I have finally done it. The pictures are crummy - and I only had time to get one piece done (although I have two others started) - but I can finally explain the new technique. And for those of you who aren't so good with the written directions, there are pictures! ;) I didn't take step-by-step pictures because it's so easy - but if my directions aren't clear, something doesn't make sense, or you just want step-by-step pictures, leave me a comment and I'll be happy to post them. NOW...onto the fun stuff!
This new technique - which I will christen The Royal Ribbon Technique - only requires two items, in addition to whatever medium you're working on (paper, paper mache, chipboard, etc). I have not tried this on glass or plastic so I don't know if it will work on those. All you need is a Clover Mini Iron (or Creative Hot Marks or Textile Tool - both by Walnut Hollow) and a thermal printing ribbon. That's it! (PLEASE NOTE: I HAVE PROVIDED LINKS TO THE ABOVE PRODUCTS IN AN ATTEMPT TO SHOW YOU WHAT THEY ARE IN CASE YOU ARE UNFAMILIAR WIT THEM. THERE MAY BE BETTER/LESS EXPENSIVE ALTERNATIVE PLACES TO PURCHASE THESE THINGS ONLINE AND/OR LOCALLY. PLEASE DO YOUR RESEARCH BEFORE PURCHASING FROM ONE OF THESE RETAILERS - AND REMEMBER, JOANNE'S AND MICHAEL'S BOTH FREQUENTLY OFFER 40% OFF COUPONS. THESE COUPONS ARE "INTERCHANGEABLE" - MEANING YOU CAN USE A JOANNE'S COUPON AT MICHAEL'S AND A MICHAEL'S COUPON AT JOANNE'S.)
You know what a thermal printing ribbon is...
It's the ribbon that is found in barcode printers, etc. It's available in many colors - *if* you look for it. The most common color is black - and unfortunately, I don't have any colored ribbon right now. As soon as it arrives I will repeat this technique and show you how versatile this really is. Also, the thermal printing ribbons are available in wax, wax/resin and resin. It doesn't matter which type you use.
Since thermal ribbon is so delicate (and clingy!), unroll it and cut off a piece. Position it over your project with the dull side down. Using your "iron" on the hottest setting, touch the glossy side for 1-2 seconds. You can use the entire iron surface or use one of the decorative tips that comes with the different ironing tools. You can also use the tip of the iron to write fine lines, letters, etc. Here is one of the ATCs I have only partly finished - and I apologize in advance for the crummy quality.
The background is a lime green and the only "embellishment" done to the card (so far) is the Royal Ribbon Technique. On the right side I used the entire surface of the iron to make petals - and on the left and top I used the tip of the iron to create squiggle lines and dots.
This blue card is also only partly done. The gold is tissue paper I crumpled up and then lightly ironed the thermal ribbon over it. I adhered it to the card with gel medium. The swirl in the upper right corner was done with the tip of the iron, the left corner has an impression of the iron's surface. The black shiny part along the left side is the actual thermal ribbon - on a scrap piece of paper I ironed off portions of the thermal ribbon. Once you iron it, most of the black ink comes off and you're left with a patterned piece of "plastic". I glued this down with gel medium and trimmed the tissue paper and thermal ribbon backing to fit the card dimensions.
And here is the ATC I actually finished. It's bland - but still fun. I began with a white pre-cut ATC card. After painting portions with red and blue watercolors I used the Royal Ribbon Technique to create the black designs you see. I used gel medium to adhere tissue paper with gold stars and the wings you can hardly see. (I'd made the wings with Color Mists on freezer paper.) I cut the picture of the boy out of Rebecca's Highlights magazine, used rub-on letters to spell "FLY" and attached 3 gold star brads. I rimmed the card with gold leafing pen and brushed glossy gel medium over the whole thing. (Don't have any matte.)
The whole piece has a fun, kid-like feel to it - even if it's hard to tell from the picture. I don't know what was wrong with the camera - but it definitely has nothing to do with "operator error". Ha ha ha
So there ya have it...the Royal Ribbon Technique. It's very easy, very fun and very addictive! You never know exactly how the pattern will turn out - even when you have the ribbon flat on the paper and use the iron in the exact same way each time - you'll still get variation. It's fun to wrinkle the ribbon up and see the different images you come up with on both the paper and the ribbon!
I can't wait for my colored ribbons to arrive...I have ordered free samples and they should be here shortly. I will make a few more things and post them so you can check out how different colors react. I think using different colors to do a collage background would be awesome and can't wait to try it!
If you have any questions or need clarification, please leave a comment. :) Thanks for reading - and have a great time experimenting with the Royal Ribbon Technique!! IF YOU DO EXPERIMENT WITH THIS TECHNIQUE, PLEASE POST A LINK BACK TO MY BLOG SO I CAN SEE IT - THANKS! :)
So...now I have to ask...was it worth the wait?