Wednesday, March 17, 2010

How To Wednesday! Reinker Float Background Technique

Good Morning Friends!

I have been playing with the reinker float technique for the last few weeks. I had an embossing class at my house and it was one of the techniques we covered.

I know that Crystal French from Denver came up with this idea. I heard about it from Sandi Maciver after she attended the the Stampin' Up! Seattle Regional Seminar. There it was demo'd by Connie Ingram. In other words, this is not my original idea. However... I never really "got" the directions for it, so my spin might be a little different from the original. I couldn't find a tutorial online for it anywhere to point people to, so here we go.

I originally saw this technique done with the large rose from The Manhattan flower Stamp set, but I think it works with any LINE ART type image, and my favorite to use with it is Embrace Life.

The Number ONE thing that you should absolutely have is shimmer white cardstock... This cardstock lets the water float on top instead of absorbing it... So, if you don't want to be frustrated... Get yourself some shimmer ~ or cardstock with that quality. How do I know?? Tried it.. :)

If you've never done embossing, there's a tutorial for it on the stampin up customer website here.

My tutorial has a few parts so hopefully I won't lose anybody.. :) First, the measurements to make your life easier if you're looking to reproduce this card.

Base: 11 x 4 1/4", scored and folded in half at 5 1/2" ~Rich Razzleberry
2nd: Layer: 5 3/8" x 4 1/8" ~ Bordering Blue
3rd Layer:5 1/4" x 4" ~ Whisper White
4th Layer: 4 x 3 1/4" ~ Rich Razzleberry
5th Layer:4 x 2 5/8" ~ Bordering Blue
6th Layer: 4 x 2 1/2" ~ Shimmer White

Next ~ What you will need to start
Your cut layer of Shimmer white
A pretty line art image that can overlap nicely
white embossing powder
heat tool
dry Paintbrush
Aqua painters, or a wet paint brush
Some type of plastic to put the ink on
a buddy and a pal..
So what's a buddy... Well you call a friend for your Pal.. but I use my powder pal tray.. This is much more fun with a friend, so call someone and use paper to catch your powder.

A buddy is a small rosin type bag, that helps you remove the static and imperfections from your fingers and the paper. So first ~ rub your fingers with the buddy then your paper and it will help the embossing powder not stick to you or unwanted areas of your project.

Next, using versamark ink, stamp a random pattern with your line art stamp. I overlapped mine to make the cool background. I couldn't really get a good photo for the versamark, so skipped that part.

But next I poured my embossing powder on top and flicked the back of my paper to remove any excess.

At this point ~ no matter what I'm embossing, I take a small paint brush and clean up any areas that have flecks of embossing powder where it's not supposed to be. By doing this, my embossing always looks clean and sharp.

Heat your powder and watch it melt. Make sure you embossed the whole thing, it should look shiny. Don't overheat or you'll scorch your cardstock.. oh and ummm watch your fingers.

Next I filled my glass dish with water, and used an aqua painter to pick up my ink droplets. Here I used rich razzleberry and bordering blue.
Notice I used an old dimensionals paper to drop my ink onto! Reuse it all! When it's done, it gets thrown out anyway.

Next I sprayed the BACK of my paper with water... Why did I do that??

Well ~ here's a dorky art thing that I learned in college... Whenever you do something to paper that makes it warp. (heat, water, etc.) do the same thing to the back and it wont roll up on you. By wetting the back first, I wont have curling cardstock.

After wetting the back, I turn my image over and sit it in a plate (hi Eeyore!) Then, really soak the top to make puddles of water. Note ** the embossed areas will keep the puddles somewhat separate, but it's fun to watch the reinker fly into other sections like a little flood.

So here, I'm showing the bordering blue being dropped onto my embossed shimmer. Isn't that fun??

After I was done with the blue, I painted more with the razzleberry and made a wonderful mess! Looky here mom!

I managed to get the paper off the plate without spilling my pools of ink. I set it under my room heater for about 20 minutes, You need to just walk away and let it dry. However, if you get really excited and can't wait, you could use your heat gun. :)

And here she is! This is my reinker float tutorial.. I hope this gets your creative "juices" flowing... (Oh I'm a geek).

I have two more examples online here and here. I hope you enjoyed my silly little tutorial and that it made you smile. :)

Happy Wednesday!

Selene Kempton


  1. I am SO going to try this out this weekend! exciting :-)

  2. Thanks for the refresher on this technique...your color combo is STUNNING! Just the inspiration I needed for some lilies I was trying to color :-).

  3. Thank you for this very clear tutorial! I appreciate it :-)

  4. Fabulous job on this tutorial Selene! You rock gf!

  5. Hi,
    If you want to see a video tutorial about this method you can visit Patty Bennet's Blog. I think you did a wonderful job and I think your card is gorgeous!

    Susie Nwvwa-Sousa

  6. Gotta try this, this looks awesome!

  7. Gorgeous and a great tutorial! :) Thanks for blessing my day.

  8. That is the mostest wonderfulest tutorial I have ever read. Thanks for the fun and the technique. Sounds like a good CASE project for me. You are not a geek.

  9. Great Tutorial, I've done a few of these and found that it also works on glossy cardstock. I will have to give it another try using other sets. Thanks for the reminder. Hugs Cindy

  10. This is beautiful, Selene! Great job....

  11. Beautiful, Selene! And thanks for the art school tip about wetting both sides of the paper!

  12. Just beautiful - and wonderful instructions!

  13. Thanks for the tutorial! I can't wait to give this a try.
    Your card is very beautiful too!

  14. this is amazing! so beautiful! thanks for sharing the tutorial.

  15. Yes, I enjoyed your tutorial, and Yes, it made me smile! Beautiful card!

  16. Beautiful job, I will have to try this. TFS

  17. Great job!! I love it.

  18. Wonderful Tutorial, I love learning new things. Your card is gorgeous and thanks for the tip on spraying the back of paper. Where do you find shimmer cardstock?

  19. This is just absolutely gorgeous. I love the colors you used. Fabulous card!!!

  20. Stunning card, thanks for the tutorial and the humour!

  21. I just saw this card on Pinterest. Thanks for the tutorial! Beautiful card.

  22. Just saw this on Pinterest, Absolutely beautiful! Great tutorial too, thanks for sharing.

  23. What a beautiful combination of color with the white line embossing. I have never heard of this "floating ink"technique, but you explained it thoroughly plus giving us the tip about spraying the back too. Great tutorial.. Thanks for sharing!