Different Types of Ink for Rubber Stamping


When you walk into a scrapbook store or down the aisle of your local craft store you can be overwhelmed by the different types of ink. What kind of ink should I buy for rubber stamping or making cards?
Here is a list if different types of ink used when using rubber stamps for cards, scrapbooks and other crafts and how to use the inks.

Dye-based Inks for Stamping: How to Use

Dye-based inks are the most popular and commonly used for everyday stamping. Because they are water-based they are washable but are permanent once they are stamped on paper and dry (you can use a heat gun to “set”)
You can use dye inks on all types of paper including glossy or coated . Dye based inks will often contain some kind of solvent ( usually alcohol) to speed drying process.
Dye based inks are also good for painting over with watercolour paints ( using marker on cd method or watercolor paint) as they dry fast and won’t smear.
They are not great to use for embossing- they dry too quickly. Use a pigment dye instead.
Most dye inks are acid free . If you are not going to emboss then your best choice for stamping is to use a dye based ink.

Popular brand of dye ink are : Memories, Adirondack Dye Ink Pads, Fluid Chalk Ink Pads are considered to be “dye” based inks. Ancient Page Dye Inks and Tim Holtz Distress Ink Stamp Pads

Common Brand of Dye based Ink Pads for Stamping

Color Box Fluid Chalk Petal Point Ink Pad BLOSSOM PASTELS Tim Holtz Distress Ink  Pad: Ancient Page Waterproof Dye Stamp InkPad: Coal

Pigment Ink for Stamping: How To Use

Pigment based inks differ from the usual normal dye-based inks. They are thicker, richer and fade resistant. They have a slow drying time which make them excellent for embossing. If you use on glossy paper you have to emboss , pigment ink will not dry properly on coated paper and will smudge.
The colours in pigment inks are rich and vibrant and work well on matte papers and good for embossing on any paper. Pigment inks don’t fade when embossed.
Brilliance inks are a pigment based ink however they dry quickly and I don’t recommend for embossing. These are good inks for edging cards and coloring backgrounds. The viscous texture comes form glycerin, which is why they are slow drying and will not work on plastic or metals. They do work well on vellum.

Popular pigment based inks for stamping and embossing are Versacolor Pigment Ink Pads, Cat’s Eye Ink Pads, Petal Points and ColorBox Pigment Inks.

Alcohol Inks for Stamping and card making: How To Use Alcohol Inks

The standard alcohol inks for for using when makig cards or stamping are Tim Holz Adirondack alcohol inks.
They will only work on glossy or coated paper, metal, plastic or other non-porous surfaces. You can get stunning results with these. They are mostly used for interesting backgrounds.

Using Fluid Chalk Inks with Cards and Rubber Stamping

Chalk inks are technically a dye based ink but they behave more like a pigment. They are fast drying.

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