Tutorials, Techniques and Terminology

This page is a work in progress and am hoping that it will help newcomers to stamping.  I was demonstrating at a store recently and it occurred to me that some people may find a page like this useful.  If there is something you would like me to list do let me know and I will do my best to help.  If i can figure out how to do it I will endeavour to upload some short videos, failing that i will try and take step by step photos.  I will also add bits as I think of them

Pigment Ink - A slow drying ink that usually needs to be set with a heat gun to dry and is one of the best inks to use for heat embossing

Dye Ink - A fast drying ink, and one that is most commonly used for stamping and tends to only be suitable for paper and card. Memento is a good dye ink.

Archival Ink - An oil based ink, can be heat set will stamp on most surfaces but may need heat setting on some surfaces

Distress Ink - Distress inks are primarily a dye based ink, but have been made in such a way that they can be moved around the substrate you are working on.  This obviously does depend on how porous your paper/card is so if it is drying quickly your surface is probably very porous and the ink is soaking in quickly.  The beauty of Distress inks is that they are designed to blend with water.  So not only can they be used for general stamping but they can be used for heat embossing, blending, water-colouring and creating effects with water.  Tim Holtz is the best person to watch on YouTube as he invented them!!

Heat Embossing - For heat embossing you will need either pigment ink or a versamark (or something similar) ink pad, embossing powder (the finer the better) and a heat gun.  Versa mark is a clear pigment ink and generally you have around 5 minutes to put the embossing powder over the top.  As it is clear you have lots of options for colour including clear as this is just added using the embossing powder.

Dry Embossing - This was used quite a bit when i first started out but now is not so widely used but basically uses a stencil and an embossing tool which has a round ball at the end and you manipulate the paper/card into the design on the paper through the back of the paper.  Nowadays this effect is far more easily achieved by using embossing folders through machines such as a Sizzix Big Shot, Cuttlebug etc

Using ink sprays - these are great fun and there are certainly plenty to choose from, I have Distress Stain Sprays (these are all identical colours to the inks and paints and so can all be used together, but do bear in mind that they all have differing amounts of pigment (the stuff that gives them colour) so although they are the same colour in principle some of the sprays will at first appear darker than say the ink pads).  Dylusions sprays these are lovely and bright although they do lighten up once they are dry and with these in particular it is best to spray the page with water first then add the spray. Perfect Pearl sprays - now these are great for adding a bit of a sparkle after you have finished a project as they are very translucent (you can see through them).  All of these three are made by Ranger inc.  I also have Prima's Colour Bloom sprays these are just gorgeous, and whilst like most other sprays i have come across are translucent they give a really nice coverage on their own.  Be warned, ink sprays are messy and so they are not for everyone, i very often end up with stained fingers at the end of a play session.  For best results you will need to use the sprays on a substrate that is designed to take water.  Water colour paper works well but does tend to be textured slightly so if you are likely to want a smooth stamped image over the top you may want to use something like manilla cardstock or smooth coated card.  It will work on most substrates(the surface that you are using) it will just come out better on some.  I like to use water after i have sprayed to lighten them but some like the Dylusions work better when applied to a surface that has been spritzed with water first.

Using Acrylics