Thursday, April 30, 2015

happy birthday to me... and UNTIY!

Hello my wonderful friends!

It's time for another Unity hop!
(and sale!)
This one is kinda, super awesome cuz we're having a party (again!!!)  Which is actually kinda super awesome because my birthday was this week!

I feel like I have been gone FOREVER! This month has been the month of computer problems. One night, out of the blue, my computer freezes. Then it crashes, big time. URGGG!!!

So my fabulously AMAZING dad spent days working on it. (he's my go to tech guy since he programs for a living..) Then, after salvaging what he could, he got it reformatted and going again...but it was problem after problem.... 

Let's just say, I am SUPER glad to be back up and running and spending time with you guys instead of wanting to hit my head against a wall... repeatedly!

So, I have a confession to make...
I've been seeing so many talented people using FOIL in their designs lately. I've seen rolls of BEAUTIFUL colored foil in the stores. I've wanted to try it... but I was intimidated. 

I didn't want to have to buy ANOTHER machine...either a machine specific for foiling, or even a cheap hot laminator. I don't have room for another machine in my studio. I don't have a bunch of money to spend on a new machine... especially if I just want to get my feet wet with a technique to see if I like it. 

So I've always walked away from those pretty sparkling sheets of pure magic. 

Until now. 

I saw someone else (Jennifer McGuire, actually) show how to use embossing powder with the foil, and it got me thinking... Which got me experimenting... Which led to me happily being able to foil without buying a new machine. YAY!

(I will warn you though... While I haven't run into ANY problems foiling something thats been printed on a laser printer, using embossing powder like I'm going to show you is a little less  predictable.  Sometimes it comes out PERFECT, sometimes, not so much. You have to play around a little to get the feel for your iron and how much time is the perfectly right amount.)

Step 1: For the cleanest results, use an anti static powder. Simply rub it across your paper... This will prevent loose embossing powder from sticking where it doesn't belong.

Step 2: Stamp your image with embossing ink. I use VersaMark, but any embossing ink will work.
(the stamp is Strong and Beautiful)

Step 3: Using whatever embossing powder you choose, emboss your image. I used clear just because I didn't want it to show if the foil missed any spots. 

Step 4: Cut a piece of foil large enough to cover your image. Here I'm using Tonertex Foil (simply because I found a really old sample pack in my stash, and so it was easiest to experiment with... however there's multiple brands out there now)

Step 5: Here's where it takes some experimenting.... Instead of a laminating machine for heat, I use my iron. I found that turning the heat about half way was good. You need to keep the heat/pressure on the image long enough to remelt the embossing powder, but not so long that the powder soaks into the card stock. I like to put a sheet of parchment paper over the foil to help protect my iron, but I don't know if that is necessary or not. 

Step 6: This is another important thing I learned. If you remove the foil too soon after heating, it won't work, it will just pull off the still fluid embossing powder. Let it cool. Let the embossing powder harden. THEN carefully pull off the foil. 

TIP: You can also use adhesive sheets with foil... The foiled mat was made by cutting a piece of double sided adhesive to the size desired, then applying the foil to one side. Works beautifully! 

So, if you have been slightly intimidated to dabble in foiling because you don't want to invest in another machine, consider pulling out your iron!

Don't forget---
 Leave a comment on EACH blog in the hop (including the Unity blog) for your chance to win.  The winners will be announced Monday on the Unity blog.