Altering Eyelets and Brads

Using eyelets or brads on your layouts or cards can be the perfect touch. There are a couple of different ways you can use them, however altering them to match or work with your layout seems to be the newest and latest trend.

Eyelets are great to work with and can be rubber stamped, embossed, aged, distressed, or colored to match your layouts. These same techniques work for brads or any other metal-based embellishment you wish to use.

Here are a couple of ways to alter your metal embellishments:

If you are desiring a vintage aged look on your eyelets or brads, and would like to use a metallic finish (gold, silver or pewter), you begin by sanding the tops with a piece of fine grain sandpaper (found at hardware stores.) Then apply a coat of dark-colored permanent ink using a cotton swab, paper towel or napkin or Q-Tip. Brown-hued inks work really well.

You can also take your ink pad, and dab your metal piece directly onto it. You can get different effects by swirling or twisting it, creating unique patterns.

The important part is letting your metal piece dry before handling it. This keeps the ink on the metal piece from getting smudged. You will need to experiment until you get the look you want, and the best part is that if you do not like your results (the pattern or color), you can simply remove the ink with fingernail polish remover. Note: You can also use fingernail polish to paint on metal as well. Be sure it is completely dry before placing on your layout.

Another unique way to alter an eyelet or other embellishment is to use your heat embossing tool. You can use the tool to color an eyelet or rubber stamp tiny images, letters, or numbers on brads.

You can do this by holding the bottom of the eyelet or brad with a metal clip or pliers. You will need to heat the top of the embellishment for a few seconds to get it really hot and then quickly dip it into the embossing powder.

The heat from the brad or eyelet will instantly melt the powder. You can leave the embellishment as it turns out, or you can stamp an image on the head of a brad or use glitter powder or mix other colors with your eyelet.

Do not handle the pieces until they are completely cooled and/or dry. Have fun!