Saturday, 4 December 2010

Tutorial: Alcohol Inked tags ... without the alcohol inks.

Hi. So you've come back to see the technique was I was teasing you about in my post yesterday have you? Good,good ... here goes ...

The softly blended background to the Mica tile collage from yesterday:

Sparrows - collaged mica tile

... and also the background on this acetate tag are both made by sandwiching the same material in between two transparent layers:

And that material? Well, believe it or not that material is inky used kitchen roll!

I first discovered the usefulness of a roll of kitchen paper when spray-inking when I attended Dina Wakley's Art Journaling workshops at Art from the Heart.

She demonstrated how, after spraying, if you gently roll the errrm 'roll' across the area you've just sprayed it removes a lot of the wetness that can crinkle your pages and slow down your layering process. Soon I started to see how beneficial this was but also ... how this often led to interesting colours and designs being imprinted on the kitchen roll, especially after you've rolled it across a stencil or mask before lifting it from the page:

And as I admitted in this post in August, about my Art Journaling workshop experience, Iwas so enamoured with this particular sheet of paper:

I saved it from the rubbish bin and took it home with me to make merry with another day.

And now that day has come!

Here as poomised is the tutorial so you too can make use of your used inky kitchen and, let's not be coy about it, toilet paper too!

Turning inky kitchen roll /toilet paper into alchol ink-esque tags

1. Don't worry if you don't have Mica tiles. While Iused them on my 1st attempt at this technique - the sparrow collage above - after that I've simply used scraps of acetate:

And, if you don't even have any plastic packaging handy ... just wait a few weeks as there's bound to some in amongst your Christmas presents!

2. Whatever type of transparent material you end up using, cut two pieces to the same size before you begin. Next:

I used a gel medium in this photo but have also used Glossy Accents and Anita's 3D Gloss. As long as the glue is one that dries clear it should be OK.
3. Select the specific section of inked-up paper you want to use. It's proabably best if the paper is dry for this part - to prevent tearing before you get it in place: 4. Smooth out the paper as flat as you can. Then:

You only need enough to cover the paper. Any excess will squeeze out the sides at a later stage!
6. Select any images and/or text you want on your tag:
7. Once you're happy with their position:
This will take a little gently wiggling and sliding about but once you've got the sides all lined up, press down on the tag to clear any air bubbles. Have a damp cloth / wet wipe on hand to remove the excess gloss which will escape from the sides.

I added some metal tape to one side for a stained-glass type feel, before punching a hole using my Crop-a-Dile.
It's in this sort of light that the similarity between this technique and that of using alcohol-inks comes through I think.

Plus, for someone who doesn't really like getting her fingers stained by alcohol inks ... and who doesn't actually own any anyway ... I think it's a pretty attractive alternative!

You can either leave your tag like that or ...

9. Glue a few embellishments to it:

Select some co-ordinating ribbon and tie on a charm using raffia: And finally ...

10. Add it to a gift for someone special:

Oh, OK then, yes, you can keep it for yourself if you like your finished result that much!

So, what do you reckon? Will you think twice before throwing that sheet of inky paper out now?

For me, it's an exciting new discovery and one which I already have plans for ...

I think it would make the basis for some beautiful unique jewellery. Something based on the shape of the anklet I made in this earlier tutorial
but using a thin strip of kitchen-rolled acetate, rather than muslin, and with a hole punched in either end with a ribbon tie through each! And then there's earrings ... and pendants ... and ....

And I'll stop there for one night!

I'd love to know what you think. I know not everyone likes the idea of saving scraps let alone re-using kitchen-roll ...

... but it is very lovely kitchen roll ... wouldn't you say?



  1. When my daughter was a senior in high school she went through a phase of writting on windows with glass chalk. No window was safe. One day she went around cleaning all the windows and she was enamored with her paper towel when she was done. She laid it out to dry then framed it behind glass. It is very pretty. Thanks for sharing, ms.cheryl

  2. Oh Miss Julie. This is absolutely awesome. I'd been thinking about trying to use my inky rags for something, but this looks fantastic. You're such a star! x

  3. Lovely idea, Julie! I loved Dina's kitchen roll tip too, and am going to try this with some thin sheets of mica - if I can find them in this chaos! Lovely stuff ...

  4. Lovely technique, thanks for sharing.


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