Bleached Out Images

by Beate Johns

Use household bleach to add highlights to embossed images.

Supplies

  • Bleach
  • Plastic or glass container to hold bleach
  • Watercolor brush
  • Detailed image stamp (Craft Secrets Clear Art Stamps Rose used here)
  • Distress Ink, or other ink suitable for embossing
  • Embossing powder
  • Embossing heat tool
  • Colored cardstock

Step-by-Step

  1. Step 1

    Ink stamp and stamp the image on colored cardstock.

  2. Step 2

    Pour embossing powder over the image. Tap off excess. Clear embossing powder was used here to create a soft image. Any color of embossing powder would work.

  3. Step 3

    Use an embossing heat tool to heat the embossing powder until it melts.

  4. Step 4

    Add bleach to a glass or plastic container and dip the watercolor brush into it.

  5. Apply bleach to image.

  6. Step 5

    Continue to add bleach to the image until the entire image is bleached out.

    Let dry or use the heat tool to speed up the drying process.

  7. Step 6 (Optional)

    Color your image with a color medium of your choice.

  8. Copic Markers were used for this sample.

    Hint:
    When using Copic Markers only use clear embossing powder.

  9. Step 7

    Finish your project.

Video!

Your Turn

You've seen the tutorial, now you try it! We've got a section of the gallery set aside for Bleached Out Images. Try this technique, then upload your artwork to the gallery. Show us your creations!

***Please note - Internet Explorer/Edge is not a supported browser, and will not allow you to see the videos. Please use Chrome, Firefox or Safari to view our tutorial videos.

Questions and Comments

We'd love to get your feedback or questions. Leave your comment below.

thanks for imformation
glass prices  |  Wed Apr 20, 2011 at 3:18 AM
I used Stampin Up card stock and I used Clorox bleach and I used a watercolor brush - but the color of the cardstock did not bleach out! Why would this be? Does bleach get 'old'? Does the heat help? (I didn't heat it)
Do I need to put more bleach on? I love the concept and it looks great on your tutorial - but I'm having a problem. Please help!
Lisa  |  Wed Apr 27, 2011 at 11:39 PM
Hi Lisa,
You used the same supplies I did. So yes, I think bleach can get old and loose it's power. I had bought the bleach for the bleaching tutorials, my bottle was new.
Beate  |  Thu Apr 28, 2011 at 4:11 AM
Can you tell me if the item, Amazing folded cards DVD is in the Winter 2010 book, or the summer 2011? They e-mailed it to me and I would rather send a check to get it rather than use a debit card to order my thing's. Do you understand? Please get back to me and let me know if it is in one of the books. The item # is; 410515
Lisa A. Wing  |  Thu Apr 28, 2011 at 11:49 AM
I bought a new bottle of bleach and it made all the difference! But I was compelled to comment on the fact that I used a inexpensive watercolor brush and 2 things happened - after painting approximately 12 images, the bristles were eaten away and the beaching affect was streaking (which looked cool on a big flower stamp - but was frustrating if you WANT the whole image to bleach) So I decided to try using my son's brush from the the watercolor books you buy for kids - the bristles are very stiff and 2 things happened there - the bristles remained in tact and the whole image bleached!
Lisa  |  Wed May 4, 2011 at 8:10 AM
This is a terrific idea...can't wait to try it out..I'm not the least bit artistic but maybe I can finally make something look professional..Thanks so much for the tips!
everorer  |  Thu Jun 2, 2011 at 1:42 AM
I have just found your awesome site, it is the best ever,like many stampers i look at a tutorial then can't remember how it's all done, what a great idea to put "print this Tutorial" on the side bar, yes it uses a lot of printer ink but who cares !! i now have a book of all the projects on hand for when i am thinking "what shall i try today" keep up the good work these cards & projects are beautiful.
nany may  |  Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 11:00 PM
If you are eventually colouring with copics why do you not have to stamp the image with momento ink?
Augustina  |  Fri Jul 15, 2011 at 9:30 AM
Hi Augustina,
I am not sure how Memento ink reacts to bleach. I know clear embossed lines won't be affected, that's why I did it the way shown in the tutorial.

Have a great weekend!
Beate  |  Fri Jul 15, 2011 at 11:25 AM
Hi, I just love this project...But can you tell where you got the "rose stamp" I just love it and would like to find one for myself. Thanks
Deborah Jexierski  |  Sat Oct 8, 2011 at 2:02 PM
Hi Deborah,
I added the link to the stamp set to the supply list. It's called "Rose" From Crafty Secrets Clear Art Stamps.
beate  |  Sun Oct 9, 2011 at 5:44 AM
I tried this last nite when making Halloween cards. I used a black card stock and it did nothing. I didn't have Clorox bleach I had the Wal- Mart brand, would that be the difference?
chris hebert  |  Fri Oct 21, 2011 at 2:00 PM
Hi Chris!

The brand of bleach doesn't matter, but the cardstock does! smile Different paper companies have different finishes that react to bleach differently. I have a video where I tested a few different brands that you can view here and see how different they all are:

http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/14676517
Lydia  |  Fri Oct 21, 2011 at 2:09 PM
what are copie markers and where can you get them
sharon  |  Sun Nov 13, 2011 at 2:05 PM
I have the stamp, the ink, the powder, Gina K cardstock. For the life of me, can not get the stamp to come out on certain places on my cardstck. I'm standing up pushing has hard as I can, nope, wont stamp like yours. Maybe my ink needs replaced ? Help !
Paula Harbert  |  Thu Feb 9, 2012 at 12:12 PM
Paula,
Try putting a piece of fun foam underneath your cardstock. That might help to get your image to stamp all the way.
beate  |  Thu Feb 9, 2012 at 1:33 PM
I have used this bleach technique many times, and have found that before I could get the image completely done, the bleach had eaten my brush tip away right down to the handle! Is there any special brush I can use that this won't happen to?
Clare Curcio  |  Wed Sep 12, 2012 at 9:07 AM
I use an old blender pen for this technique. You can just dip the tip in the bleach and away you go! I wrap a piece of masking tape around the barrel of the pen so I know at a glance not to use it for anything else.
AnnetteMac  |  Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 10:16 AM
Hi there! Your techniques are great!! I have been looking at several different techniques you have on this and I love them!! You make them so simple too!! This technique however I tried a few years ago and didn't understand but you make it so plain I am ready to try it again!! Thanks!!
Jessica Phillips  |  Wed Oct 10, 2012 at 1:34 PM
This technique is so neat, I am so trying this very soon, thank you for sharing
Ana B. Schutz  |  Tue Dec 11, 2012 at 9:32 AM

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