Aug 28, 2012

Distress Ink Tutorial: Intro + Labeling

I have completely fallen in love with my set of Tim Holtz/Ranger Distress Inks!
I waited a long time to make my purchase (which I did from and I was finally able to get all 36 original ink colors.
I mainly wanted the inks to use as a water coloring medium, as my Copic marker collection was running dry... literally.  But, as you probably know, they do so much more!
I've been slowly learning and trying out new techniques and it is so much fun.  Even when the final result isn't exactly what I had in mind, you really can't go wrong with Distress Inks.  :)

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The Ranger/Tim Holtz Distress line is huge and seems to be growing every day!  Check out the {RANGER INK} website for all of the products, tips and projects.
For those new to Distress Inks, the following is taken directly from the Ranger Ink website:
"Tim Holtz Distress Inks are a collection of acid-free, non-toxic, fade resistant, water-based dye inks. They're perfect for the new vintage, stained, aged effect crafters are creating in their altered books, scrapbook pages, cards and paper craft projects. Tim selected the colors and helped develop these inks to produce a realistic, weathered look on paper, photos and decorative fibers. All the colorful Distress Inks afford added versatility when photo tinting and color layering with the original, award winning tones. The 2" x 2" pads are made with a higher raised felt for easier use with direct to paper techniques, Re-inkers available in .5 oz. amber glass bottles with eye drop applicators."
To see the Inks in action, do a simple Google or YouTube search for Distress Inks... there's so much inspiration, you won't be disappointed!
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For my tutorial today, I'm going to show you how I labeled my Distress Ink collection.  Each ink pad comes with the manufacturers top-label, like this:
The sides, however, are plain black.  Since the pads are typically stored stacked, with the lids facing up or down, there's really no way to see which color is which.
This is where the creativity comes in!  I have to be honest... I was just as excited about being able to label and organize my Distress Inks as I was to actually use them.  :)  I did a ton of research online, via Google, YouTube and random blogs, to see how everyone else has labeled their Ink pads.  I came up with a way that worked best for me.
I wanted to be able to see the inked color, but also clearly read the label.
This is how I did it:
1.)  I printed out the names of each color (which you can find HERE) on a sheet of white, self-adhesive mailing labels.  I cut out each name, as close to the print as possible, as the sides of the ink pads are pretty small.
I also cut strips of the plain labels to cover most of one side, from corner to corner.  These strips are approximately 2-1/4 inch x 7/16 inch (5.7cm x 1.1cm).
2.)  I then used the Distress Ink blending tool and a foam pad (one for each color) to cover the plain label fully with the corresponding ink color.
3.)  Once the ink was dry, I carefully peeled the backing off the printed name label and placed it in the center of the inked label.  I then stuck the entire label onto the side of the ink pad.  Do this carefully!  It wont peel up again without ripping, so get it exactly where you want it before pressing it on firmly.
4.)  I followed these steps to complete all 36 labels.  You can see in the background of the photo the unlabeled pads... totally impossible to tell which color is which.
That's all there is to it!  It's fairly time-consuming, but totally worth it.  Wouldn't you agree?  :)
That's it for today!  My next tutorial will show how I keep track of the foam applicators and how I store my labeled inks.
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P.S. I thought it worth mentioning that I have no affiliation with Ranger Ink. I just love this popular product and wanted to share my ideas with everyone else.  :)


Anita said...

I also love my DIs Annie. Thanks for this great tutorial!

Rachel Parys said...

Genius!!! I always have to pull a stack out and go through it, this is super smart! I better get started on this, it's a fab idea!

Denice said...

Congrats on ur new purchase!!!!
I store mine similar but only have about half as many as you. Looking forward to more of your DI tutorials.