I am so in love with the flowers on today’s tag! I have shared before how I love adding embossing powder to metal embellishments, especially Tim Holtz’s metal Idea-ology pieces.
Today instead of using my Heat It Craft Tool to melt the embossing powder, I am sharing how to use the Ranger Melting Pot. I was inspired to use the melting and embossing powder and melting pot from the technique shared by the fabulous Jess Lincoln from Vintaj at CHA-S.
Begin by warming up your Melting Pot. I put mine on the highest heat setting. Place a small piece of a craft sheet in your melting pot. The sheet will make it easy to remove your items after they are hot and will make clean up easier. Place your metal pieces (foliage pieces are shown) on the piece of craft sheet. For my craft sheet pieces, I used an older damaged sheet that I had. I bought a new one for inking and used the one I replaced for cutting up.
Use your fingers to pick up a pinch of embossing powder and sprinkle it on to the metal embellishment. Picking up a pinch of powder at a time will help you control how much powder you apply. You can use any type of embossing powder. In this set of flowers and leaves I used Distress Embossing Powders.
After I sprinkle the powder on, I allow the pieces to sit and melt. I like to put the lid back on my pot to keep the heat in. You don’t have to, but I felt like it helped it melt a bit faster. Distress Embossing Powder will still look very textured when it is melted. I really like the texture it creates. You will notice here that I didn’t not cover the pieces completely with the powder. I knew I would be adding layers and that they would get covered by the end of the process. I also like the finished pieces to look a bit vintage and chippy which is accomplished by leaving some bare metal.
After the first layer of powder is melted, you can add additional color if you would like. I like adding a second color to flowers and a darker green to leaves.
Remember, the Melting Pot gets very hot as do the metal embellishments. Resist the temptation to move things around with your fingers. You really do not want melted sticky embossing powder on your skin. . . trust me. Keep a pair of long handled tweezers handy to move your sheet and pieces around. If you notice pieces are melting unevenly, simply rotate the sheet. My Melting Pot in these photos gets much hotter in the deep end so I found that I needed to rotate my sheet after a minute or so to even out the melting.
You could at this point remove the pieces and let them cool. With the Distress Embossing Powder finish alone, they will have a bumpy matte finish. They look great like that, but I wanted shine, so I added a clear coat. The clear coat will also fill in and smooth the roughness finish of the Distress Embossing Powder. If you want a smooth finish, you will want to add a top coat.
For my clear coat, I used white Enamelware Embossing Powder to the pieces on the left and clear embossing powder to the pieces on the right. This was the first time that I have used the enamelware powder and am totally in love with it! It leaves a white finish that is clear and glossy with specks of white in it. The pieces with the clear powder are very glassy looking. Both are amazing looking!
To remove your sheet from the pot, use two tweezers (or needle nose pliers) to pick up the sheet and lift it out of the pot. If you are using tools with metal tips, be careful to not scratch up your pot’s nonstick interior.
Set the sheet on your work surface and allow it to cool. Remember the metal pieces are hot to allow them to cool before picking them up.
I wanted to also show you how the pieces would look by using a regular embossing powder. In this example I used Ranger’s Adirondack Embossing Powder (Butterscotch and Lettuce). I also wanted to share what would happen if you used a spoon to sprinkle on your powder. If you have long fingernails the pinching method might work as well for you so you might want to use a spoon.
For me, using a spoon is much harder to control the amount of powder applied to the embellishment. These pieces ended up with a heavy first coat.
For a second coat, I decided to try a specialty powder instead of a second color. I sprinkled on Ancient Gold Embossing Powder in Enchanted Gold. I love this powder! It melts like butter and leaves the prettiest gold sparkle. The photos of the finished pieces really don’t show it well, but in person, there is a gorgeous gold glimmer to the pieces it is on.
To finish off this set, I sprinkled on a small amount of the enamelware and a heavy coat of clear embossing powder.
As before, lift the sheet out of the pot and allow the pieces to cool before handling them.
After cooling, the embellishment and any excess powder around it may be stuck together. They pieces can be cleaned up very easily.
First, break off the excess pieces. They snap off very easily.
Next place a clean piece of craft sheet in your pot. . .
and lay the pieces back on the sheet to re-melt. If you get a lot of pooling of melted powder under the pieces simply scoot the pieces around on the sheet with your tweezers to get them out of the puddle. If after cooling the holes for the brads are covered, use a craft pick or round metal file to clear the hole.
Keep in mind, you don’t have to stop at flowers! You can apply this treatment to any of the Idea-ology pieces. I especially love using the Ornate Plates. On this plate I combined Broken China, Shabby Shutters, and Antique Linen Distress Embossing Powders with the Enamelware Powder. I think the finished piece looks like weathered vedgris metal. If you want a rough texture with the verdigris color, leave off the top coat of enamelware or clear powder.
I should mention, that if you don’t have a Melting Pot, you could still achieve this look by laying your embellishments on a craft sheet and heating them with a heat tool. The advantage of the Melting Pot for this because is that it is faster since I can do multiple pieces at a time and that I don’t have to sit and hold the heat tool. I can do other things while the melting happens.
Finally, you can’t have fancy colored flowers and embellishments with out coordinated brads. Making matching brades is super easy! Simply hold a brad with a pair of tweezers and heat the tip until it is hot.
Dip the hot tip directly into your jar of embossing powder.
The hot tip of the brad will pick up powder.
Heat the tip of the brad again until the powder melts. If you like the texture and coverage, allow the brad to cool. If you want more color, dip the brad in powder again while it is still hot.
If you would like a clear coat, you can heat the tip again and dip it into your clear or enamelware powder.
Heat the brad again to melt the powder. Once it is melted, allow the brad to cool on your craft sheet.
I used my assorted colored pieces to embellish a tag. They would also look amazing on a book cover or home decor piece or even as jewelry pieces.
Seriously, these make me swoon. The remind me so much of vintage enamelware jewelry.
You can see how the bits of exposed metal add to that vintage chippy look.
This set really demonstrates the white speckles in the Enamelware Powder.
I wish you could see in this piece in person! The gold is is so pretty!
Whew! This tutorial has been a long one! I didn’t want to close it out though without mentioning the tag, just in case someone wanted to duplicate the look of it. I began with a plain manila tag. I added swipes of Peeled Paint and Picket Fence Distress Stain in vertical swipes. Next, I used Peeled Paint Distress Ink to stamp my image onto the tag. I added Vintage Photo Distress Ink the edges of the tag and then misted the surface with Biscotti Perfect Pearls Mist. I blotted away the excess and then dried the tag with my heat tool. The final step was to apply a coat of Clear Rock Candy Distress Crackle Paint over the entire tag. Once the tag was dry I added my embellishments.