering vellum on patterned paper

Transparency of vellum has its pros and cons. The background pattern will show through, but so will most of the adhesives that you need to use for attaching vellum on the background. However, lightweight vellum does not require too much adhesive to stay in place, and the trick is to use glue only on spots that you can cover later with other elements like frames, cut-out images or sentimetns, flowers, sequins, enamel dots, buttons etc. For some projects, a stapler is a good option for fastening, and on other projects, a metal brad will do the trick.

In my card sample, I die-cut a paper frame that I used for hiding the glue marks.

In my card sample, I die-cut a paper frame that I used not only as a fun layout element, but also for hiding the glue marks where the vellum is attached to the background.

 

Heat embossing

Vellum is a great material for heat embossing. Same supplies (VersaMark and Embossing Powders) can be used for vellum and for paper, and the melted powder will stick as it does on paper.

Simply heat emboss the text on a piece of vellum and attach the strip on the card.

Translucent vellum takes heat embossing to a new level, providing new possibilities to layer stamped elements. This is especially the case with stamped sentiment texts that in some cases are tricky to position on a card. Simply heat emboss the text on a piece of vellum and attach the strip on the card. While the vellum will highlight the raised text, its translucent background will let the underlying pattern to show through too.

Coloring with inks or watercolors

Vellum can be colored with markers, pencils, paints, inks, and watercolors. Vellum does not absorb wet media too well and a watercolor painted vellum surface may start to curl. However, this vellum characteristics can be utilized for creating beautiful vellum flowers where you can use the curling as an advantage:

I started with stamping and heat embossing simple flower images on a piece of vellum.

I started with stamping and heat embossing simple flower images on a piece of vellum.

 

I colored the flowers with All-Purpose Ink in Cherry Pink, adding with a water brush quite a rich amount of water on the petals

I colored the flowers with All-Purpose Ink in Cherry Pink, adding with a water brush quite a rich amount of water on the petals. While vellum was still a bit moist, I cut out the flowers and dried the color with a heat gun.

On this card the background is heat-embossed also, using clear embossing powder.

Using the heat gun to dry the wet inks curled up the flower petals, and by layering two stamped flowers I created a beautiful 3-dimensional flower to be used on a card.

If you are not big on heat embossing, Delicata and Brilliance inks will dry on vellum without heat embossing. Remember though that it will take longer to dry on vellum than on standard cardstock.

Dry embossing

Vellum has a smooth finish that can easily be dry-embossed. The result looks amazing, as the embossed lines turn from frosty white to bright white. If you’re using embossing folders and a die-cutting machine, make sure that you’re applying as little pressure as possible on the folder. A detailed image and heavy pressure will easily break the vellum. I prefer using a stylus for dry embossing vellum. In this technique, I place the piece of vellum on a surface that is a bit soft, like the Imagine Craft Mat or a mouse pad, and trace the lines with a stylus. It’s important to apply just enough pressure to change the vellum from translucent to white, as a stylus can also tear or punch the vellum if too much pressure is used.

With a stylus, you can write texts, doodle swirls or draw

With a stylus, you can write texts, doodle swirls or draw. Instead of free-hand drawing, you can also use a stencil as your guidance. Just place a stencil on the vellum and trace the pattern with a stylus:

Instead of free-hand drawing, you can also use a stencil as your guidance.

I attached the vellum panel on the card with a few stitches on each edge as I did not want to frame it for this layout. Instead of hand-stitching, I could have used a sewing machine for attaching; it works just as well!

I used this dry-embossed vellum background for a simple card project. The dry embossed pattern adds a whimsical element that does not compete with the bold sentiment.

Hope these ideas inspire you to use vellum on your craft projects. I’m sure you will love the versatility of it!

Supplies

Imagine
Other
  • American Crafts – Vellum
  • Stamps: Carabelle Studio – ‘Little girl with ball’, Visible Image – ‘Somewhere In Time’, Honey Bee – ‘Congrats’, Stampin’Up! – ‘Diagonal Stripe’, Jasmine Jones+Studio Calico – ‘Happy Birthday’, Altenew – ‘Freeform Greenery’.
  • Other stamps: “Thanks” sentiment, Flowers
  • Sizzix – Nesting dies
  • Fiskars – Stylus
  • Dot stencil
  • Water brush
  • Cardstock
  • Card bases
  • Embroidery yarn & needle

Mythbusting – StazOn Ink & StazOn Cleaner with Clear Stamps

by Nadine Carlier

StazOn ink is a solvent ink that can be used on plastic, glass, metal, paper, and a host of mixed media surfaces and ephemera. So it is natural to assume that it might damage your stamps. We asked Nadine to talk a little bit about why StazOn is totally safe to use with any stamp set!

Supplies

Other

Tips and Tricks: Crafting on a Budget

by Roni Johnson

Tips and Tricks: Crafting on a Budget

Crafting can get pricey! If you are spending too much on crafting and it is taking some of the joy out of it then we are sharing some easy ways to scale back but still engage in a great crafting routine. There are lots of articles out there about crafting on a budget and most of them discuss the same list of common sense ideas…

  • Price shop
  • Clip Coupons (IRL or web)
  • Shop at Dollar Stores or Thrift Stores
  • Upcycle/Recycle various items
  • Search web for ideas/patterns

These general ideas are nice and they are a good start but I want to give you some specific ideas and tips to help you save not only money but something more valuable…your time.

Buy Unmounted Rubber Stamps

Unmounted stamps can cost as much as 50-80% less than traditional wood mounted stamps, take up less space and are easy to store and use. To use unmounted rubber stamps, apply Tack ‘N Peel to your acrylic blocks. This is a clear reusable cling sheet that has a protective liner sheet that can be used over and over. Once it has been affixed to the acrylic block it is very simple to use, remove the clear liner sheet; position the stamp on the block as desired, ink and stamp. When you are finished stamping simply peel the rubber stamp off the block and replace the liner. If the Tack ‘N Peel loses its “sticky” quality simply wash with water and let it dry. After it is dry it will once again be ready to use.

Make your own Texture Stamps and Stencils

This is a fun and easy task when you stop and look around your home. You’ll be surprised at how many items can be turned into a usable texture for all sorts of crafts. For example, lace, food netting, cheesecloth can all be used as a stamp or stencil. Foam food trays can be carved to create stamps, bubble wrap, rubber bands, fibers, leaves, coins can all be turned into stamps by sticking them to an acrylic block. Pencils tips are great for the bokeh technique, kitchen utensils, game pieces, tools, feathers, flowers, and more can also be put to use. You only have to take a moment and look around to see what you have on hand that will create fun and new stamps or stencils for your art.

Clearly Embossed

Let’s face it there are hundreds if not thousands of colors and brands of embossing powders on the market. You could easily spend a small fortune collecting the various embossing powders available today. A great option is clear embossing powder; the original ink color will shine through and match your project perfectly. No need to sort through jar after jar trying to find the right color to match your project and no more storing all of those little jars either! Tip: Did you know you can turn virtually any dye ink into an emboss-able image? Press your stamp onto a VersaMark ink pad then onto a dye ink pad and then stamp the image. The image can now be embossed because of the VersaMark ink. This works particularly well with a clean VersaMark ink pad for lighter colors and I keep an old grungy VersaMark for darker colors.

Make Pattern Papers

Let’s face it, most of us have more pattern paper to last us the rest of our lives so instead of buying yet another sheet, pack or collection, break out your stamps and make your own pattern! It’s easy; all you need is a sheet of plain cardstock, ink and complimenting stamps. All sorts of designs can be achieved quickly and easily. Give it a try, you’ll be surprised how quickly it is to make. Making a pattern doesn’t have to be perfect…if you make a stamping mistake, look at it as an opportunity to embellish!

Coloring Pages as Art

There are thousands of beautiful coloring sheets up for grabs on the internet free for your personal use. These coloring pages are great because they can be re-sized to fit your particular project and they can be used for backgrounds as well as the main focal point. You can choose to print the images on the appropriate paper to fit your particular use and mediums you would like to incorporate be it plain cardstock, bristol cardstock, watercolor paper, mixed media paper and more. The uses are limitless.

No More Waste

To eliminate wasting various mediums by keeping a supply of plain tags or A2 size blank cardstock panels handy when you are creating. Use these spare pieces to pick up excess medium from your work surface and tools. You may choose to pick up mediums once or several times depending on your preference. These tags and panels can then be used to create one of a kind artwork in a snap. All of the hard work has already been done. Simply pop on the main image and/or sentiment and your set to go. Instant card or tag for whatever your need.

Multiples

When you’re making a card or gift be sure to work in multiples! By doing so you will cut down on waste and left-over scraps. If you use a quarter sheet of cardstock rather than pitch the extra or place it in the never-ending scrap basket make two or three similar cards to help use up all of the extra bits. Rather than having a basket full of scraps that you might or might not use you’ll end up with a basket of finished cards, tags, ATC’s, etc. that can be used in a moment’s notice.

No matter how you structure you crafting habits and budget you will find there are several ways to keep costs at a minimum. Thank you for stopping by the Imagine Blog!

Supplies

Imagine