Brew Up This Laboratory Halloween Card!

Hello crafters! It’s Anna-Karin from Layers of Ink here with a Halloween tutorial. I really enjoyed making a spooky laboratory with vials of weird stuff on the shelves. It’s easy to make using dies by Tim Holtz and a new fabulous surface.

I love to use transparent and translucent items, since they are great for building up layers and work for so many techniques. That’s why I was happy to see the new Thermoplastic Sheets. Each sheet can be die-cut, dry embossed, stamped and colored. Best of all, these sheets are heat-moldable. Once cooled, Thermoplastic keeps its shape perfectly. I thought it would look great combined with Tim’s Laboratory Set to create small dimensional bottles or vials.

  1. Start by die-cutting vials from a Thermoplastic Sheet using the Laboratory Set. Make this sandwich: Multipurpose Platform Tab 2, Cutting Pad, Thermoplastic Sheet, die facing down, second Cutting Pad.

  1. Use light shades of Ranger’s Alcohol Inks color the “glass” of the vials. Use an ink-blending tool with a felt pad.

  1. Add content to the vials by using stronger shades of alcohol ink, working on the same side as before. You can use more than one color and let them blend. Pounce several times with the felt applicator for a textured effect. Try to make it look like some of the content is bubbly or coming out as vapor. It’s lots of fun to color these.

  1. When the Thermoplastic is heated up, it becomes moldable. Work on one vial at a time on a heat-resistant surface. Place the plastic with the colored side down. Heat with a heat tool—being very careful not to burn yourself—and then shape the plastic. It doesn’t get that hot, but be careful nevertheless. If you are not happy with a shape, you can simply reheat and reshape.

  1. For the background, I used the skull design from Tim’s Mixed Media Halloween 2 set, and die-cut it twice from watercolor paper. You can also use another light-colored paper. The vials look nicest against a light color, otherwise you won’t see their colors as well.

  1. Smear Distress Ink (Antique Linen and Pumice Stone) on a non-stick craft sheet, mist with water and press the paper into the ink.

  1. Die-cut the shelf from the Laboratory Set from brown kraft core paper and sand slightly.

  1. Since the plastic vials are very lightweight they can be glued down by applying a tiny bit of Matte Medium along the edges that will touch the paper. The medium is invisible when dry.

  1. Here, I die-cut two small labels using the same Laboratory Set and stamped them with a tiny number stamp. This blue vial is maybe my favorite.

  1. Die-cut a sentiment using the Shadow Script Halloween Set and adhere below the shelves.

  1. You might see the dimension of the vials better in this photo. The Thermoplastic Sheets are so cool and have so much potential; I can’t wait to craft with them again soon.

Thank you so much for taking the time to look at this project!

Happy crafting!


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One thought on “Brew Up This Laboratory Halloween Card!”

  • Anne R

    Anna-Karin, your shelves and vials are fabulous!! That thermoplastic sheeting looks like it is amazing to work with. I love the way you 'filled' the vials too, they look so realistic! xx

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