Techniques by Freyja - based on a Class given at Blade Rubber

Resist: Any substance or object that applied to any surface will resist the colour or effect of any other substance subsequently applied to that surface. Wow! That’s it ‘in a nutshell’. The most obvious resist for crafter is that of crayons/wax which we know will repel anything water based applied over it; similarly water over oil. We use this to good effect and there are several common products that will resist other products giving lovely, interesting and surprising effects, all easy to achieve and all improve with practise. Unless otherwise stated, always use glossy or encaustic card and although white is the favourite, cream, other light and some dark colours are worth trying, all with interesting results. Use a clear embossing pad, except for special techniques which will be explained later - Versamark being the most popular but others are just as good. End results might look alarmingly bright or over coloured, however ink will slowly be absorbed into the card and even after two or three days the colours will further fade and soften, be patient. On the other hand if you want a really sharp over –stamping wait until the under layers are dry.

Types of resist for stampers

Embossing Resist:
Stamp and emboss an images/images onto glossy card - clear or white emboss.
Sponge or brayer over with dye ink.
Stamp again with plain colour or emboss with a different powder.
Leave or add more colour for more depth and interest.


  • Experiment with lots of different colours and embossing effects.
  • Brayer before the first embossing and if clear the colours will show through the subsequent layers of colour/stamping and embossing.
  • Plain stamping over the design in toning colours looks mystical with a sparkle or interference layer of embossing underneath.
  • Use an anti-static bag over dry ink before embossing for clean images.

Joseph’s Coat Resist:
Brayer over card with rainbow dye ink and leave to thoroughly dry.
Swipe an antistatic bag over the card to eliminate static.
Stamp an image and emboss with clear powder.
Cover the entire card with black dye ink. Easier with dye re-inker.
Leave to thoroughly dry then wipe the embossed areas with a tissue to expose the colour underneath.


  • This is a very dramatic effect, use stamps with bold lines and solid areas as these show the colour through the embossing. Try very dark blue, purple, brown or green ink instead of black.
  • Permanent pigment inks such as Brilliance and Fabrico + chalk inks can be used instead of dye ink. Heat to dry before stamping and embossing.
  • Sponge instead of brayering ink before embossing.

Clear ink resist:
Stamp your image with Versamark and leave or heat to dry.
Using dye ink and several colours there are two ways to apply colour over the image, with a brayer or a sponge. Leaves are good images for experimenting.
When applying colour remember colour mixes. Yellow followed by green or blue will result in a mixture of greens, while yellow followed by orange or red will result in an orange mixture.
Well ink the brayer for the first colour, and cover card thoroughly, the image will magically appear through the colour.
Wipe off spare ink and stamp again over the whole card and brayer or sponge using the second colour.
Experiment with a variety of images and colours, ‘polishing’ each layer to remove spare ink.
Many colours can be over laid with surprising effects and not covering the card evenly with each new colour will result in a beautiful array of shades or a rainbow effect. Practise makes perfect.
Try using a rainbow dye pad for speed and ease; the colours usually readily blend with each other.
Useful for making ‘frames’ for other card panels, use words and patterns as well as pictorial Stamps.

Archival versus non-archival dye ink:
These two inks are incompatible the archival having a different - usually water resistant binder - that will resist the plain solid colour or rainbow dye pad, showing through.
Stamp image with archival ink, use light or dark colours, and dry thoroughly.
Brayer over images with dye ink.
Use contrasts of light over dark or dark over light and wipe off excess ink.
More images can be stamped on top with permanent ink.

For soft/faded effects stamp, sponge or brayer over the previous layer when wet to absorb more ink. If a sharp image needed thoroughly dry the previous layer.

Wax Resist:
Wax is the obvious resist to water based ink. Use a sharpened white candle, white crayon or easiest of all a chinagraph pencil.
Stamp image with Stazon or permanent ink pad.
Choose the areas you want to stay white and use the wax to cover them.
Brayer, sponge or stipple over the whole card with dye inks and leave to dry.
Polish the image with a piece of towel or face cloth to remove the wax.
For distressed effects when collaging or when multi layering with sponged chalk ink rub some beeswax between layers to resist the over sponging/stamping. Uneven streaks and patches result in a natural aged look.
Great for antique style backgrounds, use light patches of wax + a few sharper short strokes before sponging two or three colours over. Use wedge shaped cosmetic sponges for interesting Fresco effects.

Object resist:
If feeling adventurous, and while in the garden or watering the window box, collect a few well veined leaves. Press briefly to flatten then find bits of mesh, tiny shells, punched shapes etc and place on a piece of wet water colour paper. Spray water colour/ thinned acrylic paint/ metallic paint, dye ink, watered re-inkers etc. over the paper and objects.
If this sounds eccentric just give it a try as some wonderful results are possible with a lovely natural look and wonderful blend of colours.

Have fun with resist,

©Freyja Lee for Blade Rubber Stamps 2009
Freyja is a regular teacher of popular Classes at Blade Rubber