One of the things that will greatly affect heat embossing is the ink pad.

My #1 recommendation is to ensure the ink pad is “juicy”. Whether you’re using pigment ink, embossing ink, Distress Ink or Versamark, your ink pad needs to be wet. I’m not talking dripping, running off the sides of the pad kind of wet. I’m talking moist to the finger and 1 tap to a stamp will leave a nice amount of ink.

Why? The embossing powder is dry and needs something to stick to until it is heated to bond with the paper. A wet ink pad will enable you to stamp a nice, solid image that will get coated with embossing powder the first time on the paper. It will also help keep that powder there in case you aren’t able to use the heat tool right away.

I personally use Ranger’s Embossing Ink pad for 99% of my heat embossing. I LOVE the cinnamon smell of the ink and it just plain works – ALL the time. With any stamp – detailed, bold, large, small – it’s all good. With any paper, vellum or acetate. With any type of embossing powder – detailed, regular or thick.

I also use Clearsnap’s Top Boss Embossing Ink pads occasionally which yield similar results to the Ranger pad. I find Ranger’s has more consistent results than the Clearsnap one.

Many people use Versamark mostly because it stays wet I think. It seems to have become synonymous with embossing ink, but honestly Versamark breaks down when it’s heated and really shouldn’t be used for heat embossing. It’s a great ink for watermarking and to use with chalks plus a fixative. Versamark will eventually dry, so that’s the reason for using a spray fixative when using chalks.

Questions? Leave a comment and I’ll answer. Thanks!

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4 Responses to Choosing Ink Pads

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