Glycerine and Distress Ink


I mentioned the other day that I had seen, briefly, on one of the craft channels, a demo for spritzing cardstock with glycerine to make Distress Ink move better on it.  I had to have a go, despite the fact that I had very little info. I have a bad habit of trolling thru the channels during commercials when watching something live, rather than actually watching the ads.  I’m told, from a commenter that Sheena Douglas was the demo.  I’m sure I’ve been by her blog for WOYWW and recognized her from other shows. She has a lovely bubbly personality and what I saw of her project, it was quite nice.

So, armed, as ever, with very little info, I just dived in. Oh and I have to share the mug DH got me – he finds the fact I blog amusing.  It actually says Be careful or you’ll end up on my blog, and is, I suspect, meant to be a threat.


I mixed up about equal parts glycerine and water, maybe a bit more water, in a spray bottle.  I’m thinking a mini-mister with a very fine spray might have been better.

For my contrast, I just smudged on a bit of DI, using the normal technique of Cut ‘N Dry foam, starting off on the craft mat and moving on to the card.


I tried a few different types of cardstock.  The first one, which almost put me off, was a super-smooth card, bought at a show, packaging long gone, but meant to be used for Copic colouring.  How bizarre is that flecked effect?




I actually think the weird mottled effect is kinda interesting.  But I tried a few other types of card, smooth and textured, and on all of them the glycerine and water, def. made the Distress ink move more freely over the surface, and allowed it to blend nicely. On the left you see the un-sprayed plain cardstock and on the right, the spritzed with glycerine.


Really, I didn’t even load up the foam – what little there was on the pad from doing the plain sample was enough to colour it.

I had an idea – I could see that the cardstock grabbed the ink very differently when the glycerine and water was sprayed on first.  So I grabbed a stencil – not even a clean one (like I have any of THOSE!) – and sprayed thru it.


I let the mist dry for a while, even blasting it briefly with a heat gun. I first smudged on the Peacock Feathers, then the Peeled paint over that.  What a nifty two-tone sort of effect, very subtle.


I tried a different stencil, and did Wild Honey. I actually did Fired Brick over that, and it looked really nice, but my camera batteries died and I am in the process of recharging them so you’ll just have to use your imagination.  Sorry about that.


On caveat is that I have to say I feel just a little bit sticky.  I would def. spray inside a box or on something you can wash, and have baby wipes handy to clean off your fingers.  But it does work and really gives quite a soft and misty look to the Distress Ink.  I particularly like the thru-a-stencil version.  I do wonder about storing something like this long-term – we get mice coming in from the fields occasionally, and I remember them trying to gnaw thru the metal lid of some spearmint-scented ink pad I got with an old Club Scrap kit that was hiding in a box on a low shelf.  I wonder if the glycerine would tempt them to nibble away at a card?  I don’t think I’d use it on a scrapbook page, for example. Humm.  It rather sounds like I am talking myself out of using it, doesn’t it?  Maybe – or maybe I am just deciding I need to consider WHEN is a good time to use it, and if there is any other technique that might do similar, without the stickiness?

6 thoughts on “Glycerine and Distress Ink

  1. great experiment and also wanted to mention the frugal crafters video on different uses for glycerine, for example reinking your embossing pad.

  2. You have such amazing experiments and info. Love that about you and your blog. Thank you.

  3. Lindsay, the frugal crafter has a youtube on the uses of glycerine. Some people overseas have had trouble buying glycerine. I suggested that they tell the pharmacist they were using it to make hand lotion

  4. That makes sense why my glyerin gel plate is slightly sticky!

  5. I have used Glycerin for embossing but never considered using it in a spray bottle, hhhmmm you really do some amazing experiments and always keep me reading for the next intriguing update. Gosh I really want to see that fired brick effect now. You really know how to keep someone interested. Please upload the fired brick one.

    Hugs Eliza

  6. When you used the stencils, the effect reminded me of using VersaMark as a resist. There is a crafter’s blog that I follow and she uses glycerine for her embossing ink pad. So I guess it’s not surprising that the look would be similar. I just wouldn’t have thought to use it in a spray through a stencil, then the ink. I do have a small spray bottle with water and glyceric that I used to give me more open time on my handmade gelatin plate. I don’t use it much on my Gelli Arts plate. It seems like the permanent one helps the paint not to dry as fast.

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