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Ask the Artist

Our Artist in Residence, Dina Kowal, answers your questions

  • Submit your question to Dina
  • February 3, 2021
    Q: Tiffani asks: "What are some ways to create a marbled background?"

    A: There are lots of different ways to create marbled effects! Check out these tutorials for techniques using a variety of supplies you may already have. In addition, there are marbling paints that create stunning effects - they're floated on water, as in some of the techniques below.
    Alcohol Marker Marbling
    MISTI Marbling
    Watercolor Marble
    Marker Marbling
    Mixative Marbling
    Nail Polish Marbling

    January 27, 2021
    Q: O'Nelda asks: "How do I apply glitter to a stamped image without the glitter coming off?"

    A: I use a sticky embossing powder - the one I have is from Judikins but there are other brands available as well (Ranger, Wow! and Stampin' Up! come to mind). The powder turns into a sticky glue when heated. Heat just until the powder gets shiny, apply whatever flock, foil, glitter, etc. you are using right away, and then reheat the powder to reactivate the adhesive - it's that second heating that really locks down the embellishment.

    January 20, 2021
    Q: Leslie asks: "How do you line up die cut letters or alphabet stickers to adhere them to a card?"

    A: I use a sticky note to help get them lined up correctly, with the sticky side up. The adhesive has a light enough tack that you can make adjustments easily, lining the letters up along the edge of the sticky side. It will hold the letters in place while you add your glue to the back. Once they're stuck to your card, just lift the sticky note away! You can line up the side edge of the note and the cardstock to be sure you're sticking everything down straight. This trick works great for individual letter dies as well.

    January 13, 2021
    Q: Sharon wants to know: "Can I mix all of my white embossing powders together? I would keep detail powders separate but I have about eight different embossing powders and I'd like to have them in one big container."

    A: My concern about mixing them all together would be this: embossing powder loses its reactivity over time (some people would say it has an expiration date). That being so, you wouldn't want to mix older powder with new powder.

    January 6, 2021
    Q: kazeka posted: "I've been having a problem with my cling mounted rubber stamps - since they aren't clear, I can't tell if they are straight, or where they are exactly in relation to other images. I have a MISTI, but when I actually stamp the placement is always off. Is there a way to avoid this?"

    A: I have a piece of acetate that fits in my stamp positioner, as well as a gridded vinyl sheet. Once I get my stamp visually straight, I can lay either clear sheet over my card panel and stamp to see if the positioning is correct. The lines on the gridded sheet are especially helpful for stamping sentiments. If the positioning is a little off, I can either adjust the stamp and do another test print or shift the card base to align with the stamp, keeping the clear sheet lined up in the corner.

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