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Old 12-03-2012, 11:17 PM   #1
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Default Help!! What's the difference?

What is the difference between Twinkling H2O's, Perfect Pearls, and Pearl EX? What are some of the uses for each?
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Old 12-04-2012, 02:42 AM   #2
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Pearl Ex - mica powder. Pretty and shimmery and sparkly, but it contains no fixatives so you need to use it with something that will make it stick. You can add some to a travel bottle of hairspray and make a shimmer mist (not archival!); you can mix it with a little Mod Podge and paint with it; you can add some gum arabic and use it as a watercolor, and you can use it to highlight an image stamped with a glue pad or versamark (although with the versamark, you'll want to spray it with some kind of fixative as well)

Perfect Pearls: also a mica powder, but it has a fixative added. You can do the same things as with the Pearl Ex, but instead of mixing it with hairspray, you can mix it with plain water and it will still stick. You can also add a bit of water and use it as a watercolor (if you try this with plain Pearl-Ex with no gum arabic, the powder will just fall off once the water dries.) Pretty much any technique I've seen that calls for Pearl Ex will work with Perfect Pearls. Most of the sets of Perfect Pearls come with a "Perfect Medium" pad that you can use like versamark and they also come with some really nice brushes to help apply the powder. Those brushes work equally well with the Pearl-Ex

Twinkling H2O's are watercolors with mica powder added. You use them like you would use regular watercolor paints - coloring images, background washes or painted directly on the stamp and then stamping.
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Old 12-04-2012, 05:55 AM   #3
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I'd just add on the Twinkling H2Os that they are slightly more opaque than regular watercolours, in my opinion, and dull the stamped outlines a bit, so I prefer to heat emboss if I know I am going to be using them, then the embossing acts as a resist. But they give a lovely shimmer, and I enjoy using them.
For the DIY mists described above, I usually add a few drops of re-inker in to the water as well as Perfect Pearls, for a stronger colour.
Type Pearl-Ex into the search box in the Tutorials section and it will give you several ideas.
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Old 12-04-2012, 08:14 AM   #4
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Thanks! Sounds like I need all of them... I knew that would happen!
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Old 12-09-2012, 12:09 AM   #5
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Unless you just want all 3, I don't think you need all 3. I have all of these, and use the Perfect Pearls more than the other two combined. Here's why:

With Pearl Ex, you need to add gum arabic to be able to watercolor with them. I used the liquid gum arabic, and just ended up with a sticky mess. Using them dry and having to spray your project with a fixative is a pain and sometimes changes the color of your project.

The Twinkling H2O's are hard like watercolor pots or trays; you have to add water to be able to use these. It's difficult to add the correct amount of water: too much and you end up with a pale wash. Too little and you end up with too dark colors. The H2O's come in little pots; you have to let the water you've added completely evaporate before putting the lid back on, or you could end up with a moldy mess.

With Perfect Pearls, you have the option of using them dry to brush onto an image you've stamped with Versamark (I wouldn't use the Perfect Medium - it's terrible. I contacted Ranger; they sent me new pads and they were just as bad as the ones that came with the set.) Or just scoop a small amount onto a watercolor tray and add water to use as watercolors.

Just wanted to give you my experiences with these mediums, and maybe save you some money.
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Old 12-09-2012, 10:07 AM   #6
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Well thank you!! It was nice to hear some of the cons as well as the pros!
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Old 12-09-2012, 10:57 AM   #7
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I have perfect pearls and H20s. I bought my H2Os when they thought they were going out of business. I used to watercolor back in the day. I like them but I don't love them. Maybe I need more work with them but I do love having the option to use them.
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