experimenting with alcohol based inks

I have been wanting to play with the alcohol based inks for some time. These inks are quick drying, and easily adhered to non porous materials, and make a great option for custom coloring metals, glass, and plastics.

For just a few minutes of effort (about 30 minutes all told), I was able to make this bright and summery bracelet, using the colours cranberry, lettuce, and eggplant. The scan above, doesn't give the bright colours justice.

I decided to start with something inexpensive - the reasoning that if I messed it up, I wasn't out too much of an investment. I also love cheap plastic buttons of any kind. I decided to use a package of mixed, white, plastic buttons.

I reused an yogurt lid as my palette, and placed very small puddles of ink, one colour at a time. It's important to use small amounts at a time, because this stuff dries incredibly fast. Small amounts helps prevent wastage.

I then dipped an edge of each button in a colour and strung them on a piece of wire to dry. You can also lay them carefully on a piece of newspaper as well.

One or two wanted to stick together, but were easily pried apart. Since only the edges would show, the stuck together areas didn't bother this project. But if the flat areas were to show, I would have redone them - the colour was patchy where it stuck.

If a nice even colour were needed, I think placing the button on a tooth pick first, then dipping, would be a better approach. Then the tooth pick could be seated in a block of foam while the button dried.

This bracelet was quickly strung using several passes of Fire Line. However, were I to make another one, I would definitely use beading wire and crimps. I also strongly recommend building in a bit of slack in the tension to allow the bracelet some movement and curve. Sometimes you have to make mistakes to learn!

Hope this inspires you to experiment!

1 comment:

Tania said...

It's not like I need another obsession or anything - but those colours are gorgeous. Even better in real life, huh?

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