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Inked Edges PLUS: A Photoshop Tutorial

Good morning everyone!! It is Monday and guess what?? It’s tutorial time!  Let me first say thank you to all of you that left me a sweet comment last week..boy was it nice to find out  that you ladies are reading these tutorials, and even nicer to find out that you all ENJOYED them!I was walking on clouds all week so thank you all for your feedback!

I had two great suggestions from my readers on some tutorials they would personally like to see and, because they were both pretty easy and relatively short, I thought I would bring them BOTH to you today!

Berniek wrote last Monday and said she would love to know how to get those great inky edges that paper scrappers get by using the ink pad on the edges of the paper. If you are not familiar with this technique, or are wondering WHY would you want to  ink the edges of your papers and elements, the short answer is because it can add a lot depth to your layouts, and really help those papers and elements stand out!  While inking the edges of our paper layouts is pretty easy, inking the edges of out digital layouts is even easier…and WAY less messy! There are many different techniques that are used to achieve this look, but I am going to show you the one I use the most, so let’s get started!

To begin, open your  paper or an element such as a tag, photo mat or even a label that you would like to do your inking on. I will be using a label from Mye’s Signs of Spring kit.

Once your element or paper is open, go to Layer> Layer Styles> Inner Glow.

Once you select Inner Glow, the Layer Style dialogue box will appear and this is where we will make all the adjustments we need in order to “ink” our edges! We will be making the first adjustments in the Structure Section.

First, choose the Color of your shadow by clicking on the colored square in the structure section. When the Color Picker Dialogue screen appears,  choose the color of the “ink” you want to use. For the most part I use a dark brown or black to ink my edges, UNLESS I am inking in the same color family.

Choose a blending mode by clicking on the arrow and then selecting a blending mode from the drop down menu. I personally like to use the color burn mode, but you can play around with it and try them all!

Next, select your Opacity and using the slider tool change it to around 70%. This is the opacity I use if I am going to use a brown or black based edge. If I choose to “ink” it in a darker shade of the element, I will adjust the opacity appropriately. For instance, If I have a light pink label, then I will select a dark pink “ink” and set the opacity to 72-75%.

Change your Noise slider to 35-40%. This is a VERY important step because this is the selection that makes your edges look like they were inked in real life. The Noise feature makes it look speckled and not full on color.  I set mine to between 35-40%.


Now we will adjust the “Elements” part of the Layer Style dialogue box.


Select Softer from the Technique drop down menu. I like this setting because it softens the edges of the Inner Glow.

Make sure that Edge is selected for your Source.

Choke shrinks the boundaries of the matte of an Inner Glow before blurring. You can play around with this setting and find one that works the best for you, but I set mine somewhere between 1-7%

 Next, you will choose the Size you want your Inner Glow. Again, play around with this setting to find the perfect fit for your paper or element. I like anywhere from 15-20%.

Finally, in the Layers Styles dialogue box, we are going to change the settings on the Quality Section.

Check the Anti-aliased box in the Quality section.  Anti-aliasing takes a hard edge and slightly blurs it so it doesn’t have a “jagged” look.

Next, select a contour setting by clicking on the arrow and choosing one from the drop down menu. This is probably one of THE most important setting we will choose today because the contour box chooses the shape of the Inner Glow effect over a given range.  I suggest you try them all so that you can see HOW they look on the page, but my two favorite go to choices are Log and Half Round.

Set Range to about 40-50%. Range controls which portion (or range) of the glow is targeted for the contour. If you just want the edges..the # goes higher, but if you want it to creep more into the middle,  make that # lower.

Set your Jitter to around the same setting.  Jitter varies the application of a gradient’s color and opacity. Now push OK to accept the changes.

Now, you can leave it as is and have your newly “inked” edges, OR for added depth, you can add an Inner shadow in order to add a little bit more color and I think it kind evens it out a little!

Here is my newly “inked” label!

And that is IT!!! easy huh?? Adding these inked edges to your elements and paper gives it that real life look that we are always striving to achieve without the mess of those ink pads!  Enjoy!!


Saving On Line Tutorials

Valerie stopped by the blog this week and asked me if  I had a quick tutorial on saving  these and other on line tutorials so that she could go back and read them whenever she wished. I did not have one, but I decided it was probably a good idea that I share it with you! After all, if one of you asks me, there are usually 10 more of you who are just too shy to ask!

The best way to save online tutorials for future use is to copy and save them into a word processing program like Word Perfect or Microsoft Word, so go ahead and open that program, whichever it may be and create a blank document.

Next, go to your online tutorial and select everything you want printed by clicking on the title and dragging all the way to the bottom of the tutorial. Once you do this, your selection will be highlighted!

Then, right click on the highlighted section and select Copy from the fly out menu.

Now, select your word processor’s blank document and click on the open document until you see your blinking cursor. Hit CTRL V (paste) and your copied selection will appear on the new document.

It is at this time that I take the opportunity to give the correct credit and information on the tutorial I just copied.

Under the title, I will put the date that the tutorial was published, who authored the tutorial and where I found it. That way, if I ever needed to locate it on the web, I can find it right away! Once you enter the information that you will need to keep track of it, you can save it to your computer for future viewing!

Well, that is it for this Monday morning! I hope that both tutorials answered some of your questions and thank you again ladies for telling me what YOU want to see!  Remember, if there is anything that YOU have been dying to know..just leave a comment and you may being seeing a custom made tutorial….just for you! See you next week!


comments +

  1. connie miles says:

    Regarding “saving online tutorials” – You can copy and paste the text but not the photos or illustrations. Do you have a trick that will also save the photos?

    • Tamara says:

      Connie..the images should copy as well when you highlight the whole selection, right click and hit COPY. Make sure that you hit CTRL V when you go to your word processing program and EVERYTHING should copy over! If it does not, you can copy each image individually and add them in one at a time by right clicking on the image and selecting Copy Image then pasting it in the word processing document. This would take longer..but if you can’t get the other way to is an alternative.

  2. Donna Espiritu says:

    yes you can save the images too. when you highlight the post the images in between should be included when you copy and paste it on the word document…

  3. […] the original post : HERE find-out, first-say, last-week-boy, […]

  4. Berniek says:

    Thank you so much Tamara! This is just what I was looking for and you make it look so easy!And I am sure that there are even more people reading, trying out and loving your tutorials!!! I’m glad knowing this made you so happy!

  5. Christy says:

    These are great tips- thank you!

  6. Bethany says:

    Just as I finished reading the inked edges tutorial, I thought, “I must print this!” Saving info a document is a much better idea! I love photoshop tricks like these!

  7. valerie says:

    Thanks. I thought this is what I was doing and I wasn’t getting the images. Then today I realized, I was trying to copy from the email not the website. once I copied from the website into word then it worked. No wonder, sometimes I could copy and somtimes I couldn’t!
    thanks. and thanks for both tutorials!

  8. JeannieK says:

    I really look forward to your tutorials every week Tamara! I use PSE8, so not all of them work for me – like today’s ink edging. Sometimes there is a work around, so it’s a great learning experience to see if I can figure it out. Elements does not have the capability of adjusting inner glow layer styles so I”m seeing a need to move to the CS version! Which is not a bad thing! 🙂

    • Tamara says:

      I am so glad you like the tutorials Jeannie! I will be adding a PSE version of this tutorial for you and other PSE users…soon!

  9. Carla Peterson says:

    Thanks so much for the tutorial. I love tutorials because they help me learn to do more with my scrapbooking.Would it be possible for you to do one where you put the main picture in the background (It’s hazzy) and then the picture itself in the front. Sorry, I don’t know what it is called.

    • Tamara says:

      Carla…I think i know what you are saying…you want to see the blended photo in the background and then the same photo scrapped in the foreground right?? Have you checked out my blended photo tutorial yet? Because I think that is what you are looking for!

  10. Claudia says:

    Hi Tamara,
    I also follow your tutorials and learn a lot of it. I have another system for keeping tracks of tutorials. In Google Reader i’ve made a tag ”tutorials”. Sites that have nice tutorials, like yours, i’ve added to my Google Reader. Once a week I check this folder. When I see a tutorial I like I pin it on Pinterest. On Pinterest I have a collection of tutorials by subject. You can see it here:
    A quick and easy way to make a collection of beautiful tutorials!

    Love from Holland,

    • Mye says:

      Claudia..that is also a great idea! Just remember that if you keep them just as a link and not as a hard copy, that you are up to the mercy of the writer. I have gone back to tutorials that I liked years ago..and the pictures are gone..or the whole post is!!

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I'm Mye De Leon

I'm a mom with a desire to give the best for her family and turned a lettering hobby into a multi6-figure business. These days, I eat strategy for breakfast and turn other businesses into successful empires.

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I'm Mye


My business is to help your business generate more revenue so you can be who you want to be.

I'm Mye


My business is to help your business generate more revenue so you can be who you want to be.