Friday, January 4, 2013

Popular Pin: Epic Fail



If you listen closely, you can hear the cumulative sigh of relief all around you.  The hectic holiday season is over and we all have some time to ourselves to get back into the swing of “normal” daily life.  For me that means finally getting to all those projects on my wish list….or should I say on my Pinterest boards.  If you’re on Pinterest, surely you’ve seen something similar to this one floating around:



I pinned it a while back thinking that I could use this tip to dress up a new bird feeder design that I was working on.  Much to my dismay, not only does the link not work properly, but the instructions on the pin itself don’t actually work.  Disheartened, I set out online to see what other solution I could come up with as I had gotten quite attached to my idea of a new feeder.  Oddly enough, I found many bloggers simply regurgitating the information that I already had on my pin.  I wondered if they were actually testing the final product before posting it or if they had magic ceramics and Sharpies that I could buy somewhere.

So off to Hobby Lobby for inking pens I went.  I picked up two different paint pens that are supposed to be permanent and went straight to town decorating a few random plates that I picked up while out thrifting.  I even included a plate decked out with Sharpies for the sake of comparison.  Here’s what I ended up with:



The first plate is the plate that I used Sharpies on (I was still secretly hoping that it would work and I that I had just done something wrong the first time).  On the second plate I used a paint marker from Tree House Studios that doesn’t require baking to be permanent.  And finally, the pink plate was done with a DecoArt glass paint marker.  It also required baking.

Sadly, the Sharpie plate didn’t work again.



The paint marker from Tree House Studios had a nice flow and I like the way it writes.  But it also scrubs off with a little elbow grease.  I also don’t like that the ink contains Xylol (a common, flammable ingredient in some paints and thinners) and can be harmful…even fatal…if swallowed.  So for the sake of the birds and the environment, this is not the ink for me.



Finally the DecoArt glass paint marker gave me what I was looking for.  Well, for the most part. 



I got a little impatient as I had a feeling this would be the one that would work and started scrubbing the plate only 6 hours after cooling completed.  So the first TW"eat" is slightly lighter in color than the second.  But the next morning I scrubbed my li'l heart out and viola!  It stuck.  So the ink is permanent, but it is much thinner than the other two options and tends to bleed into any little scratches on the plate.  When you’re repurposing someone’s dinner plates you can imagine the tiny scratches on the surface that you’d never notice otherwise.  So I think I’ll keep working with the DecoArt markers and see if I can refine the method to avoid the bleeding.  

Have you tried any other glass/ceramic pens with any success?  If so I’d love to hear all about it!

8 comments:

  1. See, this is why I like your blog. You test your ideas and you don't just pass on cute thoughts without bothering to find out if they work! unlike a lot of other online people, I might add.

    So when you do recommend a project, I'm much more likely to listen and try it out. Thanks.

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    1. Oh my, *blushing*! Readers like you keep me honest. :) Thanks for reading (and commenting).

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  2. Hello Tricia! I realize you've posted this a little while ago. But if you recall - did you "bake/cure" the plate using the Treehouse marker?

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    1. No, I did not. The instructions do not call for heat setting the ink.

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  3. I'm making a mug and I want to decorate the inside and I like the reviews for the DecoArt glass paint marker but it says to not have it come in contact with food and I was wondering if you've ever had any problems in this area.

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  4. For the Treehouse markers, is it necessary to seal them with something in order for them to be food safe?

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    1. Hi, Sidney and Linda. To my knowledge all of the paint pens and glass paints on the market even those that are "non-toxic" are not considered to be food safe. Most makers will say that the markers are for decorative purposes only. And if you want to add them to the outside of a mug, it's typically suggested that you keep it from areas that your lips would touch.

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  5. I know I'm ridiculously late to this party, but I *JUST* realized that the Sharpies that all these Pins are referring to might be the Sharpie PAINT markers rather than the regular Sharpies... Thoughts?!?

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