Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Shaving Cream Embossing Part 2 (with tutorial)

Last night I spent a bit more time in the stamp room experimenting with the shaving cream embossing technique and I think I figured it out. Just to be clear, this isn't embossing card stock after it has been colored with dyed shaving cream. Rather, it's a technique where the shaving cream dyed with reinkers is pressed into the crevices of an embossing folder before the folder is run through the big shot with white card stock in it. The goal is to get the color only on the parts of the card stock that are raised/embossed.

Unfortunately, I don't think this technique will ever turn out as sharp and marbled as the shaving cream stenciling technique does, but that's OK. A little imperfection is what stamping is all about. What this technique lacks in sharpness it makes up in letting you use very little shaving cream and reinker with it (a dallop of shaving cream with a drop or two will do - I explain this in the process I used with the flames folder, below) and you can also utilize this techniques with the messy shaving cream you have left over after you create some backgrounds using other shaving cream techniques (as long as you still like the colors, of course).

The background for the dreamcatcher card, above, was my 5th or 6th attempt with this technique, and it gave me a really nice clean impression. I hope it's clear from the picture that the color is only applied to the raised (embossed) portion of the card stock, leaving the rest mostly white (again, this technique will never give precise, crisp and sharp results, but this background got close).  There's not as much color variation in this background because by the time I did it the colors had pretty much all blended together, but I think it still came out nice.

The best wishes card has more color variation, but the lower left hand corner of the embossed background was quite messy, barely any white left at all. This was one of my first tries at cleaning off the excess shaving cream, and I obviously did not do a great job in that corner.

I'm including a step by step tutorial with pictures. I know the pictures aren't great, but hopefully they're good enough to give you an idea of what needs to be done.

Step1: spray shaving cream onto a plate (I used my Stampin' Up! small powder pal tray and drop in two or more colors of reinkers. I used way too many drops here of almost amethyst and soft sky. Use toothpick or another similar instrument to marble the colors together. I "muddied" mine too much, because I wanted to avoid white spots in the folder. Unfortunately, that didn't work as well as I wanted it to.

Step 2: use an old credit card, gift card or something similar to pick up the dyed shaving cream. You need something sturdy with a hard enough edge to drag along the embossing folder.

Steps 3 and 4: drag credit card along the embossing folder so that the dyed shaving cream settles in the crevices of the folder. Do this in several passed until all crevices are full of shaving cream. Make sure the shaving cream is in the parts of the folder that you want to see raised in your background. On some folders this takes a bit of consideration. Also, try to make sure the shaving cream in the crevices is dyed. White shaving cream in the crevices (like you see on the sides of the embossing folder in these pictures) means no color on the embossed design.

Step 5: wipe all dyed shaving cream off the credit card with a tissue (or rinse it off in a  sink and dry). Wrap a tissue around the once again clean and dry edge of the credit card and drag it along the embossing folder to wipe off excess shaving cream. This is to make sure the excess doesn't spill into the flat spaces as the folder is squeezed together by the Big Shot. You may need to use several tissues to complete this step, as a clean tissue edge is critical every time. It's best to hold the card almost perpendicular to the embossing folder as you do this.

Step 6: this is what your folder should look like when you're done with step 5. You can use a tissue to clear off any stray shaving cream off the edges. Place a piece of white card stock in your folder and close it, then run it thought your big shot as you normally would.

As you can see in these pictures, the almost amethyst/soft sky combination did not yield great results because despite all the mixing I still had a lot of white shaving cream on the edges of the folder. Also, the soft colors resulted in minimal contrast against the white card stock.

My next experiment involved using the three shades of green reinkers: gumball green, green galore and glorious green. My initial tries with this combination were sort of a disaster, so I won't show them here. After a while, though, the colors all bizarrely mixed together into this seafoam green color, which I actually kind of liked. I added just a drop or two of the amethyst reinker and this combination finally started yielding results I liked.

This next picture shows the folder and the after results with the background that I used on the best wishes card. Obviously it came out much better. The color variations really show in this one. And isn't this Tropical Paisley embossing folder from Sizzix fantastic? I just love it.

After I was done with the seafoam green, I experimented with yo yo yellow, only orange and real red and a Darrice flames embossing folder. You can see the results in the picture showing my other samples. for this folder I sprayed three small spots of shaving cream and added just a couple of drops of reinker to each, then mixed them to give me three solid colors. I applied the dyed shaving cream one color at a time, filling in only a portion of the folder with each color. To keep the colors from muddying too much, while applying the second and third colors I dragged the credit card away from the "border" where two colors touched instead of towards it. The colors at the border blended as I cleaned off the excess shaving cream  in step 5.

The difficulty with this flames folder was the large areas that were going to be embossed, which made it difficult to clean off the excess shaving cream without lifting it out of the crevices. The final result wasn't perfect, but I still like it and  I'm sure I'll be using it on a future card. The same is true for the other samples seen in this picture (except, of course, for the one I already used on the dreamcatcher card.)

While all the above makes sense to me, I know some of you may have questions. Feel free to leave those in the comments and I'll answer as best as I can. Thanks for reading!

Recipes (all products Stampin' Up! Unless otherwise indicated)

Dreamcather card:

Paper: whisper white, wisteria wonder, vintage violet
Ink: wisteria wonder, Color Splash Recollections Ombre Inkpad (only seafoam green color used), reinkers in green galore, gable green, glorious green and almost amethyst
Stamps: Dreamcather from Color Splash by Recollections; Feathers by Inkadinkado
Accessories: Lacy Brocade embossing folder, stampin' sponge.

Best Wishes Card:

Paper: whisper white, wisteria wonder
Ink: Color Splash Recollections Ombre Inkpad (only seafoam green color used), reinkers in green galore, gable green, glorious green and almost amethyst
Stamps: Oval All
Accessories: Tropical Paisley embossing folder by Sizzix

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