Check out the blog's collection of 4th of July crafts: 4th of July Craft Collection
Monday, June 22, 2020
My sister gifted me some cylindrical vases that she didn't want any more and I've been trying to come up with ways to decorate them ever since. I used the plastic wrap method of applying alcohol ink to the first one, but I wanted to try something a little bit different for the others. I had some luck with swirling or dripping ink and backing it with spray paint on another project, so I thought I'd try something similar for these vases.
So I got out my craft mat and alcohol inks and selected some sunset themed colors. Ranger has a set of alcohol inks called Summit View that includes a purple, orange and yellow ink. I added some watermelon red and we had a nice selection of sunset colors.
I dripped the different sunset shades of ink in random intervals around the top edge of the vase so that it would drip down into the vase. I was going for something mostly straight, but a few mixed or wiggly
lines were fine.
I continued dripping lines of alcohol ink around the top edge of the vase and letting it drip down (orange and yellow seen above). I continued adding red and purple along the top and letting it drip down.
When I felt I had pretty good coverage with the ink on the sides, I ended up with a pretty good sized puddle of ink on the bottom of the vase, so I flipped the vases over to drip back down and dry.
After they set for a a little while, I came back and added a few drips to any place I felt was a bit empty and then I cleaned up the top edge of the vase (which had gotten ink on it from flipping it over to drip) with a napkin soaked in a little rubbing alcohol.
After the vases were completely dry (in my case, I ended up letting them dry for a few weeks because my white spray paint was clogged and I had to order another one), I covered the vases in some plastic wrap to keep the spray paint from coating the outside of the vases.
I sprayed a light coat of white spray paint on the inside of the vases. I didn't even bother trying to get a solid white coat. I liked being able to see the ink on the inside of the vase.
I let the vases dry for about an hour and then peeled the plastic wrap off of the vases. There were a few drips and over sprays along the top edge of the vase, but I was able to clean them off with a little goo gone. These turned out really fun, but I was surprised at how spotty the ink was in some places. It was much easier to see the ink lines after the vases were painted. I love the way the ink really pops against the white background.
Monday, June 15, 2020
Last year I made an attempt at an artistic rendering of a starry sky with alcohol ink. I then decorated it with a vinyl decal of the TARDIS (from Dr. Who). Back then, I wasn't sealing everything with Kamar Varnish after completing--especially if it was something I was planning on using decoratively. So with the little flecks of ink that came off when I applied the decal and some overall dulling of the ink in the last year, when a chip of ink came off (in the pink circle below), I knew it was time to touch up the tarids tile.
When I applied the tardis decal, some of the ink in the lower right corner of the tile flaked off, but it looked sort of starry, so I didn't mind it much, but as the tile got a duller and another piece of ink flaked off, I got out my craft mat and got to work.
I pulled out my blue, black, purple, and silver inks and dripped them onto areas that needed additional coverage or that had gotten a bit dull. I used some canned air to spread the ink out and away from the center of the tile (and the decal).
I covered and up any areas that I thought looked worn and set the tile aside to dry.
After the ink was dry, I sprayed it with some Kamar Varnish to seal it. If this tile were being used for as a candle plate or coaster, it would need a more durable sealant over the Kamar Varnish, but since I have this one sitting on a shelf (on a plate stand/easel), hopefully this should do the trick for years to come.
Original Project Post: Alcohol Ink Galaxy Tile
Monday, June 8, 2020
A little while back, I cut a whole bunch of (mostly geeky) vinyl decals out of a sheet of holographic silver vinyl with my Silhouette Cameo. For this week's project, I applied them to some 4 inch ceramic tiles that I decorated with alcohol ink.
I decided to use the plastic wrap method of ink application for these tiles. I wanted something generally blue and not too busy, so I thought it would be fun to try to stretch the plastic a bit to create a more subdued pattern that what I usually get with the plastic wrap.
I tore off a piece of plastic wrap about the size of both of my tiles, placed it on my craft mat, and dripped several shades of blue alcohol ink on the surface until it was nearly covered in ink.
I set the tops of my ceramic tiles onto the alcohol ink and then folded them over so the plastic wrap pulled taut, and I had the top sides of the ceramic tiles facing out.
Here's (above) the opposite side of my wrapped tiles.
I light them dry for a day (drying takes at least 8-12 hours, so I usually just leave them over night and check on them sometime the next day).
I unfolded the tiles and started pulling them up off of the plastic wrap.
The shades of blue mixed nicely and I was left with some interesting patterns from the plastic wrap being stretched across the tile.
I sealed the tiles with some Kamar Varnish to set the ink before applying my decals. I let the varnish dry for a day before applying my vinyl decals.
From the stash of silver holographic vinyl that I had cut, I chose a droid and a famous police box. I opted for the slightly less sticky transfer tape that I had on hand and I was sorry I did. Every loose piece of the decal had to be rubbed down or peeled up when I peeled the decals off of the backer paper. The stuff that's more like masking tape, works way better.
I cut out my transfer tape to be about the size of my decal and rubbed it onto the decal--paying special attention to the parts that weren't attached to the larger design of the decal.
Then I carefully peeled up the transfer tape (making sure it pulled all parts of the design off of the backer paper).
Then I positioned the decal, rubbed it down onto the tile, and then peeled off the transfer tape (making sure it didn't peel any parts of the decal up with it).
Then I repeated the process with my droid decal.
These turned out really fun! I'm not sure if I'll use them decoratively or as coasters. If I go the coaster route, I'll want to put another sealer on the tiles to make them water resistant (like a spray acrylic or mod podge). If I use them decoratively, they should be good to go.
Monday, June 1, 2020
I can't seem to throw out those French's Fried Onion containers. The labels come off easily and they're a weird mix of plastic that I'm not sure would get recycled if I put it in the recycling bin, so I usually toss them into the craft bin after they've been emptied. In the past, I've covered them with tissue paper and mod podge. But this time, I wanted to try something different.
Since the plastic wrap alcohol ink method works well on white surfaces, I thought I'd give it a try on one of the fried onion containers.
After my plastic was mostly covered, I placed the container in the middle of the plastic wrap and wrapped the plastic around it.
After the plastic wrap was securely wrapped around the container, I set it aside to dry. It takes at least 12 hours to dry. I usually leave it overnight or for a couple days before peeling the plastic wrap off.
The next day, the ink was dry, but it was clear that several areas didn't get inked. It was also clear that the ink mixed a bit too much (turned brown) in a few places.
There were several voids in the ink on the front of the container and the top of the container.
So I decided I needed to fill in some areas. Fortunately, the plastic wrap method is fairly forgiving. I tore some smaller pieces of plastic wrap off and inked them to cover the voids and to add color in a couple of brown areas.
Unfortunately, I failed to take any pictures of the re-inking, but I did take a picture of me using the last of the roll of plastic wrap to secure the pieces I had patch worked together to cover the container.
When I came back the next day, the ink was dry and the container looked like it had much better coverage.
I peeled the plastic wrap off and was pleased with the second attempt at covering the container.
So I took it out on the deck in a shoe box and sprayed a coat of Kamar Varnish on each side of the container to set the ink. If this container ends up storing items in a kitchen or bathroom, I'll also want to add a layer of acrylic sealer over top; otherwise, it should be good to go.
This project was fun and turned out so colorful. I'm glad I have another option for covering up these fried onion containers and reusing them!