Embossed Mailart

Today is a HUGE day for me. Something that has been in the works for over a year and a half, and I’m so excited. I will be dealing with that immediately after posting this, but first I just wanted to share my most recent mailart pieces for the 365 project. I will be back as soon as I can to share more about my exciting news.

A couple weeks ago I saw this tutorial post on Oh So Beautiful Paper about embossed stationery. It brought me back to high school graphic arts, first semester. We were learning about business cards and just to show how far things have come since then, the teacher told us if a business card wasn’t embossed (quickly checking by running fingers across the card), most people in business would just throw them away. Flash forward to today, embossed cards are definitely in the minority. I work for a printing company and we don’t even have embossing capabilities in house, so any embossed business card orders we receive get farmed out and it is a very rare occurrence. At any rate, back in high school we got to play around with embossing so I knew how to do it, but haven’t done any since then. Immediately after reading this post, past 8 pm, I HAD to run to Michael’s to see if they had any embossing powders and fluid and I was thrilled to find a selection. I found a stamp pad that also came with a small bottle of fluid, which was perfect for me.

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If you are not familiar familiar with embossing, it’s a method in which you get a raised type. Above are some thumbnails at an angle so you can see how it looks. I also encourage you to click on the link at the top and see a picture tutorial. But basically an image is printed with embossing fluid on paper and then the embossing powder sprinkled over it. The powder adheres to where the fluid was and the excess is removed. Then the powder is heated and the powder melts and sticks together and looks more like a raised liquid on the paper.

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I started out by carving a few small little triangle stamps to make some banners and test out the embossing process.

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When I think of banner messages, I think of sayings like “SURPRISE” or “HAPPY BIRTHDAY” so I though it would be funny to make some banners that were a little less exciting, like “it’s your birthday… or not!” and “I don’t want to go to work!” Wouldn’t that be funny to walk into a party and that was the banner hanging there?

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At first I only bought black and green, so the next day I went back to see if there were any other colors I’d like. I decided to play with some other carved stamps I made.

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This is when I started experimenting with painting with the embossing fluid in the bottle.

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This is when I got the idea to thin out the fluid and put it in my Kempar Drawing Pen that Rosa gave me eons ago. That pen comes in handy so often!

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I was able to get multiple colors by drawing out one part, sprinkling the powder and then drawing another and repeating. I learned if I heated each color between each color by the end the original colors would start to flatten out and get absorbed into the paper.

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Lastly, I went over many of the finished cards with light, wet layers of watercolor. I had a lot of fun making these, and I know this will not be the last time I have embossed things to share… I’m thinking maybe some paper products for the etsy shop!


Hi, I'm Robyn and I was Hatched from a Kinder Surprise Egg. Graphic Designer by day, Maker of things by night. I have worked as a graphic artist professionally since I was 16 years old. Went on to get my Bachelors of Art from NIU. I like to share my Artwork online at flickr.com/photos/robayre and on my own personal website http://www.robayre.com. I also have an online shop http://www.robayre.etsy.com where you can find more of my "crafty" sorts of things, as well as a random piece of artwork here and there. Oh, and I'm also an occasional contributor to Artomat (artomat.org).

2 thoughts on “Embossed Mailart

  1. I love to come across websites that serve a purpose and are topic specific. I have a blog of my own and I focus it on the topic of greeting card business and my passion for greeting cards. Cheers.

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