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How To Emboss in Scrapbooks

By Just Stamp It!

Embossing is a technique that creates a raised image on your scrapbook page that you can see and feel. It is a great way to add texture and dimension to your scrapbook pages. Embossing can give you a very classy and elegant look to your scrapbook pages so it is especially good for wedding and antique style pages. But don’t stop there! Embossing can look good on any page! Try embossing frames for your pictures, your title of a page, a series of small images in a border along the edge of a page, and the list goes on. You can color the embossed images in when you are done or leave them as is. Be creative! Can you emboss in scrapbooks? Sure! There is just one important word of caution before attempting embossing in your scrapbook: do not apply heat near your pictures or it will ruin them. To be safe, put your pictures on after the embossing is finished.

Embossing is just as easy as rubber stamping. You will be amazed at how simple it is to achieve such a beautiful, raised image. Here is a list of tools you need:

Paper and stamps
An embossing ink pad, embossing markers, or good, wet stamp pad*
Your choice of embossing powders (they come in many different colors)
A heat source
Scratch paper (used to under your project to collect excess embossing powder)
Fine-tipped paint brush or Q-tip

*A note about ink pads. The stamped image needs to be good and wet for the embossing powder to adhere to it. An embossing ink pad is made up of a nearly clear ink that dries slowly. It is the preferred ink pad for embossing because it does a great job and wipes easily off your stamps. Embossing markers are also available in a variety of colors and are used in a similar fashion to ink pads. Embossing markers are perfect for embossing a hand-written title/caption or adding raised accents such as streamers, balloon strings etc. Some ink pads that have a thick, slow drying ink may also be used, but experiment with it first to see if it works.

Here are the 4 easy steps to embossing an image:

  1. Ink the stamp you have chosen to use with your embossing pad and then stamp your image.
  2. Generously sprinkle embossing powder over the stamped entire image. Dump the excess powder onto the scratch paper beneath your project. Later, after you are done, you can pour the excess powder back into your container. Embossing powder goes a long way
  3. Tap lightly on the back of your paper to remove more excess powder. You can also use the fine-tipped paint brush or Q-tip to brush around the image and remove any more excess powder. Do not blow on the image or brush over it.
  4. Now, apply heat until you see the powder "melt" using an embossing heat tool, toaster, toaster oven, or iron. Using a blow dryer is not recommended because it will blow the embossing powder away. We prefer an embossing heat tool because it is fast and accurate. If you do not have a heat tool though you can hold the paper over a toaster (do not put it in the toaster), hold the paper under the heat element of a toaster oven, or use an iron without steam to heat the backside of the paper. Heat the image just long enough to melt the powder. Heating it too long can cause the paper to burn or warp. Sometimes the paper does warp very slightly, but it is usually not noticeable once you are done with your scrapbook page or card.

You’re done! The finished result is a beautiful raised image that looks as if you spent a long time creating it. If only they knew how easy it was!!! Have fun and try this great technique on your next scrapbook page.

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Last modified: August 23, 2001

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