How to make your own alcohol ink

Written by megan shoop
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How to make your own alcohol ink
Alcohol ink mixes up quickly with a few household supplies. (ink image by dinostock from Fotolia.com)

Artists love alcohol inks for their versatility. Unlike oil- or water-based inks, alcohol inks stick to slick surfaces like glass, plastic and glossy paper. This makes them ideal for scrapbooking, creating decorative windows and personalising mirrors. Though alcohol inks can be expensive commercially, you can keep crafting and preserve your budget by making your own.

Skill level:
Moderate

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Things you need

  • 56.7gr plastic squeeze bottles
  • Fabric dyes
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • 6-inch square plastic container
  • Aluminium foil
  • Felt squares
  • Stamps

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Add about 2 teaspoons of powdered fabric dye to one of your 59.1ml bottles. Fabric dye is available at craft stores. Your bottles should be the type with a tapered application tip.

  2. 2

    Fill each bottle to about ¼ inch below the top with rubbing alcohol. The concentration must be 90% or higher. Other concentrations will make your dyes watery and cause them to run.

  3. 3

    Shake the bottles lightly to mix. The dye colours should look dark and very concentrated. If the colours aren't dark enough, add another teaspoon or so of dye and shake again.

  4. 4

    Make a homemade stamping pad from a plastic container. Line the container with aluminium foil so the dyes don't stain your container. Place two squares of felt in the bottom of the container. White felt works best because you can see your dyes better.

  5. 5

    Squeeze a puddle of dye onto the felt large enough to coat the stamps you want to use. You may use a single colour, make separate puddles of different colours, or draw stripes of colour on the pad for a rainbow effect.

Tips and warnings

  • Try stamping canvas, old jeans, T-shirts and other plain fabrics to repurpose them.
  • Carve your own stamps from potatoes to make this craft even cheaper.

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