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How do I emboss?

It’s easier than you think!

Heat embossing gives a flat stamped image a raised effect, with the help of powder and heat. Although it may seem difficult, it’s actually quite easy to do. All you need are a few supplies! Here’s how to do it!

  1. Choose your ink and embossing powder colors. Pigment inks (like Brilliance ink) or VersaMark ink work well for embossing because they stay wet longer. Dye-based, chalk, and StazOn inks do not work well for embossing. When choosing your embossing powder, keep in mind that the finished image will take on the color of the powder. You have two options:

    -Option 1: Stamp with a colored ink and use a clear embossing powder. Because the powder is clear, the ink color below will show through.

    -Option 2: Stamp with a clear ink (like VersaMark) and use a colored embossing powder.

    We recommend using a colored ink and clear embossing powder, simply because there are more colors of ink available than there are colors of embossing powders.

2. Ink your stamp and stamp the image on paper.

  1. While the image is still wet, generously sprinkle embossing powder over the image, covering it completely. Don’t worry about pouring too much—the excess powder is reusable.

  2. Lift the paper up and tap the edges on top of your work surface to shake off any excess powder. You will be left with only the stamped image, covered in powder.

  3. Using a heat gun (available at Archiver’s), gently heat the image. Hold the heat gun 6-8 inches away from the paper and move it gently from side to side. Holding the gun too close to the paper, or keeping it in only one spot, can burn the paper.

  4. The powder will melt and the image will rise. When the entire image is embossed, turn the heat gun off.

  5. Let the image cool for a few seconds before handling it.

  6. Pour the leftover embossing powder back into its jar.

Helpful hints:

  • There are two types of embossing powder—regular and superfine. Superfine powders should be used when the stamped image includes lots of tiny details.

  • A Tidy Tray is great for embossing. Place your project over the tray, sprinkle the powder, and tap off the excess—all of the powder stays inside the tray’s walls. When you’re finished, tip the tray up and pour the excess powder back into its jar with the use of the built-in spout. Less mess for you!

  • You can emboss on some specialty papers, like vellum. However, you need to hold the gun further away from the paper to avoid burning. You may need to heat the image longer because of the increased distance between the heat gun and the paper.