One of the inking methods I've been exploring in this past year has been using ink on laminating pouches. Back in December, I made some snowflake sun catchers. Well, at the same time, I made a sheet of red that I had planned on cutting out with some Christmas themed shapes. After hours looking for just the right patterns to cut out of the plastic, I gave up and decided to save it for Valentine's Day.
I grabbed three true shades of red alcohol ink: Watermelon, Crimson, and Poppyfield. I dripped the ink onto the inside of the laminating pouch and added a bit of rubbing alcohol to thin it out and then used the hand blower and air can to blow it around.
Once I had one side of the pouch covered, I decided to add some metallic ink to break up the red a bit. I chose Pinata Rich Gold. I like Pinata's Gold and Brass better than Ranger's Gold, but they'd all do the trick for this particular application. I dripped a few drops around the sheet and added a drop of rubbing alcohol and spread the ink around a bit.
Then I let the laminator pouch dry. This is really important. If the ink isn't dry, the laminator won't get a good seal on the plastic and it will squish the ink around and ruin your design. So make sure it's complete dry and then run in through the machine.
Next I made my designs in Silhouette Studio. I measured the laminator sheet and entered the correct size into the custom size option and then traced a heart that I liked. I made some hearts about 3 inches (which is a good size for a sun catcher) and then nested the same heart, but smaller, on the inside. I had a little column of space on the side, so I added some medium sized hearts along the edge. Then I added little circles to all of the hearts so I could hang my sun catchers. If you don't have a cutting machine, you could trace around any heart shape and then cut with scissors.
I sent the design to my Silhouette using the "sticker paper, clear" setting. After cutting, it looked like it made it through the machine ok. Watch for pieces peeling up while cutting laminating film. They can throw your design off if pieces peel up and get caught while cutting.
I peeled my hearts up from the cutting mat and they turned out perfectly! You could string several up on fishing line or just hang them up on little suction cups. Either way, they look amazing when the sunlight hits them.