Embossing: Using Paste & Powders on Cards

The one thing most card makers always remember is that feeling of awe the first time they used embossing on their handmade project. Whether it was embossing with powders, an embossing folder, a stylus or paste, it leaves an impression on both the paper & the person!

Earlier this week I teased you with information on the new embossing paste and posted the two cards I’m sharing today.

These cards are loaded with fun techniques. They are pretty easy techniques too!   We’ll focus on the card on the left, for the most part, but I will share how to make that great “hello friend” image for the second card towards the end of the post.

Step 1: Stamp the images in Versamark onto Crumb Cake CS, after using embossing buddy on your paper to keep stray powders away.  Then apply embossing powder (Gold)  and tap off extra.  Use the heat gun to melt powder.

Creating layers of texture with heat embossing powder.

Step 2: With your card front on an easily washable surface (I chose the silicone mat), choose your Decorative Mask and placement.  Then use Washi tape (I sometimes use Frog tape for painting) to temporarily tape mask down to keep it from shifting.  Apply paste with the Palette Knives in an even coat- Spread it like putting butter on toast or frosting on cake. Carefully remove mask immediately after using.

Step 3:  Immediately close up your embossing paste and clean your masks, knives and anything else that came in contact with the embossing paste using a water bath (for later cleaning) or warm sink and non-metal bristle brush (a toothbrush works great!).

Adding layers using decorative masks for embossing paste.

Step 4: If you didn’t take too long to clean your materials, your embossing paste should still have enough damp spots to it that you can add embossing powder (White) & it will cling to some (not all) areas- don’t try to get a perfect covering of it if you want the shading.  Apply, tap off, and heat set- Yes, be aware it will bubble because of the paste.  It adds even more texture.

Adding embossing powder over embossing paste.
Sponging ink over both embossing powder & paste.

Step 5: Using a dauber and Crumb Cake ink, rub in additional color in areas you choose. I recommend also doing the edges of the entire card front.  The areas with Embossing Powder will resist the color, the areas of paste which didn’t take on Embossing Powder will accept some of the ink, but not as heavily as the cardstock does.

Step 6: Since this card front used a lot of different mediums, I found Tear Tape to be the best to adhere it to the card base.  The card base I used is Marina Mist as it matched my Dragonfly Dreams die-cut the best.

Step 7:  I cut the Swirly Scribbles die out in cardstock (color doesn’t matter, it is being covered in embossing powder), and decided to trim parts of it away before embossing.  Cover it in Versamark, add powder, heat- Repeat 3 times for a nice glossy appearance to the Gold swirl. Attach using glue dots for best adhesion.

Adding a glossy look by applying Fine Tip Glue. Creating a gilded look with sporadic embossing powder application.

Step 8: Use watercolor paper, watercolor pencils, and aqua painter to create a washed blue/green background paper which you die cut to get the dragonfly with variations of soft color. The full dragonfly (background) die-cut is in Marina Mist.  Attach using the fine tip glue pen and then cover the entire die with the pen and allow to sit until dry.

Step 9: The dragonfly on the right has added embossing. Apply areas of Versamark (just tap the corner of the pad), Gold embossing powder, and heat to achieve this gilded appearance.

Step 10:  Use your fingers to slightly curl the wings and adhere the dragonfly to the card with glue dots.

Stamping into multiple layers of heated embossing powder.

Card 2 has one additional technique for this “hello friend” emblem.

  • Using the largest Layering Oval die, cover it in Versamark – just smoosh your pad over the cardstock.
  • Add the embossing powder and heat as usual.  Then repeat multiple times (mine has 5 layers).
  • Before the last time you heat, ink whichever Red Rubber (photopolymer might not like the heat- I didn’t want to try and perhaps damage) stamp in Versamark as a release agent.  Set aside.
  • Heat the final layer and immediately stamp into the wet/heated powder before it cools.  It might slide a bit so be careful to stamp straight up & down!
  • You shouldn’t get embossing powder pulling up on your stamp thanks to the Versamark pre-stamp, but do make sure to clean off any residue asap because the heated Versamark can be difficult to get off the rubber later. -Yes, a little more scrubbing will do the trick.

As an extra bonus: Layered embossing powder stamping is a great project for cardstock you don’t like or stamped poorly as it will be covered. Yippee for that!

I hope you liked all these techniques and try one or more of them on a card.  If you copy my card in different colors, I would LOVE to see the result.  I imagine it would be lovely in so many other colors of embossing and/or colors of the dragonfly & card.

Until next time…

-Joanne