Tuesday, March 2, 2010

{Tuesday's Tips: Chalks & Inks}

After my last Tuesday's Tips posts, I got several emails from ladies wondering about the different chalks and inks and wanting to know which kinds to purchase. I thought it would make a perfect post for this week.

It can be a little tough choosing with so many choices out there. I first started with chalks, about 8 years ago. This is the set I found at my local scrapbook store:

I instantly loved them! They came with a few "make-up" applicators (you can see them on the right side of the picture) and so I went and purchased a pack of 24 applicators at my local store so that I would have one for each color. Working with the applicators is easy and they are small enough to get just the right amount of color in tight spaces. I STILL have this same set today! Really, I do. They seem to last forever and even though some of the pieces are withered down with holes in them, this set is my old stand by. The average cost is about $14 for the set.

FYI, if you run out of applicators, Q-Tips work pretty good. They don't last as long, but they get the job done beautifully!

About 2 years ago, I was looking for some new chalks and found these at the same store I had purchased my first set from.

I bought three sets of them: Primary colors (seen in the photos), Pastels and Earth tones. These I didn't like so much. Some of the colors were so hard, you could hardly get any chalk to rub off onto the applicator and because of this, it tore my applicators up pretty good. Other colors were so soft that they crumbles to powder! For the most part, they worked like my first set, but it was frustrating to have to work with those colors that didn't quite cooperate. The average cost is about $9 each, I bought them because they were on sale for half off, so that wasn't so bad. Still, that put me on the hunt for newer chalks...
That hunt led me to these:

This is my most recently purchased set and I am in LOVE! °Ü° Each color has a matte and shimmer, which is why you see two halves of a whole circle. The ones on the top are shimmery and the bottoms flat matte. You can see that each color has 3 little white round puffy balls, called "pom-poms". They range in size from small, medium and large. These are your applicators! The tool to the far right, is what you use to grab the pom-pom of your choice, rub the color you need and apply it to your project! It also comes with a chalk eraser for mistakes (upper left tool), a burnishing spoon (which I have never used), a brush (equivalent to a "blush" brush) and stencils.

Pebbles Inc. is the manufacturer and sells refills for the pom-poms and eraser. A great set if you are looking. Lots of great colors and tons of versatility! The cost is about $28, I got my half off at JoAnns.com for $14. An EXCELLENT deal!

Ok, let's move onto inks. Like I told you last week, I prefer the Color Box Cat Eye Fluid Chalk ink pads. They come in over 45 colors, fit perfectly in your hand and are easy to work with. They go on like an ink and dry looking like you chalked the edges. For small spaces, I use a tiny paint brush and it works great! I have also used Q-Tips and daubers (will get to these soon) when working with crazy cuts and hard to reach edges. It requires a little more patience when using the brush and Q-Tips, but well worth the effect. The average cost for each is about $2. I usually find mine for about $1.19 on JoAnns.com.
Color Box also sells this set:

They are called Petal Point Ink Pads. There are 7 different sets, all sold in coordinating colors: pastels, earth tones and so on. The average cost in about $16 per set. These don't have the versatility of the Cat Eye pads, but you can use these with them:

Daubers. These ones in the picture, fit right on the end of your finger and allow you to work the ink. These are great for using with ANY ink pads you have. I do love them because they allow you the luxury of purchasing large ink pads and still having the ability to ink edges using all the fantastic colors that are offered in the larger pads. These are also sold in a smaller size, for smaller projects.

I really wanted to get some photos taken of how exactly to chalk and ink edges, but did not have time this week. It has been a little crazy around here and my daughter, who would have taken the photos for me, has been busy working. I still would like to them and hopefully will in the near future.

So, there you have a teeny-tiny idea of what is out there. The trick, again, is finding what works for you and then stick with it! Use scrap pieces of papers to practice your technique. Remember to start softly and then go on heavier with the color and lastly, just have fun with it! Like with any hobby or craft, there are endless possibilities to where you can take your shading! °Ü°


Elegante Family said...

Thanks for the info. I have the first chalk kit you showed. I actually won it 7 years ago. So funny. I think I am going to have to put the pebbles one on my wish list.

Mary said...

Thanks so much for the information! I would LOVE to see pictures of how you use the cat's eye pads to chalk your designs! Do you have to do anything special to "set" the fluid chalk ink on your designs or does it dry just fine on its own? Thanks!

The Avid Scrapper said...

Brandy, you will ♥ the Pebbles set!

Mary, you do not have to "set" the inks. Now, if you purchase the "pigments" then yes, those you will need to set with heat, but I really do hate pigments and never buy them. I just want to ink and go! Thanks for your comment °Ü°


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