This Metal Leaf Alcohol Ink Project has been very popular at the stores this year. We’ve made them with the lights added or without. Some customers turn the leaf upside down (see photo at end of post) and some use other colors like greens or purples. You can have the inks create a more splotched look (dropping the alcohol blending solution on the inked leaf would do this) or you can make it more blended as this project is.

The point is that this “how-to” is just a starting off point. Here is how we did this specific project, but you can easily make it yours by changing colors, shape, or products.

The cool thing about Alcohol Inks is that you can’t really mess it up. They blend well and are easy to manipulate – especially with the Alcohol Blending Solution.

See 25 Ways to use Alcohol Inks >

Alcohol Ink Lighted Leaf Board

• Metal Leaf
Alcohol Inks (we used Butterscotch, Valencia and Metallic Gold from Tim Holtz)
• Tim Holtz Alcohol Blending Solution
• 12×12 Slat Board
Alcohol Ink Applicator Tool
30 ct Firefly Lights, battery operated with remote control
• Drill
• Permanent Pop-up Glue Dots
• Vinyl Rub-on Transfer

1. Drill a hole into the middle of the slatboard.

2. Add batteries to the light strand and fit into the corner of the slatboard. You can attach the battery case with glue or Velcro. If you use glue, make sure to attach it so you can access the case to change the batteries.pull light string through hole from the back

3. Arrange the string of lights in the the general shape of the leaf in the middle of the board. Hold the leaf over to make sure no lights are showing outside the leaf and when you have them how you want, glue down with glue dots or other adhesive (glue gun, Beacon 2 in 1 Adhesive, or E6000 would all work).

A customer applies the color by patting it on and blending it to get the desired look

4. Take your lightest color and drop dots of the alcohol ink on a blending tool and blend going from the middle out until desired look.

5. Add the second color and add to a separate applicator and apply from the edges toward the middle until desired look.

6. On a separate applicator tip add a few drops of Alcohol Blending Solution and use this to blend the two colors together until you get the look you like.

7. The final color, the metallic gold, is added last on this project, mostly done over the edges.

8. Once the leaf is dry (alcohol inks dry pretty quickly) attach to the board with glue dots. One glue dot is on the bottom on the leaf where a metal loop is attached. Place it on that loop. Place the other one at the top, you may need to add two. (Note, the environment where you hang this can affect the glue’s adhesiveness. You can add a glue like E6000 to the glue dots or use Beacon 2 in 1 or a glue gun to adhere it, too).

9. Once it’s all dry, turn the lights on and enjoy. The Firefly lights have a remote with a timer, and lots of light pattern options. Now you have a great festive fall decor piece for your home

You can also choose to make this without the lights.

Alcohol Ink on Leaf Project