Mementoes In Time


All About Distress Oxide Inks (Part 7)

Posted on May 23, 2017 at 1:00 AM

Life in A Distressing World, Adventures With Oxide Inks (Part 7)


Being in the Background

I thought I would post a quick demo actually showing the process to get a basic wet background. Really, if you are used to working with Distress Inks then it is exactly the same process. Apart from the Direct to Paper and Blending Techniques which we have already covered, you can create the most beautiful backgrounds from adding wet ink to your paper.


Distress Inks and Oxides are both highly reactive to water and blend so well, to create something different everytime you set to work, whether you are using the same ink colours, the same papers or whatever. You can see the difference between the Distress and Oxide Ink backgrounds in the photo above.

I have chosen three colours I like here but the palette works so well with any of the colours blended together to get different themes. I am using a basic medium weight cardstock so you will get different effects using glossy card, which we will look at in another post


Swipe the pads across your craft sheet to give a block of colour to work with. You may need to press down a little on the pad to release the ink which is suspended below the surface. Leave some room between each colour or else your pad will pick up the ink and become dirty. If you get anoher colour ink on the pad, all you have to do is wipe the top with a cloth to remove the ink. The felt pads are quite easy to clean this way.

Add some water to the inks, I am using an old room scent spray bottle here as I get fed up refilling the much smaller mini misters so often. The added benefit is a nice smell on the paper too!


The ink will start to bead up on the sheet and eventually, as these are oxides, you will start to see the oxidisation occuring as they dry on the sheet. I prefer to get going as quickly as possible and let this oxidisation happen on the paper rather than the sheet but you can always re wet the ink with another spray of water.


Now you can start dipping your cardstock into the ink, moving and turning it around to get a good spread of colour on the surface.Dip just two to four times and then let you card dry a little. You can use a heat gun or let it dry naturally. This will allow you to build up layers of colour and hence get a depth on your background.


Note: You can just drag or swipe your card through the ink which is what I did when I first started playing with these ink. The inks will blend but you will end up with a much flatter looking background, where you have no layering but just one background with all the colours merged together. If you dip and make sure that you dry before dipping some more, you will build up layers.

Either is nice depending on your project.


I have stopped here and had a look to check coverage. You may need to add more ink to your craft sheet or more water. You can also add water to the card and move it around to create runs and blend te colours more but again, this will create a flatter effect rather than depth.


You can go back and redip your card as many times as you like until you get the effect that you are looking for.

I am giving my card adrying off here with a heat gun. The great thing is that you can still go back and add some colours at this stage or maybe try some Distress Inks on top to really make your background come alive. You can also go back and respray to blend any areas you want but be aware that some of the ink will have settled and will not respond to water at this stage.


As is often the way with crafts, less can be more, so it really is a matter of trial and error. Making mistakes is a good think as that is how you learn what you like. I personally think it is quite hard to make real mistakes with this though!

I decided to spray the card directly at this point to get some run marks and a messier look and then dried it again. Then back onto the craft sheet to add a bit more Wilted Violet as I wanted a more lilac/purple tone for my background.



Finally, I splattered water onto my background using my hand to get some bigger splotches, which gives a lovely effect as you can see. I am very happy with this one!

Here is another example, this time with even more water splattered on the paper then dried to give a lovely cloudy effect where the water has spread.

Next up, we will be looking at using these inks on Gloss Papers for a completely different effect. After that, I will be looking at another stamping technique and then using stencils. That will bring the series to a close, so join me again here on the blog if you are enjoying following this in depth review of Distress Oxide Inks!

Important Stuff

Please ask if you wish to use our content - words, photos or designs. You can contact us here and we usually just ask for attribution links to be added.

I would like to say that this article is NOT sponsored in any way, I do not receive any remuneration and any enthusiasm for the product is genuine and without any kind of financial incentive whatsoever!

Categories: Craft Techniques, 2017

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1 Comment

Reply Marion
12:46 AM on May 24, 2017 
Hi Imy! I am really enjoying this series on the oxide distress inks. I haven't succumbed to purchasing any of these "yet" lol. It is fun seeing the pretty oxide effects you are getting. I love the cards you have created with your backgrounds to. Thanks so much for taking the time to make and share your play experiments with us. Hugs to you from across the sea xx

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