Yesterday, I took pictures to create a tutorial to show you how easy this is.
First off, all cardstocks are going to turn SOME kind of color when you add bleach to it. You should do a small swatch test on your cardstock when designing a card to make sure that the colors your cardstock turn will work well together for a finished project.
Or......if you're like me, you can just experiment and hope it turns out to be something cool in the end. ;)
For this card here, I chose my colors and liked the way they looked together before I put bleach to them. I hadn't yet bleached any of these colors out before, so I took the chance that they would still work together. I really like how the finished product turned out.
The colors that I started with are the new Bayou Blue and Wild Wasabi, along with Pumpkin Pie. The only places on the cardstock that you can that still retained these original colors is where the images were stamped. At first I wasn't sure about the colors when I was doing each of the cardstocks, but when I put them all together, I thought they looked pretty cool. I wasn't sure if I was gonna love or hate it, but wow! I love it!
So........what you'll need for this technique is:
* stamps (I used the Doodle This set and the Wonderful Words set)
* colored cardstock
* Versmark ink
* clear embossing powder
* embossing gun
* wide flat paint brush
* bleach (NOT the bleach gel, but straight bleach)
* small paper cup (Dixie cups work well)
Stamp your image on your cardstock with Versamark ink.
I stamped the long doodle stamp on the Bayou Blue cardbase, the large flower on the Pumpkin Pie cardstock and the "friends" image on the Wild Wasabi cardstock.
I did all my stamping at once for this project and then went to the next step.
The Versamark ink is sticky, but it will soak into your cardstock if you let it sit too long and then it won't hold the embossing powder. I worked pretty quick so I didn't have to worry about that with this card.
Step 2:Sprinkle clear embossing powder on the images, shake off the excess and pour it back into the container.
Heat the images with your heat gun until the images turn to a shiny liquid and rise. Let the images cool.
Pour some bleach into a small cup. I like to use the little Dixie cups that you use in the bathroom because they're small and I throw them into the recycle bin after use.
Use a wide flat paint brush to pick up a generous amount of bleach from the cup.
Apply a generous amount of bleach directly to the cardstock in small areas. Pick up some more bleach and apply again. Keep doing this until you have all of the cardstock covered.
The key to doing the bleach wash is to keep dipping into the bleach and keep applying. Bleach burns off quickly, so you'll find that if you try to use the same "dip" from the cup to cover a large area after more than 5 or 6 seconds, it won't have the same strength as it would if you applied it directly from the cup.
Here's a view of the finished "bleach washed" cardstock. Some of my bleach "pooled" in areas and those spots bleached out even lighter than the others. Because the stamped images were sealed with clear embossing powder, the original color of the cardstock was retained and pops through the bleached areas around it.
If you want some of the areas to bleach out a little lighter, you can also dry it with your embossing gun. If you want, you can even go over some areas with a little more bleach after the first application has dried and then dry it with an embossing gun. You'll get even more of a contrast.
You can see here on the close-up of the greeting that I applied a little more bleach to the cardstock and dried it with the embossing gun to create some more contrast and visual interest.
When I adhered the bleached pieces to another piece of cardstock (to have them matted), I realized that they really didn't look quite right because the color was just so bold. So, I picked up some bleach with my paint brush, but I knocked as much off as I could and then swiped it across the outside edges of the cardstock (Wild Wasabi was what I used for the mat behind the flower and Pumpkin Pie was what I used for the mat behind the greeting). By doing this, I only touched random areas of the cardstock, so some of the color remained, but some of it was bleached out. This brought in some of the color from the embossed images, but also some of the bleached look from the embossed pieces.
Here's a quick shot, again, of the finished card (so that you don't have to scroll all the way back up again.
I added a piece of black gingham ribbon around the greeting in a double knot as the finishing touch. It was a nice bold touch to give a bit of contrast to the bleach wash.
And here are the links to the other "bleach wash" cards I created:
Hope you all enjoyed this and learned something new. It's a lot of fun to experiment with different colors and see how they all mix and match.
Let me know if you have any questions about it.
Have a lovely weekend!