Embossing Metal (It’s Easier Than You Think)

Until today, I thought metal embossing had somewhat limited uses. But Lisa Patterson has shown me the light! Her delightful mixed-media art includes this technique often because she prefers fast and easy results. I can’t blame her for that! The catch is that the results don’t look like they were achieved so simply. Their intricate, textured designs hold my attention. I want to look more. Don’t you want to reach out and feel the bumps, lines, and curves of these images? Scroll down for Lisa’s advice on how to emboss metal with your own hands.

A metal grid with coordinating papers and metal inserts, by Lisa Patterson.

Metal Embossing Basics (an excerpt) by Lisa Patterson

I have to admit that I’m a rather lazy crafter. I will not spend days creating something—I like to see results fast, and it has to be easy. I look for ways to make embossing on metal as quick and as much fun as possible; embossing only “looks” difficult and time consuming.

I like to use metal in a variety of ways, whether it’s cardmaking (yes, you can use metal with most die-cut machines), home decor, journals, scrapbook pages, wedding albums, candles, or mailboxes.

For easy gifts, I like to keep a bunch of plain frames and inexpensive spiral notepads on hand. Using the following instructions, you can emboss a piece of metal and attach it to a frame or notepad in no time and have a great, inexpensive gift that looks fabulous. I guarantee you’ll go through your stash and end up metalizing everything.

This is a creative way to use die-cuts, molds, and metal.
Lisa used green metal for the tree tops and embossed
the red metal hearts with a mold to create this tree card.

Embossing Technique: Drawing on Metal

Drawing your own designs on metal is very easy to do and allows you to customize your designs.

1. Doodle a design very lightly on the top side (black side) of the metal using a small, pointed tip refiner from the kit.
2. Flip the metal over (black side down) and go over the design, adding more pressure to create the embossed look.
3. Flip the metal back to the front (black side up) and place it on the acrylic mat.
4. Using the same pointed tip refiner, outline both sides of the image line so that it looks refined.
5. Flatten the background area with a paper stump to make the embossed image “pop.” ~LP

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Always learning something new,


Blog, Mixed-Media Techniques


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