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Twinkling H20s and other shimmering products

Reported by Susan Reidy

Over the last several months, I’ve managed to amass a small collection of products that add shimmer and shine to my craft projects. My most recent acquisition was a few sets of Twinkling H20s by LumniArte.

I wanted to see how these tiny little pots of watercolor shimmery goodness compared to my other go-to bling products, specifically Shimmerz and Champagne Shimmer Paint sold by Stampin Up!

First off, the obvious difference — both Shimmerz and the Shimmer Paint are liquid inks. Twinkling H20s are dry cakes, like traditional watercolors, but include shimmery mica flakes. You add water — a little or a lot — to get the color flowing. You can add water to the pot, wait about 10 minutes and turn it into a paint (it will dry and return to its original cake form).

From left to right: Champagne Shimmer Paint, Twinkling H20, Shimmerz

I like to use sponge daubers and Fantastix to add any of the three shimmering products. Regular paint brushes or aqua painters also work well.


All three shimmering products can be used in a range of applications — as a color wash, to color in portions of a stamped image, applied directly on a stamp, and more.

Using a Fantastix, I made a few swipes with each on a white and a brown piece of Bazzill cardstock.


The Twinkling H20s did the best on the dark cardstock; the colors were the truest and most saturated. Shimmerz had a hard time on the dark cardstock, but I did like the results on the white cardstock. The Shimmer Paint did ok on the dark cardstock, but I still think the color was the best from the Twinkling H20s.

I did notice some of the “novelty” colors of Twinkling H20s don’t work as well on dark cardstock. For example, I tried Scarab Beetle on the brown cardstock; it looked turquoise. Then I tried it on the white cardstock; it looked brown, but when you shifted it, it had a turquoise sheen. Cool.

As for sparkle, the Twinkling H20s and Shimmer Paint did the best. Shimmerz was not as sparkly as I had hoped, and it got a little goopy, leaving large flakes of sparkle vs. an overall sheen.

I think this had to do with poor mixing by me, which is one reason I really like the Twinkling H20s. Because they’re dry to start out with, you don’t have to worry about mixing/shaking to ensure even distribution of the sparkling element.

After drying overnight, I found that all three were pretty permanent. Rubbing my finger over the shimmer only left me with a flew flecks of sparkle. There was some warping of my paper, but it quickly flattened out after I put it under some heavy books.

For my first project, I decided to try making a little swatch of background paper using Twinkling H20s. I like how I can layer the color to make it darker by just going over the same spot a few times. The colors also layered very nicely.

Another benefit of the dry nature of Twinkling H20s is you can control the color saturation by how much water you add. You can also tone down any colors by mixing them with the Oyster Twinkling H20.


Next, I added some water to my pot of Heavenly White, waited a few minutes and mixed it to a more paint-like consistency.


I then used a sponge dauber to add shimmer to my banner pieces, which I had embossed with snowflake pattern. I love how it highlights the embossing, as you can see in this before and after photo.


Here are some shots of my finished banner. I love how the Twinkling H20s give it a cool, wintry feel.

For my next project, I shimmered up a heart doily, also with Heavenly White.


I added it to my Valentine’s Day card. I also used the Champagne Shimmer Paint and a mask to add a border around my stamped image. That’s another of my favorite uses for these shimmering products.


Once I got started, I couldn’t stop shimmering! I used a paint brush to add some Heavenly White to the heart the little girl is holding, her petticoat, socks and to some of the words on the card.

I’m really glad I invested in Twinkling H20s; they’re a great addition to my shimmery products. Of the three products I tried out, they were my favorite for dark cardstock. I also liked using them on stamped images because I could control the consistency and color better than with the other two products.

Twinkling H20s are available in large individual 10 gram jars, large jar kits and mini Twinkler kits (5 gram jars). Prices range from $3.75 for large individual jars to $40 for 24-color mini kits. More than 150 colors are available.

They are available online through LumniArte and other stamping retailers.

Shimmerz is available in 42 colors, and other types of shimmery products are available including sprays. Stampin Up offers three colors (Champagne Mist, Frost White, and Platinum) of Shimmer Paint in .05 ounce jars for $5.95 each.

Pros:
  • All three add a nice, permanent shine and shimmer to projects.
  • Twinkling H20s, because they’re dry, don’t need to be mixed/shaken to ensure even distribution of the sparkly bits.
  • Twinkling H20s provide the best color on dark cardstock.
  • Even though the pots are small, the Twinkling H20s will last through many projects.
  • Using more or less water, you can control the amount of color from the Twinkling H20s.
  • Oyster can be used to lighten any color.

Cons:

  • All three can warp your paper, depending on how much product you use and the type of paper.
  • If you want to collect all the colors, these shimmery products can get pricey.
  • You won’t know when to stop and will up shimmering all your projects (not that there’s anything wrong with that).

What to you use to glam you your projects? Leave us a comment and let us know!

Disclosure

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Shimmerz, Blingz, and Spritz and how they compare

Reported by Megan Lock

Here’s a video demonstration of three different glittery media, so you can see them in action!

Now that you’ve seen the video, below is just a quick comparison of what I talked about:

Shimmerz and Blingz
Form: aqueous liquid in plastic pot with twist-on lid
Glitter Factor: very glittery, adds an intense amount of super fine glitteriness to image
Clarity: transparent with tinting of color
Ease of use: easy, just shake before use and use a regular paint brush, minimal clean up
Availability: not at large retailers, seen at some local craft stores.
Cost: $2.79-$3.95

This is a very cool product. It’s very unique and provides endless outlets for your creativity. You can use it on paper, but you can also it on almost all surfaces, metal, wood, fabric, felt, etc. One of my favorite techniques is to shimmer up some flower embellishments. You can also take your scrap paper, cover it with Shimmerz, and punch out different shapes for some beautiful embellishments, too. There are a lot of options with this product!

Also, this company produces Spritz, glittery, shimmery spray that you can spray onto the surface of your project, if you’d prefer to avoid the paintbrush. The spray provides a lot of glitter and shimmer, but it’s a little less dense than your average coating of the Shimmerz. If you like to support American based companies, you’ll be glad to know that these products are made here in the USA.

Pros:

  • use over colored image for REAL sparkle
  • can be used over variety of color mediums (copics, colored pencils, etc.)
  • variety of colors
  • made in the USA

Cons:

  • aqueous-based, use caution when using over water colors, can smear color
  • if used too heavily will cause paper to ripple

Twinkling H2Os
Form: solid cake in plastic pot with twist-on lid
Glitter Factor: mild and variable, more water = less glitter, less water = more glitter
Clarity: variable with quantity of water used, though on average provides deep, rich color with mild sparkle
Ease of use: moderate, requires water coloring skills, need to prep color before use
Availability: not at large retailers, seen at some local craft stores.
Cost: large pots $3.60 each, also available in kits.

Smooches
Form: liquid, about the consistency of nail polish, in plastic bottle with twist-on lid with applicator
Glitter Factor: mild, the silver gives more of a metallic finish than glittery
Clarity: opaque
Ease of use: easy, applicator included, no mess to clean up after use
Availability: not a large retailers, possibly at some local craft stores, though new product so availablity may be limited.
Cost: $4.50

Here are the products in action. I have three cards using each of these products.

This card shows the Twinkling H2Os used as water colors:

Gina K and Verve stamps

I used Shimmerz on Ketto’s dress:

Stamping Bella, Ketto

This close up shows some of the shimmer:



Lastly, I used the Smooches to color in the little dots on the Javabug’s dress and hat:

Stamping Bella, Huggabugs

Shimmerz and Luminarte also produce glitter or shimmer sprays to add more shimmer to your project. How do you use these products? Have your tried all of them? Do you have a favorite?
Click on the link at the top of the page to visit Craft Critique for comments, giveaways and more!

Twinkling H2Os by Luminarte

Reported by Tami Bayer

These fun little shimmery pots of watercolors are made by Luminarte. They come in two sizes, are non-toxic, acid free, and are available in 168 colors. The large pots retail for $3.70 each. These paints can also be purchased in sets of small 5 gram or large 10 gram pots with price varying depending on the size of the set. The pots now come with a see through lid, which is wonderful. I stored my old ones upside down so I could see the color. The new ones are so much better.

These paints can be used on many different surfaces and are safe for children. The website lists all of these surfaces as appropriate; paper, canvas, rocks, wood and even Easter eggs. I must admit that I’ve not tried real Easter eggs, but I love the idea of that. I’ve had good success with this product on paper and canvas.

My favorite way to use these paints is to spritz a bit of water into the pots, wait a couple of minutes for the paint to get soft. Then I use an aqua brush and color in stamped images. I prefer using embossed images so the paint stays in the lines. The paints can also be used direct to rubber giving a beautiful stamped image. I’ve also made beautiful backgrounds with them.

    What I don’t love about this product is that it takes some effort to use them. The pots all have to be opened individually and then spritzed and wait a bit. I find I don’t use them often because of the extra time factor. I’m into quick stamping. But, when I take the time I am always pleased with the results.

    Pros:

    • 168 colors available
    • beautiful shimmery effect
    • non-toxic, acid free

    Cons:

    • spendy at $3.70 per color
    • takes some time to prepare cakes for painting
    • doesn’t work on non-porous surfaces

    These paints retail for $3.70-$36 depending on the size of the set you purchase or if you purchase individually. If you’d like to add these paints to your collection, check first with your local scrapbook or stamping store. I’ve seen them in most every small shop I’ve visited. If you can’t find what you like there, then you can purchase online at Luminarte, Addicted to Rubber Stamps, or Frantic Stamper. I would rate this product 8 out of 10.

    I would love to hear if you tried this product and any tips you have to share with us.

    Click on the link at the top of the page to visit Craft Critique for comments, giveaways and more!