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This page was updated on 8 January 2007
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Tips and Techniques
from the Krafty Lady Design Team
& friends of the DT

Kristine's Krazy Glass Technique
aka Caught in Crystal or Acetate Technique
Click for larger version in a new window

This is easy, messy but the results can be very, very, GLAMOROUS indeed!
I was first shown this technique by the original creator - Mary Jo McGraw during a 3 day seminar at Judi-Kins. Even though the technique is simple, it lends itself to variations, such as the types of colours used (inks or paints), the number of colours used (from 1 or 2, to multi colours), the way in which you swoosh the colours together (blobs, or swirls, or waves, or dots etc etc), with or without glitter, even how much you crinkle the tissue and then pat it down flat will affect the result. So my suggestion is try it out first, then go crazy!!!

Materials:

Acetate (aka overhead transparency film that is suitable for laser/photocopiers ie heat resistant IF you want to emboss or heat set it, otherwise other OHF is fine)
Ink pad and stampsClick for larger version in a new window
Colours - you can use either re-inkers for stamp pads, or other ink like drawing ink or fabric dye ink, or acrylic paints, or folk art paints, or Lumieres paints, or whatever! Inks will give a thinner more translucent effect, paints will give a thicker more opaque look (tho' the paints can be thinned down first with water)
Tissue paper - white is probably best, so take a sheet that is slightly bigger than the piece of acetate you wish to cover, and crumple it up really tightly so it is very rumpled, then smooth it out a bit again so it is still wrinkled but back in shape as a sheet of paper
Glitter or confetti (optional)

Click for larger version in a new windowGlue - usually this technique calls for Judikins Diamond Glaze, but Crystal Glaze, Plaid Dimensional Magic or similar glue/sealant would be suitable. You can also use floor polish which is much cheaper - the one recommended in Australia is Pascoe's Long Life Self Shining Polish (in USA it is called Future Floor Polish or FFF) - warning: this is a runny milky liquid so don't just pour it out of the bottle, put a little into a spritzer/mister bottle for easier less messy application! DG is magic but it does start to 'set' quite quickly which means you have to work fast; however the floor polish doesn't dry as quickly allowing you to work with your colours much longer, and it dries clear and is much cheaper so it has become my top recommendation!

Method:

You can decide to either cut out a small piece of the acetate, suitable to use as a card front and slightly bigger than the image you want to use, OR use the whole A4 sheet and cut it up later into the size you want (I do a whole A4 sheet to save time, but for your first effort you might want to try a smaller piece until you get the hang of it.)

Again you have 2 options - either to stamp the image now, or do the background first then stamp the image when it has all dried. If you want to do the background first and stamp later, skip this step. If you want to do the image now - stamp your design on the front of the acetate with ink: either (1) a permanent ink that will dry on glossy surfaces eg Brillance or Ancient Page black (this will take a few hours to dry by itself but you can heat set it with the heat tool, and it only takes a few seconds) or Stazon; OR (2) use a pigment ink and then emboss with clear/or black EP to 'set' the ink (as it will never dry on the glossy film by itself.) Click for larger version in a new window

Wait till it's dry, then place it face down (ink side down) onto a piece of wax/baking or scrap paper, and tape it down to the paper (this is mainly to stop it moving around). NB If you are using the floor polish, since this is so runny it might be best to run tape all around the edges of the film, sealing it temporarily to the paper so the liquid doesn't seep in underneath and ruin the stamped side (masking tape is good.)

If you have stamped an image first, and wish to colour/highlight any particular parts, this is the time to do it. I prefer to lightly sponge some colour, allowing some see-through for the later background stuff to show through. This step is optional, as you will get wonderful serendipitous results using random background colours.


If using floor polish put it in a spray bottle & spray generously over the whole sheet/piece; or decant into a small container and spoon it out or dab it on with a sponge. Or if using Dimensional/Diamond Glaze etc, dob a few 1 cents blobs around. You may need to experiment with the amount used, I tend to be very generous with it!

Click for larger version in a new window
Choose some colours (inks or paints) that look good together - eg purple, pink, aqua, gold - you can use any number of colours, or only 2 if you want, like red and black, or gold and green, for a dramatic look.
Add some blobs of colour either right on or very close to the blobs of glue-y/glaze stuff, as the 2 mediums have to be mixed together slightly.
Kind of spread it around with either your fingers or a cheap foam brush (I find fingers better.)

You need to schmoosh the colours and glue/glaze together but not too much as you don't want the colours to get too muddy - just go easy, and add more colour/ink and glue/glaze if necessary. If you are using your fingers you can create different effects with the motion you use - blobs, swirls, waves, streaks, etc. The idea is to fill in the sheet with colour, but leaving little gaps so the glitter and tissue will show through. Spread the colour right to the edge of the sheet so you get the maximum use out of your acetate.

Sprinkle some glitter over it, wherever you like (it looks great sprinkled in the gaps between the colours.)
Lay the crumpled sheet of tissue paper over the top of everything and pat it down so that the gluey/painty mixture is soaked up into the tissue, but make sure the tissue maintains the crumbled look, this is part of the effect.

Try and pat down air bubbles, but if you find you have bubbles or bits of the tissue paper are still dry-looking, add a bit more glue/glaze and pat it into the tissue. In fact another light coat of the glue/glaze is not a bad thing to do to make sure everything is going to stay 'stuck'. Another option with the tissue paper is to leave it very crumpled and don't pat it down completely flat, this will give a more textured effect.

Now leave it to dry before cutting or stamping onto - this is very very difficult to do, the hardest part of the whole process - WAIT! I hate waiting .. When you turn it over (removing the tape that is sealing it to the scrap paper) you will be amazed at how gorgeous it looks now! Trim the excess tissue paper from the edges. If you find the edges have stuck to the scrap paper on the shiny front side, try removing these marks with some gentle eucalyptus or tea tree oil, or even a baby wipe.
Click for larger version in a new window
Some Hints:

Have all your materials at the ready, as you need to move quickly once the glue/glaze has gone down - DG tends to start solidifying quickly, but you have more time to linger if you use the floor polish.

As I mentioned above, some people cut the piece of acetate at the beginning of the process into approximately the size they want for a card. I prefer to use the whole A4 size sheet of acetate and do it all at once. If you want to do a particular design, or multiples of them, on the A4 acetate sheet, then draw a grid on the scrap paper first so you know where to lay your stamped images, and when you turn it over, put the acetate back over the grid so you know where you want any particular colour to go.

If you are stamping first, and want to overlap or 'mask' images so they overlap correctly, you should heat set the first image before masking as the ink will not be dry and will smudge. Then you can use a post-it note with the sticky bit to mask over the first image with your second image, and so on and so forth.

When you are smooshing the colours together you will collect a lot of excess paint or ink on your fingers - instead of wiping it off your fingers, keep some bits of scrap card beside you and daub/wipe/dab/splash or brayer the excess paint from your fingers onto the card - another instant background done!

If you want to, you can add another piece of acetate to the back of the first one - I did this to make some translucent bookmarks. The trick here is to wait til the first layer is completely dry (one day or overnight).
Click for larger version in a new window
 Then you can dob on some more Diamond Glaze and maybe a bit more colour and glitter to cover the first layer of tissue paper, then put down another sheet of acetate and smooth down, trying to get rid of all bubbles so that the 2 sheets will 'seal' together properly. Then you could add more stamped images if you like, or leave plain so that you can see the colours and glitter on the 'backside'.


NOTE: the ONLY glue that will seal and dry between the 2 sheets of acetate is Diamond Glaze - I have experimented with the floor polish and other glue, and it never ever ever EVER dried! And another note - I used both coarse and very very fine glitter between the layers, and the coarse glitter seemed to deter the 2 sheets from sealing completely as it was a bit lumpy I guess. When I used the very fine glitter it seemed to seal better, or maybe I was just more generous with the Diamond Glaze!!!



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