Simple Stencil Background Using Distressed Oxide Ink

Does the idea of using stencils excite you and intimidate you all at the same time? Let me show you how to create a beautiful simple stenciled background using distressed oxide ink!

I have been super crazy about stencils lately.  Especially mandala stencils and oxide inks! I can't stop creating and the ideas are just pouring out! Let me show you how it is super easy to create a beautiful background using this stencil and your favorite distressed oxide inks.

Check out a blog post I did recently where I used water spray to create a neat effect on the background with distressed oxides and stencils.

For this card I decided to use My Favorite Things “Captivating Mandala” and my favorite colors of Tim Holtz's Distressed Oxide Inks in the blue color family.

This post contains some affiliate links for your convenience (which means if you make a purchase after clicking a link I will earn a small commission but it won’t cost you a penny more)! The income I make helps me with the expenses of this blog. Click here to read my full disclosure policy.


Supply List

Watch the video tutorial

Step by Step Instructions

Choose your distressed oxide ink colors

For this card I wanted to create an ombre effect with the blue color family.  The colors I choose in order were: Blueprint Sketch, Mermaid Lagoon, Peacock Feathers, & Broken China.

Choose your stencil

For this card, I choose the Captivating Mandala stencil from My Favorite Things.  But if that doesn't fancy you, then you might some of these other stencils.  These are some of my favorite mandala stencils.

Position the stencil on your paper

I am using the Neenah Solar Crest white paper here.  You will want to place your cardstock down on craft mat like this one from Ranger, or you could a glass media mat like the one that Tim Holtz makes.  Either one will work because you need a smooth surface to blend your inks on.  And these surfaces are super easy to clean up.

Position the stencil on your paper

Use the purple craft tape, from iCraft, to adhere the stencil to the paper and the craft mat so the stencil will not move when you start to blend the ink.

You will need a blending tool of some kind.  With this project I used Tim Holz's blending tool.  I like this tool because it is does not tend to leave striation marks with the blending of the ink.  And what's even more convenient is that you can use one blending tool for entire color family.  Since these inks are all in the blue color family, I only had to use one tool and I did not have to clean it after each use.

Blend the distressed oxide inks

Distressed oxide inks are very messy, so I suggest you use a piece of paper or a paper towel to hold down your stencil down.  After inking up your blending tool, start off the paper so you do not deposit a ton of ink in one spot on the paper.  Then do small circles over the stencil where you would like to lay down the ink.  In this case I decided to start at the bottom left corner of the stencil and make my way up and to the right corner.

Lift your stencil and admire the design!

Clean Up is a Snap!

Before reusing your stencil with different colored inks, be sure to clean your stencil and your work surface so you do not get ink on future cards.  If you are creating multiple cards of the same color, then it isn't as important to clean the stencil in between card,  but I would recommend at least clean your craft mat surface so you do not deposit unwanted ink on the back of your cards.  I just spray some stamp cleaner on the stencil and the craft mat and wipe up with a paper towel.  Easy Peasy!

Final Project

Download the PDF tutorial with all of the dimensions

Want access to my FREE Resource Library where I store all of my tutorials? Fill out the form below and you will receive instant access to my library as well as my weekly crafty newsletter.

Join the Sympathy Card Swap

Would love for you to join me in my Color Theme card swap that is taking place May 11, 2019. It's a mail in swap.  You can get details of the card swap here.

Want to save this Simple Stencil Background using Distressed Ink Tutorial for later? Save one of these pins to your favorite Pinterest Board!



  1. Diane Malik on May 19, 2019 at 1:07 am

    Beautiful! Thank you 🙂