Transfer Gel by Artisan Enhancements is a product that enables you to make funky pieces that others have done by hand in the past. It is a transparent fibrous gel that you apply over an image that you printed from either a laser jet printer you have at home or work or a professional printed image from your local CopyMax or copying store. Both black & white images and color images work perfectly with this gel. This item is a quart; also comes in an 8 ounce jar.
So, how does the Transfer Gel work?
Well, first you find an image you love! Reference The Graphics Fairy
for inspiration! She has amazing images that are free!
Then print your image to the correct size and remember to make it in the reverse that you want to see it. This is especially important if transferring lettering, otherwise the wording will be backwards!
Next, lay your printed image onto your painted piece, ink side down.
If you can lay your furniture down so the image is facing up - for example, if doing a dresser front - consider laying the dresser on its back. This is not necessary, but if you have a small piece, do it.
Apply the Transfer Gel by brush to the area that your image is going to be applied to. Next, apply some Transfer Gel to the side of the printed image you want transferred to your piece. You will use quite a bit of it covering the whole image in a uniform way. To give you a rough idea of how much Transfer Gel you will use => for an 8 X 10 print out we used about a tablespoon for each step noted above. (2 tablespoons total)
Again, your image is face down so the printed image is facing the furniture, not you. And one last reminder, make sure the print is mirror imaged.
Use a smoothing tool to adhere paper evenly to surface. I like the plastic scraper that I received with my Pampered Chef baking stone, but even an old plastic library card works.
Allow your printed paper to fully dry to assure the image has transferred. It is best to leave it overnight, or even 24 hours depending on the temperature and moisture in your area. (Don't try to rush this, otherwise it will be like taking a cake out of the oven after half the time it needs.) Some have shared that you can rush it by using a hairdryer, but I suggest you be patient and only use a hair dryer at the very end.
OK, now comes the best part: I like to say, "the Christmas Morning moment!"
Spritz the paper with water liberally, then using a sponge or cloth remove/rub away paper from the image. Now it is VERY IMPORTANT that you do not over work the removal of the paper since you could start to remove the transfer. So, approach this carefully and go slowly.
As always, it is best to test a small spot to make sure that the drying was totally completed.
Some have shared that if you get a funny outside haze circle, (that may be called a halo) after you have removed the paper, just lightly sand the edges of the image with a fine grit paper like 300 or 400 grit. Just like dark cars show more dirt, dings and scratches, this halo effect seems more evident on darker colored painted pieces.
Think of Transfer Gel as being almost like Decoupage medium.....meaning - it does not necessarily need a top coat. However- if you want to top coat it- consider using the Artisan Enhancements Clear Topcoat Sealer OR just seal it with Annie's Clear Wax.
Transfer Gel can be used over paint on furniture, wood, walls, and any previously painted nonporous surfaces.
Seal container tightly and do not let freeze or expose to direct sunlight or extreme heat. Do not apply product when air and surface temperatures are below (50°F) 10°C.
ALWAYS test this on a small project prior to use...and note that some people either LOVE it...and some ......have a difficult time with it.