My Introduction to Alcohol Inks and Metal

by Colleen.
(Webster, NY)

Playing with alcohol ink

Playing with alcohol ink

Thanks to Rena for introducing me to alcohol ink & metal! I am still learning how to manipulate the ink as it drops on the metal.

These are some of my first attempts. Be aware when you buy the assorted metal sheet packets in the craft stores that they will have a film on the metal.

Copper & alcohol ink cuff

Copper & alcohol ink cuff

Fun with alcohol ink

Fun with alcohol ink

The silver is actually copper, they all need to be cleaned with steel wool and washed like Rena said.

Thank you Rena for your great tutorials!!!

It’s a must try.

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  • Colleen, thank you so much for sharing the wonderfully colorful pieces you’re creating with alcohol inks! I LOVE to see what people make from my tutorials. I especially like your pieces in the first photo – they look like stained glass on metal. And very cool how you connected the metal pieces with chain. If you’ve been wearing your alcohol ink pieces, I’m sure you’ve been getting compliments on them!

  • Cat says:

    Colleen…perfect for Spring and Summer! I especially like the multi-color ones in the first pic. Small world, too…I’m in Red Creek! Thanks for the tips. I definitely want to play with this method!

  • Colleen says:

    Thank you for the kind words everyone. I hope you all get the chance to try this, it’s a lot of fun. Cat, I’m originally from Ontario. Love the country!!

  • Tamara says:

    Love the beautiful collage of colours! These pieces remind me of the beautiful bright tie-dyed silk scarves I see sometimes, and always feel a compulsion to buy!

  • Debra says:

    These pieces are lovely! Inspiration for me to try something new!

  • evie brearley-suarez says:

    what’s the best metal to use with alcohol inks?

  • Colleen says:

    Evil, I’ve used copper, base metal sheets from Joanne’s, Michaels, etc., and brass. I haven’t tried it on aluminum yet. Always make sure your metal has been lightly sanded, then cleaned with soap, water and dried before you use the ink. The sheets usually have a film on them. Whether this needs to come off before inking, I don’t know, it’s just something it do. If you don’t like how it turns out, wash off with rubbing alcohol and start over. Have fun!

  • Moogie says:

    I just made a cuff using aluminum. I textured an aluminum strip, bent it into a bracelet using, well, a bracelet bending tool! Then washed, rinsed well, dried & applied red alcohol ink. It came out very vivid. After that dried, I put 2 light coats of Valspar clear satin “Premium Finish”. It worked very well–didn’t make the ink do anything funky. I’m really enjoying playtime with different metals!

  • Colleen says:

    Thanks for the info Moogie!!! I’m thinking pretty much most metals will accept alcohol ink if it’s properly prepped and then sealed. Can’t wait to break out my aluminum stash!

  • Really interesting to hear everyone’s experience with alcohol inks and different metals. Colleen, your cuff is beautiful! I am always looking for new ways to colour metal, especially copper, but ensuring the longevity of colour is extremely important, particularly if the pieces are to be sold. I currently use Vintaj gloss sealer which is great for their patinas, but any recommendations for alternative sealants for inks, etc, would be welcomed. Also, I’m in the UK so I’m well aware that many brands are difficult to get hold of ( sigh..).
    Good luck with all your jewellery endeavours, everyone!

  • amanda thompson says:

    Another great tutorial. Thanks for sharing! I’ve been wanting to play around with alcohol inks with my jewelry and wasn’t sure where to start. Your pieces are beautiful.

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