Easy Ink Blending with AECP

Hello! Thanks for stopping by. I’m back with another card for my AECP Classes. My recent class was Easy Ink Blending Techniques.

Ink blending is one of my favorite techniques. I find it very relaxing to play with ink and see what you can create when you start blending various colors together. The results can be quite beautiful.

While ink blending is not difficult, there are some things to consider when creating an ink blended background or focal point for a project.

First is the type of paper you’re blending the ink on. I’ve found that Strathmore 100lb Bristol Smooth cardstock makes ink blending effortless. It’s definitely worth trying out different types of paper though because you can get very different results in your ink blending.

The next thing to consider is inks and colors. If you’re using multiple inks you should consider what they might look like blended together. Are they going to make mud as I refer to it? I always test my ink blending on a scrap piece of paper to see what they will look like once they’re blended. This gives me a good idea of what colors play well together. Color Theory classes can be a great help also. I also keep a color wheel on hand as well so that I can easily refer to complimentary, split complimentary, triad and tetrad color families. Also it’s good to consider the type of inks your blending are they pigment, distress or dye inks. Each type of ink can give a bit of different results and some are easier to blend than others.

Lastly, I consider what I am using to blend the colors. I used to be a blending tool and blending sponge person only but I did make the switch to the brushes. I do still use the ink blending tool and sponges on occasion, but it depends on what effect I’m going for. I find that using the blending brushes I get a much smoother blend. The blending brushes I have were purchased from Amazon and they were about half as much as the branded ones that some craft companies have available (I like to save money where I can so I have more money for my favorite stamps and dies, LOL!). If they look like makeup brushes, it’s because that’s what they are but they work like a charm for ink blending and are easy to clean up.

For my projects today I ended up making two cards because I ink blended two panels and couldn’t decide which I liked better so I made both into cards.

I cut two pieces of Strathmore Bristol Smooth 100 lb. cardstock to about 5 x 6 inches. I like to have some excess cardstock when I’m ink blending. On my first piece I started out blending Altenew’s Lagoon ink at the bottom and mixed it into the lighter ink shade called Volcano Lake. I turned my cardstock around and on the opposite edge of the cardstock I blended Pinkalicious and then added the lighter shade Pink Diamond. I added ink and blended until both sides were smooth and they nearly met leaving just a trace of the Pink Diamond almost blending into Volcano Lake. The colors are very vibrant, but I found the more ink you add to the darker areas at the edge the more vibrant they become as they get darker.

When I ink blend, I also do a bit of a tap off of excess ink before I take it to my paper. I keep a scrap piece of paper handy for tapping off excess ink. This can help prevent the blots of ink that are hard to blend out when they first come in contact with your paper. I always start my blending off the page and blend in circular motion onto the page. I continue to layer in more color to get a darker, more vibrant result.

As you are adding a lot of ink to your project, the ink can stay wet for quite a while an can transfer off onto your fingers. I like to use a Post-it note on the fingers that I’m using to hold my paper in place while I’m ink blending so as not to pick up and potentially transfer ink with my fingers to other parts of my background.

Once I was done, I set the panel aside to allow the inked background to fully dry. You can also heat set the ink if you are impatient.

 For my second background, I used a combination of inks; Ultraviolet, Marigold and Lagoon. I began by blending each of the ink colors from a different edge and then slowly blending and adding in more ink until the entire panel was covered with a gorgeous blend of the three inks. I like how the Lagoon and Marigold blended to give a bit of a brown hue in areas and hints of green in others.

For my cover piece I used one of my favorite dies from Altenew called Doodled Lace Cover Die. This fun floral die cuts an A2 sized piece so it’s perfect for use as a background or in my case a cover over my ink blended backgrounds. The die is artistic in itself so it doesn’t need much else to make it pop!

I decided to play up the inks that I used in my triple color blended background. It reminded me of just a hint of fall so I used a burnt orange mirrored cardstock and cut my Doodled Lace cover using my Gemini Jr. It cuts perfectly and I love all the stitching details on this die as well as the little areas it has for adding gemstone details. I used a Spellbinders Tool-n-one to carefully poke out the die cut without tearing it. The die has a lot of delicate details so it’s best to use a pin or poking tool to release the cardstock from the die. You can also use a piece of wax paper in between the paper and the die and the paper will release really easily that way as well.

I die cut a second piece of Doodle Lace from some purple mirrored cardstock. For this die, I wanted to have more of my ink blended background showing so I carefully cut away a couple of the larger flower images from the Doodle Lace. I love how it can completely change the look of the card by cutting away a bit of the die cut elements. The nice thing is that I can easily use these to embellish the inside of my card panel which I did for this card.

I cut my inked backgrounds down to be A2 size and used 1/8 mm double sided tape to adhere both die cut panels to my inked backgrounds.

For my sentiments, I used the You are Awesome and the Just Saying Hello from the Painted Butterflies stamp set. For the my pink and aqua background, I stamped the sentiment using some embossing ink and heat set some Cactus Flower embossing powder from Hero Arts.

On my orange mirrored card, I stamped the sentiment You are Awesome on a piece of white cardstock and heat set with some Violet embossing powder from Hero Arts. I cut some little fishtails off the piece of cards tock and popped it up on the front of my card with some dimensional foam.

As a finishing touch, I added Swarovski crystals to one card panel and some purple iridescent gems from Pretty Pink Posh to my other panel using a bit of clear glue.

I absolutely loved this ink blending class. Ink blending is so fun and really gets the creative juices flowing. There are so many different ways to incorporate ink blending into your card making from backgrounds such as mine to even using it to create colored flowers or to enhance your colored cardstocks. It can be a focal element or it can act as an embellishment.

I hope you’ve enjoyed today’s cards. I highly recommend the Easy Ink Blending class as its lots of fun and provides some great ideas.

Hope you have a great day!