Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Embossing Powder Screw-ups

It's Teusday, so I had to watch the Donna Downey Artist Gang video while having my first cup of coffee.  Today's artist was Catherine Cote (who also goes by CeeCee, so I automatically like her). She made some beautiful cards using embossing powder.

I went on a manic search for my embossing powders that I haven't touched in, probably, 3 years.  I couldn't find the black powder, which is what I wanted.  But.....I did find some stamps that I haven't seen in years and some little earrings that I never finished (picture below).

I figured that I would give it a try with some Marcasite embossing powder.  This was the closest thing that I had to black, but it has little specs of many different colors.  I used an embossing stamp pad (never opened) by Hampton Art Stamps. I don't know if the stamp pad had exceeded it's shelf life or if the powder was too old, but as you can see, it didn't work.  I was also so determined to make it work that I burned the page by overheating in areas with the heat gun.

Never one to give up, I tried it again on a piece of Strathmore Bristol Smooth paper.  Catherine used hot-pressed watercolor paper.  She said that it needed to be smooth.  My first attempt was on watercolor paper, but I only had cold-pressed so it had some texture.  I don't have any hot-pressed watercolor paper.  Sometimes you just have to make do with what you have.


So, then I went to the computer and googled "how to use embossing powder".  The woman in one of the videos just used a regular black inkpad instead of an "embossing inkpad".  Aha.  I'll try that,  and...........it worked beautifully.

This time using a different jar of powder (gold).  In this photo, you can see where half of the stamp is embossed.

Next step - the watercolor.  Watercolor scares me every time.

Catherine Cote used Twinkling H2O's.  I don't have them.  They look like a very bright, shiny, watercolor in little jars.  I tried my Sakura watercolors, but I was using a really cheap brush (yeah, let's blame it on that) and everything looked smeary and yuck.

I tried another one, using gouache, which is a type of watercolor.  I didn't add enough water, so it doesn't look very pretty.

On this fish, I used silver embossing powder, over regular black Ranger ink, using one of my favorite fish stamps that I found during my manic embossing powder search.  The powder melted beautifully.

I used a tiny bit off gouache with a lot of water and I think it's getting better.  However, it's definitely still not "card-worthy".

So....bottom line....use hot-pressed water color paper.....use black embossing powder.....use fresh embossing ink or black ink.....don't leave your heatgun too long over one spot.....practice your watercolor technique.....don't give up!

If you would like to see how Catherine Cote made these beautiful cards, click here.

Oh yes.....the forgotten earrings.

Now I just need to go on another manic search for some little, dangling crystals to attach to the bottoms.  One of these days I'm going to be organized.....right, who am I kidding?!?



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