Thursday, March 19, 2015

Heat Tool Comparison / Hero Arts Nature Challenge

Hero Arts Nature Challenge

Sometimes it's nice to upgrade a tool. I use a heat tool often in my stamping, as I enjoy heat embossing. It's also handy to speed up the drying process when using wet media. For years I've used the Ranger Heat it Craft Tool; it worked well and I didn't think about replacing it. I began seeing another heat tool used fairly often as I watched video tutorials. This one is made by Milwaukee and is the 1400 model. I noticed as I watched others do heat embossing that it seemed to go so much faster than I was used to. I finally decided to take the plunge and get one.

It came in the mail today, so I quickly got it out and decided to see if it was as good as I hoped.

Ranger Heat it Craft Tool

Milwaukee 1400

I had a scrap of an old manila file on my work  surface, and a brand new Hero Arts stamp (Paint a Flower) I'd just scored on clearance. I inked the stamp with Versamark and stamped the image in the center. I coated it with white embossing powder, then stamped and coated the same flower twice more. (Sprinkling the embossing powder on the first image makes it easier to see where to stamp again, since Versamark ink is clear.) I turned on the heat gun and was thrilled at how quickly the embossing powder melted! I also like that the nozzle is much smaller than my other heat gun, which allowed me to keep the heat focused where I wanted it. It is slightly louder than the Ranger tool, but not enough to be a nuisance. I was glad that I had glanced at the instruction booklet before using it, since it smoked a little at first. I knew that was okay, since I'd read that it might do that - just as the booklet said, it quit doing that after a few moments.

I got out some Distress Stains in Spiced Marmalade and Peeled Paint and squeezed the color onto my craft sheet. I dragged the stamped paper through the wet stain, then dried it and repeated the process. The white embossed flowers resisted the stain, and I love the way it looks.

I thought it would look a little more interesting if I cropped the image tightly around the flowers, so I trimmed the panel down and rubbed some Brushed Corduroy Distress Ink around the edges.

I had a scrap of the stained manila file left, so I stamped a greeting from Hero Arts Trees, Birds, & Messages, using Ancient Page Close to Cocoa and clear embossing powder. I layered my stamped pieces with some patterned paper and some textured brown paper and mounted everything on green cardstock.

Finished Card

I'm linking this to the Hero Arts Nature Challenge.

It's the last day of winter, so Happy Spring tomorrow!


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