Monday, August 16, 2010

embossing 101

i promised i'd give you the tips on how to emboss.  well after last thursday's paper shop workshop, i used my 10% off coupon to get a few more materials and now i'm ready to go!

without further ado, i present to you, embossing 101.  note - i was just playing around with this, trying to create the rehearsal dinner invites, so there's still some work to be done there and all kinds of typos, incorrect dates, etc.  all photos taken from my blackberry cam.

materials needed: stamp(s), embossing powder, heat gun (no, your straightener or hair dryer will not work.  hair dryer will blow the powder off and the straightener is just a horrible idea haha), stamp ink (i used watermark ink because it's clear and i can also use for watermarks), and scrap paper to put underneath the project to catch excess powder.

step 1 (we can have lots of fun.. sorry, had to throw in the old school NKOTB reference there) - take your stamp and cover entire stamp area with the watermark stamp pad.  sometimes you can actually hold the stamp and apply the stamp pad to the stamp to make sure it's fully covered.

step 2 - apply the stamp to designated area of your project.  make sure to press firmly but don't wiggle it or else it will smudge.
see the pretty watermark?  you can leave it as-is, or continue on with the embossing.  the watermark is a nice way to add more details but in a subtle way.

step 3 - act fast, because you don't want the ink to start drying.  pour enough embossing powder to cover your imprint... 
and then tap off the excess powder on to your scrap paper
it's important to make sure that all excess powder is removed from the outer areas of the stamp.  embossing powder is made of tiny plastic particles, so if any get left behind, they will be melted on to your project.  you can use a Q-tip or fine brush to get the excess off, if needed.

step 4 -turn on the heat gun and hold about 1/4"-1/2" away from the powder-covered stamp.  you don't need to pre-heat the gun, it warms up immediately.  slowly move the heat over the embossed area until you see the powder start to set.  don't hold over for more than 30 seconds (shouldnt take more than 15-20) or it will start to brown the paper
haha i just noticed my random foot in this picture.

and that's it!

it is SO easy to do and now that i know how, i will definitely be incorporating this little detail wherever i can for the menus, programs, and a few other pieces here and there.  cost breakdown: heat gun $23, stamps ~$3-$8 (but you can get stamps anywhere, they don't have to be from paper source), embossing powder ~$4-$8, watermark ink pad ~$4-$8.  the paper was the most expensive part but again, i will probably go to officemax or somewhere like that to get bulk paper in the colors i want.  and everything else will last me through the process and i can keep the stamps & heat gun forever!

below are a few more pics of some other trials i played around with:
here i was trying to see if i could do 2 colors on top of each other.  to do this i first did the pink one and then re-stamped and covered with the white powder.
this was my other rehearsal dinner invite trial, but i'll come back with more on that later.  i wouldn't use all 3 colors together, but i wanted to see what they'd all look like on the paper stock i will be using.
close-up of the watermark in a different spot

happy monday!

15 comments:

  1. holy moly this looks so easy and you've totally inspired me!

    any idea of the cost breakdown? and, are there types of paper this won't work on... like metallics?

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  2. @ kristina - i just added the cost breakdown, thanks for the reminder! but here it is as well.. cost breakdown: heat gun $23, stamps ~$3-$8 (but you can get stamps anywhere, they don't have to be from paper source), embossing powder ~$4-$8, watermark ink pad ~$4-$8. the paper was the most expensive part but again, i will probably go to officemax or somewhere like that to get bulk paper in the colors i want. and everything else will last me through the process and i can keep the stamps & heat gun forever!

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  3. oh and it will work on any paper type, because the plastic will melt in to all kinds!

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  4. Don't ya love embossing! I loved it so much that I embossed my daughter birthday invitations, lol! I was addicted:)

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  5. Oh and everything is beautiful by the way :)

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  6. how adorably cute is this! loving the utensils (especially the watermark in the middle) want to do mine? oh wait... i still don't even have a R.D. booked yet (eeek!) :) seriously, so pretty and fun!

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  7. Very nice! I love embossing! I am planning to emboss something.. just not sure what yet! haha

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  8. So cool! I love how your samples came out. The utensils stamps is amazing. I was considering doing this for something but now I think I'll save myself the trouble, but it seems like an affordable way to spice up your stationary!

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  9. so great! i love the utensils stamp! did you get that at paper source?! it's soo cute!

    such a great tutorial!

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  10. I really enjoy your tutorials like this. I looked it up after your 1st post but there aren't any classes near me. Boooo. These are gorgeous.

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  11. I love that you posted this because I had no idea how to emboss and now i want a heat gun!! PS I love the fork, knife and spoon stamp!! :) Thanks for the easy to follow steps.

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  12. I used to emboss sooo much as a kid and honestly , I forgot about it!! i forgot how pretty and easy it is. I'm def. going to home and pull out my old embossing gun and powder and start thinking of ways to use this!

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  13. Hi Jacin, Laura's mom here. She directed me to your blog so I could see what you've done with embossing. It really looks pretty and adds such a classy touch. Nice job! We're both inspired now!

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  14. Utterly gorgeous! What a lovely handmade touch. This embossing is completely new to me. . . I want to run out, buy all the supplies now, and cover everything I own!

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  15. such a lovely DIY! adds such a beautiful touch to invites and menus and what not!

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