Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Inky Background Tutorial

Hi again - Mary here with a technique tutorial for you that I think you will enjoy. I call it the Inky Background technique, although it might have a different name elsewhere. Here's what you need to create this technique:

1 piece of printer paper - something lightweight, not cardstock
2 ink pads - complementary colors or one light/one dark
spritz bottle with water and a rubber brayer (optional)

Start with the lighter of the two ink pad colors and apply the ink to the paper by dabbing and swiping the ink pad surface directly to the paper. Leave some white spaces along the way.

Your paper will look like this when the 1st step is complete:

Now the fun part. Take this paper and carefully scrunchle it into a ball. (Yes, scrunchle is a word - I just made it up).

Carefully again, unscrunchle and press the paper as flat as you can using your hands. Grab your second ink pad and lightly repeat the process of swiping the ink pad surface over the paper. Be careful not to apply too much ink although there is really no wrong way. The crinkles on the paper will pick up this 2nd color of ink like this:

Now this next step is optional but I like the end results so it's worth the little time it takes. Lightly spritz some water across the surface of the paper and using a clean, dry rubber brayer, roll across the paper, back and forth. This will do 2 things: flatten the paper a little more and blend the inks together a bit. Here is the finished paper:

Set the paper aside to dry before trying to cut it. I take this time to get the rest of my card "parts" ready for assembly. When it's time to put together your card, cut your background from your inked paper in an area that appeals to you the most. This usually winds up being the center of the paper where the best inking occurred. You can also add additional stamped images to the background as I did on my card:

I stamped the tiny snowflake from the Let it Snow set on my inked background paper and then added my color coordinated snowfella from the same set to the card front. The snow mounds were die cut from felt and added to the bottom of the card, extending a little past the edges. As my card is 3 1/2 x 4 3/4 in size, having the snow extend beyond the edges won't cause a problem when I go to put this card in a standard envelope. On the inside is the sentiment "Wishing you snow much fun this holiday season", also from the same stamp set.

I hope you've enjoyed this little technique and give a try yourself sometime. It also works great with autumn colors and silhouette images stamped directly on the background (think trees)....have fun!


  1. Oh Mary - what a interesting and easy way to create a background paper!! This one definately goes in my arsenal of tricks! TFS! xxx Steph

  2. What a fun way to make a background! I'm going to have to try that! Thanks for sharing!!

  3. FUN FUN FUN!! Love this idea Mary!!


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