Distress Oxide Trials – one or two colours

As I’ve been reading your comments about distress oxide inks I have noticed some of you are not sure you want them so have held off or only bought one or two to try. I decided to see what I could do with just one or two colours. I’ve been having so much fun with about half the colours I haven’t even opened them all yet and sadly spiced marmalade is currently hiding somewhere in my messy busy and productive workroom. All that to say, if you only have one or two colours, do some experimenting with them anyway; you might be surprised.

This green themed card is inked with only peeled paint distress oxide ink and yet there is a light and dark teal green, and dark and light olive tones as well. I was pretty impressed. I think the key to this effect is in the layering of colour. I pressed my ink pad on my craft mat, spritzed the ink then swiped my embossed panel through the ink. Colour only partially filled the panel; I dried it then repeated the process over and over. Each layer of ink reacts with the ink already on the paper and the un-inked areas on the paper. I also did some splattering of ink and water and some dabbing of water with a paper towel to lift a bit of colour. Because my panel was embossed I had to be careful not to reheat the embossing too much so I kept the heat tool moving. I love the effect around this ‘blips’ background stamp. A friend of mine used this stamp with great results recently by sprinkling brusho over the embossed image. Seeing her lovely card reminded me I had this stamp tucked away.

My second card uses only two distress oxide inks, worn lipstick and fired brick. I was hoping to do cards in just one colour but I wasn’t getting the same variety of colours from worn lipstick. My guess is that I spoiled my chances by covering the whole panel with my first layer of diluted ink rather than just part of the panel. I did manage to build up some different pinks over the top of the first layer but the differences were not as dramatic as shown on the green above. I will try again and use the same partial inking technique over and over and see what happens.

I did still manage to get some nice colour trapped inside the embossing creating light and dark petals and leaves. To provide just a bit more contrast I swiped it through some fired brick diluted ink a few times. When I press my ink on my craft mat then spritz it lightly it forms little beads of ink. Swiping through them spreads colour across the panel but pressing the paper down on top picks up little dots of ink, another cool effect I think.

I finished both cards with embossed sentiment banners and a few embellishments.

I have a growing list of suggestions from readers to try next week. Thanks for all your encouragement, tips and questions.


Stamps: Felicity, Blips, Amazing!, Special Thoughts (PB)
Dies: Triple Banner, Shades
Paper: hot pressed watercolour paper, Neenah natural white and epic black cardstock
Inks: versamark (Tsukineko) Distress oxide peeled paint, worn lipstick, fired brick (Ranger)
Also:  WOW clear embossing powder, Studio Katia sparkling crystals, Simple stories enamel dots

15 Comments on “Distress Oxide Trials – one or two colours”

  1. Shauna Todd says:

    I love how the distress inks create such great backgrounds…not to mention how good you are at making everything look great!!

  2. Bonnie says:

    You learned several neat things in this play, Heather! I like using one or two colors of ink.

  3. Pat says:

    Thank you for showing that it isn’t necessary to have lots of colours to get a beautiful result Heather. I think I may well buy two or three colours and try those together and alone. I don’t have any of newer range of colours so perhaps Cracked Pistachio, Fossilised Amber and Mermaid Lagoon as an example. Anyway you have certainly given us something to think about.

    • Heather says:

      Sadly there is no mermaid lagoon, but the broken china is a nice blue to try. I haven’t even opened my pistachio yet, More fun ahead.

  4. Lindsey says:

    Okay, I think I shall play with my TWO oxide inks this weekend. These are both great examples! The results, to me, are reminiscent of watercolour powders (when they work just right…)

  5. maureenchandler says:

    What great cards – it is so much fun to play with these distress oxide inks and every card is different!!! Thanks so much for sharing your lovely cards!

  6. Clelie says:

    Oh, I love these! Your ‘trials’ make me think of differences in some colors when using the pigment powders ie. Brusho, Color Burst and Bister…some separate into a multitude of colors and some less. Amazing to see the separation of colors with the Peeled Paint Oxide. Can’t wait to see what happens with the Lipstick and Fired Brick when done the same way as PPaint. I don’t think I would have thought to try one color or doing it in sections at a time! I am totally going to try this with the other colors (when Life grants some Play Time). Yes, the past year has allowed less time to go ‘play’ (seasons, you know) but I want you to know…when I have had the time, I am usually playing with a technique or product you brought to my attention. Thank you very, very much for adding ‘color’ and blessings to my Life! ♥

    • Heather says:

      I’m sorry to hear play time has been hard to come by but yes some seasons are for other purposes. Thanks for leaving me such a nice note.

  7. Susie Williams says:

    Heather thanks so much for doing all this. I didn’t realise how effective one single colour can be. Mind you, you could scribble on a brown paper back and make it look fabulous!! I love everything you create.

  8. Shaz in Oz says:

    THANK YOU, Heather these are awesome, I’ve ordered two colours so will give this a try, ever so glad that you’re like me… keen to experiment thank you again… 😊👍❤️

  9. ednamburgess says:

    I’m one of those with only 1 color to work with. Will buy another 1 or 2 and try your experiment. Thanks for all the updates. Edna

  10. Daria says:

    These are amazing cards. I am especially drawn to the variation of colors in the green card. Thank you for sharing details.

  11. Janine B says:

    I just bought a few and I am so enjoying reading about your trials. I need to play more!

  12. Ooh I must try using just the Peeled Paint oxide, it looks awesome! Love the pink card too. Thank you so much for doing these trials and sharing your wonderful creativity with us! xxx

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