Beautiful Card Design Ideas for Every Type of Craft Ink

Last Updated: August 7, 2023

Are you passionate about using inks to bring your craft projects to life? At Altenew, we share your love for inks, and it shines through our extensive collection of vibrant colors! From the allure of pigment inks to the brilliance of fresh dye inks, we are dedicated to providing you with a comprehensive range that spans the entire spectrum of the rainbow. Each type of craft ink possesses its own enchanting qualities, capable of creating mesmerizing effects on your cards, scrapbooks, and more. 

An orange flower card made with fresh dye inks

Fresh Dye Ink Pads

When it comes to cardmaking designs, the possibilities are endless, and it's always exciting to experiment with various inks to craft unique and stunning creations! In today's blog post, we invite you to explore the different kinds of craft inks: crisp dye inks, fresh dye inks, and pigment inks, and discover the captivating card designs that you can achieve with each of them. So, gather your supplies, put your crafting game on, and let's get inky! 

The Three Different Types of Craft Ink Available at Altenew

Before we delve into some cardmaking inspiration, let's take a second to talk about the differences between the three types of inks available for purchase on Altenew. How do you know which craft ink is the best for you? Take a look at the table below to see some of their differences: 

Fresh Dye Inks  Crisp Dye Inks Pigment Inks

Water-based ink; more colorfast than Crisp Dye Ink

Water-based ink; older line of Altenew inks Oil-based ink; perfect for mixed media projects

Perfect for watercoloring techniques and water-based effects

Perfect for watercoloring techniques and water-based effects Waterproof and fade-resistant; perfect for no-line watercoloring

Can be used as a watercolor paint; just smoosh some ink on a non-porous surface and use a wet brush

Can be used as a watercolor paint; just smoosh some ink on a non-porous surface and use a wet brush Can be used for heat embossing techniques and on other surfaces, such as fabric

Comes in new, modern, and vibrant colors; alongside old crisp dye ink colors

Comes in innovative ink families that Altenew became known for Comes in limited but unique colors for versatile use

Features round ink pads for portability, a bit smaller than oval ink pads

Features oval-shaped ink pads to help you cover larger areas more quickly Features rectangular ink pads

Super fast drying time

Super fast drying time Slower drying time

Easy to open and close lids for a non-tiring crafting process; fit snugly into your hand

Easy stackability of ink pads to help you save space Easy to create stunning ombre effects with the coordinated color families

Of course, it’s important to note that in the future, the Crisp Dye Inks will be retiring as they are replaced by Fresh Dye Inks - but don’t worry! There are still lots of Crisp Dye Inks and Re-Inkers in stock, and the change to Fresh Dye Inks will be gradual. 

Fun and Funky Fresh Dye Ink Card Ideas

When exploring the world of card design, there's nothing quite like the excitement of diving into a new batch of fresh dye ink colors! These vibrant and captivating ink pads hold an entire spectrum of possibilities just waiting to be unleashed onto your cardstock. If you're ready to embark on a journey of creativity, here are some inspiring card design ideas to try out with our new line of fresh dye inks:

A colorful fruit card made with the vibrant colors of fresh dye inks

Lemonade Party Ensemble

Take your card designs to the next level by pairing the beautiful and vibrant hues of fresh dye inks with stencils. We just love the modern and playful vibes of the Citrus Fruits Stencil Set! Nora's card surely quenches our thirst for stunning designs! 

A tropical toucan card filled with red and orange hues

Craft Your Life Project Kit

The Coral Red from the Deco Garden Fresh Dye Ink is a stunningly radiant red shade! Why not pair your brighter, fresh dye inks with some subtle-colored crisp dye inks? Dabbing and varying the pressure of your blending brush on the stencils will help add depth and dimension to your creations.

A vibrant green card featuring mandala flower designs

Green Fields Fresh Dye Ink

Like our Crisp Dye Inks, our Fresh Dye Inks also come in coordinated color families! This makes creating beautiful blends and cohesive color palettes on your projects easier. Especially for complicated designs like mandalas, choosing colors that don't clash with each is essential. For your next project, try making mandalas (with the Stampwheel) using colors from the same family will help create a harmonious look on your projects.  

A gorgeous boat ride ensemble

Boat Ride Ensemble

Have you noticed a pattern yet? Our designers love using the fresh colors of Fresh Dye Inks for summer-themed paper crafting projects! Of course, you can also use them for other projects, but the cheery colors of the current fresh dye ink sets remind us so much of tropical scenes! The blending of the blues from the Ocean Dreams Fresh Dye Ink 6 Mini Cube Set is perfect for mimicking a lake background, coupled with the Dotted Waves for added texture.  

Elegant and Classic Crisp Dye Ink Card Ideas

Fresh dye inks may be the new inks on the block, but there's nothing like the timeless looks of our good ol' Crisp Dye Inks! These vibrant and precise oval ink pads offer many possibilities, allowing you to create stunning and intricate designs that will leave a lasting impression. If you're ready to explore some card ideas for your crisp dye inks, here are some inspiring designs to spark your imagination: 

A floral card featuring two beautiful roses with hot pink fresh dye ink colors

Colorful Charisma Fresh Dye Ink Bundle

There's no denying it - Crisp Dye Ink colors are also gorgeous contenders! The convenient color families are perfect for creating realistic designs with layering stamps. Using different tone values of one color will help give dimension and depth to your projects instead of one-dimensional, flat images. Taking from Rubeena's example, the Cherry Blossom Crisp Dye Ink Oval Bundle is perfect for floral stamps! 

A large floral image featuring hot foil plate

Golden Days

This gorgeous red-themed card is perfect for a variety of occasions, including anniversaries, holiday cards, sympathy cards, and even Valentine's Day cards! Sometimes, you don't need that many colors - embrace the power of a single color palette by using different shades of Crisp Dye Inks. Create a monochromatic masterpiece by stamping various images, blending gradients, and adding subtle highlights and shadows. The result is a harmonious and sophisticated card design!  

PRO TIP: If you don't have coordinating ink colors, you can create a darker shade with just one ink pad. Just use repeated stamping to create a darker tone.

A gorgeously embossed card featuring blue and green crisp dye ink colors

Crisp Dye Inks

Here's a fun idea to do: create an awe-striking background for your card designs with embossing folders and Crisp Dye Inks! Simply choose two contrasting or complementary ink colors and ink-blend them on your background - you can play with different directions and patterns. Then, choose an embossing folder design to complement your ink colors.

Bold and Dramatic Pigment Ink Card Ideas

If you're craving a burst of intensity and impact in your card designs, look no further than bold and dramatic pigment inks. These rich ink pads hold the potential to create truly striking and unforgettable cards. Ready to make a statement? Here are some awe-inspiring card design ideas that will showcase the power of mixed-media pigment inks

A bright safari-themed like card featuring ink-blended colors

Obsidian Pigment Ink

Embrace the sheer intensity of pigment inks by using them to create solid-colored backgrounds. With just a few simple swipes of a brayer or an ink-blending tool, you can achieve a velvety, saturated look that demands attention. Whether you opt for a single vibrant color or create a gradient with complementary shades, the result will captivate, like Joy's sunset-like blending of solid colors for her card!

A breathtaking beach scene featuring a boat against a sea of white clouds

Cloud White Pigment Ink

Isn't Jennifer's card just absolutely breathtaking? Her expert use of the Cloud White Pigment Ink to create an ethereal ocean scene is just jaw-dropping! To make clouds from the Caribbean Dreams Die Set look like it was painted, apply the Cloud White Pigment Ink and some blue inks with a gentle hand using a sponge dauber or an ink blending tool, softly blending it onto the cardstock. The result is a whisper-soft backdrop that sets the stage for the rest of your design!

A beautiful pigment ink card made with ink-smooshing techniques

Vibrant and Highly-Pigmented Mixed Media Inks

Elevate your ink-smooshing techniques by incorporating the glamor of Enchanted Gold Pigment Ink! The infusion of shimmering gold accents adds a touch of elegance to your cards. After applying your desired colors using the ink smooshing technique, take a gold pigment ink pad and lightly press it onto your card. The combination of vibrant hues and metallic accents will leave a lasting impression on anyone who beholds your creation!

Another idea is to combine the allure of heat embossing with the captivating effects of pigment ink smooshing. Begin by heat embossing a bold and intricate design onto your card using clear embossing powder. Then, apply the pigment inks through the ink smooshing technique, allowing the colors to intermingle with each other. Watch as the embossed areas resist the ink, leaving behind a striking contrast that adds dimension and visual interest!

Get Your Hands Inky With These Lovely Card Ideas!

Overall, the world of card design is brimming with endless possibilities when it comes to utilizing various craft inks. Whether you're exploring the vibrant and fresh colors of dye inks or delving into the bold and dramatic realm of pigment inks, the key is to let your creativity shine. Experiment with different techniques such as gradient blending, watercolor effects, stenciling, embossing, and splattering to bring your card designs to life!

A pretty orange hue-themed card made with the best fresh dye inks for crafting!

Golden Sunset Fresh Dye Ink

If you want more inspiration, you can always drop by the Altenew Blog for more wow-worthy project ideas and card designs. Happy crafting!  

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