July 21, 2017

Technique: In a Bleach of a Moment - Part 1

Before you get started with your own "Moment of Bleach experience", let's start with some important information:


Using cardstock that is colored through works great with this technique. But you have to test your papers first, because not all papers will react to the bleach. Like the red paper seen here. This one didn't reacted to the bleach at all. Ones you apply the bleach, the color of the paper will fade and often a light shade will show up (you have to test your papers to find out what color will be reviled and which paper will work)

Using cardstock that has a white core (e.g. Close to My Heart,...) will not react to your bleach, BUT there is another way to use this cardstock. Apply some ink of your choice (CTMH, SU, Distress Inks,...) over the colored cardstock... now when you add the bleach, the applied ink will fade and the colored cardstock will show.....awesome isn't it?

Here is a closer look at the three samples I tried. First off is this red paper. I think it was a Bazzil one. I stamped the flowers and embossed them with gold embossing powder (pic. top left). The picture on the top right and the bottom one shows you the paper after I used the bleach on it. As you can see, this paper didn't react to the bleach at all. I really applied a lot of bleach, but nothing. All that was shown at the end were some stains from the bleach....so this one didn't quite work.

 The blue paper I used here is one from my leftover stack. I don't know the maker of this paper (it's not CTMH). I stamped the paper with some butterflies and flowers and embossed them. I used white embossing powder for one piece and green powder for a second piece. (pic. top left is before the bleach). I applied a bleach solution around the area of the white embossed butterflies and it reacted right away. I used my older bleach on the second (green embossed) piece and applied it this time to the inside of the butterflies. Interesting result, since it seems to be more green than on the other example. This could be do my older bleach or the green embossing powder makes is look like more green. In any event, both blue papers are the same!

Last but not least our own Close to My Heart paper with the white core. To make sure the bleach would work on it, I applied distress ink over the whole sample. The red has a light pink cardstock as a base and the blue one has a light turquoise color as a base.
First I used a swirl stamp on both items (pic top left and bottom left) with my old bleach. The red one showed up after quite a long drying period, while the blue one didn't show at all. So now I tried a flower stamp and my new bleach on the blue again and this time it shows really good. 

Summary for me, test test test before you start a project and stamping with the bleach not so my cup of tea. Coloring with bleach on the other hand is quite interesting to work with.


You can pretty much use all stamps with the bleach, BUT you have to clean them immediately after stamping with water and some stamp cleaner. Give them a good scrub, rinse thoroughly with water and let them dry.

Alternative, if you don't like to use your stamps with the bleach directly, stamp the image and emboss it, then use a brush to apply the bleach to the areas. Especially when you think about using a more delicate stamped image. 

I stamped my little cardinal and leaves in black ink and embossed it with clear embossing powder. You need a black ink that will not dry quickly to use it with the powder. You could also use VersaMark and black embossing powder. The flowers were stamped in VersaMark ink and the embossed with silver powder.


You can use any kind of household bleach. Most common is the liquid form or you can even get it these days in form of a gel. No matter which one you use, make sure it is not exposed to light and air for a long period of time. The bleach comes in a milky container to keep it "fresh". Small amounts go a long way.....DON'T FORGET... when working with bleach make sure you are in a very well ventilated room and keep your kids and pets away from the project!

My first project was the cardinal. For some reason, thinking of bleach made me think of snowflakes. Even so we have like 90 F right now outside and the humidity is awful, so snow is a good thing to think about right?

I started with a piece of watercolor paper. I stamped my images in black ink and embossed it with clear embossing powder. This way I made sure the bleach wouldn't compromise my outlines.

I used my Spectrum Noir Aqua markers to color the images in. These markers sometime don't blend well on the watercolor paper, so I used my handy craft mat instead. I placed some color on the mat and used a brush and water to applied the color to the image. I colored the bird in with different shades of red. I used two greens for the leaves and a little brown for the branch. After the image was dry, I picked three blue markers and did the same with the background. I added water to the background first and then dropped in some color. Don't worry about watermark lines, they are perfect for the background.

After everything was dry I used my bleach mixture and a small brush to add the bleach. I started with the little dots for snowflakes. Next I went on to brush the bleach on the leaves and a little on the top of the bird. Be careful with the bleach, because it will spread really fast, especially on the watercolor paper.

I cut the image down to a 3 1/2" square. For the card itself, I used a regular card base 4 1/4" x 5 1/2" and covered it with a piece of 4 1/4" x 5 1/2" darkblue cardstock. I put my Cricut to use and cut out a frame at 4" x 4". I adhered the colored image to the frame and placed a piece of silver foiled cardstock behind it. The foiled cardstock was sticking out pass the corners which I cut back with my scissors. I adhered the piece raised with foam dots to the card front. 

I then stamped my phrase in VersaMark and embossed it with white embossing powder.

 A little red bow and a few sequins finishing of this card. Well, almost... I added the cut out from the frame to the inside of my card and added a little phrase to it. 

Well, this is the first project I did with my bleach adventure. What do you think? I actually was super pleased with the outcome, even so the process wasn't so great.

While I don't like to stamp with the bleach, I do like the application with a brush. If I find a quite moment, I might have to try the stamping again, now that I have a fresh bleach pen in my house :-) Yes, don't even start with your old bleach. Get yourself a bleach gel pen for about $3 and have fun the first time you try this technique.

I would love to hear from you, so leave me a comment and check back next Friday for the last two project I did.

Thank you for turning in. I hope you enjoyed this little excursion into the world of bleach.

See you next Friday with part 2.....

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