Monday, July 27, 2015

So many new designs!

There are lots of fun new items up in my store today, check them out! :)


Thursday, July 2, 2015

Perfect Gold Foil! Minc Vs. Laminator

If you know me, you'll know that I can be a little obsessive. I have been wanting to start foiling for a while now and I was torn about whether or not I should buy Heidi Swapp's Minc machine, or go with a "cheaper" lamination machine, which supposedly works just as well. After lots of video watching I decided to try to save some money.
I am already used to messing around with toner from working with my Gocco. I think people should know that it's not exactly easy to just find a copier that uses toner these days. I know that my local copy place does not use toner anymore, just FYI. For me buying a laser printer is a no brainer because I will be using it for multiple things. I actually had an old one is storage but the ink is no longer made, so I decided to upgrade to a Brother laser printer.
I started out ordering a Swingline laminator, and the results were not great. Anything that is worth showing for this test was laminated after I let the thing heat up for at least an hour. It still definitely worked, I just wanted it to be perfect, the black spots sticking out really bugged me. 
Why aren't you solid???
It seemed like there was a lot of room for error, and I couldn't help obsessing over pinterest pictures where the gold foil was perfect. Running it through the laminator 3-4 times, waiting that long for it to heat up all for mediocre results just wasn't good enough, and it looked like all laminators pretty much worked the same, unless they were expensive. After watching lots of Youtube videos, I decided to run out and buy a Minc machine, and after seeing that there were a couple at my local Joanns. And guess what, it was on clearance for $89.99!
Since the Minc came with some sample foil, I was able to test my results with both the Minc foil, and the art deco foil. Overall I think both foils are pretty much the same in terms of quality. It seems like the red has better coverage than the blue for some reason, the red was able to adhere much more while the blue had a good amount of problems.
Using the Swingline, after letting it heat up for an hour.
 The red looks all right, but...
The trouble with the blue really stood out for me.
 They're still cute, just not perfect.
 Another using Kraft paper and the Laminator. I just can't stand the spots. 

And here is the first attempt with the Minc! Not bad fpr a first try.
 Results with Minc, same foil and paper.
Still one tiny flaw, not sure why, but looks way smoother! This was on setting 3, I think if you're using card stock, just go ahead and go up to 5.
After only spending 10 minutes with the Minc, it was clear who the winner was. The Minc had results that were infinitely superior to what the laminator could do. I tried making a few pages for my planner (planner accessories coming soon!), and wanted to try a bunch of different papers besides plain white. I was most excited to try to foil kraft paper, in my head it looked so neat.
Success!! It came out perfectly, with minimal effort! No waiting for it to heat up for hours, no sending it through multiple times.
 Look how pretty the red is!
 From my coral collection :)
So pretty!
I am just amazed at how different the results are from the laminator, the pictures really don't do it justice.
Considering the Laminator was around $30 (which is getting returned), I feel like the Minc is worth the extra money. The time and foil that will be saved from eliminating errors with the Minc is definitely worth it, especially if you want to make high volumes of prints, like I want to do. It was also nice that some foil came with the Minc so that I could test it out without buying more products.


Use the smoothest paper you can find
Make sure your settings on your printer output the most toner possible (highest dpi/quality)
Minc: Worth it
"Cheap" Laminator: Worth it if you're not a perfectionist
Art Deco Foil: just as good as Heidi Swapp foil
Minc Foil: Wonderful!

Here is my list of materials:
White Paper
Kraft paper (on sale for super cheap at Michaels right now):

Black paper
Deco Foil 
and the winner: MINC
If you want to make any of my posters with foil, you can buy them from my shop in high resolution:
Peacock Feather Poster
 My peacock Feather design came from my Silhouette store
The Wild & Free Poster 
The Coral print design was used from my coral collection here

But since I'm sure y'all would like to try this without buying MORE stuff, I'm posting my designs that I used for the coral print and the Wild & Free print, the size of the artwork is about 2 x 2', perfect for a small print, and you can get 2 on one 8.5 x 11 page.

Print them out in black, and foil them up! Have fun! Hope this helps with some decision making. :)